Black Sails Wiki
Walrus on the beach.jpg
Season One
Number Four
Date Aired February 15th, 2014
Writer Jonathan E. Steinberg
and Robert Levine.
Director Sam Miller
Previous III.
Next V.
"I brought fiends to this place, encouraged them, enriched them, and empowered them. It seems as though my penance ought to be a simple one. I will see to it that they are cast out of this place. Soon and for good."
―Richard Guthrie.

The Walrus is careened with a disastrous effect; Charles Vane struggles to right himself after losing his crew; and Eleanor loses the trust of those closest to her.


Bones takes over from Gates.

The episode begins with Gates sitting below decks on the Walrus looking over charts. Billy Bones tells him that it is time to go up on the deck and talk to the crew. Up on the deck, Gates explains to the crew that since he will be the new captain of the Ranger that they will need a new quartermaster and that nominates Bones. The crew wholeheartedly agrees and cheers for Bones. Bones goes on to tell the crew that if they are going to fight the Urca, that they will first have to careen the ship, i.e. scrubs the bottom of the hull. Concerning where they are going to be doing the careening, the ships carpenter, De Groot, disagrees with Captain Flint's choice of location, stating that the risk of calamity is too high. However, since finding a new location would take perhaps take two weeks, De Groot's concerns are overruled by the crew. With the location agreed upon, the ship is pulled onto the beach and laid on her side.

On shore, Bones has a flashback to his conversation with Morley that he had on deck a week earlier. Morley begins to tell a story about how, several years earlier, Flint convinced the crew to chase after a merchantman, the Maria Aleyne, which was allegedly packed with jewels and gold. Morley continues by saying how the crew tracked the merchantman for months until they finally spotted her. When they attacked they lost several men and yet there was hardly anything on board. He says that while he was exploring below decks he heard a man and woman begging for their lives, screaming "spare us and our fortune's yours". He then heard screaming until he saw the murderer leave; it was Captain Flint. Morley tells Bones that once they got back to shore, he saw a lady there waiting for Flint and that when Flint reached her said two words: "they're dead." He says that tracking that ship was never about money, it was an execution. Morley states that he fears that it's all happening again and that good crewmen will die for Mrs. Barlow's agenda.

At Mrs. Barlow's house, a disinterested Flint is having sex with Barlow. Afterwards, as Flint is getting dressed, Barlow asks him why he is upset with her. He tells her that it's because she read Marcus Aurelius' Meditations with Richard Guthrie. The book apparently had some significance between Barlow and her former husband, Thomas Hamilton. Barlow tells Flint that she is having trouble remaining in such an uncivilized place. Flint assures her that things will get better.

In Vane's tent, Rackham enters to find Vane visibly bruised and beaten. One week without a ship has sent Vane into a tailspin. Rackham tells Vane that he needs to get himself together because Rackham is tired of trying to recover what they have lost just by himself. Looking outside his tent, Vane sees a hulking man staring at him. The man suddenly seems to disappear.

Hornigold talking with Mr. Scott.

At Eleanor Guthrie's tavern, Hornigold confronts Mr. Scott, claiming that Eleanor is out of control after her humiliation of Vane. Hornigold states that several captains are fearful that they too will lose their livelihoods if they catch Eleanor on the wrong day. News arrives that the Andromache is about to arrive in port. The Andromache is the ship captained by Dyfed Bryson that Eleanor wishes to take the large cannons from and give to Flint. Mr. Scott explains to Eleanor that what they are about to attempt with Bryson is very risky and that they cannot under any circumstances try to detain him. He tells her that if they were to make a violent move against Bryson that it would be a direct affront to the Guthrie Trading Company and therefore to her grandfather. Scott insists that Eleanor promise that she understands and that she won't do anything to detain him should he balk. Eleanor promises that she won't try anything like that. As Bryson arrives on the beach, Eleanor is there waiting for him. She tells him that one of their crews plans to hunt the Urca. Bryson seems shocked and states that surely her father wouldn't agree to such a thing. Eleanor tells him that in fact her father does agree and that he wishes to speak to Bryson.

