Our Flag Means Death: Season 1
March 20, 2022 11:05 AM - Season 1 (Full Season) - Subscribe

Stede Bonnet left his large sugar plantation in Barbados, abandoned his wife, children, land and fortune; bought a ship; and turned to piracy on the high seas. Taika Waititi, David Jenkins, and Rhys Darby find the comedy in Bonnet's piratical career.

The series follows Bonnet and the crew of his Revenge as they attempt to become fearsome pirates of the Caribbean. (Cameos from Leslie Jones, Nick Kroll, Kristen Schaal, Fred Armisen, and Will Arnett)

ScreenRant has published several articles on Our Flag Means Death, exploring the show and the real story of Bonnet and Blackbeard.
Smithsonian Magazine's story about The Gentleman Pirate
posted by gladly (65 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
 
I really wanted to get into this becasue of Waititi's involvement, but crashed out.
posted by porpoise at 12:22 PM on March 20 [6 favorites]


This scratching my Flight of the Conchords and What We Do in the Shadows itch. The absurdity of the anachronistic humor and Rhys Darby and Waititi having such chemistry are keeping me in it.
posted by gladly at 12:39 PM on March 20 [1 favorite]


They must have made this for me then. I love it. Extremely funny.
posted by bleep at 1:25 PM on March 20 [4 favorites]


I absolutely love this. It's not exactly what I thought it was going to be, but is somehow even better. I've been recommending it to everyone.

I have enjoyed playing spot-the-actor.
posted by confluency at 2:13 PM on March 20 [7 favorites]


I started the first episode a day or two ago and didn't make it all the way through. Then I stumbled on this "Why You Should Absolutely Be Watching Our Flag Means Death" tumblr reblog and decided to keep going. And now I'm caught up on all 8 episodes released so far, totally onboard for Stede/Blackbeard (not to mention all the other goofball pirate pairings), and hoping against hope that the final two episodes dropping on 3/24 give wildly ahistorical happy endings for everyone.
posted by oh yeah! at 2:29 PM on March 20 [4 favorites]


This show is pretty dumb (not a criticism; I love dumb comedy) but I have to say Taiki Waititi’s acting is genuinely very good. It’s maybe the first time I’ve ever seen him in anything where I don’t spend the whole time thinking about how he’s Taika Waititi.
posted by something something at 5:08 PM on March 20 [6 favorites]


Does anyone know if this is/is going to be available in the UK? It sounds like exactly something I would love, and while I am quite happy to wait for it to arrive here, I may have to, er, pirate it.
posted by Fuchsoid at 6:02 PM on March 20


I agree, it's a rough start until Blackbeard is on, but after that, it's delightful.
posted by Marticus at 6:20 PM on March 20 [3 favorites]


I absolutely loved Hunt for the Wilder People, Thor Ragnarok and WWDITS the movie. But his TV shows just don't do it for me. It's a rare case of a great talent needing to be reigned in and time constrained for it to work for me.
posted by M Edward at 10:58 PM on March 20


I agree, it's a rough start until Blackbeard is on, but after that, it's delightful.

Yes, definitely stick with it until he shows up, it gets much better after that. It's even got a little poignancy to cut the silliness.
posted by schoolgirl report at 8:40 AM on March 21 [2 favorites]


Stede Bonnet has fascinated me since I was 11, and I think only Taika Waititi has the chops to bring the poignancy inherent in the hysterical historical figure. But any semi-historical attempt at a Stede Bonnet biography is going to be attacked, boarded, mutilated and left to die by the boogeyman of Blackbeard.

Does this show have the scene with Blackbeard and his closest lieutenants where Blackbeard draws his pistols, crosses his arms underneath the table, and blows out the sole candle before firing blind?
posted by infinitewindow at 2:41 PM on March 21 [1 favorite]


As everyone above is saying: I barely made it to the second episode, but once it clicks, it clicks, and I'm all in by the end of the first season.

