Tuesday, March 4, 2014
House of Cards (Claire) shows abortion regret followed by defiance
Claire Underwood played by Robin Wright is not quite as ruthless as her husband but a close second. In the 13th episode of season 1, we see a glimpse of abortion regret. Claire and Frank have been married 27 years and no children. We don't immediately know why, but Claire starts to have dreams about children, specifically a girl, being caught in vines and she is unable to reach her. Who is she talking about? They don't have children. Then she wonders aloud to Frank what they will leave behind. You know she is talking about children.
There are brief mentions of her starting to go through menopause. A few scenes later, she is consulting with a doctor and you get the impression she is discussing the possibility of having children at her age. Is this a fertility doc or an IVF clinic? Here we find out that she has had three abortions. No further explanation but she looks sad as she relays that information to the dr.
Abortion regret....it sure looks that way.
On to season two we find out more about the abortions. During an interview she gives into the pesky reporter who keeps pressing her on the issue of why no children. Claire finally acknowledges an abortion. The reporter is questioning her about a report from their opponents that said she was pregnant during the campaign. Have you ever been pregnant, she asks? Claire is adept at parsing her words and she says yes I have been pregnant and finally says she had an abortion. You are left with the impression at that point that she is talking about the allegation that she was pregnant in her marriage to Frank. They quickly call a break.
Her handlers discuss during the break how she can do damage control. Claire tells them the truth....two abortions as a "reckless teenager" and one while married to Frank because their birth control failed. They were in the middle of a campaign and she was 16 weeks pregnant and they decided they did not want a baby and needed to focus on the campaign. So that was the third abortion.
True to form, Claire goes back into the interview and says that she was date raped in college and even names the alleged rapist who is now a public figure. It apparently is true that Claire was the victim of date rape and she allows the viewers to think that is when she got pregnant and had an abortion. Claire obviously panicked and is in full damage control at this point. Given her end justifies the means mentality, she has just lied and said that she aborted as a result of rape which is not true but will sell to the public.
The earlier abortion regret is now replaced with a defiant attitude when threatened. The roller coaster emotions is not uncommon but when not being pressured, the abortion regret comes through.