Black Sails – Series 2 Review

Black Sails 1

Black Sails 2Plot: Series 1 saw Captain Flint chasing down a prize far bigger than anything his crew had dreamt of. Now that prize is out of reach and gold no longer Flint’s priority. War is coming to the pirates, waged by the Navy and determined to see every last one of them hung.

Flint strikes a new course, bringing friends and foe alike into line if there is any chance of survival. But old friends can no longer be trusted and enemies can be formed quicker than allies. Survival is the most important thing but by no means is it guaranteed.

Black Sails 3

Quote: `There’s a significant difference between preventing Ashe from making a trophy of Flint, and saving Flint’s life. Who’s to say Vane doesn’t help Flint escape from shore, and then slit his throat the moment we’re in open water? Along with all of ours.

That was dark.`


Opinion: It took me a while to get into series 1. However, beginning series 2 with the characters firmly established in my mind and the relationships – however complicated they might be – between said characters straight, series two had an instant edge. The second series was bigger, bolder and better than series 1 in every way, if you’ll excuse the cliché.

The plot was much stronger. The prize this time around was far more than about gold. It was about survival. Squabbles between the captains were irrelevant when faced with a common enemy. But getting them to see that common enemy was a whirlwind of twists, betrayals and unexpected moments that had the tension increasing in each episode.

The characters were a lot stronger. Each develops enormously in the second series, coming into and holding their own against odds that would have broken them the first time around. Max, Jack and Anne in particular are no longer just accessories to the plot; they are driving it.

The backstory was shown through flashbacks rather than a lot of talk. It kept the episodes moving at a faster pace than some of the early ones. They again provided a lot more depth to the character and made characters likeable. Flint, for example, became so much more than a driven pirate when events as to how he reached this point are revealed. It gives the viewer something to root for. You want him to be successful, whereas in the first series my feelings were torn on the matter.

The content is dark and gruesome at times – watching behind a cushion was needed. However, as the quote shows, there were moments of humour injected through cleverly scripted dialogue. It stopped the tension from becoming painful when everything was at stake.

I thoroughly enjoyed this second series. In fact, I was gripped. From the first episode to the tenth, the plot never faltered and the characters never disappointed – even if their actions were not the desired ones. The plot truly gained momentum by the end of the series and I look forward to see where they take it next.


Amazon | HMV

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