Welcome back House of Cards, or rather, House of BlackBerry

By Bla1ze on 14 Feb 2014 10:29 pm EST

House of Cards, the Netflix American political drama starring Kevin Spacey, is now back for its second season. If you've watched the show at all you've likely noticed one thing about it, aside from the fact that it's awesome, and that's that there are a ton of BlackBerry smartphones used in the show. A recent article in the LA Times has highlighted the amount of product placement in the show in general but has specifically noted the BlackBerry and iPhone placements.

Smart spunky women and artsy types use iPhones. Powerful men need a Blackberry.

They’re smart, they’re sexy, they can break a big story at the touch of a button. They’re the women of “House of Cards” and virtually all of them have iPhones on their person at all times. Reporter Zoe Barnes gets her powerful male boss fired with a tweet from her iPhone. Claire, meanwhile, arranges illicit rendezvous with lovers and lobbyists. Don’t mess with these women when they have an iPhone present. 

To be a man, on the other hand -- a real man, anyway -- you’re going to need a BlackBerry. Like Gogol’s lost nose, being without your BlackBerry for even a moment is the virtual equivalent of castration.

At season’s close, Frank makes the tragic mistake of leaving his BlackBerry behind for a few precious moments of nuptial bliss with his wife Claire. While he’s out, a huge story breaks that threatens his ascension to the vice presidency.

Peter Russo, meanwhile, alienates his constituents, struggles with drug and alcohol abuse, and is generally incompetent. But his real kiss of death is throwing his BlackBerry out the window of his car. He was killed shortly thereafter, and deserved everything he had coming to him.

BlackBerry: glue it your body or die horribly.

You may or may not agree with their assessment but there's no denying the fact that there is a ton of BlackBerry usage happening on the show. It's not the only show that features BlackBerry as well. Community is another, along with The Newsroom, Veep, and more. What other shows have you seen using a lot of BlackBerry smartphones?

Topics: Apps

Reader comments

Welcome back House of Cards, or rather, House of BlackBerry


Congrats. Beat me to it. Not a TV watcher at all. But you see Berries every now and then.

Zzzzwiped from a Zedevice....

Yes, not a totally original show.

And supposedly it's 2014 in House of Cards Season 2, but everyone is still stuck on OS 7 from 2011. Haven't seen any BlackBerry 10 handsets. No Z10s or Q10s, let alone any Z30s.

Actually one of the main characters, Remy Danton, has a Z10 that is shown prominently ever time he is on his phone or texting.


So Netflix like to place BlackBerry on their show.. yet they won't develop a freaking app for it?? That's super lame!!!!!!

Posted via CB10

@myke86..I don't have Netflix,but was wondering?Is there a difference in price for the mobile app and the one you get thru cable in your home,that may be why BB doesn't have the app.

@ Jojo. It does not matter which source you access Netflix from, it's one payment and you can access from anywhere

...we are all connected...

TV, movies, videos from the net. Not much time to watch in general, regardless of the source.

Last one I watched was the new RoboCop, what I remember, someone was apparently "using an unencrypted phone", so he was able to track'em down and smoke'em out, the bad guys I mean.

iPhone for me? Scr... ahem Q that! (posted from the latter)

I just started watching last week, and noticed it right of way. But it makes sense...their congressmen and such. They need the security inly BB can offer.

It's a great show. Heard from a friend and started watching it. After watching the first couple of episodes, you realize the quality and effort behind the show...definitely worth following if this is a genre that appeals to you.

Blackberry is definitely a big part of the series. If they even try to substitute a different product in the hands of someone powerful in government, there goes their credibility.

If Frank Underwood, a main character on the show who uses his BB prominently, would probably say something like "We look busy, because we are." Then proceed to cut you.

