In what is sure to go down in history as the most momentous leak since the Pentagon Papers, Netflix yesterday released ten out of 13 episodes from Season 3 of House of Cards, a full two weeks before the show’s February 27 premiere date. Netflix apologized for the “mistake,” which it attributed to a bug. Obviously, some sort of subversive political maneuvering was at play. The new season was available for about 25 minutes — enough time to get halfway through a single episode — before Netflix took it down, but that didn’t stop enterprising fans from screen-grabbing and GIF-ing their way through key plot points. Based on official episode summaries that are now plastered all over the Internet, here is what we were able to glean about House of Cards Season 3.
1. Claire makes a bid for the UN
Episode 1: “A rocky start for the Underwood presidency. Frank wants to introduce an ambitious jobs program, while Claire sets her sights on the United Nations.”
2. Russia is going to be this season’s China.
Episode 3: “The Russian president’s state visit becomes a cold war of wills, and some punks heat things up.”
Episode 4: “Claire bypasses Russia at the UN.”
Episode 5: “Claire spars with a Russian ambassador.”
Episode 10: “Frank needs to deal with Petrov [the Russian President, maybe?] one on one, while Claire tries to preserve the peacekeeping mission. Sacrifices must be made.”
3. There will be a hurricane, and it will be troublesome.
Episode 8: “A hurricane endangers more than just the entire East Coast, and Frank must make a difficult choice.”
4. There is unrest in the Middle East, which, above all else, is a massive inconvenience for the President. Also, Frank might be running for another term in office.
Episode 9: “The Jordan Valley erupts in chaos just as Frank’s campaign is picking up steam. Claire gets disturbing intel and counsels him.”
5. Frank has an encounter with God, or possibly Raymond Tusk.
Episode 4: “Frank tries to outmaneuver a potential challenger and ends up face to face with a higher power.”
6. Claire makes a high-stakes political move…
Episode 6: “Frank and Claire travel to Moscow to negotiate the return of an imprisoned US Citizen. Claire takes a stand that jeopardizes their plans.”
7. … And causes grave, but mysterious, damage.
Episode 7: “The damage is done, and the Underwoods must repair it, but deep wounds don’t heal fast and sometimes not at all.” WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?!
8. The Colbert Report still exists in House of Cards Land
This spoiler comes courtesy of the folks at Vox, who managed to watch the first episode of the new season: “Frank, newly president, goes on The Colbert Report.” I never thought I would say this about the cold, cruel world that is Frank Underwood’s Washington, but I want to go to there.
9. Frank pees on his father’s grave while breaking the fourth wall.
10. THIS IS A MAJOR SPOILER. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.
Doug Stamper isn’t dead, despite getting a brick lobbed at his head in the final episode of Season 2.
He also receives an ominous “Get Well Soon” card from the Underwoods that reads: “We had cleaners come by. Thought you should come back to a tidy home.” Shiver.