I had the pleasure to sit down with Luke Arnold who stars as Silver on the Starz drama Black Sails. I wanted to find out his approach to this season considering that it will be the shows swan song as well his character’s evolution and a whole lot more.
Hank (GWW): Can you talk about the tremendous evolution of your character Silver which seems to be the tale of one man living two lives. The way Silver started off the series seems like a lifetime ago compared to where he finds himself as this season starts.
Luke Arnold: It has been a real pleasure, its not often that you’re given a character that goes on such a journey. I’m really pleased with the way that we have been able to tell his story.
Hank (GWW): The public found out a few months back that this would be the Final season, how did that go for you guys? Was it something that you guys had mapped out for a while or is it something that became apparent to you recently or was it just kind of a last minute notification. (Laughs}
Luke Arnold: The writers always had kind of end point in mind and once we got into making season 4 i think everyone kind of felt like this could be it. I feel like what we are doing is ending the show when the story ends instead of any kind of outside influence. In season 4 the further we go into the story there is this kind of feeling that the end is kind of creeping into all of the characters lives. At the start of season 4 there is a lot of talk about the last battle and moving on and what this is going to mean. I think the story that we started telling 4 years ago, it kind of has a natural ending.
Hank (GWW): Does having the knowledge that this is the final season affect your approach or your portrayal of the character?
Luke Arnold: We have always worked very hard on the show with rehearsals, be it on the sets or afterwards around at each others places on weekends so that its kind of like a piece of theater to make sure we are really game ready for every scene. Even more so than usual knowing that we really had to stick the landing everyone pushed their work ethic to the limit to make sure that this season fulfills the promise of the last three seasons.
Hank (GWW): I think that one of the big story-lines from day one has been your relationship with Toby Stephens (Captain Flint) and the evolution of that relationship from the slickster of the crew that was kind a thorn in his side to a peer that he relied on to this season where it seems in some ways you become his superior. Can you talk about how that relationship has grown and taken different forms through the years leading to season 4.
Luke Arnold: That’s something that Jon Steinberg always said, that the central relationship to the show was Flint and Silver even though we barely talked to each other during the first season. I’m a thorn in his side, then i’m kind of his right hand man, then I’m the quartermaster that’s kind of part friend and antagonist to each other. At this part in season 4 its a whole new part of their relationship, they are closer to each other than anyone had been during the course of the show. When we start season 4 they are very much allied for the same cause, that relationship and the turn it takes is the real central thread of season 4. It takes many twists and turns within these last 10 episodes.
Hank (GWW): How do you feel with the evolution of your character who is now a leader of men, hes out front and hes putting it all on the line. There has been some tremendous character growth with Silver as hes been shaped by some extraordinary events and times.
Luke Arnold: Its really on looking back that you realize wow he was a different person not that long ago. He went through that time when he was kind of a coward ordering people from the back line and this season he really is on the front line and hes the first man going into battle a lot of times. Hes leading his men from amongst them and that’s very different than the man we first saw. I think that’s what happens when you kind of go through these traumatic events and different kind of pressures are put upon you. Hes been through alot between losing his leg, becoming the leader of a revolution. In season 4 from the word go hes put through even heavier things than what hes been through in the previous 3 seasons before. So I feel like I’ve played three different characters already and played almost three new versions of Silver in season 4
Hank (GWW): The biggest obvious change that Silver has undergone during the previous 3 seasons was when he lost his leg. The only replacement available was a barbaric peg which at the time was cutting edge medicine, for most men such an injury would be debilitating but for Silver it lit a fire within. The injury and subsequent peg served as a catalyst for Silver, can you talk about that and the challenges of working with the peg yourself.