Flint tells Silver of his loyalty to Bones.

Back on shore, Flint approaches the ship as it lays partially on its side. He comes across a crew member accosting John Silver claiming that his cooking of pig meat gave them "the squirts". Flint tastes the pig and claims that it tastes good, but when the crew member skulks off, Flint spits it out and tells Silver to get another pig to butcher and that he'll instruct Silver how to cook it properly. Later, Silver witnesses an encounter from afar between Bones and Morley and reports this to Flint. Flint dismisses Silver, stating that he trusts Bones a thousand times more than a rogue like Silver and that attempting to play him against his own crew won't earn Silver any favors. The wind begins to pick up and De Groot looks around nervously at the trees that are holding the ship up on its side.

At a tent in Nassau, Max is just finishing having sex with a very happy crewman of the Ranger. She tells him that he should now understand how it will be if she is made to feel comfortable, instead of being abused by them. Hamund enters her tent and as she timidly approaches him, he punches her in the face. Outside the tent, a very uncomfortable Anne Bonny can hear the sounds of Max's screams.

At Miranda Barlow's cottage, Mr. Scott arrives to dress Richard Guthrie for the upcoming meeting with Bryson. Guthrie brags to Miranda about what a fine man Mr. Scott is. He states that at one time Mr. Scott was his personal houseboy and that Scott worked his way up into eventually earning an education, which he then passed on to Eleanor. Miranda questions why Guthrie is taking part in the attempt to get Bryson's guns. Guthrie responds that he must present himself as still in command of the functions of the trading company as opposed to being a wanted criminal. Were Bryson to find out that Guthrie was a wanted man, then Bryson would take him back to Boston in shame.

Noonan confronts Rackham and Bonny.

In the streets of Nassau, Rackham is attempting to get a fellow pirate, Gruenwald, to sell Rackham's goods to Eleanor as if they were his own. Gruenwald tells him that he can't take the risk of Eleanor finding out and ruining him like she ruined Vane. He tells Rackham Eleanor doesn't have a problem with him (Rackham) and that he should just find his own ship to command and branch off from Vane. When Bonny agrees with this, Rackham explains that he hasn't gotten any offers from other crews to come aboard. They are then confronted by Noonan, who runs Eleanor's brothel. Noonan blames Rackham for taking away his best whore, Max, and insinuates that he is thinking about stealing her back. Bonny seems to encourage Noonan to do it. When Rackham confronts Bonny about her encouraging Noonan to move against them, she storms away.

Eleanor and Richard meet with Bryson.

At Eleanor's tavern, the meeting between the Guthrie’s and Bryson is taking place. Bryson seems stunned that Richard would go along with a plan such as the one to capture the Urca, but Richard tells him that the only thing that matters to him is profit and that they stand to gain quite a bit. Richard then asks to speak to Bryson alone. Bryson then accuses Richard of being desperate. He surmises that with the Scarborough docked nearby and with Guthrie taking part in such a risky plan, that something must be terribly wrong. Outside the room, Mr. Scott sees several armed guards and realizes that Eleanor has lied to him about her promise to not use force against Bryson should he not comply. Bryson then emerges from the room and tells Eleanor that the guns are hers and that he will begin transporting them to shore later that evening.

As Richard Guthrie and Mr. Scott walk back to Miranda's cottage, Richard tells Scott that he fears that Eleanor will get herself killed. He states that if she continues on the path she is on, that either the British or the Spanish will kill her. When Scott asks Richard what he told Bryson in private, Richard confides that he has a plan in place that will save Eleanor from herself. He asks Scott to help him.

Flint amputates Randall's leg.