The only thing that bugged me a little -- maybe more than it should -- is that while Swedish people are not generally an equity-seeking group who need better media representation, it's a tetch aggravating that they got Nat Faxon to play The Swede for what seems like no particular reason. I like Nat Faxon! But I remember having a conversation with a Swedish colleague... probably twenty years ago now? where he mentioned in passing how the Swedish Chef always kinda hurt his feelings, and it stuck with me, and Pointless Comedy Swede just doesn't land right (and double especially because they seem to have taken some care and intelligence with representation across the rest of the cast).

But that's like a 0.5% quibble against a 99.5% everything about this is great.
posted by Shepherd at 4:28 PM on March 21 [1 favorite]


I’m five episodes in, watching along with some friends who are big Black Sails fans, and, well. This show sure doesn’t seem to be trending any less gay than that show. You love to see it.

Definitely agree that Taika Waititi is really surprisingly good in this. So much said with just the eyes! I love Izzy as well, I skipped Chernobyl but now that I know he was in it I’m thinking I’ll go back and check it out.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:57 PM on March 21 [1 favorite]


I’m five episodes in, watching along with some friends who are big Black Sails fans, and, well. This show sure doesn’t seem to be trending any less gay than that show. You love to see it.

Update, just watched episode six and lol just lol I can’t believe this is happening
posted by showbiz_liz at 6:57 PM on March 23 [9 favorites]


And now finished ep 8 and just, wow I know this show is not gonna be for everyone but my gay ass could not be more delighted by this incredible nonsense. Can’t wait for the rest.

Also whoever is responsible for that beard deserves an Emmy.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:16 PM on March 23 [15 favorites]


That kiss. Oh, that kiss. Now it's a different pirate story.
posted by Stanczyk at 5:07 PM on March 24 [11 favorites]


So that part, I predicted. The fucking toe thing? THAT, I absolutely DID NOT PREDICT and it was amazing. That scene belonged in a show ten thousand times darker than this one.

Based on the reactions I'm seeing from the aforementioned Black Sails fans, this is a show that was 100% tailor made to be fandom bait, more than maybe anything I've ever seen before.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:19 PM on March 24 [3 favorites]


The one-eyed widow was played by Kristen Johnston, best know (to me at least) as Sally from 3rd Rock From the Sun.
posted by Marticus at 8:07 PM on March 26 [6 favorites]


I don't think I'm going to know how I felt about this show until I know whether there's going to be another season. On the one hand, there was that kiss, and the lovely conversation about love between Stede and his 'widow', and the so very extra faking-Stede's-death shenanigans. But if this ends up being the series finale, we're left with Blackbeard in misery and Lucius lost at sea forever. Clearly geography is meaningless in the OFMD-verse, if Stede can rowboat his way from England to that speck of land his crew was marooned in no time, then they can certainly find Lucius still bobbing around alive in the ocean in season 2 and all get back to the ship. But for now, it's a very bury-your-Schrodinger's-gays kind of ending.
posted by oh yeah! at 4:41 AM on March 27 [4 favorites]


This is a new level of acting from both Rhys Darby and Taika Waititi. And I agree with showbiz_liz — Blackbeard's eponymous facial hair deserves all the awards.

Was really hoping Dominic Burgess (who played Jeffrey, the guy who first recognizes Stede when he gets back) would join the crew, he was so great in The Good Place.

Plus I still think of the "pyramid scheme" and laugh and laugh.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 11:17 AM on March 27 [2 favorites]


This costuming deep dive on Twitter was interesting and made some connections I had missed. Mary's outfits are really good, and the idea that the more insecure Stede is, the more layers he wears is key.

Also enjoyed this pirate-related Q&A with Rhys and Taika.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 8:25 PM on March 28 [5 favorites]


We finished this last night. I didn't know what to expect from this show, but it was very well done!

I often read these threads even before finishing the show, and I thought 'the toe thing' was talking about the moment when Blackbeard and Stede were captured and Blackbeard stretched his leg over to nudge Stede with his toe in that overhead shot. Nope! That was not the toe thing!

