Frank Underwood's past has finally come back to haunt him in Season 5. That means the return of some characters that the Netflix series hasn't used in a quite a while. There are some spoilers for House of Cards ahead, so don't read on until you've gotten to this particular reveal. Frank Underwood's former school friend and lover Tim Corbet returns on House of Cards. Fans may remember him, even though it has truly been a while.
The character has appeared before, in Seasons 1 and 3. He's a member of the Riflemen singers — remember Frank Underwood's barbershop quartet? So they were what some people would call friends with benefits in college, but went their separate ways after graduating and lost touch. Tim is now married to a woman named Beth, with kids, and runs a white water rafting company in California. He and Frank seem to share a verve for danger that has manifested in two very different ways.
In Season 3, Tim contacted Frank to let him know that he had been approached by Thomas Yates to be interviewed for the book. Specifically the Sentinel — the military academy that Frank and Tim and the rest of the Riflemen Singers attended. That's definitely something that could come into play later.
The character is mentioned again in Episode 2 of Season 5. He had been missing for two days. Claire is approached by a mutual acquaintance, another Sentinel alum named Ken, and told about his disappearance. It is implied that Frank would be broken up by this news due to the special nature of their relationship — which Claire reacts to, and attempts to silence him. I think she might be jealous of Tim, in a way that she was never of, say, Meechum. When Doug briefs Frank about Tim, he orders that the search be amped up and asks to speak to Beth.
It's clear that Ken believes Frank and Tim were in love, but he won't directly say as much. With the President already under investigation, this will certainly amp up the drama. While Claire Underwood seems to want to keep the nature of Frank's relationship with Tim under wraps, a homosexual relationship and a lost love could potentially humanize a Democrat President. I mean, admitting that Frank Underwood actually cares about anyone or anything would humanize him. This little bit of past has always been intriguing on House of Cards, and I'm glad that it's back in Season 5.