Luke Arnold: It was brutal but at least I got to have my leg back at the end of the day. I’ve kind of been sharing the role with a guy named Ben de Jager who has lost a part of his left leg. He steps in for a lot of the shots from behind and some wider shots where you need to see Silver missing the leg, Ben would come in and do a lot of that stuff. It was amazing talking to him and some other people, other amputees and other people that had gone through similar stuff. They talk about there is a change in them and they talk about what its made them realize they can do and find this strength from within that they never knew was there. I think with Silver he was so adaptable and so kind of not really ever connected to anyone or any particular thing. What he gained was the respect of the men which was something he never had before and really wasn’t out to get. He also had a mindset that the last thing he wanted was for this to define him and to be seen as less of a man than he was seen before.
Hank (GWW): The question out there is that after this season concludes and Black Sails ends the next natural step would be something with Treasure Island. Is there any chance that something like that could happen or is that even something that you would be interested in?
Luke Arnold: I think we’ve had such a good time and i’m so proud of the show that the idea is appealing in a lot of ways. There’s also something at this point I think that everyone is very satisfied with what we were able to accomplish and how we feel about this final season. It could maybe happen and it could be interesting down the track. I think at the moment we are all very happy to walk away from what was one of the toughest shoots I could imagine being a part of. To know that no one ever let up caring about every piece of the story and being able to walk away and look at every piece of it and being happy with the result. We all had so much fun, maybe in like 5, 10, 15 years and if the audience continues to grow we might come back and do something when the times right but at the moment I think that we are going to let this land and I’m going to enjoy having both of my legs back.
Luke Arnold really gave some tantalizing morsels about whats to come in this final season and blood is sure to spill on the high seas. Be sure to tune in to Starz Sunday January 29th at 9pm est for the premiere of the 4th and final season of Black Sails. Check out our continued coverage of Black Sail’s final season and more at www.thegww.com and you can follow myself on Twitter @SonOfNumenor313.
Shiver Me Timbers! Black Sails actor Luke Arnold on the perils of playing a pirate
Pretending to be a swashbuckling pirate is almost a childhood rite of passage. But it's not widely practised by grown-ups, unless you happen to be someone like actor Luke Arnold.
The 33-year-old Aussie actor is currently starring in the adventure drama Black Sails as John Silver, a character Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson made famous in the classic novel Treasure Island.
Filmed in Cape Town, the show is set in the 1700s, before the events of Stevenson's book.
*INXS biopic tells an all-too familiar story
*The best - and worst - new DVD and Blu-ray releases
*Chief censor labels warning on Lightbox drama Flesh and Bone 'inadequate'
Black Sails also features more of Stevenson's iconic characters such as Captain Flint, who is played by Toby Stephens, the son of Dame Maggie Smith (Downton Abbey).
The show is in its fourth and final season and Arnold, who portrayed singer Michael Hutchence in INXS: Never Tear Us Apart, says his Black Sails role was "a childhood dream come true".
Arnold recalls having a Lego pirate ship as a child and says his first introduction to the Treasure Island story was via the 1990s film Muppet Treasure Island.
However, he read Stevenson's novel after landing the Black Sails role four years ago. Arnold has since re-read it at least once a year.
Although playing a pirate is fun it can also be painful, literally.
At season two's end, Arnold's character's leg was amputated after a brutal attack and the actor describes playing a one-legged pirate as "really tough".
"The nice thing is that I got to walk back on two legs at the end of the day," he says.
"Both the peg in season three and then being on the crutch in season four presented their own challenges but were actually much bigger than I expected.
"I knew it would be a little bit tough being on the sand with a crutch, anything where I have a lot of action and cover a lot of ground, it was just constantly painful really.
"Whenever I wasn't on set I'd be in physio, trying to get my alignment back or to sort out the pain in my back and neck and hand that was starting to creep in."
After four years playing a pirate, what are Arnold's sailing skills like these days? It turns out they aren't as good as he'd hoped.
"It was my plan when I was (in Cape Town) to rent a little boat and do some sailing courses," he says.
"But after all day every day being on a fake ship out in the sun being sprayed with water, the last thing I wanted to do on my weekends off was anything boat-related. But I'll probably get back into it now."
