Television shows should grow thematically as they age and remove or develop characters as dictated by the story. Black Sails Season 3 is an essential lesson in how to advance a story and leave no living man or woman behind. If you’re caught up with the first two seasons then you’ll find no reason to turn back in the latest batch of episodes.
It’s no secret that Black Sails is charting a course toward the story of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic Treasure Island. Season 3 takes the biggest step yet toward this eventuality with the introduction of a famous pirate and what we presume is the fabled island itself.
Ray Stevenson joins the cast as the dreaded Blackbeard, or at least we hope that’s what he will become in the fourth and final season. Blackbeard’s introduction and role in Season 3 is relatively muted and in some respects upstaged by the mere mention of another big name and inevitable evolution of John Silver into Treasure Island’s seedy villain.
Seeing a increasingly reckless and fearless Flint start to notice a darkness churning inside Silver as the legend of Long John Silver is first mentioned makes the wait for Season 4 all the more unbearable. Flint has his own demons to overcome and with the big finale’s epic battle between the pirates and British leading to a definitive victor, new conflicts between friends appear to be on the horizon.
While Flint and his history with Miranda played a big role in Season 2, secondary characters were given their own meaty arcs in Season 3 to successfully spread the love around and make the world feel bigger. One beloved character doesn’t survive the season and it hurts knowing that character is off the board for the final season.
You can’t talk about Black Sails without mentioning the amazing production value. Treasure Island is a sight to behold, even more impressive than the pirate stronghold of Nassau. The finale battle with an opening shot underwater is downright cinematic. Even Jaws would be jealous of a tense shark scene. No expense appears spared to ensure Black Sails is as authentic as possible.
Anchor Bay and Starz continue to present Black Sails on Blu-ray with a transfer and Dolby True HD audio befitting a show of its quality. A handful of bonus features are also included that go behind-the-scenes and provide a handy recap of Season 2. All told the extras are less than an hour in length combined but cannot be missed after watching Season 3 in full.
- Season Two Recap
- Blackbeard: An 18th Century Pirate
- The Storm
- A Pirate’s Last Words (Spoilers!!)
- Woodes Rogers
- Inside the World of Black Sails
It’s a shame more viewers haven’t discovered Black Sails, one of the most enjoyable and well-made shows airing today on cable TV. The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones may get all the pop culture attention, but Black Sails stands tall among the giants without so much as a flinch. Season 3 is the most expansive, gripping and entertaining season yet making the Blu-ray and prior seasons a bounty worth pursuing.
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