Black Sails Wiki
Season One
Number Eight
Date Aired March 15th, 2014
Writer Jonathan E. Steinberg & Robert Levine
Director T.J. Scott
Previous VII.
Next IX.
"Time and again he gambles with our lives...that is, when he's not taking them in cold blood."
―DeGroot about Flint

The Walrus continues to hunt the Urca; Vane's return disrupts Eleanor's new venture; and Rackham and Max continue to improve the brothel, but at a terrible cost.


The episode begins in Rackham's brothel during a severe thunderstorm. Rackham requests to speak to Mrs. Mapleton. He has decided to stop paying the 40% distribution of house profits that he promised her in exchange for her silence regarding the murder of Noonan. When he attempts to fire her, she threatens to tell all the merchants on the island about how he came to control the brothel. Max arrives and calls Mapleton's bluff, asking her who she is going to tell on the island? She points out that all of the merchants on the island are now receiving tremendous discounts at the brothel and are unlikely to care how Rackham came into business.

Degroot S1E8 (2).png

Aboard the Walrus, the crew are making the best of the thunderstorm and are enjoying themselves below deck, playing cards and listening to music. Silver is attempting to get Randall to wear a prosthetic leg that Dr. Howell has fashioned for him. Randall will have none of it and throws it on the floor.

Inside Captain Flint's cabin, Flint and Gates await Silver. When he arrives, Flint asks for the last bit of the Urca's schedule that Silver had memorized. Flint states that he is going to cross check Silver's memorized schedule with an actual map of the coast to see if they match up. They do. Silver asks Flint about where they stand now that Silver has upheld his final bit of the bargain that is keeping him alive. Flint tells him to keep wondering and orders him to take the new sailing coordinates to De Groot. Before Gates is to head back to the Ranger, Flint asks him to have a drink with him. Flint and Gates then start drinking heavily and reminiscing on old shipmates that they used to know.

Mr. Scott and Eleanor S1E8.png

At Eleanor's tavern, Mr. Scott arrives in Eleanor's office. Eleanor expresses her concern with the storm, which she calls a "ship killer." Eleanor tells Scott how sad she is about all the strife that the schedule has caused between her and Scott and her and Max. Scott tells her that trouble might have found them anyways, regardless of the schedule.

Elsewhere in Nassau, as Rackham takes a bath, Anne Bonny , distraught that Rackham has fired Mrs. Mapleton given all the secrets she knows about them. When Rackham says he does not care, Bonny begins to suspect that all of his nonchalance has to do with Max. She suggests that Rackham must have slept with Max. After Rackham denies this, Bonny storms off. As she is leaving the brothel, she spies a naked Max and stops to look. Max catches her staring and smiles at her.

The next day on the beach, the members of Eleanor's shipping consortium are on the docks bidding Captain Lawrence good luck on the first voyage of a ship in the consortium. Suddenly, guns begin to fire at the ships in the harbor from Hornigold's fortress overlooking the town. When Eleanor asks Hornigold why his men are firing on the ship, he states that it is not his men. Mr. Scott takes Eleanor off the shore and out of danger.

On the sea, the Walrus and the Ranger are approaching Division Bay, where they suspect the Urca to be. However, when they make the turn into the bay, the Urca is nowhere to be seen. The leadership then must decide what to do to keep the men from revolting. Flint determines that they should maintain their position and send out scouts to attempt to locate the Urca. Dufresne approaches Gates and tells him that De Groot is demanding that they inform the crew right away of Flint's past treachery. Gates tells him that it is not in the best interest of the crew and the mission to tell the crew about Flint just yet. Gates tells Dufresne that they will try Flint for his crimes back at home and like civilized men. Gates then hands him a document and leaves.

Suddenly, Logan spots sails to the south. It is determined that it is not the Urca but is a Spanish man-of-war, possibly an escort of the Urca. Flint quickly calculates a plan of action. The Ranger will raise the black flag and will fire a few shots across the bow of the Walrus. Presumably, because the Walrus is flying a fake Spanish flag, the Man O' War will believe that it is a Spanish ship being attacked by a pirate. As the Man O' War gets closer, the Ranger will take off as if trying to get away. Then when the Walrus has successfully deceived the Man O' War into thinking that they are just a Spanish merchant ship, the Man O' War will leave the Walrus and chase the Ranger. When this happens, the Walrus will turn quickly and fire a broadside into the exposed stern of the Man O' War, while the Ranger turns to port and fires against the Man O' War's bow.

"I'm sorry, this is not what I wanted."

Before the plan is put into play, Gates demands to see Flint in private. Gates tells Flint that he cannot let Flint go down this road. Gates states that he is taking the Ranger and will try to get away. Flint tells him that he will have no chance to defeat the Spanish ship if the Ranger sails away. Finally, when Flint accuses Gates of disobeying orders and starting a mutiny, Gates admits that he is managing a mutiny. He tells Flint about Dufresne and De Groot and the others on the crew that know about Flint's lies and deceptions regarding Singleton and Billy Bones. As Gates goes to leave the room, Flint grabs him from behind and chokes him and eventually breaks his neck. As Flint holds his dead friend's body in his arms, he apologizes and begins to cry. Just then, Silver enters the cabin. When Flint explains that there is no way out of this, Silver tells him that there is always a way out.

