Sunday, February 28, 2016

Black Sails 3.6: The Duel

What an excellent Black Sails 3.6 last night - an excellent episode in this excellent season - which features a duel to the death between Flint and Teach.

Of course, neither one can die - Flint because he needs to live long enough to appear in Stevenson's fictional Treasure Island, Teach because he definitely didn't die on that beach according to real history - but like all good docudrama story telling, knowing the ending didn't get in the way of watching a great story.

It's not a surprise that Flint is a good shot, having been trained in the Royal Navy. He grazes Teach, which Flint hopes kills him, but no such luck.   Flint is adept at swordplay, but he's been weakened by his ordeal at sea, and therefore it's also no surprise that Teach bests Flint in their sword fight.  But Vane leaping in to save Flint is a great surprise, and speaks to the loyalty that Vane has to the pirate dream  - the "pirate republic" (I love that phrase) - superior to Vane's loyalty to Flint the man, and even to Teach, whom as Vane later laments, Vane has now betrayed twice.

This piratical answer to the British Empire has always been, for my money, the best part of this story. It also is behind what Scott tells his daughter in another fine scene, back on the escaped-slave island. People who believe in freedom - whether for plunder as pirates, or just to live their lives without toiling for a master you can't leave - have a powerful, noble common cause in this story, whatever the profundity of their other differences.

It's also gratifying to see Rackham and Bonny fighting in their own way to wrest Nassau from Rodgers.   I'm looking forward to seeing how Eleanor manages to do the same in this continuingly compelling, swashbucking story.

See also Black Sails 3.1: Restored ... Black Sails 3.2: Flint vs. Sea ... Black Sails 3.3: Gone Fishin' ... Black Sails 3.4: Mr. Scott's People ... Black Sails 3.5: Alliance

And see also Black Sails 2.1: Good Combo, Back Story, New Blood ... Black Sails 2.2: A Fine Lesson in Captaining ... Black Sails 2.3: "I Angered Charles Vane" ... Black Sails 2.4: "Fire!" ... Black Sails 2.5: Twist! ... Black Sails 2.6: Weighty Alternatives, and the Medium is the Message on the High Seas ...Black Sails 2.7: The Governor's Daughter and the Gold ... Black Sails 2.9: The Unlikely Hero ... Black Sails Season 2 Finale: Satisfying Literate and Vulgar

And see also Black Sails: Literate and Raunchy Piracy ... Black Sails 1.3: John Milton and Marcus Aurelius ... Black Sails 1.4: The Masts of Wall Street ...Black Sails 1.6: Rising Up ... Black Sails 1.7: Fictions and History ... Black Sails 1.8: Money

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pirates of the mind in The Plot to Save Socrates 

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