“Black Sails” recap (2.09): Queen E

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Previously on Black Sails, people told Eleanor that she should eliminate everyone who knows about the Urca gold, including Max, Max vowed to protect Anne at all costs, Vane killed Mr. Guthrie, and Flint brought Abigail Ashe back to her father even though it’s widely known that Peter Ashe is a pirate-hater.

We open on Nassau, where Mr. Guthrie’s body is being cleaned for burial. Eleanor sits in her office while people take turns paying their condolences.

Black Sails 209-1Bored now.

Eleanor looks at the line down the street and sighs, knowing this is going to be a long and emotionally exhausting day. She steels herself for her next visitor and looks up to see that it’s Max, with food for her from her girls.

Eleanor thanks her, politely, like she thanks everyone, refusing to show emotion on her face. Max tells her that she knows Eleanor is hurting, that everyone here thinks they’re paying their respects to a daughter who is grieving their father, but that Eleanor’s relationship with her father was more complicated than that. Max says she wishes she could comfort her, to be the one person with whom she can share her true feelings.

Black Sails 209-2“Remember when I was your harbor?”

Eleanor’s expression falters but only for a moment and she tells Max that there’s nothing complicated about her situation. The people aren’t here to pay their respects, they’re here to make sure Eleanor knows they are not her enemy, because there is a war about to begin and they can sense it in the change of the wind. Plus, Vane’s manifesto has been read aloud on the beach. Eleanor asks Max if she’s chosen a side yet, and Max just looks sad.

But can I say, the shot of the two of them sitting tall, facing each other, alone, for the first time since early in Season 1, was one of the most beautiful and powerful and heartbreaking shots of this show.

Black Sails 209-3So similar, yet so different. So close, and yet so far.

Back at the Inn, Jack asks how her meeting went, and she says that she’s seen what Eleanor can build when she’s being ambitious, what she can destroy when she’s angry, but what she just saw was a different Eleanor entirely. She tells Jack to speed up their plan.

Which is a good idea, since In Eleanor’s office, some thugs come to see Eleanor and she tells them they move at sundown.

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