Quick! Grab some snack supplies, hustle together a crew of your most favoured friends and set sail on the comfiest sofa (or if you’re me Captain it alone under the duvet) as you’re going to suffer from one almighty binge hangover from this treasure of a series.
Now running it’s course through a second season, this STARZ original series started out as a prequel to the classic Treasure Island as written by Robert Louis Stevenson and by capturing those pirate loving audiences earned a record breaking debut viewing figures of 2.6 million for STARZ, surpassing numbers of their latest popular show ‘The White Queen‘. So needless to say this show is worth its weight in gold: I should really stop with the pirate puns right about now…maybe not.
A prequel it may be but even a novice Treasure Islander can still be captivated by the island of Nassau and the pirates that inhabit in and around its seas. These dastardly men and women alike feast in gold, sex and gore, and the Captains are as trustworthy as your friendly politician. In a rush to describe it in little words to a hesitant friend I described it as a pirate ‘Game of Thrones‘ or ‘Game of Gold‘ would be actually be better suited.
Heading a cast of engaging and diverse characters is the infamous Captain Flint, intent on pirating the biggest score of gold known in pirate history but never is such a feat as simple as that; when is it ever? Actor Toby Stephens, 44, who portrays Flint, in an interview with the Telegraph describes the Captain; “The most feared pirate. A brilliant man who amassed a huge amount of treasure, but when we meet him he is on the ropes financially and his crew are very disgruntled. He has the capacity for incredible violence and anger, but if you were a pirate you had to be feared otherwise it wouldn’t work.” And when asked to describe the show himself; “Deadwood meets The Wire. It’s not just the blood and boobs it’s billed as. It’s more about the mechanism of piracy rather than the fantasy of it. Whatever we’ve seen before has been a mythologised version and what was really good was we got halfway through filming season one and it got such a great reaction at Comic-Con it got recommissioned. Which is just as well as they’ve built three full-sized ships, a water tank and a shanty town on the coast of Cape Town.“
Fun Fact: Toby Stephens is son to Dame Maggie Smith.
Captain Flint isn’t the only recogonisable one among the motley crew of characters, be prepared to meet the even more infamous John Silver before the parrot and wooden leg and the future bearer of the ‘Black Spot’ Billy Bones. Even historical pirates of the past are brought to life on screen including the well-known pair Jack Rackham and Anne Bonny. You’ll find no spoilers here but it’d be criminal to miss out on this high budget, cutthroat and well-tailored marauding mayhem of a television series.
You can watch Black Sails on Amazon Instant, STARZ, or the first season is available to purchase on DVD. Also check out the STARZ website for exclusive clips, downloads and picture galleries!
Is Black Sails on your to watch list? Do you have a favourite character already? What are you hoping to see? Want a binge rating on another show? Let me know in the comments!
Binge Rating: ★★★★★
Feature Image: The Cast of Black from the left: Max, Eleanor Guthrie, John Silver, Captain Flint, Hal Gates, Captain Vane, Jack Rackham. Source: http://jamesflintt.tumblr.com/