"Black Sails" S1E1 Review - "I."

The Internet has been buzzing with chatter about the new show, Black Sails, from Starz for several months now. The premiere episode was screened at SDCC 2013 and was renewed for a second season when the show was still months away from premiering its debut episode. The cast is now on Twitter, even if they weren't to begin with, and the overall social media presence is strong. With viral marketing campaigns and appearances at other cons, the anticipation has been building for people to finally see what everyone's been talking about. Top top it all off, Starz has now made the first episode, "I." available for viewing on their website, as well as YouTube.

Upon first glance, Black Sails has everything you already loved about pirates tails. Scallywags, swashbuckling, booze, sword fights... it's all good and fun, right? Before long, Black Sails reveals a darker, more serious tone. If your primary exposure to pirates in the visual media forum is the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, make no mistake, this is no Disney show. There are naked breasts (which is considered scandalous in America), more savage brutality in fight scenes, and a healthy use of the word "fuck." But putting these surface things aside, what truly stands out in Black Sails is that the pirates are particularly clever. To plan a mutiny involves scheming and plotting. One must be cunning to rise to power; the political dynamics in this first episode will strike a chord with those wary (or at the very least aware) of the abundance of  propaganda in political campaigning. There is a system in place with the Black Sails pirates much like the government systems one would see in today's societies.

Black Sails has action, adventure, and just might make you ponder about the politics at play that influence your way of life. Season 1 will have eight episodes in total, and Season 2's ten episodes have already begun filming and production in Cape Town, South Africa. Tune in for more adventures and John Silver cheek (he's no Jack Sparrow, but his sly ways are still bound to draw you in).

Black Sails airs on Saturdays on Starz at 10/9 c.

See the first episode of Black Sails for free here on the Starz website (x) or here on Youtube (x)


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