Jump to content
Forums forums
PRIMETIMER
maraleia

Eleanor Guthrie: She Gets Shit Done

Recommended Posts

Love, love, love this woman so much. She doesn't give two fucks what other people think about her and just gets down to business. Her only failing was not helping Max when Max was on the beach being manhandled and raped by the pirates.

Really excited to see where her character goes this season.

 

Share this post


Link to post

Okay I just binge-watched this yesterday and I'm not sure I understand how you can blame Eleanor for Max's woes.  First Max takes something of value from a client (I'm pretty sure that violates the house rules in a whore house) and then blackmails the client into including her in the plot to sell the page -- something she knows was stolen from a pirate's haul, which is a killing offense.  So right off the bat Max partners up with someone who's broken the pirate code.  Max is reckless.

 

When Eleanor forces Max to tell where the exchange is going to take place, so that Fint & Co can get the page back, yes that is a heart-breaking scene.  It is totally understandable why Max feels betrayed.  But then she leaves.  She casts off the protection that Eleanor has put around her and puts herself in a position to be snatched up by Anne Bonny.  Max is reckless again.

 

Elanor has no idea where Max is during her first imprisonment / abuse episode. She thinks Max left on a boat.  She only finds out the truth right after she and Vane have knocked boots when Vane's crew catches Rackham trying to spirit Max away (under Vane's orders) and decides to publicly gang-rape her instead.  Eleanor's reaction was pretty damn strong when she found out -- complete with beating members of the crew with a club and basically banishing Vane from his livelihood.  What's Max's reaction?  Blaming Eleanor for the situation and giving herself to Vane's remaining crew to work off the debt of 5000 pesos.  I think later we learn that a hand-job costs 5 pesos so ugh, that's a lot of fucking she just signed herself up for.  What the hell was she thinking?  Max is a bit of an idiot.

 

Eventually Anne is so disgusted by the situation in Max's private "fuck tent" that she enlists Eleanor's help to end it and it is Eleanor who goes all "kill'em all and let God sort it out" by proposing that Vane's entire remaining crew be slaughtered so that no one will be around to take vengeance for her killing the one bad guy who was brutalizing Max. THIS is the problem I have with Eleanor.  I don't blame her for not taking action to save Max earlier. Max has twice TWICE walked away from Eleanor's protection after putting herself into a very dangerous position.  Eleanor, on the other hand, conspires with Anne to slaughter members of Anne's crew thereby helping Anne violate the most central rule of the pirate code and she doesn't do it save Max, she does it to punish the crew (or at least the biggest, meanest loudmouth) for  celebrating when she was forced to reinstate Vane's pirating privileges.  She did it out of ego and a need to save "face."  She kills a bunch of men who did nothing bad to Max because she feared they might be loyal to their crew.  It's a pretty shitty thing she did.  And the one who is going to suffer for it is Jack Rackham.  I don't think Anne gives a shit if she can't be a member of a pirate crew any more but Rackham wasn't given a voice in the decision.

 

This is why I don't much like Eleanor.  Her actions towards Max were understandable.  It's her cold-blooded murder of Vane's remaining crew that I can't stomach.  Also her taste in men is pretty dubious.  I'm mean Vane is pretty to look at (in a certain light, when the light catches his six-pack abs just right and he's not completely covered in mud) and I can understand the attraction of a bad boy but, damn, that guy is bad news.

Edited by WatchrTina

Share this post


Link to post

I just re-read my own post above and was amused to realize that almost all of the characters who initiated action in my synopsis above are women.  Max steals the page from John Silver and blackmails him into including him in the plot to sell it.  Anne captures Max.  Anne regrets the consequences of capturing Max ("I just thought they'd kill ye") and puts the wheels in motion to free her.  And Eleanor's actions (forcing Max to reveal where the exchange was happening, publicly shunning Vane, and setting up the slaughter of Vane's remaining crew) really drive the plot forward.  Add to that the letter that Mrs. Barlow writes and all the shit that brings down on Flint (and her letting Guthrie go) and you've got a group of women -- a very small subset of the population of the Black Sails universe -- being the authors of a lot of the action.  I have to give the show props for that.  Given the time-frame it would have been really easy for the women in the cast to have fallen into the background and been only acted upon, serving as motivations for or victims of the actions of men.  Instead, the women of Black Sails are agents of change.  Way to go writers!

 

Now if only they made better choices.  Because ladies -- you really screwed up a lot in season 1.

 

ETA: The show runners must have similar feelings about the importance of the women because they've released a behind-the-scenes video specifically addressing them.  I found it when I want to the IMDb site for Black Sails today but here's the YouTube link if anyone is interested https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZ5S9b_OucQ

Edited by WatchrTina

Share this post


Link to post

I don't blame Eleanor for making the choices she did re: Max and I felt like she was unfairly villainized by a lot of fandom, but I also don't blame Max for doing what she did either. Max was in a much more marginalized position compared to Eleanor, I can't blame her for trying to better her own lot in life. What she did carried risk, yes, but I don't think it was unreasonably reckless. It's not like she stole the map herself, she just made sure that she was able to get in on the action. And it was Eleanor who led the men straight to her, which once again I understood why she made that choice because she had her own plans for the map, but it's not like Max did something colossally stupid on her own that led Flint to her door. 

 

And Max has always been a proud woman. Which, yes, is to her detriment because it caused her to run away from Eleanor when she could have used her protection, but at the same time, considering Max's social position in pirate society, I really can't blame her for that either. Hannah New herself said in an interview that she understood where Max was coming from because Eleanor's attitude towards Max was on the paternalistic side, and Max didn't want any of that. (And on the flip side, Jessica Parker Kennedy also came to Eleanor's defense.)

 

Both of the women were coming from reasonable positions. Max wanted Eleanor to run away with her, where they could start over and Max wouldn't have to fuck for a living. Staying put meant keeping Max in her marginalized state. But conversely, running away for Eleanor would have meant giving up everything that she (Eleanor) had worked for. Would she, as a woman living in the 17th century, wield quite as much power and influence elsewhere? Probably not. That was a lot to ask of her. I didn't blame Eleanor for not wanting to give it up, and I thought fandom was being OTT in making her out to be a villain for it. But of course ambition is evil and people who choose ambition over love are evil. 

Edited by galax-arena
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
×
×
  • Create New...