Starz‘s Black Sails XXIV. TV Show Review. Black Sails: Season 3, Episode 6: XXIV. was highlighted by a fight between two captains. Captain James Flint (Toby Stephens) and Captain Teach (Ray Stevenson)’s duel, like those in the original Star Wars films, was more than about swordplay. It was about the future and the past, loyalty, heartbreak, and betrayal. The winner of the fight was almost meaningless. It was what they were fighting for, the surprise during the fight, and the result of that surprise that was the essence of its purpose.
As a viewer of the evolving storyline between Captain Charles Vane (Zach McGowan) and Blackbeard, I was very surprised by what happened. The viewer could see the growing dismay on Blackbeard’s face, much like Oenomaus when Doctore began attacking him in Spartacus: Gods of the Arena.
When Vane saw Flint about to die, Vane wasn’t about to see a man he respected killed, he was about to see his last chance at Nassau extinguished and he couldn’t let that happen. Vain was not lashing out at Blackbeard, he was fighting to keep his dream of Nassau alive.
Quartermaster John Silver (Luke Arnold) bearing his soul to a complete stranger, Madi (Zethu Dlomo), must have been a stratagem to form a bond with a kindred spirit. During his truthful declarations, it did not seems as such. It seemed like he saw an outlet to confide in and instead of holding fast, he bared his soul, exposing his fear and his responsibilities.
Silvers admissions made it possible for Madi to make her own.
When I said it “must have been stratagem,” Silver had no way of knowing if his words would be effective or not. If it was stratagem, it was also a gamble, one that paid off with Madi speaking of her leadership grooming and of Silver’s neophyte status.
Perception and follow through are all that Silver had. If he gave those up he would be nothing in the eyes of his men and he was not going to let that happen. He had lost too much already. They were all that he had left.
Silver and Madi’s new alliance to weather Captain Flint and his dark depths should prove fruitful as Silver grows closer to Flint. I see Silver and Madi’s burgeoning bond possibly blossoming into something else as XXIV. proved that they are both kindred spirits.
Captain Jack Rackham (Toby Schmitz)’s plan for immortality, spurred by jealously of Woodes Rogers (Luke Roberts)’s quick accomplishments in Nassau (Jack failing to realize that he was not the leader that Woodes was, thus not eliciting the same responses from people that he did), was anchored solely by Anne Bonny (Clara Paget)’s swordsmanship and her ability to avoid British detection. I don’t understand Captain Rackham. He puts himself and the woman he loves in dangerous simply to aggrandize his name in the Nassau. It was utter lunacy. He never presented himself as an egomaniac previously, always making the sensible, rationale choice in a situation. What he did in XXIV. was the complete opposite of that mindset. He risked torture, execution, and a Spanish invasion of Nassau, which Anne could have been caught in the middle of or killed in, all for the sake of the propagation of his name. Who would but the love of their life in such danger for name recognition? Jack Rackham. Who would walk away from a fortune for a piece of paper? Jack Rackham. If Captain Jack Rackham wants name recognition, he is certainly getting it.
Max (Jessica Parker Kennedy) siding with Rogers was the smart play, the move the viewer expected a intelligent character like Max to make. Like Rackham, she was thinking about her future and legacy. Unlike Rackham, her future and legacy would be established by building up and stabilizing Nassau. Rackham’s would be built be destabilizing and destroying Nassau and its current government.
At the end of XXIV., there was a narrative point that was hard to swallow. Captain Vane knew that Jack kept a portion of the Urca gold. He had no idea how much. He also had no idea about what Jack or Anne were going to do or where they were going to go after he escaped from The Fort. With all of these unknown variables in mind, why does Vane believe that he can find Anne Bonny? Why isn’t Vane looking for Jack Rackham and Anne Bonny?
Why does vain assume that he can find Anne Bonny? She could be anywhere. With Jack’s brain power, they could have already left Nassau. Why would they stay there, under British rule, when they could leave with the gold and live somewhere else?
Vane assumption that he could magically find Anne was baseless (unless something happened off screen that the viewer is unaware of presently). And if by some miracle he figured out where she had gone, possibly hundreds, if not thousands of miles away by now, how did he plan on convincing her to give him her share and Jack’s share of the Urca gold? That is her future. That is never having to commit another crime again. Why would she give that up? Nassau is Flint’s dream, Vane’s dream. It is not Anne’s.
Anne is like John Silver was in the beginning. She wants the money and the freedom that comes with it.
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