We open on Edward “Ned” Low torturing a poor soul while speaking about Blackbeard, infuriated that Edward Teach has beaten his record for consecutive raids at sea. He doesn’t want answers about Blackbeard’s whereabouts because he already has them — he just wants to hear the sweet music of screams.
Ed is having flashbacks to the horrible things he did to his crew in the wake of his heartbreak and Izzy joins him, saying he’s only talking to him again because he drunkenly mistook him as Roach. Ed expresses he feels a storm is coming but Izzy is obviously still not in the mood to lend a listening ear to the man he’d once have done anything for. Ed apologizes about Izzy’s leg before walking away. Stede shows Ed that he’s put all of the remaining treasure into one room, but Ed only views the room as a reminder of his guilt for all of the awful things he’s done. Stede says maybe Ed could do something good with it.
Archie is telling the crew about a birthday party she once had where she cut her way out of the inside of a snake, asking the rest of the crew what they do for parties, leading them to the conclusion that they are a bit boring now. Frenchie announces that today is Calypso’s birthday and the crew immediately decide to celebrate the occasion they definitely did not just make up as an excuse … Stede convinces Ed to use his treasure to fund the party.
“You could use this loot to pay for a big bash. Turn poison into positivity.”
The minor prince from episode 1, Richard, has changed his tune about wanting to be a pirate now that he’s lost his nose (he’s wearing a prosthetic to save the audience from anything too gruesome) and is vowing to take on the remaining pirates. He receives another nose made of qinghua pottery.
While the crew shops for the perfect party supplies sparing no expense, Ed gives some of his fortune away to less fortunate children (played by Taika Waititi’s children, Te Hinekāhu and Matewa Kiritapu), including money and knives. Of course, he also gives them advice as to how the use the knives most effectively much to Stede’s dismay. The children ask if the two are pirates which Ed denies, saying the two of them own an inn. Richard accepts Zheng’s invitation and meets on her ship and while there’s some disagreement about why exactly he’s there because Zheng doesn’t like the term “blackmail”, it’s obvious there’s something sinister brewing … and it’s not the tea Zheng is pouring.
“Minor prince … Pirate Queen who bent China to her will … these are just labels. I don’t want to talk about who you are, I want to talk about who you could be.”
The deck of the Revenge is lit up for the party while below deck Wee John is working on his look for the party, applying makeup when Izzy joins him. The entire crew are in high spirits already when Ed and Stede join, soon enough Wee John makes his flawless entrance as the goddess Calypso absolutely slaying the look. Izzy follows soon behind with a makeup look as his own, encouraging Frenchie to follow his beat as he sings “La Vie en Rose” (and if you hear crying somewhere in the distance, it’s me, sorry about that). Before the song can be finished, however, a cannonball interrupts the festivities … the Revenge is under attack. Ed throws Stede behind him to protect him (once again, sorry about the crying you may be hearing in the distance). Ned Low makes his entrance, stating he’s going to torture the entire crew.
Ed maintains an arrogant, cocky outward appearance through questioning and torture until Ned’s attentions turn to Stede. Frenchie points out to Ned’s crew that they don’t sound very excited to be carrying out the torture and tell them they’re celebrating Calypso’s birthday. Izzy says whatever torture they carry out on him will only turn him on. Below deck, Lucius and Black Pete emerge from their entire day of celebrating their engagement, which prompts Lucius to wonder why they weren’t interrupted. Just then, the screams of their crew mates can be heard above. As the crew continues to scream the newly engaged couple collect as many weapons as they can. It’s evident that Low’s crew aren’t enthusiastic with their captain’s methods, his crew appreciating Stede’s positive reinforcement and compliments toward their torture methods.
“Don’t talk to my employee.”
“Oh … that’s the problem. You see her as your employee rather than the person she actually is.”
Stede slips free of his binding and holds Hellcat Maggie at sword point, ordering his crew’s release. Ned says Stede can just kill her, leading his own crew to turn against him entirely. Lucius and Black Pete run onto the deck to rescue their crew mates and announce their engagement, but Stede’s already got the issue under control. Zheng has presented Richard with her solution to the piracy problem … she has built a pirate navy and if the crown pays them a living wage, they won’t pirate. The prospect of him being the one to end piracy without firing a single shot is promising, one he seems enticed by.
Ned Low’s crew leave with treasure that Stede provided them, all of whom seem to really adore Stede. When Ned insults Ed, Stede is quick to force him to walk to the plank. Ned reminds Stede that once he kills him he’ll no longer be an amateur but a real pirate, something Ed beseeches him not to do because you can’t come back from killing in cold blood. Ned continues to antagonize the man, referring to Stede as Ed’s pet, which only angers him more.
“You hurt my crew, you shit talked my friend and damaged my ship … but worst of all? You fucked Calypso’s birthday!”
Stede throws Ned’s violin at him, knocking the man into the sea. The crew cheers while Ed looks disappointed and Stede has flashes to his childhood trauma, retreating to his quarters. Ed joins him to make sure he’s okay … but instead of being torn up over his first kill Stede is exhilarated. He pushes Ed against the wall as the crew continues the party, Izzy finishing the song he started earlier. As the song plays out Ed and Stede share a passionate kiss, Roach setting off fireworks as the co-captains find their way to bed together.
The first seven episodes of Our Flag Means Death season 2 are streaming now on Max. To refresh yourself on the season before the finale on Thursday, October 26 you can read up on our episodic recaps here.