Season 4 takes a few episodes to transition from that feeling to new sorts of intrigue and shifts in power and it's all the better for it!
Claire truly gets to shine this season and she ends up being an even more interesting character than Francis. I actually found myself wanting him in the show less so that she could be in it more.
It's also nice to see all the threads from previous seasons start to pull together as the past catches up to the Underwoods. And the season finale left me wanting more, which is always a great sign.
After season 3 I didn't know if I would keep going with this show but after watching season 4 I know that I'll jump into season 5 as soon as it's available!