In the linked article they make it seem like Netflix is getting $$ to sponsor these brands on House of Cards, but I don't think BlackBerry or Apple are paying to get their phones on the show. For one if BlackBerry was really sponsoring the show don't you think they would ask them to make a BB10 app as a result? Also I have read that it's both BlackBerry and Apple's policy to not sponsor product placements, instead they send free phones to the studios that want to use their products.

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Apple MIGHT be paying (Congressman Underwood has an iMac on his desk that is suspiciously prominent in all the scenes that take place in his office). I doubt BlackBerry is, but in truth the US Congress IS still on BBOS legacy devices.

Posted from CB10 running on my awesome Z30 2B6927F7

The obvious upgrade path. Hope he likes it more and more, as power user and legacy features are added with every upgrade!

iPhone for me? Scr... ahem Q that! (posted from the latter)

Too bad they're ending the newsroom with season 3. I guess it offended quite a lot but man, I'm a fan of Sorkin and this is one of his best!

Posted via CB10

Newsroom started off nicely in the first season then fell off toward the end of the season and was just HORRIBLE for the entire second season. So bad that I removed it from my DVR list and probably won't even bother to watch the final season. I'm not sad to see it go. I am happy to see that House of Cards is already approved for a third season, though!

Samsungs and BlackBerrys on Last Man Standing, Tim Allen seems to switch it up between the Z and the Q.

Posted via my  Z10 - C0012139E

+1 for Last Man Standing. I'm pretty sure I saw a Porsche Design kb device in Tims hand in one of the Season 2 episodes. Also, they used the hdmi function to connect a Z10 to the TV in the episode with the young soccer coach.

Posted via CB10

I was really hoping there would be a BlackBerry 10 in Benedict Cumberbatch's hand for season three of Sherlock, seeing as smartphones play a prominent role in the show. But alas, it was not to be. Did see a brief shot of a legacy device in an extra's hands in the season opener but that was it.

Z10 STL100-3 | | Bell | CB10

They're *everywhere* in Newsroom, or at least they were in the first two seasons. We'll see what comes in Season 3.

Posted via CB10

Yep I noticed this immediately from episode one and was so happy to see the Z10 get some TV love for a change.

That is a great story. Isn't that show only available on Netflix? Netflix that will not ever go native on BlackBerry?. Win for BlackBerry at least from one perspective.

Team BlackBerry

Wow. I'm still in the fourth episode (Season 1). And now some scenes are spoiled. But I totally notice that men have Blackberrys (Kevin Spacey uses a legacy) while women have iPhones.

Posted via CB10

There is a definite statute of limitations on spoilers for hot shows like this. That statute has most certainly expired.


Posted from my brain to your screen via CBQ10

How about a spoiler alert next time Blaze! I haven't watched it yet....but thanks for spilling the beans...

The show Justified uses BlackBerry. I've noticed Raylan Givens (US Marshall) and the rest of the US Marshall crew using BlackBerry to communicate. Mainly Bolds

Not approved by the NSA. My personal Q10

The hit show Person of Interest showcases the blackberry, the last episode Shaw ( Sara Shahi) uses a z10 to take a picture of a map, and for secret agents on the field and the fact that hacking and technology is a dominant theme in this franchise I figure that the use of blackberry was wise in that case.

Posted via CB10

Lots of screen time on Bones. Series creator Hart Hanson uses a Q10.

On the Following the cult uses BlackBerry for their super secret communications.

I believe I've seen BlackBerry on The Blacklist but I think they use a mix of devices.

Posted via CB10

I saw some Windows Phones in Season 2 of House of Cards, alongside the usual iPhones and BlackBerries.

Yea, Last Man Standing uses BB10's. Tim Allen even had a Q10 with him when he appeared on the Jimmy Kimmel show.

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Tim Allen personally owns that Q10. See one of my posts where I asked him about it on Twitter. He is the real deal, not just holding a prop.

I used my Q10 to create this CrackBerry madness!

Chicago Fire - the chief uses a Q10, and the character Matt (played by Jesse Spencer) has a Torch.

