The creators of House of Cards (2013) have consciously based many elements of the show on Shakespeare's history plays. According to Robin Wright, “the way it was displayed to us, long before Episode 1 was ever written in Season 1, was you are Lady Macbeth to [Kevin Spacey]'s Richard III.”
The ambitious, dark complicity between the Underwoods recalls the relationship of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, while Frank's addressing the camera with satisfied updates on his crafty plans reminds us of the self-confessing villain Richard III.
Daniel D'Addario of Salon.com asserts that “viewed years from now, House of Cards may look like a history play about our era’s utter disconnect between government and citizenry. Its flaws — the degree to which, for a show about politics, the politics themselves are pretty unreal — may indeed be assets in depicting the national level of confidence in government…the show gets at power by depicting not its effect on a nation but its effect on a single person. Perhaps, like Shakespeare, the writers of House of Cards have captured their times in a manner that future generations might study."
Far from hiding these parallels, the shows makes its inspiration clear from the start to underline the no-holds-barred ambition at the center of the marriage between Frank and Claire and the peculiar, vanity-fueled deviousness of the ever-confessing Frank.