'House of Cards' Season 2, episode 11: Poor Doug Stamper, Frank is his only friend

michael-kelly-house-of-cards-kevin-spacey.jpg Warning: Do not keep reading if you haven't watched the first 11 episodes of "House of Cards" Season 2. On tap Monday (March 3), "Chapter 24."

Where we are:

A special prosecutor, Dunbar, has been appointed to investigator Xander Feng, Raymond Tusk, the Lanagin casino and whatever ties they may have had to the president and/or vice president. Tusk has promised Lanagin safety and money if he'll testify against Frank, so Doug's trip to the casino comes to light.

It doesn't look good -- Feng is laundering money through the casino, and it remains to be seen if the prosecutor thinks it's Tusk or the president who is benefiting from it. Tusk decides he needs to swing things in his favor, so he sends Remy out to dig up dirt on Jackie Sharp. Remy talks to Havemeyer and finds out just exactly how Sharp got the majority whip position in the House.

Remy uses it to threaten Jackie: Meet with Frank and then say he pressured her about her testimony, or they'll go public about Havemeyer and she'll lose her seat in the midterms. Jackie doesn't cave, telling Remy she was right when she thought she meant nothing to him.

Weirdly, Remy's first reaction is that one thing has nothing to do with the other. How dense is he? You think you can have feelings for a woman one minute then ruin her career the next minute and they're unconnected? If you can do that to a person, you didn't feel very strongly for them in the first place, pal.

Anyway, Frank decides to go on the offensive now that Doug's trip to Kansas City has been outed, so he and president (under Frank's advice, of course) release their travel logs to the prosecutor, revealing every trip, no matter how small, since they took office. President Walker's visits to the minister at his sick friend's house raise a red flag, because it's a private address that he's been visiting regularly.

It seems at this point, with two episodes to go, that Frank is manuevering himself into the presidency, right? We wonder if at some point, Frank will make an audience aside where he tells us this has been the plan since he was snubbed for secretary of state. *snort*

The marriage counseling thing was obviously a gigantic set-up by Lord and Lady Macbeth here, but you have to wonder when Frank was planning on using it to hurt the president. Frank has said (not just to "public" people, but to his wife, so you know he's being truthful) that this investigation is a little scary because they don't know which way it will come out. Frank can't control it, and they could all go down.

Throwing the president to the wolves ("fresher meat," as Frank says) is obviously the plan now, but it can't have been the plan for very long.

In other news, the Underwoods seduce Meechum (called it), and Doug finally cuts Rachel out of his life, though it's really sad when he comes to talk to Rachel and finds her in flagrante delicto with her new "fellowship" friend.

What do you suppose the last two episodes hold? The president going down in flames because he sought marriage counseling (which, to be honest, seems like a bit of a stretch) and Frank taking the office?

Best Lines:

Frank
: "When you're fresh meat, kill and throw them something fresher."

Frank: "I feel exposed. The skin where my ring used to be. Even Achilles was only as strong as his heel."

Frank: "I've never given someone a third chance ... until this very moment."

Photo/Video credit: Netflix