Black Sails streams on Lightbox
Read more TV Guide stories on our page and connect with us on Facebook
FeaturedINTERVIEW: Luke Arnold On 'Black Sails' Season 4 Being The Ending And The Prop He Gets To Keep
Earlier this year, I posted my review of #BlackSails season 3 and immediately it got retweeted by none other than actor Luke Arnold himself, who plays John Silver on the show, so ya naturally my first response was geekin' out like the fanboy I've always been of this very epic series. So when Starz and Anchor Bay recently gave me the opportunity to interview Luke Arnold, from New York Comic-Con, in anticipation of season 3 Blu-Ray/DVD release on November 8, there was no way on earth I'd turn that down.
Luke Arnold shared with me what you can anticipate from his character, John Silver, in season 4, how he felt about the show coming to an end, and you'll never guess which prop from the set that he took home with him as a souvenir. Below is my full interview with Luke Arnold..
Rama's Screen: Luke, first of all, thank you for this opportunity. I'm a huge fan of the show. And thank you for retweeting my review of "Black Sails" season 3 earlier this year.
Luke Arnold: "O, no worries, thanks very much for doing that, for your support."
Rama's Screen: Your character, John Silver, lost a part of his body, he'd gone through a lot, so will he catch a break?
Luke Arnold: "I’d like to say he does but probably a long way from that. I’d say you do get that at the end of season 3, with everything, we ended with a pretty good position, we win the battle, he’s now got this new love interest in Madi. That’s the closest thing for him catching a break we’ve seen so far. I think that is a real change for him, to get close to someone. But pretty immediately in season 4, things take a downward spiral and they don’t stop. Things take a downward spiral kind of in the first episode of season 4. So no brakes for Silver coming pretty soon."
Rama's Screen: Do you think John Silver thinks Captain Flint is a good leader?
Luke Arnold: "Yes, I think by now they do have mutual respect by the end of season 3. Captain Flint is obviously the best leader in Nassau, and I think Silver has always been aware of that. There’s no denying that he is the best captain, the best leader around. For a while, Silver was just using that to his means, but now he really believes in him and his cause at this point anyway. But yes, he really does see him as the best leader around. And they really have a real friendship at this point. That definitely gets tested in season 4 is all I’m saying."
Rama's Screen: How tough was it for you to be acting or performing now that your character has a peg leg?
Luke Arnold: "So much tougher than I expected, the peg leg in season 3, it was tough but it was doable, we could do it. Now season 4, I spent a lot of season 4 without the peg leg and on a crutch, hopping around in one leg and my body still hasn’t recovered. For me it really was.. just doing that all day, your body starts to think you’re missing a leg. And usually if you are missing a leg, you should use a prosthetic or use two crutches. So because in Treasure Island, John Silver has one crutch, that gives me another hand free for sword-fighting and things like that. We went with the one crutch and it really just screwed my body up, it made it really tough. So ya, it was tougher than expected. That said, I have a great double, his name is Ben and he’s actually missing his left and he’s real trooper, he’s amazing. So he was able to step in and do a lot of the stuff in the wider shot because it’s easy to have him in there than me and then use visual effects to paint out my leg. So between the two of us, I’d say he has do a lot more than I have to and it was great having him there. And it says something about Silver, it’s amazing to see a character like that to lose a part of his leg and to still come out and be the powerful figure that he’d become. To lose that leg and actually becomes stronger for it rather than weaker, it’s really great telling that story."
Rama's Screen: When it was announced that this upcoming season 4 will be the show's finale, it bummed me out, man! I felt like it's unfair, like we the fans need to receive five or six or more seasons out of "Black Sails"
Luke Arnold: "I have to say that this has been the best job that I could ever have wished for. I love the role I got to play, the people I got to work with, I love watching the show when everyone else does that it felt like the end, the story has reached its natural conclusion. The arc, the story that we set up four years ago, it really felt like it reached that moment where it all came together. I think we all got to do everything we ever could’ve wanted with this show. I couldn’t imagine… they were talking about doing a fifth season, but once we filmed the finale of this season, everyone just agreed that it just felt like the right ending. So it’s not like the story that got canceled mid-season or things left unfulfilled. The real arc that we began from the very first episode really does come to a very satisfying conclusion."