On the Mentalist, the character Theresa Lisbon had a Bold 9900 up to the current season; I haven't noticed a specific cellphone this season. The main character Patrick Jane used a feature flip phone up to the current season; now I think he has a cheap Samsung. One thing that really irritates me on the Mentalist - none of the detectives uses a password for their phones. I cannot believe that law enforcement professionals would be so careless.

The Show Motive that ran last year in the US and took place in Canada had all legacy BlackBerry phones.

Posted via CB10

Well it's not a TV show but the movie "Best Man Holiday " has its 2 main characters using Z10s a lot. Like a lot a lot. Full frontal and back of the phone, typing, they watch YouTube on it. It's actually a big part of one of the main plot lines.

Posted via CB10

I love this show Kevin Spacey is awesome. Nice couple sprinkles hearing the bb10 ring tone once in a while during the show)

Posted via CB10

I love House Of Cards. I thought I was the only one noticed the high BlackBerry usage in that show.

Posted via Don Vado Berry

Gave up following the trends years ago...I've long since come to terms with myself. Coolness is merely a bonus.

Posted via CB10

Bea bit hard for BB10 devices to be used in season 1 since it was released in February 2013. Filming would have taken place well before BB10 was released.

"ut his real kiss of death is throwing his BlackBerry out the window of his car. He was killed shortly thereafter, and deserved everything he had coming to him."


NCIS (many legacy devices, Bones (Torch and Z10), The Mentalist (legacy). Generally I have the impression BlackBerry are often used for law enforcement (and apparently also for powerful politicians). Supporting BlackBerries image of being very efficient and secure, however it doesn't really make BlackBerry look cool.

Would be cool if they used Blackberry 10 for the new 24 show!

Posted via CB10

if I remember correctly, NCIS LA's Eric Beale showed-off a 'picture password' before it was actually released in 10.2.1, but it was different (he used a picture of him and Nell Jones then tapped the eyes or something like that). So i'm thinking that these people follow all the news on leaks as well. :) both NCIS series have been using Blackberry phones for many seasons now.

Can't share a show but recent super hit movie Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit has a porche design BlackBerry in it. Loved it

I remember seeing Cyrus from "Scandal" using a Q10 last season, or early this season. Awesomeness!

Posted via CB10

I've seen the Z10 in Covert Affairs. Then tons of BBs on other shows like Supernatural, Gossip Girl and movies, too, like the recent Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit where the main antagonist/badass used the Porsche design. :)

Posted via CB10

Reminds me of the FX show "Damages" with high stakes litigator Patty Hewes. Patty always had her BlackBerry with her as did all her associates too. Then there was also HBO's "Entourage" with Hollywood super agent Ari Gold and of course his BlackBerry. Plus, how can we forget TNT's "Dallas" with J.R. Ewing who also sported a BlackBerry. A powerful phone for powerful characters.

Posted via AT&T BlackBerry Z10 Smartphone

I haven't seen "House of Cards" but I can say that I watch every episode of "Chicago Fire". They give a lot of play time to BlackBerry. I first noticed the Bold 9900 but when the Q10 hit, they quickly moved on that one.

Not ashamed of the 'Berry I carry. BlackBerry by choice!

What a nice review!

I am happy to clean my house today, make some shopping and then boot my Mac to view season 2! It is a classy and intelligent series. And I only like watching movies. No series type. But House of Cards surprised me.

And I have seen season 1 with lovely BlackBerry phones! So I am happy to see season 2!

When it comes to business and being unique, get a Blackberry. Thank Blackberry it's 2014 and we have BB 10 and a fine line of phones. I hope for this year we keep moving and get 2 flag ship phones! Q10 like and Z30 like!

BlackBerry fo fo fo fo life (nWo Style)

They use a Z10 in Teen Wolf recently so targeting teens. Was surprised by that since it seemed to be the home for Samsung and Nokia. Go BB. :-).

