Netflix House of Cards less tainted by spurious, probably misremembered racism than original

Ed Williamson

4th January 2013

A friend of mine once bumped into Ian Richardson, star of the BBC series House of Cards. He apparently said something disconcertingly racist.

Racist in the sense of being a bit old-fashioned and set in one's ways, rather than any sort of impassioned entreaty to ethnic cleansing. In the same way that my grandfather was generally mistrustful of the Japanese, but would've have cheerfully talked to everyone had he somehow ended up in Tokyo. But still, a bit racist.

I should temper this by saying that it was at least 15 years ago, that my friend is far from a reliable witness, and that I might even be misremembering it myself. But this is the internet. That's more than enough to tarnish a dead man's good name.

Kevin Spacey would never say anything racist: he'd be too busy doing his awesome Al Pacino impression or just being an all-round great guy. He is, however, starring in the equivalent role in the David Fincher-directed House of Cards remake. It's exclusive to Netflix, who are releasing the whole 13-episode first season at once on February 1st. I like this idea; it's consistent with the way people watch TV these days (to the extent that I found watching Homeland in weekly instalments on Channel 4 last year quite a charmingly quaint process) and it'll be interesting to see how it takes off.

I just hope it's not too racist.

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