Rama's Screen: What will you miss the most about the show and is there any prop from the set that you got to take home with you?
Luke Arnold: "It’s really the people I’m going to miss the most. There’s so much I loved about the job side of it. But truly, working with Tom, Toby, the producers, every single person on the set, I couldn’t have imagined better people to be doing this job with and it really was a joy everyday, it never felt like a job. It always felt like we’re making something special, it was a great opportunity. A lot of laughs and a lot of love amongst everyone down there, so when it comes to November this year, for the first time in five years, we would be heading back down to Cape Town, it’s going to be really sad but it’s nice that we get to walk away feeling like this package we made is something we’re proud of.
As far as props… in season 4, I ended up back in Eleanor’s office and I found the piece of paper that John Silver was writing on when he was writing out the direction for Urca de Lima back in season 1. And that was actually in the very first scene we shot, episode three on the very first day, so it’s just amazing to find that little piece of paper that I had been writing out on the very first morning of shooting the show. And one of the producers actually framed it so I’ve got that and that’s my real keepsake from the show"
There are no user reviews for this listing.
'Black Sails’: Luke Arnold Looks Back on the Starz Series' Final Season
By Christina Radish
The pirate drama airs Sunday nights on Starz.
On the fourth and final season of the Starz drama series Black Sails, Eleanor Guthrie (Hannah New) has helped Woodes Rogers (Luke Roberts) transform Nassau into an impenetrable fortress while Captain Flint (Toby Stephens) amasses a fleet of unprecedented strength, in the hopes of striking the final blow against civilization. But the closer they come to defeat, the more they fight back, setting Flint, John Silver (Luke Arnold) and their allies up for inevitable defeat.
During this 1-on-1 phone interview with Collider, actor Luke Arnold (who’s taken such an incredible journey on the road to becoming Long John Silver) talked about what he’s most proud of with Black Sails, being aware that they were shooting the end of this story, what he took home from the set, the learning curve in finding John Silver’s physicality once he lost his leg, just how much Silver will be tested this season, how much Silver’s goals have changed since the beginning, the crazy stunt and action sequences, and why he’s just not ready to jump into another long-term role yet.
Collider: I’m simultaneously very bummed to be talking to you about the final season of Black Sails and very excited about how amazing this season looks!
LUKE ARNOLD: I think we all have that feeling, as well. We’re so excited to have a final season and finale that we’re really happy with and that we think feels like the right way to go out with the show. And then, it’s also sad to not get to do this anymore.
This show has undoubtedly pushed the limits of what a TV show can do, and it’s been a massive undertaking, for four seasons. Looking back on it, what are you most proud of having been able to accomplish with this show?
ARNOLD: Personally, for me, it’s the journey of Silver. It’s really gratifying for me, every time someone who’s watched the show up to now, goes back to Season 1 and forgets who he was at the beginning of the show, or remembers how they felt about him and who they thought he was and was going to be. It’s such a testament to the writers that you get to go on a journey that is so dramatic, where the character is almost unrecognizable from the beginning to the end, but you believe it, every step of the way. For me, taking him on that journey is exactly what I wanted out of the show. What I want from any role, and especially in television, is to start somewhere, and then end somewhere completely different, but have that journey be believable.
Knowing that this was going to be the last season, did you try to savor every moment while you were in it?
ARNOLD: Yeah! Generally, there isn’t too much time to think about anything else. This season is very physical, and most of it was just trying to physically get through all the action and mentally get through the epic scenes that were so important. Those last few episodes, you know that this is it. If you don’t make the scenes work, then the whole thing is for nothing because it is the end of our journey. So, we were definitely aware that this was going to be the end and that everything had to count. It probably also made us more appreciative. On days when we were suffering with the heat and the physical side of things, we also remembered that that was it. As much as you complain about how tough it is, we only had to do it once more, and then it would be over. It was nice to know that everything we were putting in the can was the final pieces of the story.