Posted via CB10

I saw the "Bones" use Blackberry phone, possible Z10 even that Agent Booth use since Season 8 second half seasons till season 9 now

Posted via CB10

Scandal, The Blacklist, Chicago Fire. Not just legacy devices, but even Blackberry 10 gets some love. I've seen the Q10 a lot on Scandal & The Blacklist.

In fact, on the most recent episode of The Blacklist, they dropped a line about how the BlackBerry is under-appreciated.

I'm z10ing. Yes, I invented a verb.

I saw a lot of older devices on the British/French show called The Tunnel. Basicly, all the French had BBs, while the British used Samsungs and an iPhone.

Posted via CB10

I hope BlackBerry pushes even harder into this kind of advertising. The more placements the better, especially with the rich famous and powerful, whether it's content or real life. They need to regain the mind share among Americans that they are very much alive and are in fact the phone of choice for the most successful people.

Posted via CB10

All these shows and US market share Is less than 1%,what are they doing this product placement for?I guess BB is just hanging out in fantasy land,now get them out in the real world and all will be forgiven.

I don't give a flying F what kind of land you think as long as they keep on making these kick ass phones.

Posted via CB10

House of Cards is awesome. Hanging out for season two.

Do you think we might spot a couple more porsche design BlackBerrys this season?

Posted via CB10

Oh god, Blaize, that is the funniest thing I've read in a long time.

Hey Meester Chen, here's a new slogan for your Porsche & Lamborghini target market:

"BlackBerry: Glue it to your body or Die Horribly".

Take that, "life companion".

Posted via CB10

I noticed this watching Season 1. I did get thrown in either episode 1 or 2 when I realized one of the new characters, a congresswoman who is basically the female Frank, was using an iPhone.

Both NCIS series have been using BlackBerry for a couple of seasons now.. might've been from the start.. that's more than a decade..

Is it product placement or just the fact that BlackBerrys are a reality in the corridors of political power? Seems odd that Netflix would strike such up a relationship with a company it refuses to develop an app for.

I doubt this is Netflix's decision. They air the show, they don't meddle in the creative details.

Posted via CB10

Yes I'm happy to read about all these shows with BlackBerry's and I'm curious to know if BlackBerry is paying for this.

Posted via CB10

They could be but I doubt it. While BlackBerry devices are featured there are no lingering close ups of any of the phones, nor any mention of the product by name, eg: "I'll BBM him on my BlackBerry" etc which would almost certainly be demanded by BlackBerry. I work in a parallel industry to film and television production, and while that doesn't make me an expert by any means it does give me some insight that most people wouldn't have. My guess is that the production company asked a 3rd party prop supplier for devices that were most suitable for the show. They do the same with weapons, cars and all sorts of objects.

It's true. Blackberries are for men (and powerful women). Iphones are for the weak. The theme is strongly exhibited in this TV series as it is in real life.

Posted via CB10

Ouch that's good. It's better than what I tell people : iPhones are for people who love themselves (consume and flaunt), BlackBerrys for people that love their friends and family (connect and communicate)

Posted via CB10

I've seen many BlackBerry smartphones used on most of my favorite TV shows. Rizzoli & Isles on TNT. I've spotted the Z10 on USA Network shows Covert Affairs and White Collar and other devices used in Suits.

Should we say...."SPOILERS"? If you watch this show and haven't seen it all yet don't read this article. Lol

Posted via CB10

Burn Notice was a show that once used BlackBerry Pearls and Jennifer Carpenter's character in Dexter had a BlackBerry Bold in the final season.

Sent from my BlackBerry Z30

Homeland! Every senator, most CIA carry BlackBerry. Unfortunately, Saul carries an iPhone, Carrie uses random Android burners.

I don't know about the phones they use, but I've seen PlayBooks plenty of times on Rizzoli and Isles. They've used it for virtual crime scene walk-throughs and video conferencing.