Blackbeard's whole turn at the end was so dark! Especially compared to Stede's reconciliation with his wife, which was so sweet.
posted by Acari at 7:23 AM on March 29 [2 favorites]


Blackbeard's whole turn at the end was so dark! Especially compared to Stede's reconciliation with his wife, which was so sweet.

This show keeps getting described as a sitcom or a romcom, but boy oh boy was there NOTHING comedic about Blackbeard in the back end of that last episode. Which I totally love, to be clear - but what even do you call a 90% silly sweet show where one of your two romantic leads goes THERE in the finale?
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:25 AM on March 29 [6 favorites]


I quite loved the soundtrack. Was that all Erik Satie? I know a few of those songs, and noticed that some were altered to fit the episode better. Brilliant.
posted by rebent at 5:16 PM on March 29


I'm making my way through this show, having watched half the episodes, and you know what, I still don't know what I feel. I expect I'll finish it because there is just nothing like it and I'm fond of everybody in it, but wow. The tonal mismatch just tosses me around constantly. People on social media love the central ship so much and already I'm like, hi, did nobody mention Blackbeard ordered somebody to kill his dog? I'm stuck back on this thing, hello? When a man weeps and says "I'm not a good person," no matter how handsome he is -- especially if he's handsome -- that is a very bad sign! It's one of the oldest in the book! I dunno, man, I guess I'm just too old. I feel like my mom must have felt when I was showing her an anime or something.

Outside of all that, though, I love what they're doing and I really hope they get a second season. The sheer playfulness and weirdness -- I would rather be challenged by that than bored by something else.
posted by Countess Elena at 5:53 PM on March 29 [3 favorites]


People on social media love the central ship so much and already I'm like, hi, did nobody mention Blackbeard ordered somebody to kill his dog? I'm stuck back on this thing, hello? When a man weeps and says "I'm not a good person," no matter how handsome he is -- especially if he's handsome -- that is a very bad sign! It's one of the oldest in the book!

Once you finish the season, it does become clear that they're not just ignoring those aspects of his personality - in fact, I kinda think they're being rather deliberate in addressing what you're talking about, by taking certain things that were brushed off or used as joke fodder earlier on and showing them in a more realistic light.
posted by showbiz_liz at 6:58 PM on March 29 [6 favorites]


I think it's interesting to compare this to What We Do in the Shadows.
Maybe like Guillermo:Stede::Nandor:Blackbeard.
In that there are romantic pairings, and grisly vampiric murders, but here they are taken beyond setups for comedy.
I don't think that the vampirism is ever presented as wrong or evil. Even the murder of vampires is usually just comic.
There is obviously something more planned with BlackBeard. I hope to see what it is in s2.
posted by Acari at 1:35 PM on March 30


This show is astounding, rewards rewatching, and I feel like my brain and my heart are filled with Pop Rocks. I legit don't know what to do with everything I feel about this show.
posted by tzikeh at 2:15 PM on March 30 [15 favorites]


if Stede can rowboat his way from England to that speck of land his crew was marooned in no time

The Bonnets lived in Barbados, so not quite such a long row; still awfully convenient to find their rock though.

(I don't remember if the show ever made the location explicit in Stede's flashbacks? but in the final episode we do see Mary at breakfast reading about her art show in The Barbados Times.)

I'm on the fence as to whether Lucius is really dead: on the one hand yes, as a dramatic necessity to underline the darkness of Ed's turn back to Blackbeard. On the other hand, the show plays a bit fast and loose with fatality: the whole business of being run through with a sword being trivially survivable...
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:07 PM on April 2 [4 favorites]


I would die for Edward but, much like not being able to get over Aziraphale’s cowardice and selfishness in Good Omens, found Stede to be kind of repulsive. He’s trying his best and all but ultimately he’s a deadbeat dad who left his kids and whose only interactions with them is demanding their praise and attention, idk. I’m seeing some people basically concern trolling about the morality of Blackbeard’s monstrous deeds and I think that’s almost wilfully not understanding genre conventions— pirates do gruesome shit and while some of the violence is serious, most of it is basically a cartoon, like, we have two guys recovering from abdominal stab wounds within a week, they’re playing real fast and loose here, this isn’t moral fiction where bad and naughty characters go to the fictional character Hague.

