Starring Toby Stephens, Hannah New, Luke Arnold, Luke Roberts, Ray Stevenson, Jessica Parker Kennedy, Tom Hopper, Zethu Dlomo, Toby Schmitz, Clara Paget. Various directors. (2017, 596 min). ANCHOR BAY
And so ends the only good thing Michael Bay ever attached his name to. It's kind-of sad, really. I'm sure gonna miss what my family amusingly refers to as Dad's Pirate Porn.
I never watched Black Sails when it aired on Starz, preferring the annual summer binge sessions these Blu-Ray releases provided. The show got a bit pokey at times in previous seasons, but it was the most handsomely produced series on television, with just the right amounts of sex, violence, betrayal and intrigue to keep me awake into the wee hours of the night, saying, "Okay, just one more episode, then I'll go to bed."
At least the series ends with a bang. Season 4 is the most briskly-paced and action oriented of them all, the various events of the previous three seasons coming to a head during these final 10 episodes. And, as usual, anyone not up-to-speed with these characters' past-doings will be completely lost. For the faithful, there aren't any real plot twists this season, save for the ultimate fates of a few of these characters.
While Captain Flint (Toby Stephens) remains the show's solid anchor, all the supporting characters have their moments. I especially enjoyed the transformation of Jack Rackham (Toby Schmitz) over the course of the series from conniving little weasel to - almost - a trusted ally during the growing conflict with the British over control of Nassau. Woodes Rogers (Luke Roberts) returns from Season 3 as the primary antagonist. He makes a terrific villain because, even though he often demonstrates a considerable amount of cruelty, he's not completely hateful. And while we may not condone his actions, we kind-of understand them.
It all winds down to a satisfying - sometimes surprisingly poignant - conclusion that should please most fans of the series. And while I'll miss those late summer binge-a-thons, at least Black Sails ends on a high note rather than wear out its welcome.
- FEATURETTES: "Inside the World of Black Sails"; "Creating the World"; "Roundtable: Women in Piracy"; "Roundtable: "The Legends of Treasure Island"; "Roundtable: Fearless Fans"
- DIGITAL COPY