Posted via CB10

Loved Season 1 of H of C's. The Blackberry looked so cool it inspired me to buy a Q10 the first day it was launched at VZW. Still use it as my primary phone over my Z10 and Note II. Never thought I'd prefer a keyboard phone... but never say 'never'.

Bones FBI agents use BlackBerry but the pathologists use iPhones.

Posted via CB10

One of the things I like about binge watching Netflix is seeing how the devices change from episode to episode and each season. Are there any sites that chronicle this stuff? I can see a new hobby coming on.

Posted via CB10

House of Cards is pretty sweet! Episode 1 of season two was quite the shocker :o..

I've noticed a fair amount of BlackBerry on the show too, but what I was noticing is that when showing the berries, it's not as obvious, they show the form of the phone, but no logo or the word "BlackBerry".. whereas I've seen the windows logo on a phone, htc logo on a phone, quite a few apple logos on desktop and laptop PCS.. *shrug*

Seems like the only ppl that would know they're using BlackBerry on the show is if ur a BlackBerry fan and look for/notice the phones yourself. Maybe not, just my impression..

Posted via CB10

Damages staring Glenn Close has an amazing amount of BlackBerry phones used by lawyers great series with five seasons of BlackBerry love.

Posted via CB10

One thing I noticed is that the proximity sensor doesn't seem to work when they're holding up to their ears when making calls.

Fake props perhaps? ;-)

Posted via CB10

Been saying it all along....Men and Women who need to get things done use BlackBerry....play babies and metrosexuals use iPhone....people who don't need to get much done with horrible touchscreens and buggy software....Android.

CB10 from the Z30

Smallville is another show with a BlackBerry. Smallville is gone now, but, Oliver Queen A.k.a The Green Arrow uses one.

Team BlackBerry

I can't lie, I have watched this show and everytime I see the main character type a text message, I smile a little bit.

Posted via CB10

White collar also features all types of BlackBerry phones, new and old. Although, they did use iPhones for a brief season.

Posted via CB10

The character David Wallace from the American version of The Office used a Bold 9900 prior to the release of BB10.

Posted via CB10

The original UK version of House of Cards is so much better. Give a try and you will see. It's just not the same Americanized.

Posted with my gorgeous Z30

I know Olivia Pope (Scandal) used one in the first season of the show. I think she switched phones in the 2nd season, though.

Posted via CB10

She switched in the first episodes of the season and now I think she's got a BlackBerry again. But his father, chief of B613 uses a Z10, Cyrus Beane the US President chief of staff uses a Q10. Great BlackBerry 10 supporting show :)

Posted via CB10

The irony that the show has so many BlackBerrys and is a product of a company that has completely ruled out supporting (Netflix) BlackBerry should be noted as well.

Posted via CB10

The show "Scandal" shows a lot of BlackBerrys too. In old a new season. In the new season, the chief of an intelligence agency called B613, that has more power than the US President uses a BlackBerry Z10!!! It's awesome to see that! The show is very good!!!!

Posted via CB10

I haven't seen it mentioned, but a personal favorite of mine that I've noticed a lot of BlackBerry placement is the Canadian produced show Flashpoint....

Hey, how about a freakin spoiler alert??? Not everyone is through season one yet!!! I can't believe I just read that.

Posted via CB10

Remy has a z10. You can see his phone in episode 10. You can totally tell it's a z10.

Posted via CB10

Netflix and Blackberry need to come together and just get the Android version on Blackberry World. End of story

The latest version works perfectly on 10.2.1.

Nice. But still, BlackBerry should start to kick off a good marketing campaign. It's OS10 (perhaps) weakest point - there is no way it's going to be a real success when people don't know it exists. Which is a pity, because it's a good OS.

Posted via CB10

This is stupid & biased article, there is more apple devices, Macs, MacBooks, iPads & iPhones than blackberry in that show, you people are so F. blind.. for the sake of God.

House of Cards S2: All the male politicians and their staffers use BB BOLDS, the character Remy and the Majority Whip and many Secret Service and US Marshalls use Z10's