But stories about immature dads who leave their kids to chase adventure kind of is Taika’s genre, and I’m not sure what to make of that. Watching this back to back with Taika’s 2010 “Boy”, is a real trip, like, it feels like OFMD is a retelling of the events of Boy from Alemain Sr’s perspective, and there’s a real bad mouthfeel to that. The “renegade” dad who leaves his two young children to have adventures, go hunt for buried treasure, live a criminal lifestyle, and be in and out of prison. Alemain playing soldier with Boy and Rocky and Stede playing pirates with his kids, something about these manchild dads who only engage with their children through play and then split. Very unsettling to think about the way the kids in Boy are so, so terribly sensitive to every emotional shift their dad has, and the businesslike way the kids in OFMD, who are around the same age, agree that it’s better when Stede isn’t there. Looney Tunes violence and cartoonish torture (including the dog thing, which is basically played as an edgy joke) is something you see a lot in comedy but I’m not sure what to make of the parent/child stuff, because Taika’s best film is about going really deep into what that kind of relationship looks and feels like. It’s strange to see the show treat Blackbeard’s compulsory masculinity trauma so, so seriously, but then totally give Stede a pass for the exact same behavior Taika has made feature films about. It makes the show feel uneven, and makes me kind of unenthusiastic about the central ship. Blackbeard deserves better than white Alemain, for fucks sake. I know it’s supposed to be a story about a repressed middle aged gay man coming into his own, and kind of a satire of a certain migratory slash fandom archetype, Bilbo Baggins and Aziraphale, but Stede is just too grown to be acting the way he does, I can’t suspend disbelief for him like the show wants me to.
posted by moonlight on vermont at 11:27 PM on April 2 [9 favorites]


I love this show, so much. I didn't care for the first episode, but once Blackbeard showed up? Sold. We binged the rest of the series in one day.

I was really surprised to discover that a lot of what I found unbelievable about the show was, in fact, based in truth- Stede did have a run in with the Spaniards that left him grievously wounded and ceded command to Blackbeard who taught him how to pirate better. And "Bonnet returned to Topsail Island to find that Blackbeard had beached the majority of their former crew... Bonnet reinforced the Revenge by rescuing a number of men whom Blackbeard had marooned on a sandbar at Topsail Island." (Wikipedia)

Maybe it wasn't a rowboat, but damn.
posted by Torosaurus at 5:06 AM on April 3 [5 favorites]


Okay, two more things - Non-binary Jim! The actor is delightful on tiktok, making non-binary content about Jim.

And then every time Lucius's actor posts on twitter, the slew of "but bestie can you swim" comments. I think, personally, he's hiding in the walls or Blackbeard has him living in the secret closet. It would be a nice metaphor, and I think it's (kind of) alluded to in one of the final scenes where Izzy is standing near the bookshelf with the lever, messing with random objects before finding the book on pirates. There's a tension in Taika's acting there- I could be foolishly hoping, though.
posted by Torosaurus at 5:12 AM on April 3


moonlight on vermont: I really appreciate that. I am guilty of being fandom trash (particularly Good Omens fandom trash these days) and as such I think it's important to be critical and read the whole piece in any number of larger contexts. I haven't seen Boy, and you really make me want to check that out.

Stede is definitely an archetype that's popular in fandom: a neurotic mess, overeducated, privileged, queer-coded, neurodivergent-coded, and (generally but not necessarily) white. It's popular because those things correspond with a lot of us (definitely including me). And when we enjoy a character like that, we should be sure we're doing so despite the whiteness and blindness written there, not because of it. Do we, hell; but we should.

Anyway, the way this show appeals directly to femme- and queer-oriented fandom after so many decades of shows ignoring or spiting the existence of that fandom is truly refreshing, but I didn't immediately love it for that reason. I feel like a cat, just as interested in the box it came in for now.
posted by Countess Elena at 7:59 AM on April 3 [2 favorites]




Why o why no renewal news… don’t hurt me HBO
posted by showbiz_liz at 9:13 AM on April 10


This started a little slow, but wow did it get great. I loved the fuckery Stede came up with to re-widow Mary.

