TV Recap

Black Sails Season 2 Episode 7 Review – XV

Max cleans up after a massacre.  News from the outside world changes everything for Flint and Silver.  Eleanor risks her life for the sake of her future.  Bonny faces a crossroads.  Dufresne pushes Billy to act.

(Summary provided by


This episode isn’t really about Flint, and I almost despaired of finding a Best Flint Moment.  But then Abigail arrives in the tavern, and FLINT’S FACE as he sees her, sees his past, sees his future.  He takes off his sword and tells her not to be frightened in the gentlest voice we’ve heard from him (since London flashbacks).

Abigail:  You’re Captain Flint?
Flint:  My name is James.  James McGraw.

Reader, I actually gasped and tears sprang to my eyes.  Oh, JAMES.


This is SUCH a good episode for Eleanor and Billy and Max, but I have to give the award to Anne!  We get her backstory this episode, and wow is it painful.

“I was married to a man once.  Rotten fuck raised his hands at me, burned me, shared me with his men.  I didn’t know any different, didn’t know I could do anything about it.  Even if I had, I wouldn’t have thought I had it in me.  One day, we were in a tavern.  He was hurting me, and a man saw it.  He walked over and he slit his throat.  That was Jack.  I was thirteen.  I always thought he saved me from something, always been so fucking grateful.

Now I wonder maybe Jack took me from something that I was supposed to figure my own way out of.  Maybe he took away the chance to get strong enough to save myself, to grow up.  Instead I went with him, did what he did, did what the others did.  Thought I’d become one of them.  If I’m not what I was when I was born, and I ain’t what I’ve become instead, what the fuck am I?”

Oh, ANNE.  She’s going through a serious identity crisis after Jack’s betrayal.  It’s telling and heartbreaking that she doesn’t ask “who the fuck am I?” but “what the fuck am I?”

After Jack saved her from her abusive husband, she remade herself in his image.  That has fallen apart, so now she tries to remake herself in Max’s image in an ill-fitting dress with a paid customer.  When that too falls apart, Anne collapses outside, where Max finds and hugs her.

Who is Anne?  By episode’s end, Max has offered her new purpose as “a partner with knowledge of the sea” in Max’s expanding ambitions.  Sounds like a person somewhere in between Jack and Max…which could just be Anne.


It’s not really hilarious, but I did think it amusing that after Flint viciously insults Silver, he’s surprised that Silver doesn’t want to stay and brainstorm together.

Silver:  Oh please, don’t try to convince me to do it for the sake of their futures.
Flint:  For the sake of your own.  Those men listen to you.  They give a shit about what you have to say.  What you think, what you want them to think.  Where else in the world is that true?  Where else would you wake up in the morning and matter? … Don’t you want to discuss how you’ll approach them?
Silver:  I know what I’m doing.

Okay, it’s not really that funny.  But that IS AN EXCELLENT QUOTE that deserves it’s own space.


Eleanor:  Things have changed.  Things are changing as we speak tonight.

  • LOL, this is a great description of EVERY EPISODE, Eleanor.
  • When Eleanor says Flint is a “good man” I felt a serious callback to James defending Thomas.  They are such good partners to each other (which is only further demonstrated as the episode goes on)!
  • Speaking of partners, Billy and Flint are very partner-y this episode, and I love it!  I liked their mundane conversations about crew votes and potential quartermasters.  I liked their tense conversations about whether or not Flint tried to save Billy or tried to kill him.  Although not as powerful a partnership as Flint/Silver, MAN, could they be effective if they were on the same side more often.
  • True love is saving your murderess lover’s hat from the flames because you know it makes her feel safe!  (Continuing from last episode, I am really feeling the Max/Anne love now.)
  • Max is such a good leader, defending Anne but making sure the girls in the brothel feel safe and understood.
  • The gold is gone, so support for Hornigold is gone!  Silver is pissed at Flint, accusing him of making it disappear. Silver is ready to leave him, but later we learn that it’s all a lie orchestrated by Silver.  Which makes me think – is he helping Flint while helping himself?  Is that intentional on his part or I am reading too much into their relationship at this point?
  • Love that Flint dismisses his quartermaster (Dufresne) to talk to Silver.  Shows how much he’s already relying on him!
  • Silver is pissed that Flint knows him so deeply, knows his need for importance and relevance.  I love that despite this frustration, he goes and does exactly what Flint asks of him – speaks to the men brilliantly and convincingly.  Silver is a phenomenal orator, and this is maybe one of his best speeches in the whole show.