When Black Sails was done, did you take anything from the set, or did you just want to leave it all behind?
ARNOLD: It’s interesting, it’s that strange thing where everything changed so much. Nassau was always there, but every character was different. For me, Silver’s look changed so much, and he changed again, a few times, in Season 4. It’s not like some of those characters where you have a particular thing that’s with you from the beginning. There were so many versions of the character that there wasn’t a particular thing that I felt [represented] him. And then, there were the things I wanted to get rid of, like the crutch in Season 4. I was so happy to see the ass end of that. It was great to have, but it caused me so much pain and was a real thing to deal with. But, I did get one present. We were shooting a scene in Season 4 that was back in Eleanor’s office, and I found the piece of paper that I was writing the directions to find the Urca de Lima on, which was the very first scene we shot in Episode 103. Nina Jack, who was one of our producers on Season 4, got it framed and gave it to me as a gift, so I’ve gone away with that. That was amazing! I look at that, and that was day one. Most of the cast had barely met, and we didn’t know what the show or the journey was going to be. So, that’s really good to look at, at the end of the whole thing.
Was there a learning curve, in figuring out how you wanted John Silver’s physicality to be, after he lost his leg?
ARNOLD: Yeah, absolutely! It all changed, at that point. Once the leg was gone, it was about working out how much he was struggling with it and how to go on that journey of him dealing with it. And there are so many stages. In the beginning, he was a man in pain who was scared of showing that pain and wanting to be seen as a complete man still. In Season 3, Silver was worried that, if he showed weakness, he’d be kicked off the ship and be let with nothing. There was a big change between Season 3 and suffering the pain of wearing the peg leg while worrying about how that looks, and Season 4 and being able to discard that and tell a new story. Now, there’s a power in showing that his leg is missing and that defines him. He looks different to everyone else and he moves different to everyone else. Him owning that really becomes a part of him becoming Long John Silver in the fourth season.
John Silver’s gift has been being able to talk and manipulate his way out of just about any situation. Would you say that that’s tested more than ever, this season?
ARNOLD: Yeah, from the beginning. From the first moments of Season 4, he’s put through hell, really, and that does not let up. There are new physical tests and emotional tests. Now, he’s on the front line leading men into battle. Before, he didn’t care about anyone and no one cared about him. There was no emotional pressure put on him. He has really important relationships now, with Billy, Flint, Madi, and all of his men, which puts him under a whole new kind of pressure that we’ve never seen him go through before. Whether it’s the physical stuff or the emotional, Silver is put through all kinds of things that we didn’t even think would be pressure on him before. It’s a big season for Silver.
Do you think Silver’s goal or quest has changed from what it was when he started on this journey?
ARNOLD: I think it’s completely changed. In the beginning, the last thing he wanted was to be a part of anything, especially with these pirates, which seemed like the dumbest career you could ever get into. He wanted to put himself in as little danger as possible, get as much cash as he could, and move on his way. Slowly, he’s become seduced by this world and the people in it, to the point where he really seriously takes responsibility for his role. He wants to do right by not only the pirates and his crew, but also every one of the marooned camp, and Madi and everything she represents. So, it’s completely changed. He’s an absolutely different man, at the beginning of Season 4, than he was at the beginning of Season 1. And he evolves more during Season 4, but I won’t get into that yet.
You have quite an underwater sequence, this season. How long did that take to shoot and what was that like to do, and do you get beaten up even more?
ARNOLD: That was the beginning of hell that kept getting crazier as it went along. That took all season to shoot. We were in the water tank, from the beginning of the season, stuck under water, all day. We had three different sets built for that sequence, in three different water tanks, for each part of it. Everyone was like, “Well, at least you’re doing it in the summer.” And I was like, “Yeah, but you know what this show is like. We’ll be doing it in the winter, as well.” And sure enough, we kept adding bits and changing bits. Right until the last couple of weeks, I was doing bits of the underwater stuff to make that whole sequence as spectacular as it is. I had a real phobia of doing underwater work like that beforehand, but I did enough training. It was still pretty scary to do, but it was also a lot of fun and I felt more in control than I thought I was going to be. I’m really proud of having that sequence because I thought it was something I’d never want to do or would do.
