House of Cards season 6 is now on Netflix, and you may want to take your time watching it, because these eight episodes mark the final season of the show. Former lead Kevin Spacey was excised from House of Cards following allegations of a sexual assault, so Robin Wright's Claire Underwood steps into the lead as the new President of United States - who may be even more ruthless than her late husband.
This is the end of an era for Netflix, as House of Cards was the first ever original series produced by the streaming service. House of Cards season 1 debuted in February 2013, and the hype surrounding the show played a key role in attracting subscribers. Netflix has since rapidly expanded its slate of original content, but has also been doing some trimming of late, with shows like Iron Fist, Luke Cage, and Sense8 getting cancelled. Let's take a look at why House of Cards' sixth season will be its last, and whether there's any hope of renewal in the future.
House of Cards Season 6 Was The Final Season
The announcement that House of Cards season 6 would be the final season came a mere day after Buzzfeed published an article in which actor Anthony Rapp alleged that Spacey had tried to have sex with him at a party when Rapp was just 14 years old. Though not explicitly stated, it seems pretty clear that the scandal was the death knell for the series.
Obviously Netflix couldn't have foreseen the allegations against Spacey, and his exit was complicated by the fact that the House of Cards season 5 finale had overtly set up a sixth season of "Claire vs. Frank." In a strategic move, Frank had resigned from the presidency with the goal of being pardoned by Claire, who succeeded him as President. However, Claire wasn't interested in being dragged down by her husband's tarnished name, and instead claimed her new leadership role with a steely-eyed declaration of, "My turn."
House of Cards season 6 does manage to cleverly pivot from the direction indicated by the end of season 5. When the final season begins, Frank Underwood is already dead, having mysteriously passed away in his bed, and Claire has some new enemies to deal with instead.
Netflix Is Unlikely To Make House of Cards Season 7
When it comes to possible TV show revivals, the general rule is "never say never." Netflix itself has revived cancelled TV shows like Arrested Development and Gilmore Girls, and picked up British Channel 4 series Black Mirror when it was on the verge of cancellation. However, it seems unlikely that Netflix - which values its original content very highly - would ever allow House of Cards to continue on another platform like Amazon or Hulu, and Netflix itself seems unlikely to continue the show.
Which can only mean that President Claire Hale's rule will be effectively everlasting. Quite a scary thought!