House of Cards showrunner Beau Willimon has discussed the twist regarding Zoe Barnes in season 2 episode 1, explaining that it had been on the cards for some time.
*Spoiler ahead if you haven't seen the first episode yet*
The political drama's return on Monday saw vice president Frank Underwood throw reporter Zoe Barnes under a train after she came dangerously close to discovering Frank's part in the death of Pete Russo.
Barnes had been one of the biggest characters of the first season, and her death leaves colleague and lover Lucas as pretty much the only person left to investigate Underwood.
"That was always on the cards," Willimon told TV Guide of the twist. "The decisions of where we go with Zoe's story ultimately were made before we even began writing season one in earnest."
He went on to add that actress Kate Mara knew to expect her swift departure.
"I always knew what we wanted to do with Zoe's story, and so did Kate," he added.
Netflix users began binge-viewing their way through the 13 new episodes on Valentine's Day, including Barack Obama, who tweeted asking for 'no spoilers' on Thursday night.
A third season of the show has already been confirmed, with Willimon saying that he already has 'notions' of where it might go next.