Netflix handles House of Cards season 3 “leak” with self-assured Frank Underwood style

"This is Washington. There's always a leak," said the official account after 10 new episodes briefly appeared on the service following a "technical glitch"

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Netflix has handled an unexpected “release” of its much-anticipated third season of House of Cards with the slick self-assurance viewers have come to expect from Frank Underwood, the star of its multi award-winning drama.

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Ten new episodes of the political thriller, which stars Kevin Spacey as conniving politico Underwood, were briefly made available to Netflix subscribers yesterday afternoon after a “technical glitch” saw them appear online two weeks before the official release of season three on 27th February.

Yet no sooner had fans tweeted their delight than the online streaming service removed them, just 25 minutes later… 

Netflix later released a statement, blaming an in-house error: “Due to a technical glitch some Frank Underwood fans got a sneak peek. He’ll be back on Netflix on Feb. 27 #no spoilers.”

The online streaming giant’s PR machine quickly swept into action. And as the lucky few were enjoying their unexpected premieres, the House of Cards’ official Twitter account put its own shrewd spin on events:

The House of Cards showrunner was quick to follow.

And so it was that a “glitch” quickly became talk of the internet for all the right reasons and a potential PR disaster became a huge marketing win. 

It almost feels like the sort of thing Frank Underwood would have deliberately orchestrated from his new-found home in the West Wing…

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House of Cards will be released in the UK and US on February 27th on Netflix