I'm so behind on all shows all the time these days, I'm used to having renewals confirmed by the time I get to the finale. Going to rewatch this again immediately, in case that has any positive effect on renewal chances. But also just to enjoy.
posted by the primroses were over at 10:51 AM on April 11 [3 favorites]


Vico Ortiz on playing non-binary pirate Jim in Our Flag Means Death: I'm 'proud to be part of it': Well, when I first read the script, I cried. I was like, "I can't believe that I'm not even asking for this to be a thing." In part, it's because we had three non-binary writers in the writers' room. So there's already this space in which this character is being nurtured and taken care of. It's not just like, "Oh, we're going to hire a non-binary actor to do this. And then they'll fend for themselves." There was already this space that's created that people already are vouching for this character and their storyline. It felt incredible.
posted by roger ackroyd at 8:39 PM on April 11 [9 favorites]


we're left with Blackbeard in misery and Lucius lost at sea forever.

I was very surprised at the end of this because I was expecting some vaguely-happy ending (everyone learns something and blabla) and not this pretty dark Blackbeard turn and a lot of redemption for Steed who... while it's nice he let his wife keep all the money, still sucked as a dad mostly. I think the show, which I basically loved, had a hard time figuring out if it was a comic book (where the violence is more expected and not so serious) or more of a dark comedy (where the violence matters and where people can turn bad and stay bad).

Vico Ortiz on playing non-binary pirate Jim in Our Flag Means Death: I'm 'proud to be part of it':

They were great, really great, especially once they were no longer in the man-costume and got to be themselves. I was most confused by their arc in the last episode, like... I assume it was because they were super talented which is why they (and the flag sewer) got to stay but I was hoping for more of an understanding. As it was we saw ALL of the proto-couples split up which was fine for a cliffhanger but less fine if one season is all there is.
posted by jessamyn at 5:24 PM on April 15 [1 favorite]


I think the show, which I basically loved, had a hard time figuring out if it was a comic book (where the violence is more expected and not so serious) or more of a dark comedy (where the violence matters and where people can turn bad and stay bad).

I thought the tone shifts were one of the best things about it! Why should this NEED to be consistent - why is that necessarily better? To me it felt like the varying ways violence was handled were matters of the perspectives and priorities of the characters involved in the violence. For the ones who take it seriously, it’s serious, and for some characters that changes over the course of the thing, and those changes felt deliberate to me.
posted by showbiz_liz at 12:39 PM on April 17 [7 favorites]


Actually maybe another way of expressing this would be - for me there is something about this show that is SO aggressively unconcerned with reality that, whenever anything has actual realistic consequences, it hits harder than it would have in a narrative that took those things seriously from the beginning. The violence is the most obvious example of that. For example, the massacre in the dining room in episode one is filmed to be unseriously over-the-top, but the concurrent accidental face stabbing (while it happens in a relatively slapstick manner) gets lingered on by the camera multiple times because it has a different emotional weight.
posted by showbiz_liz at 2:03 PM on April 17 [6 favorites]


Why should this NEED to be consistent - why is that necessarily better?

I think there's the concept of "better" and the concept of "what I personally prefer." What I personally prefer is consistency and that's generally good for me because most media that isn't strictly unreliable narrator-driven turns out that way. This show doesn't have it which is fine but it did make for confusing and not-always-comfortable watching, for me. You like the opposite? Also fine, just not my thing.
posted by jessamyn at 2:35 PM on April 17 [2 favorites]


This isn't actually available in the UK so I applied some thematically appropriate means of acquisition and binged it all.

Really loved the show. There's some real pathos built in and the humour very much landed for me, doubly so when Blackbeard showed up. And yes, surprising depth to both main performances. The tonal shifts strangely reminded me of Barry at times where you're also dealing with objectively bad (/murderous) people but still finding them sympathetic.

