Frank and Claire’s marriage
America’s most terrifying couple begin season four estranged, with Claire hiding out at her dying mother’s Texan ranch while plotting her own political uprising with her new aide Leann.
Initially she wants to represent her home state in Congress, but is told that she is too “lily-white” to be elected in the southern state.
Emboldened rather than deflated, she tells Frank that she wants to be his running mate.
He tries to shut her down, but she threatens that she “can be a part of your campaign, or [she] can end it”, and threatens him with divorce.
Frank gets shot
During a campaign rally Frank goes to greet a crown of angry protestors.
Unbeknown to him, Lucas Goodwin, who was recently released from prison, is hiding in the crowd and on a mission to expose Frank as a murderer.
Goodwin shoots at Frank and is shot dead by Edward Meechum, who is also killed in the crossfire.
Frank has three-quarters of his liver removed, and his life hangs delicately in the balance for several episodes while he awaits a transplant.
House of Cards: Most shocking moments
Tue, February 7, 2017
House of Cards: Here are Frank and Claire's most shocking moments.
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The most shocking moments in Netflix drama House of Cards
Meanwhile, Claire heads back to the White House to guide Frank’s inept Vice President Donald Blythe.
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During a press conference, she brazenly shares Goodwin’s suicide note in which he accuses Frank of killing Zoe Barnes and Peter Russo.
Claire brushes the note off and brands Goodwin “troubled” and “mentally ill”.
Frank hallucinated about Zoe, who he killed in season 2
While in a coma, Frank experiences a series of strange hallucinations.
In one he follows a woman – assumed to be Claire out of a limo and into the White House.
When she turns around the woman is revealed to be Zoe Barnes, who begins seducing him in the Oval Office.
Things take a violent turn when she begins pushing her thumbs into his eyes,
Suddenly Peter Russo appears and begins kissing Zoe, while in real life Frank goes into a seizure.
Frank and Claire reunited after Frank was shot
Claire reconnected with her dying mother
Frank and Claire reunite
Frank’s life is saved when he receives a new liver after Doug blackmails the Secretary of Health to push him up the transplant list.
While the surgery is happening, Claire is on a flight to the G7 meeting with Blythe and Secretary of State Heather Durant.
She refuses to turn around and continues on to the meeting, where she brokers a deal with Russian President Petrov.
On her return to Washington Claire initially avoids visiting Frank.
They are eventually reunited when Frank is moved to the White House, and she agrees to rejoin as First Lady and as his wife.
She later embarks on an affair with scriptwriter Tom Yates, which Frank encourages.
Remy and Jackie continued their affair
Remy and Jackie
Throughout the season Remy and Jackie continue their illicit affair.
Leann discovers their relationship and blackmails Remy into helping Claire by meeting with Raymond Tusk to hammer out a US-China energy deal.
Jackie is against the new deal and ends things with Remy when she finds out that he has been protecting her from blackmail.
At the end of the season, Jackie leaves her husband and the lovers are reunited.
Frank and Claire put on a facade while they are estranged at the beginning of the season
Claire becomes Frank’s running mate
Throughout the series Frank refuses to entertain Claire’s request to be his running mate.
But after their reconciliation they head to the Democratic National convention where the party chooses its presidential and vice presidential nominees.
Early on, a Kentucky senator planted by Frank places a single vote for Claire for vice president.
Claire acts flattered and insists that she is throwing her weight behind Durant, but arranges for a journalist to leak details about the G7 meeting that damage Durant’s chances.
Texas casts all of its votes to its “native daughter” Claire, thanks to some scheming from Leann.
In retaliation, Durant arranges for her home state to nominate her for president, putting Frank’s spot on the ticket in jeopardy.
Frank suspends the DNC to deal with a terror threat and to formulate a plan. Meanwhile, Claire heads back to the ranch to be with her dying mother.
At the White House, Durant threatens to endorse Frank’s former rival Heather Dunbar, who withdrew from the race after the media found out that she had met with Goodwin.
Frank snaps and admits to murdering Peter and Zoe. “It’s all true. I killed them, but nobody believes it,” he says, wielding a sharp letter opener. “That’s how good we are.”
Terrified, Durant takes the hint and drops out of the race, handing the election ticket to the Underwoods.
Will Conway emerges as Frank's biggest threat
After clinching the Democratic nomination Frank focuses on taking down his Republican rival Will Conway.
Conway is an ex-military man who claims that his service background makes him the only person who can defeat ICO – the show’s fictional version of ISIS.
Frank tries to derail Conway’s campaign by bringing up his connection with Pollyhop, a search engine which gives Conway access to voter data.
But when his efforts fail, Leann and Claire convince Frank to go “one step further” by authorising massive domestic data surveillance.
Frank comes up against ICO
In the final two episodes, Frank is forced to work with Conway after terrorists take a US family hostage and say that they will only speak with the Republican.
Conway believes that the family will die anyway, but jumps at the opportunity to milk some coverage.
He arrives at the White House with his beautiful British wife, Hannah, and their two children.
Hannah and the First Lady bond initially, but their tentative friendship is broken when Hannah asks if Claire regrets not having had children. Claire coldly replies: “Do you regret having them?”
After Conway pulls some dirty tricks, Frank arranges for ICO’s leader to be moved from Guantanamo Bay to a safe house in Virginia where Claire is now waiting, putting the ball back in the Underwoods’ court.
ICO release two of the hostages, leaving Conway furious that he will not be able to claim credit for their release.
Frank then puts ICO through to their leader, who snaps and tells the terrorists to kill the remaining hostage.
Tom Hammerschmidt surprised Frank in the finale
While dealing with the ICO situation, Frank learns that journalist Tom Hammershcmidt has produced a long list of allegations against him.
Throughout the season, Hammerschmidt had been investigating Frank’s corruption and knows about his connection to Zoe Barnes.
Frank admits to leaking stories to Zoe but denies all of the other allegations, but it is not enough to stop Hammerschmidt from going public.
Claire broke the fourth wall for the last time in the finale
'We make the terror'
With just three weeks until the election, all seems lost for the Underwoods until Claire proposes a change in tact.
She tells Frank: “I’m done trying to win over people’s hearts…we can work with fear.”
Frank appears on TV to declare that the US is now at war with ICO, purposefully striking fear to ensure his re-election.
The season ends with Claire breaking the fourth wall for the first time ever, as Frank rallies: “We don’t submit to terror, we make the terror.”
House of Cards season five arrives on Netflix on Tuesday, May 30.