Black Sails Episode XI recap

So many exiting things happened this episode and they left us with Flint ready to fire upon Vane in the fort. I can’t stand it. So until then…

Long John slithers his way out of yet another flogging or keelhauling. Silver was pretty quiet this episode because of the focus on Vane, Flint’s return to New Providence, and more beheadings, but he did manage to convince Flint’s crew to forgo the vote on whether or not to go carousing on New Providence. Silver explained how sailing into the bay with Spanish markings on their canvas was maybe not such a wise idea.

Number of Flint sneers. One managed to sneak out when he was berating Eleanor for acquiescing to Vane. I believe Miranda might have sneered at Eleanor as well.

Flint is brilliant, delusional, or downright scaring the crap out of me. We learn he can be downright romantic. He leaves a book for Miranda with the words “I’m sorry” written on the inside cover. We learn their affair began over a Spanish copy of Don Quixote. Our sociopath is quite the man of letters. Not quite so romantic, however, when the New Providence pirates learned about Gate’s untimely demise. (Flint’s quartermaster who he killed in the first season.) Eleanor was pretty freaked out when she found out Flint had killed Gates. The pirates hold fine lines between brutality and outright evil fuckery and killing one of your own crew without justification falls into the evil f&%$# category as we learned after Anne Bonny and Jack killed members of their own crew.

Wenches behaving bad-ass-ly. Eleanor tried to get the upper hand on Miranda, calling her too unremarkable to warrant a mention from Flint, but Miranda has years of high-handed, British upper-class bitchiness under her belt and hands Eleanor her ass. Miranda knows what Flint’s demons whisper at night. I’d personally like to know what the both of them are smoking on that island, what local jimson weed causes one’s inner demons to whisper.

Miranda was quite the saucy wench. She basically seduced Flint back in London, showing up at his tidy apartment with very untidy thoughts. Back when women had little power, I hand it to those who took what they could, when they could. I especially liked when she told Flint about the whispers over her infidelities and how they didn’t bother her or her husband. Sooo, is she implying she has an open relationship with hubby? Or that hubby is oblivious? Time will only tell. Adding the flashbacks to Flint and Miranda’s past haven’t broken up the pacing at all and have only added more depth to these characters.

On deck shenanigans.

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Vane’s crew of natty dreads pictured above (these guys are impressive in their natty-ness) carried out quite the efficient suprizal, sneaking aboard New Low’s ship and taking out the crew. It was quite satisfying when Low called out for Mr. Holmes after he gave Vane some shade about having to come to his ship alone because his crew don’t respect him no more. Mr. Holmes don’t work here anymore. Boo yah! Well played Vane.

Pirate history check. When Vane shows Eleanor Ned Low’s hostage, Eleanor tells him how Peter Ash, the Carolinas governor…(I’m a bit confused at the Carolinas lumping here because I believe both North and South Carolina were split into separate colonies in 1712) Anyway, Ash had hung men he even suspected of piracy. It was actually pretty difficult for a colonial governor to try a man for piracy. Governors needed permission from the king to hold a piracy trial under their own authority. Piracy trials were under the jurisdiction of the Vice Admiralty so most pirates had to be shipped off to London. (This legal loophole was later resolved by legislators in London.) Some governors claimed the ability to act as representatives of the Vice Admiralty, but that was a stretch. In fact, Governor Spotswood of Virginia tried William Howard, one of Blackbeard’s quartermasters. Howard actually had a lawyer and called upon him, but through some legal shenanigans on Spotswood’s part, his lawyer was banned from the trial. Spotswood tried and convicted Howard, but later he was released as a result of a pardon. (From Blackbeard by Angus Konstam)

Episode MBP (most badass pirate).

Black Sails, episode XI, Charles Vane

Vane has quite the flowery script, he does. Writing in blood must inspire the inner calligrapher, at least I’m thinking that was his ink of choice.

I’m sad to see Ned Low go even though it appears he existed to serve as a plot device, but we have Vane to give us the occasional beheading and savage reprisal when needed. Early in the episode, Low told Vane how he was an irrational blunt instrument with an instinct toward the extreme. Episode X, we learned how Flint has a dark, wild “it”. So while Low and Flint are ruled by their “its”, Vane appears to be more rational and calculating in handling his “it” or blunt instrument, unless Eleanor’s involved. His “it” tends to get pretty fired up then. In fact, the romance writer in me has a theory about Vane, especially after Max asked him if he wanted to know how she stopped caring about Eleanor, and he responded with a very firm negative. Last season, Vane told the story of how Eleanor used to sneak out to the beach and flaunt her little, 13 year-old self in front of the pirates, casting demure smiles that said, I own you. Well, one of those smiles stuck on Vane. It’s possible Vane holds on to his affection for Eleanor to keep him from going full on Ned Low psycho. Whatever the reason, ‘tis very intriguing.

Billy Bones, Billy Bones is our true hero. We didn’t see him get more tortured, thankfully. But I did come across an interview with Tom Hooper, who plays Billy, and he provides some interesting insights into what is coming for our Billy.

Jack Rackham quote. To Anne Bonny, “She [Max] knows how to play the thing between your legs better than I.” I called the threesome! Starz didn’t disappoint. Max got Vane to do some public displays of affection so Jack and Anne could return to piracy. I enjoyed the scene in which Jack and Anne lovingly discussed building their own crew, acquiring a piragua. I wonder, ultimately, what Max’s stake is in all this. Is she really that into Anne?

So Vane now has Low’s prized plunder in his possession, the daughter of Governor Peter Ash of the Carolinas. Anyway, we glimpsed Charleston (Charles Town at the time), South Carolina in the season teasers. My second pirate book is partly set in the Carolinas around this time, so I’m excited to see Charles Town portrayed.

Eight blow my scuttlebutts because plot device Ned Low is gone, but overall awesomeness!

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