I loved it, but I'm also a sucker for anything pirate related and this briefly filled the Black Sails sized hole in my heart(ies).
posted by slimepuppy at 12:33 PM on April 20 [1 favorite]




How does the show handle Stede Bonnet's past as slaver/leading militias to put down slave rebellions? That's coming up as a blocker-if-unaddressed for friends who would otherwise be interested, & I'm hoping given Waititi's involvement it doesn't end up whitewashed.
posted by CrystalDave at 7:58 AM on April 21


CrystalDave: it doesn't handle that, and I can't imagine that it will. It's basically a historical fantasy, being period-accurate only to the extent that it suits the showrunners (which they have joked about). As such, these characters are new fictions constructed out of the historical antecedents, rather than attempts to portray these people as they were. It does address the awfulness of whiteness and the upper class and portray the indigenous people well. But this character Stede Bonnet does not appear to own slaves.

Being a white person and, as such, invariably kind of slow sometimes, my thought had been: well, so many of these guys behind the show are POC, surely they wouldn't be having fun with this premise if it weren't okay ... ? But there's no one out there who can sign a note to say it's okay. So it's up to you and your friends to decide if you can accept it. The more I think about it, the more problematic of a choice it looks, but I at least don't believe that it's deliberate propaganda or an attempt to rewrite history in the way of, say, old Civil War movies.
posted by Countess Elena at 9:10 AM on April 21 [10 favorites]


We had a deal, Kyle: I'm on the fence as to whether Lucius is really dead

Nah. The show could not move forward under that kind of burden. Ed *thinks* he killed Lucius and that's important for his story, but Lucius is fine (fandom's current theory: got back on to the ship via one of the many secret passages Stede had built -one that had external access- and is currently living in the walls with help from the crew).

In case there are any doubts
posted by tzikeh at 8:17 PM on April 23 [2 favorites]


I loved the show but didn't they already have a huge stockpile of orange marmalade? Why did they also need oranges?
posted by Stanczyk at 3:01 PM on April 26 [1 favorite]


Google suggests that while marmalade does have vitamin C, it has a lot less than actual oranges. Good question though, this totally hadn’t occurred to me!
posted by showbiz_liz at 3:29 PM on April 26


When the Supreme Court news broke two nights ago and I didn't know whether to scream or cry, I started episode one. I am so grateful I did. Will be done with it all by tomorrow or the next day, and I too am now deeply rooting for a season 2.
posted by BlahLaLa at 1:52 PM on May 4 [6 favorites]


So why did Blackbeard keep Jim on the ship as he sailed away? Because they're a killer, or is there something more I missed?
posted by BlahLaLa at 7:42 AM on May 6


BlahLaLa, I wondered why Blackbeard kept Jim but knocked them out, but kept Frenchie awake and threatened? I assumed Blackbeard/Izzy figured Jim and Frenchie would be assets to their new crew and knew Frenchie would do what he needed to stay alive, whereas Jim would fight like hell to prevent their friends and crewmates from being marooned.
posted by SeedStitch at 8:48 AM on May 6 [2 favorites]


Yeah I felt like Jim was an asset and also for the cliffhanger aspects they needed to split up every couple or proto-couple so literally no one winds up happy.
posted by jessamyn at 9:08 AM on May 6 [2 favorites]


Just did a one day binge of this series and really loved it! Very much appreciated the diverse cast and some of the truly deranged storytelling choices.

In my mind, the Ed/Stede relationship is in that category of not-super-healthy romances where neither character is a very good person and any sympathy we feel for them along the way is in that context. Not everyone likes those kinds of stories! I do really like an I can make him worse moment, though, as evidenced by my enjoyment of Izzy, who is a horrid little ferret.

I really hope we get a second season, even if HBO decides not to renew. I'm very curious about where they go next, if given the opportunity.
posted by merriment at 9:12 AM on May 9


Great season, awful finale.
posted by schmod at 6:38 PM on May 27


Just finished, quite liked it. Not sure what Lucius sees in Black Pete, but okay. I'm trying not to read too much into Bonnet's poor parenting in terms of Taika Waititi's contributions. Waititi is an exec producer, a star and directed an episode, but he didn't write the story.

