Robin Wright and Kevin Spacey in a scene from season five of House of Cards.
Robin Wright and Kevin Spacey in a scene from season five of House of Cards. David Giesbrecht

House of Cards: Is a sixth season necessary?

WARNING: Spoilers ahead for Season 5 of House of Cards.

Some adroit manoeuvring during Season 5 of House of Cards raises the question: Is it time to end the popular Netflix series?

Executive producers Frank Pugliese and Melissa James Gibson revealed to The Hollywood Reporter that they chose to end the season as a possible finale - with Vice President Claire Underwood (Robin Wright), assuming the presidency after President Underwood's (Kevin Spacey) resignation, and turning to the camera to say: "My turn".

Ending the show right there is not the worst idea in the world. Throughout its run, Underwood has never met serious opposition to his rule, except from his wife. Now that she has refused to pardon him following another act of political malfeasance, they are enemies. Season 6 would lead to their death match.

In some ways, House of Cards has been a victim of its own success. Sensing they were onto something irresistible as Frank offed one character after another with malicious glee - there goes, Peter Russo! ta-ta, Zoe Barnes! - the writers kept serving up more low-hanging fruit in the first two seasons (the show debuted with a 26-episode order), for Frank to pick and crush with his bare hands.

Take this season's threat, pretty-boy Governor Will Conway (Joel Kinnaman), who campaigned against Frank for president and appeared victorious until Underwood rigged the election. Conway had the right image for the office but lacked the necessary Machiavellian backbone to engineer a lasting coup.

Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright in a scene from season five of House of Cards.
Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright in a scene from season five of House of Cards. David Giesbrecht / Netflix

House has provided star and executive producer Spacey with no shortage of meaty, moustache-twirling scenes to chew and spit out. But without creator Beau Willimon, who left the show after Season 4, what has happened since has been more of the same, with progressively less impact. It took at least six episodes for anything juicy to happen this season.

Even worse, Frank is beginning to repeat himself. In a nod to the Season 2 Barnes murder, he pushed poor Secretary of State Kathy Durant (Jayne Atkinson) down a staircase in the White House. Now that stalwart Underwood soldier Doug Stamper (Michael Kelly) has confessed to killing Barnes and been placed under house arrest, it seems that Frank will never be caught.

The only good twists this season have come from Claire, whose pillow-talk confessional of Frank's crimes to her lover Tom Yates (Paul Sparks) served as a death knell for the clueless stud-for-hire. He should have boarded the first fast train out of Washington D.C. after she was done spilling her guts. When she finally finished him off, watching him die of poisoning as they were having sex, and then leaving his corpse behind for someone else to dispose of, Claire reached new depths of depravity.

House of Cards has made its point about absolute power. While it would be entertaining to see Claire and Frank go at each other, like Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner in The War of the Roses, or on a much higher plane, Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? we have probably seen enough. The end of the story writes itself. Claire, the gorgeous icicle with the heart of lead, would surely trounce Frank.

House of Cards is available on Netflix.

This article was originally published on The New York Post