“I was going to walk away from all you people and never look back.  I mean it.  That money was license for me to leave all of this and all of you behind, and any of you who says he didn’t at least consider doing the same is a lying sack of shit.  Truth is, there’s only one kind of person who’d want to do what we do if there was an easier way to survive.  And because I don’t believe there is a rotten, murdering fuck amongst you, I don’t imagine I’m alone in having taken some comfort in the idea of all of this coming to an end.

But now no gold.  We’re back to the same two choices we’ve known our entire lives: toil for another man’s benefit or steal for our own.  Unless Captain Flint just showed us a third way.  Reconciliation.  Pardons.  And not because we need to apologize for what we’ve done.  Not because we’ve got any desire to go back to where we came from, but because maybe with a little help this place could be the reason we never have to do either again.”

  • The reality of the brothel in Nassau is something that I just kind of choke down and accept, so I am really surprised that I genuinely LIKE Jacob and his “wooing” of Anne.  It makes me think a little further that…perhaps the only way men like Jacob can meet women and have actual relationships is via the brothel.  Are there eligible women elsewhere?  I assume inland ladies are in a class above and therefore not available.  After all, Logan was in love with Charlotte (whether she reciprocated is debatable).
  • The MUSIC while Anne is with Jacob is so good, so haunting!  The music is also so good when Silver is telling Max about the gold.  AHH!

Abigail: [My father] left me behind.  He said Charles Town was far too coarse and violent a place to bring a child into.  But you seem a formidable woman, ma’am.  Perhaps it was exposure to the challenges of this place that made you the person you are.
Eleanor:  I suppose that’s one way to look at it.

  • Growing up in Nassau made Eleanor into a strong businesswoman, but it also made her into a woman who can betray the people she loves.
  • As evidenced by past reviews, I’ve fallen pretty firmly into the “Eleanor and Vane are not good for each other (although they do have spectacular sex)” camp, but the scene at the gate is genuinely heartbreaking.  Vane thinks he has given and given to her without receiving anything from her, and Eleanor doesn’t believe that the things he does for her are actually for HER.  They fundamentally misunderstand each other, and this betrayal is the last straw.
  • Billy is so good in this episode, playing Dufresne and revealing corruptible crew members to the rest of the Walrus men.

Billy:  Have you ever been tortured?  Suffered pain applied by men who saw you as less than a man?  Saw you as an animal?  Cause it isn’t the pain they’re inflicting that’s the most frightening part of it.  It isn’t the fear of future pain.  It’s the knowledge that even when the pain stops, even if they were to let you go, that they’ve changed you.  That pain, that fear, that despair has made you someone else, someone you barely recognize, against your will.

I said what I had to say to get out of that place, but I have no intention of honoring their offer.  I would fight to the death to ensure not a single one of my brothers ever has to face what I faced.

  • How has Billy fundamentally changed?  I think this speech makes more sense in light of his season 4 experience, but he’s saying he’s changed now.  How?  Because now he will side with a man he despises and distrusts for the greater good?  I dunno, I still see him as fundamentally loyal.  What am I missing?
  • Sometimes all you need is the hug of a parental figure, whether that’s Abigail with Miranda or Eleanor with Daddy Guthrie.
  • I love that they leave what happened between Billy and Flint ambiguous.  What we believe (did Flint try to save him? try to kill him?) says a lot about us as viewers and how we read people.  It is, in fact, a hint of the same theme we’ll get in the series finale!
  • Every time I see Eme, I’m so happy that she’s found paid work!
  • Dufresne and Hornigold team up and I’m bored about it.
  • Eleanor and Flint team up and I LOVE IT.  It’s so satisfying to see them rest together for a moment, happy in the fact that “If you and I aren’t careful, we might actually see this thing through.”  I love that Eleanor shares her fears about Vane’s safety with Flint, and that he doesn’t condescend to her by offering her false hope.
  • These two are so similar, willing to sacrifice any relationship for the sake of The Mission.
  • We end with the big reveal that Silver is a lying liar who lies.  He just wants his gold, and MAX’S FACE as she learns about it.  She’s trying so hard to contain her excitement, but I’m so excited for her!  But we know what happens when people go up against Flint, so…how will this play out for them??

Not done reliving the episode?  Listen to Daphne and Liz’s podcast at Fathoms Deep!

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