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Seduce Your Way to the Top? Meet the Anne Boleyns of Washington, D.C.

HOC-Mara Zoe Barnes: the newest Anne Boleyn.

Zoe starts out as a likeable character -- occasionally annoying, but not morally corrupted ... yet.  However, the hunger for a newsworthy story becomes too great and she engages in an affair with Frank Underwood, a married congressman. I think this is when I started to really dislike her. She gets creepy towards the end of season one, while wearing Claire’s clothes and examining which side of the bed Claire sleeps on. She tries to turn the tables on Frank and exert some of her own power.

I had the biggest problem with the Frank-Zoe storyline because of the big jump from “symbiotic relationship between ladder climbers” to “symbiotic relationship” with a side of “extramarital affair.” Zoe could have written Frank’s stories without engaging in “other activities” and would have gotten the same fame and attention that she craved. Frank needed Zoe just as much as she needed him — thus the affair was a sort of "extra" in their little arrangement. Zoe used Frank knowing that he was her ticket to the big time and that, eventually, she could blackmail him.