I’m very much in a pirating mood this week after binging on Black Sails, a rip-roaring high seas drama you can find on Amazon Prime.
Some of you may remember I reviewed the first series this time last year. While I enjoyed the first outing of Captain Flint and his crew, I did find the original series a bit ropey in places.
However, I can safely say the second series has addressed many of my gripes. But before I get into that, here’s a recap of what the story is. Black Sails tells the fortunes and lives of various crews out of the pirate haven of Nassau - although the series predominantly focuses on Captain Flint and his men. At the end of the last series the crew had set out looking for Spanish gold, only to run into trouble and become stranded. However, by the chance, the same island they get stuck on is the same one that has claimed the Spanish ship carrying all that booty.
The second series starts where the previous left off but once again takes a different direction to what you would expect. Captain Flint - through a lot of plotting and convoluted events regains his captaincy and sets sail back to Nassau.
From there on the series jumps from character to character, covering all sorts of minor plots that ultimately tie together in the series finale. The series also doesn’t shy away from misleading viewers early on in a very clever way.
Anyway, back to my complaints of the first series. I felt a lot of characters in the first series had about as much personality as a cardboard box. I’m happy to say that is not the case this time round. One of the strongest performances comes from Captain Flint and the flashback sequences that tells us his back story.
While bits and pieces of his story were hinted at in the first series, this time there is no messing about and everything is put into place. The reason why he became Captain Flint and the way this part of the story is told is nothing short of genius - episode six if you’re interested.
But despite a heavier emphasise on character, the show has not watered down on the amount of action. There are enough battles and explosions to keep action fans hooked. The series also remains very grisly - so maybe one to pass on if you’re faint of heart.
Black Sails season two gets 9/10.