Spring TV 2014 – Black Sails

It’s the new year, and you know what that means – new shows. Every year, we are bamboozled with an assortment of TV shows in both the spring and fall. Fall tends to be the time everyone pays attention to, but Spring sometimes has a lot of great shows in store as well. While we at Smaller on the Outside kind of ignore the returnning shows, we take a closer look at the new spring line-up.

7. Black Sails


When I heard about Black Sails, I initially wanted to pair it up against Crossbones on our TV Battle for obvious reasons, but the latter wasn’t on until later, maybe even the fall…and that’s just too long. That’s overlapping with the next battle. So I decided to instead pair it up with the only other premium channel show on the list, True Detective. Apples and oranges, me mateys, but I think I have a winner…


  1. Argh…Pirates

    • I can honestly say that when it comes to media, I haven’t seen a whole lot of interpretations that are realistic. Entertaining? Oh yes, but realistic? Not usually, and it’s good to see Starz fully accepting their lack of restrictions once again for a TV show. In a way, this view of pirates is unique and welcome.
  2. History and Fiction-relevant
    • If you know your pirate lore, you might actually find yourself really enjoying the series, as it shows you real life pirates that existed in the past, all the meanwhile, the show is pegged as a prequel to the most famous pirate story of all time, Treasure Island. 20 years in the past, yeah, but there are some names you may recognize.
  3. Acting
    • While not entirely surprising, the acting was well-done. I don’t think there are any distinct moments that you don’t believe the acting. But like I said, it’s a premium channel, that’s not really surprising.


  1. Characters

    • Like with True Detective, I just don’t care about any of the characters…sorry. I want to, I’ll give you that, but I just don’t. The thing is, I don’t know my pirate lore, therefore the moments that would have others saying “oooh” and “ahh” leave me saying “what?”. The special “recognizable” names just come across as…random names to me, and they all just blend together
  2. Concentration
    • I can’t remember the last time I ever watched a show that came across so confusing. I don’t know if I’m the only one that feels this way, but I just couldn’t understand anything, really, that was going on in the story. I don’t know what they are trying to do, I don’t know who anyone really is, I just don’t know.
  3. Over-the-top
    • Gratuitous nudity, I’ll say it. Of course, this is Starz, and I shouldn’t be as surprised, but when comparing that fact to the rest of the show, I realize that the nudity seemed to be a placeholder. The element that keeps a certain viewer interested.  Who needs a good story that is breath-taking when you can have nudity, right? Wrong says practically every premium show out there.

So how does it fair against True Detective? Good question, because I don’t specifically prefer either of them, but I am a little more interested in the True Detective story. That one is simply about a 17 year case, which has a lot of promise in and of itself…but the show itself kind of bored me when I saw the first episode. In short, I need to watch another episode of TD, but I’m pretty sure who the winner is. Make sure to watch our Facebook Page for the winner!


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