Darby and Waititi are knocking it out of the park as actors though. I totally buy them as individuals and as a couple. I'm also particularly enjoying Samson Kayo as Oluwande. I was a bit worried that Jim didn't appreciate him enough, but I think they just had a lot of disguise and revenge on their mind. Once that was sorted they were ready to see Oluwande.
posted by harriet vane at 1:00 AM on May 30 [2 favorites]


I don't usually like pirate stories, but enjoyed this one immensely. The fact that they are pretty terrible at pirating probably helps. But mostly it's that it's centering queerness in a number of stories that I really enjoy.
posted by blueberry monster at 10:43 AM on May 30 [2 favorites]


Just got renewed for season 2!
posted by BlahLaLa at 10:11 AM on June 1 [11 favorites]


\0/
posted by jessamyn at 10:19 AM on June 1 [5 favorites]


It is imperative you watch the tweet where they made the announcement with sound on. Unless you're in an office, in which case wear headphones.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 11:46 AM on June 1 [3 favorites]


Wow we are super lucky to be in the streaming age because if that first episode had been a network pilot this show would have been dead and buried.

I, like quite a few others it seems, could not get into that first episode but man am I so happy I came back. It's so good.
posted by M Edward at 9:31 PM on June 2 [1 favorite]


Binge watched this over the long weekend and it has UTTERLY eaten my brain
posted by potrzebie at 11:25 AM on July 5 [9 favorites]


Binge watched this over the long weekend and it has UTTERLY eaten my brain

I like it an entirely normal amount.

(it's currently my anti-anxiety comfort blankie and I may or may not have watched the entire thing multiple times at this point, and am currently doing so again)

(the OFMD brain rot is real)

But really, there is just SO MUCH to love about it. And I'm another one who watched the pilot and thought "I'm not sure this is for me" (even though I love Taika and pirates) but I am SO GLAD I stuck it out. The pilot still isn't my favorite episode, but I can see the seeds of what's amazing in it now. And it so very much rewards repeat viewing (and the fact that each episode is the length it needs to be helps a lot), there are so many subtle things that are easily missed. Plus it's one of those magic ensemble casts where everyone pulls each other up to the next level.

Part of what makes it so wonderful for me is that Stede DOESN'T get a pass for abandoning his family, it haunts him and he eventually tries to do the right thing, then finds that Mary (and the kids) are better off without him, especially because Mary has found her Ed in Doug. One of the central themes is people trying to find and be who they are, and to become the best version of themselves they can be. Ed DOESN'T get a pass for being Blackbeard, it haunts him too.

Plus even if I didn't think it was nearly perfect, I would give it a huge pass just for normalizing queerness as much as it does. This is the way.

I just fervently hope S2 doesn't blow it.
posted by biscotti at 2:55 PM on July 9 [6 favorites]


Oh no I just accidentally watched it all again. Whoops?

Very different feelings on rewatch knowing how it all goes down. Much more emotional space to process what's actually on screen when I'm not devoting any energy to whether this show is fucking with me or not. And also I guess I was not so mesmerized by Ed's extreme physical beauty this time around and paid much better attention to the rest of the crew, which I'm glad to have done.
posted by potrzebie at 8:34 PM on July 16 [2 favorites]


I am pretty obsessed with this show and have it on as a comfort rewatch in the background as I do stuff, I'm probably on my 5th half assed watch, but it's a good enough show to pay 100% attention to and a good enough show to put on in the background when you need some emotional affirmation of a messy queer neurodivergent life. I always have a good cackle with how many layers of queerness there is on here, it's impressive.
posted by yueliang at 10:36 PM on July 29 [1 favorite]


I love pirates, Taika, Rhys, historical fiction…and I just didn’t love the first episode. So bummed. However, a coworker did not accept that and coerced me to keep going. Thank goodness because I LOVED IT! I cannot believe how romantic this wacky comedy is. Can’t wait to rewatch, but want to save it for a pick me up when I really need it.
posted by gryphonlover at 3:15 PM on August 27 [1 favorite]


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