Black Sails: XIX
January 25, 2016 1:08 PM - Season 3, Episode 1 - Subscribe

Flint and his crew wage war against the world; Eleanor is offered clemency; Vane takes issue with Rackham's methods; one of Nassau's most notorious individuals returns.

The Treasure Island prequel is back, with mo' money, mo' problems, a new set of alliances, and the new English governor of Nassau, Woodes Rogers, closing in.

Real people: (may contain spoilers because history)
Woodes Rogers
Edward Teach
Jack Rackham
Anne Bonny
Charles Vane
Benjamin Hornigold

Treasure Island: (may contain spoilers because Robert Louis Stephenson)
James Flint
Long John Silver
Billy Bones
posted by WidgetAlley (10 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
posted by poffin boffin at 3:29 PM on January 25, 2016

im gonna travel back in time to punch woodes rogers right in the dick

and also to give everyone in nassau a bar of soap
posted by poffin boffin at 3:30 PM on January 25, 2016

I love this show. It is excellently twisty and turny. It's no Spartacus but it hits a history, sex, violence, strong female characters and intrigue spot for me that Starz seems to specialize in. I don't want to know what that says about me but does anyone have any recommendations of other Spartacus/Blacksails-esque stuff to watch?
posted by merocet at 12:28 PM on January 26, 2016

So glad this show is back.
posted by mstokes650 at 9:49 PM on January 26, 2016

I loved the set piece with the abandoned ship - increasing amounts of dread followed by the appearance on an unknown ship that's got every advantage. Lots of wonderful suspense.

And what a great introduction to blackbeard!

God, I love everyone on this show.
posted by vibratory manner of working at 1:02 AM on January 27, 2016 [1 favorite]

This is my favorite show on TV at the moment and maybe one of the most-ignored/underrated shows I've ever watched (seriously, where is the screaming Tumblr fandom this show deserves? I want memes dammit.) This show is so good at understanding that, while the sexy pirates and naval battles are awesome, it's mostly good because they spent so much time developing characters and relationships, which is kind of unexpected for such a... masculine premise, let alone anything Michael Bay's name is on.

I think Vane was actually the cleanest and most neatly groomed in this episode which is weird but no complaints. Also big shoutouts to poffin boffin whose enthusiasm for BS on Tumblr is what made me start watching.
posted by WidgetAlley at 10:11 AM on January 27, 2016 [1 favorite]

It's such a great, great show. It deserves far more praise than it's getting -- but my understanding is they've already committed to a fourth season. So the people at the network know how good it is.

I also love how everything so far has revolved around that one shipment of gold!
posted by Catblack at 5:17 AM on January 30, 2016

Is that Titus Pullo I see with a black beard?

I run hot and cold with this; for a show putatively about pirates, there's precious little sailing. On the other hand, it is a fascinating episode in history, and how some of these actual historical figures – and literary ones! – have been dramatized is great. This episode drew me back into the series, after I'd sworn it off, and I look forward to sharing these season with all of you.
posted by The Nutmeg of Consolation at 11:42 AM on January 30, 2016

Interesting to see how the gold was such a plot driver before and now it's almost second or third billing.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:47 AM on February 1, 2016

for a show putatively about pirates, there's precious little sailing.

Here's the thing though: there's a lot of truth to the way this show deals with sailing. Compared to the short-lived Malkovich-vehicle Blackbeard, or even to the Pirates of the Carribean movies, where sailing is often basically just teleportation but with a sails-flapping-in-breeze, person-standing-at-the-prow montage instead of a glowy sci-fi special effect, this show does not let you forget that at this time in history, sailing was fucking dangerous. You might just get caught by a storm and killed, anytime. Even on sunny beautiful days, rigging breaks, ropes snap, people fall overboard, limbs get lost - and this show does not let us forget that. So every time you're gonna go out sailing, risking life and limb -- well, you better have a damn good reason. And you better prepare. And it's gonna take you a while to get anywhere, and probably a lot of stuff is going to happen at home while you're gone. And this show is really unusually faithful to all of that, and that's one of the reasons it's one of my favorite shows on TV right now.

Interesting to see how the gold was such a plot driver before and now it's almost second or third billing.

I am enormously entertained that the huge scene that much of the second season seemed like it was driving towards - a big confrontation between Flint and Vane and Max and Rackham over the gold - happened between seasons, we never saw it, and yet apparently they all behaved more-or-less maturely and gracefully and came to a sensible agreement. It's a brave twist on the usual story structure, but it let the writers keep things moving along very quickly. Plus, I love that the actual logistical challenge of keeping all that gold somewhere safe has now become a major plot driver. This show is spectacular at making these sorts of boring mundane details become really interesting plot points instead of just handwaving away the details like so many shows would. I mean, in how many other shows would that fort have just gotten auto-magically repaired between seasons? Or they would've just treated it like that barrage of cannon fire left the fort basically intact and still perfectly usable. This show doesn't get bogged down in the minutiae, but it also doesn't ignore it, it lets details like that organically add to the complexity of the plot. It's just brilliant writing.
posted by mstokes650 at 11:06 AM on February 2, 2016 [2 favorites]

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