Saturday, 21 October 2017


Black Sails Season 4
Released By: Platform Entertainment
Rating: 15
Running Time: 572 Mins
Audio: Japanese with English subs
Release Date: Out Now!
Reviewed By: Sandra Scholes 

Hundreds of British soldiers lie dead in a forest... the Royal Navy sails back to England in retreat... the West Indies are now a war zone, and the shores of New Providence Island have never been bloodier. With the help of Eleanor Guthrie, Woodes Rogers transforms Nassau into a fortress without walls, as Captain Flint amasses a fleet of unprecedented strength, hoping to strike the final blow against civilization and reshape the world forever.

Meanwhile, from within the island... an insurgency builds, fuelled by the legend of its exiled leader, whose name keeps grown men awake at night... the one they call Long John Silver. But as Flint, Silver and their allies are about to learn, the closer civilization comes to defeat, the more desperately and destructively it will fight back. Oaths will be shattered, fortunes will change hands, and amidst the chaos, only one thing remains certain: it has never been more dangerous to call oneself a pirate...

In the first season, a seemingly insignificant character called John becomes Captain Flint's cook who holds a secret, he has a piece of the captain's log from the previous captain. He might look like an insignificant character, but John plays a larger part in this series. While Eleanor Guthrie tries to keep order on Nassau, Captain Flint has his interests in helping her but only as far as it serves his needs. In season 2, Eleanor has difficulty keeping order when the leader of a pirate gang, Vane wants to take over Nassau. After Vane finds out Flint's interest in Eleanor, he takes it upon himself to try and kill him and take his crew, but as we all know, Flint always has a plan to get out of trouble, and one to become captain again. In the third season a new and dangerous character is revealed, one who could shape or destroy the whole history of what pirates stand for.

A while back, Flint looks back on his life as a respected officer in the navy, though realizing he is not as respected as he first thought. Being the son of a carpenter, he is considered lowly and we keep getting flashbacks of his life while in the present he risks being sent back to the navy as a prisoner and face execution. Instead Flint and John form a sort of partnership that could go either way over the course of the series for better or worse. Still, we get to see Flint's life unfold, and in season 3 John become one of the better characters.

Treachery is inevitable, no matter the pirate, and this season finale has all the ingredients for it; a stash of gold, ships and reasons to get revenge on others who wronged them. More than anything else, Flint wanted to see Thomas Hamilton, though it remains to be seen whether he will want to be his friend after all that has happened. This story is one that interested me from the second season for its twists and turns, making Flint into a reliable character if only for his insatiable desires and being able to keep his cool under pressure. Another character fans took to is Jack Rackham, a man of many ways who had to endure his lover, Anne enjoy nights of passion with brothel madam, Max. Jealousy aside, he has to come to terms with what he wants most of all, and disregard his disappointment.

To say this finale is dark would be something of an understatement, as the intro holds a great deal of truth in that a pirates life is a dangerous one and life-expectancy is small as we have found in previous seasons. The ones you expect to stick around don't and characters who look like they are in the background suddenly become foreground. For most of us, there is the build up to this moment where all the loose ends are tied up and everything is as it should be, though rather than fighting (which is what most of us expected) political pirate intrigue is more what goes on. Toby Stephens (Flint) continues as one of the best characters who we have seen lose his ship, then gain another and become one of the most feared pirates known to man. Hannah New's character (Eleanor) has seen fortune and disaster in her father's absence on Nassau, then seen her power nearly taken from her when her father returns. Luke Arnold (John) has seen his potential grow despite having to outwit and manipulate situations for Flint in the past.

The setting for me has been perfect, this series looking more like a realistic portrayal of pirate life back in the day than say, Pirates of the Caribbean. Fans of pirate movies and series have been waiting a long time for a series like this to come along, and here it is in its entirety. 

1 comment:

  1. What POTC should have been and is such a cool series.