Back on the beach, Eleanor approaches Flint and tells him that the guns are his and that they just have to wait for them to be delivered. Suddenly, the wind begins to pick up and the trees that are being to support the weight of the ship begin to be uprooted. As the cleaning crew flees from underneath the hull, Randall realizes that his cat, Betsy, is still in the danger zone and he returns to save her. The ship continues to fall over and Randall is trapped underneath by one of his legs. Morley and Flint run to his aid and try to dig him out. At the same time, De Groot has ordered Bones to cut the remaining ropes still tied to the trees, lest the main mast break. As Morley and Flint struggle to free Randall, Silver arrives with his butcher's knife and tosses it to Flint who proceeds to amputate Randall's leg. Just as the ship begins to fall over, Randall and Flint are able to get away, but Morley is trapped underneath and is killed.

As the men sit on the beach trying to process what has just occurred, Bones confides in Gates that he is starting to believe that Flint is wrong and that he shouldn't support him, but that he can't muster up any nerve to stand against him because he is afraid of him. Seeing Gates and Bones conversing, Flint approaches Silver and asks what he overheard during Bones' earlier conversation with Morley. Silver tells him that he heard them talking about a woman named Barlow.

Back at Miranda's cottage, Richard Guthrie returns from the meeting in town. Guthrie sits down and begins to converse with Miranda, who he calls "Mrs. Hamilton". He calls Miranda out for being the former Mrs. Thomas Hamilton, who was the grandson of Alfred Hamilton, the former Lord Proprietor of the Bahamas. Richard then begins to tell how he'd always heard a story about Mrs. Hamilton. He heard that Mrs. Hamilton, long rumored to be the cheating type, had begun an affair with her husband's best friend, a young Royal Navy officer. Upon finding out about the affair, Mr. Hamilton was so overcome with grief that he killed himself. Mrs. Hamilton is then said to have fled London with her lover, who Richard surmises must be Flint. Richard then offers to return her to civilization by taking her to Boston where she can find a fresh start.

Noonan's men prepare to shoot Vane.

Inside Vane's tent, Vane begins to have hallucinations of Eleanor. She tells him that he can still take back his position if he'll just try. Once again, he sees the vision of a large man outside his tent. As he approaches the vision it disappears and then reappears at a different location. After following the apparition into an alley, Vane is confronted by Noonan and several of his cronies. They begin to beat Vane and then put a gun to his head and pull the trigger, but the pistol misfires. Vane grabs the pistol and beats one member of Noonan's group, stabs another, and then breaks Noonan's neck with his foot.

Later on that evening, Miranda brings Pastor Lambrick to visit Richard. Richard tells the Pastor that he is ready to begin his redemption from his illicit past. Near the shore, O'Malley stands awaiting the arrival of Bryson's guns. Mr. Scott approaches him and then knocks him out with a rifle butt, and allows Bryson to leave with the cannons.

From the shore, one of the men spots the ship leaving. Eleanor recognizes it as the Andromache, but she didn't have the time to unload the cannons. When asked what they are going to do about the ship leaving with their cannons, Flint says the only thing they can do about it is take them back.





  • De Groot
  • O'Malley
  • Froom
  • Crisp
  • Dyfed Bryson
  • Hayes


  • Morley
  • Noonan
  • Noonan's man




  • During the first scene on the beach during the careening, one member of the Walrus crew appears to be playing the "Parson's Farewell" on a mandolin. This piece is a recurring theme in the music of the show. 
  • When Eleanor looks out from her balcony to the harbor after being told that the Andromache has arrived, there appears to be a flag flying over a tent that is very similar to that of real life pirate William Moody, albeit with a different color scheme. The flag is red with a heart with an arrow going through it, both black. Moody's flag had a black field, the heart was red and the arrow was white. 
  • During Noonan's ambush of Vane, his henchman's pistol misfires. This was a common problem with flintlock weapons, either due to the flint becoming dull and failing to produce a spark, or damp powder.  



Black Sails 1x04 Promo-1


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