In the third episode of House of Cards‘ new season, a character named Mark Usher suddenly shows up, played by Campbell Scott. So who exactly is this character? Is he a new addition, or are viewers supposed to remember him from an earlier season?
Mark Usher is a brand new character, and Chapter 55 is his first time on screen, although he just sort of drops in out of nowhere. Usher is a campaign manager who joined the Will Conway presidential campaign very late in the game.
Usher met up with Conway because someone else who works on the Republican campaign got in touch with him, and he happened to be available.
“Marshall and I go way back,” Usher says. “The timing is right for all of us, right?”
Usher also says that he wouldn’t get involved in a campaign this late in the game unless he felt he could make a difference in it.
We don’t know too much about Usher himself in these early episodes other than that he has been in politics for a while; he says in Chapter 55 that he’s been “at this a long time,” with this referring to working on political campaigns.
It’s unclear to what degree Usher legitimately supports Will Conway, though. In a conversation with Hannah Conway, Will’s wife, Usher says that Will has a chance to be a fine president, which is hardly an enthusiastic endorsement. Hannah corrects him to say that he will be a great president, and Usher doesn’t seem fully convinced.
Later, a campaign ad highlights Conway’s military experience, and it’s implied that Usher had something to do with this, even though he denies it when speaking with Conway.
As the election drama gets even more intense in Chapter 56, Usher becomes even more of an important player, speaking with the governor of Kentucky and trying to get him to keep the voting open. As the season rolls on, it doesn’t appear the election will exactly be an easy process, and Usher will no doubt become an even more important player in all of this drama.