Flint emerges from his cabin and tells Dufresne and the others that Gates's heart has given out and that he has died. He then orders Logan to tell the Ranger about the battle plan. When Dufresne enters the cabin to view Gates's body, Silver is there waiting for him. Silver attempts to talk sense to Dufresne and asks Dufresne what good can come from telling the truth about Flint to the crew at a moment such as this, when they are about to go into battle against a Man O' War. Dufresne appears to agree and walks back out onto the deck and tells Flint the best way to go about pretending to be a Spanish merchantman.

The consortium has a little problem.

Back in Nassau, members of the consortium are standing in Eleanor's tavern trying to figure out what to do about the men in the fort. Hornigold tells her that he has 250 men assembled and ready to storm the fort in the morning. Outside on the street stands Vane and his crew. Vane shouts up at Eleanor that it is time to talk. Inside Eleanor's office, Eleanor meets with Vane. He tells her that all he wants is to be a partner in her new enterprise. He tells her that she cannot attempt to overthrow the fort because before she'll be able to overtake the fort, he can sink half the ships in the harbor. Eleanor concedes to his demand to be a partner.

At Rackham's brothel, Vane arrives and begins to question Rackham about the disappearance of Hamund and the rest of his former crew. Vane then tells Rackham that an offense like the one he has committed deserves an answer. However, Vane decides not to kill Rackham, but rather decides to leave him in charge of the brothel. Vane tells Rackham that he will tell everyone on the island about how Rackham chose his lover (Bonny) over his crew, virtually condemning Rackham to a lifetime without ever being able to raise a crew or be trusted by another.

Dufresne draws on Flint S1E8.png

On the sea, the Spanish ship pulls alongside the Walrus. Silver, who speaks Spanish, sets Flint's plan in motion by convincing the ship that the Walrus is a fellow Spanish ship under attack from the fleeing Ranger. The Spanish ship buys the ruse and takes off after the Ranger. Flint then commands the crew to their stations and orders that they will commence firing on the Spanish ship at 300 yards. Right at 300 yards as the crew are about to fire their cannons, Dufresne pulls a pistol on Flint. He states that as quartermaster of the ship, he accuses Flint of tyrannical acts against his own crew. Flint ignores him and orders that the crew open fire. No one fires. Dufresne pulls out a letter that was written by Gates and given to him, stating all of Flint's crimes and acknowledging his own complicity in those crimes. He continues, telling the crew that the letter also contains information about how Flint is planning to steal a portion of the Urca's treasure for himself. Flint then attempts to fire one of the cannons by himself, but is shot in the shoulder by Dufresne.

Below decks, De Groot confronts Silver with a pistol, telling Silver that he too will pay for his crimes soon enough. When De Groot is momentarily distracted by the gunshot up on deck, Silver jumps him and the two begin to struggle fiercely. De Groot eventually overpowers Silver and right before he shoots him, Randall appears and strikes De Groot over the head with his artificial leg. He tells Silver, "you're welcome.".

Flint falls S1E8.png

Even though he has been shot, Flint is still attempting to fire a cannon and once again Dufresne stops him from doing so. Suddenly, a cannon fires near the stern. It is Silver who fired the shot. Now, with their true identity revealed to the Spanish ship, the Walrus must open fire and go along with the plan. Dufresne orders that all guns open fire. The fire does not seem to have much of an effect on the Spanish ship. Slowly, the Spanish ship turns where it can broadside both the Walrus and the Ranger. The Spanish ship fires and totally rips apart the Walrus, killing and wounding scores of her crew. Flint is blown overboard and with no hope left, appears to let himself sink into the abyss.

Suddenly, Flint awakes to find himself lying on the beach next to Silver. Silver points him to the Walrus, which is still intact, but has been beached on the shore. He tells Flint that they have both been charged by the crew with provoking this mess. Dufresne approaches and Flint asks Dufresne why he is still alive and why they have not yet killed him. Dufresne then takes Flint to a bluff on the beach. Once on the bluff, Flint sees the Urca de Lima, which has apparently wrecked itself on the shore during the storm of the previous night. Gold lays strewn everywhere on the beach. The crew of the Spanish ship that beat the Walrus and the crew of the Urca are gathering the gold together.

Memorable Quotes[]

"Mapleton: You will regret this, sir.
Rackham: I'm sure I won't.
―Rackham and Mrs Mappleton, VIII
"There are no legacies in this life are there? No monuments, no histories, just the water. It pays us, and then it claims us - swallows us whole."
"Im sorry, this is not what i wanted"
―Flint after killing Gates
"You spend enough time on an island, you forget there's a whole world out there."


  • It isn't exactly clear what happens to the women and slaves from Albinus' Island. Vane takes about 40 men with him, and they all appear to be the former pirates from Albinus' old crew. However, none of the slaves or any of the women appear to be among them. 
  • Historically, the Urca de Lima was shipwrecked on the shores of Florida after a hurricane. 
  • The design for the Spanish Man O' War is based on the Swedish warship the Vasa, which was built and sunk n 1628, thus the design for the ship is slightly anachronistic and more galleon-like in appearance. The Urca de Lima actually has a more traditional 18th century Ship of the Line design.





  • Hal Gates





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