Taika Waititi as Blackbeard takes a blindfold off Rhys Darby as Stede Bonnet in 'Our Flag Means Death' season 1

This First Look at ‘Our Flag Means Death’ Season 2 Has Completely Derailed Our Day

Our Flag Means Death took us by surprise, putting us in a chokehold we haven’t been able to escape. No, really. The first season premiered in March 2022. It is almost September 2023 and we’re still all screaming about it. But now we’re screaming because we just got our first official look at season 2! In an exclusive for Vanity Fair, the HBO series revealed images from season 2 along with some interviews and information about where our favorite pirates are at the start of the season. And if you’re like me, prepare ye self because Taika Waititi’s Blackbeard is starting season 2 off with a “broken heart.”

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As someone who genuinely loves almost everything that Waititi does, there is something different and special about Our Flag Means Death. Maybe it’s how the show subverted our expectations and killed queerbaiting in its tracks. Maybe it is just the beauty of seeing all of these queer couples come to life and have their space in both the series and the fan community. Whatever it is, Our Flag Means Death is a show that opened its arms to everyone. Heading into season 2, we’re hopeful that this feeling continues.

Executive producer Garrett Basch tells Vanity Fair that season 2 is “going to be unexpected and surprising, but also very pleasurable and satisfying for those who like the show.” Izzy himself, Con O’Neill, says that the new season “doesn’t follow the expected route.” That sounds both promising and frightening. Are we going to be heartbroken again like we were at the end of season 1?

And who is the cause of our heartbreak? Well, Stede (Rhys Darby) and Blackbeard. In the first look at season 2, the picture of Waititi as Ed is labeled as “Taika Waititi as Blackbeard, who begins the season with a broken heart.” Me too, Ed.

My Blackbeard

Taika Waititi as Blackbeard pointing in Our Flag Means Death. Im
(HBO)

Again, I love Waititi. Ed Teach is easily my favorite character in the entire series. And knowing how heartbroken he is over Stede just makes me love him that much more. Outside of playing Blackbeard, Waititi also serves as executive producer and pushed for season 2 to be filmed in his home country of New Zealand.

“Taika is an extraordinary talent and what’s really great about him with his international success is he’s remained very committed to New Zealand and very loyal to our industry,” Annie Murray, CEO of the New Zealand Film Commission, told Vanity Fair. “The beauty of filming in New Zealand is that you can find incredible varied locations within a very short driving distance. [And] when you get to those locations you can turn your camera in any direction.”

That’s exciting! Paired with how Taika Waititi’s Blackbeard is looking in season 2, and boy oh boy are we going to be in for a journey.

Our Flag Means Death is for the fans

Rhys Darby as Stede in the first season of 'Our Flag Means Death'
(HBO)

After the first season premiered, hashtags and cries to renew the series echoed online for weeks. Rightfully so: HBO should have made a renewal announcement while the show was still airing. Still, fans made it clear that we would not let our pirates go silently into the night without a fight. Season 2 is proof of the love and dedication that so many (myself included) have for the series. And the stars see that.

Several cast members have gone to fan conventions and seen first hand how much this show means to its fan base. Vico Ortiz, who plays Jim, sees what fans cling to in the series and how much joy these characters and their relationships mean to fans.

“It’s so beautiful to see that people are finding community within the fan base. It’s about creating spaces where we feel safe and seen, and it’s so great to see that so many people watch the show and feel validated in their experiences, whatever that may be,” Ortiz said to Vanity Fair. “A lot of people that watch the show are like, ‘Yeah, I’m a guy and it’s good to see all these dudes being vulnerable.’ We can just shake up [ideas about gender].”

This sneak peek at the new season of Our Flag Means Death has made me feral. I just want season 2 and then an instant announcement for season 3 and to always have a constant stream of Our Flag Means Death in my life. For now, I can wait until the new season premieres in October on Max.

(featured image: HBO)


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Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.