Yo ho ho! The pirate comedy “Our Flag Means Death” is again for a second season, and we could not be extra excited to meet up with Stede, Ed, and the remainder of our favourite prison misfits. The quirky present really has extra in frequent with actual historical past than you would possibly anticipate, with a number of characters loosely impressed (emphasis on the “loosely”) by real-life pirates and miscreants. Positive, the actual Stede and Ed most likely did not have a romance that was each devastating and lovable — however there’s at the least a kernel of fact to their portrayals on the present.

Is Stede Bonnet Based mostly on a Actual Individual?

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Sure! Whereas Stede Bonnet (performed by Rhys Darby) won’t be a reputation most individuals know, he was, actually, an actual individual. Born in 1688, he was a younger landowner in Barbados who inherited his household’s holdings on the age of six after his father died. He married his spouse, Mary (performed by Claudia O’Doherty) in 1709, and so they had three sons and a daughter. In 1716 or 1717, Bonnet determined to develop into a “gentleman pirate” — regardless of having completely no data of crusing, piracy, or something to do with life at sea. His early profession was considerably chaotic and decidedly unconventional, and he largely failed to achieve the respect of his employed crew.

He is finest identified for the a part of his life the place he crossed paths with probably the most well-known pirates in historical past: Edward Train, aka Blackbeard (performed by Taiki Waititi). The 2 males met in Nassau in 1717, and Bonnet, who had been wounded in a latest skirmish, provided Blackbeard non permanent management of his ship. They collaborated for a number of months earlier than parting methods, then ultimately reunited after Bonnet’s crew abandoned him to affix Blackbeard. Each males initially obtained pardons, however in addition they each returned to piracy quickly after. After a handful extra battles, Bonnet was captured, sentenced, and executed by the tip of 1718.

Is Ed “Blackbeard” Train Based mostly on a Actual Individual?

A MIstake Image by Nicola Dove
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As anybody who ever went by way of a “pirate phase” is aware of, Blackbeard can also be an actual individual — though he positively wasn’t fairly just like the model we see on “Our Flag Means Death.” He was born in or round 1680, and never a lot is understood for sure about his adolescence earlier than he took up piracy, though some tales about him counsel he was first an English privateer earlier than heading into less-legal actions. Most probably, in 1716, he joined the crew of pirate captain Benjamin Hornigold and commenced to make a reputation for himself.

His most well-known ship was the “Queen Anne’s Revenge,” related to most of the legends about him. Though a extremely profitable pirate, conquering ships and bringing in loads of loot, he was famous for having a much less brutal strategy and relying extra on worry and intimidation to construct his fame. Some descriptions declare that he would place lit fuses below his hat to scare individuals; different, extra whimsical descriptions declare he braided his namesake beard with coloured ribbons. In 1717, he met and joined forces with Stede Bonnet, earlier than separating some months later.

In the direction of the tip of his profession, he anchored in Ocracoke Island, the place he crossed paths with different infamous pirates equivalent to “Calico Jack” Rackham, Charles Vane, and a number of other others. After a collection of betrayals and being focused by the authorities, Blackbeard fought his final battle in November 1718 and was killed on board his ship. Since his demise, his legend has develop into the premise for lots of pirate lore within the common creativeness.

Which Different “Our Flag Means Death” Characters Are Based mostly on Actual Folks?

Our Flag Means Death Image by Nicola Dove
Warner Bros.

Whereas Ed and Stede get essentially the most time within the highlight, they’re positively not the one characters drawn (nevertheless loosely) from historical past! Blackbeard’s first mate Izzy (performed by Con O’Neill) is a fictionalized model of Israel Fingers, the second-in-command to the actual Blackbeard. After the historic Blackbeard’s demise, Fingers was captured by authorities and received a pardon by testifying about corruption within the ranks of colonial officers. He’s assumed to have died within the 1720s in London, though he disappears from the historic file after his 1719 testimony.

The second season additionally introduces us to a few new supporting characters primarily based on historic figures. Minnie Driver seems as Anne Bonny, a famed Irish pirate who was a fearsome chief in her personal proper, in addition to the spouse of Calico Jack. We additionally get to see a model of pirate queen Zheng Yi Sao (performed by Ruibo Qian). Additionally referred to as Ching Shih, she was a Chinese language pirate chief who took over — and expanded — her husband’s pirate command after his demise. She really function a couple of century later, within the early 1800s, however in a present like “Our Flag Means Death,” who’s counting?