Were there ever any scenes or stunts you wanted to do or wished you could do, but couldn’t because of the risk, or were you happy to have the stuntman step in?
ARNOLD: The stuntman didn’t come in very much for me. There were a couple of high falls that they got the stuntman to do. It’s so easy for little injuries to happen that it made more sense to put the stuntman in for that, considering everything else I had to do. That was it, really. There’s a guy, Ben de Jager, who’s missing his left leg. Once my leg was gone, I started sharing the role with Ben and it was great to have somebody who’s gone through the experience of losing a leg. He did step in for a lot of stuff, mainly because it was so much easier to have him there. If you’re shooting from behind or you’re focusing on the foot, it’s easier to have someone in who’s missing the leg than to do it with me and spend a fortune on visual effects to change things. So, there were some really iconic Silver moments that were Ben and not me, which was my only disappointment. But I’m really happy I got to share the role with someone who’s gone that journey and helps bring that authenticity and experience to that part of Silver’s story.
With the first season, people didn’t know what to expect, and it did things we haven’t seen pulled off on TV before. And then, the second season came and people wondered how it could possibly top the first season, and it did. By Season 4, were you less surprised with the fact that they manage to top themselves with every season, or was it still mind-blowing?
ARNOLD: It’s always mind-blowing! Until the very last episode, we were in the middle of sequences going, “I cannot believe we’re doing this! I can’t believe they’re letting us do this!” Season 3 was a big one. Season 2 was definitely a big step up and we were like, “I don’t know if we can ever do better that this!” But the first four episodes of Season 3, we were like, “Oh, no, we can do anything!” The only place to go from there is to put us all through hell, and that’s what Season 4 became. We thought that we’d done as big of stuff as we could, but we had to go bigger. It really became relentless in the fourth season. So, it was always surprising. We also always shared the responsibility. If we could make it better, we just had to be tougher and work harder. Everyone in every department made sure it felt like we were topping what we’d done before, which seemed impossible.
After coming off of a character like this, where would you like to take your career next? Do you approach what you’re looking for in a project any differently, after doing something this massive?
ARNOLD: Yeah, it’s really tough. When you sign onto something for a long time, there’s a big risk. You don’t know what it’s gonna be until you’re into it. I rolled the dice and won with Black Sails. I had an amazing character with an amazing group of people and scripts that got better and better. It couldn’t have gone any better, for what this experience was. It’s now made me a little nervous, going into the next one, ‘cause you wonder how many times you can gamble like that and win. So, I’ve been doing lots of independent film roles and TV roles. It’s like coming out of a relationship. When you come out of a really serious relationship, you don’t want to jump straight into another one. You want to play around a little bit, before getting into something serious. I’m still in that moment. I haven’t quite gotten over Black Sails yet. I’m not looking for the next serious relationship just yet.
Black Sails airs on Sunday nights on Starz.
The bonkers-sounding thriller stars a sprawling ensemble led by Kerri Russell.
Read NextAbout The Author
Christina Radish is a Senior Reporter at Collider. Having worked at Collider for over a decade (since 2009), her primary focus is on film and television interviews with talent both in front of and behind the camera. She is a theme park fanatic, which has lead to covering various land and ride openings, and a huge music fan, for which she judges life by the time before Pearl Jam and the time after. She is also a member of the Critics Choice Association and the Television Critics Association.
Leg luke arnold
Silver Will Be the Center of 'Black Sails' Season 4
The end of Black Sails might be in sight as Season 4 will be its final chapter, and Luke Arnold, who plays John Silver, might have cut his hair — the universal sign that an actor has moved on from a project — but several traces of piracy linger at New York Comic Con.
For one, we are in a meeting room called “The Chart Room.” It doesn’t look quite as much like a space on Flint’s ship as its name suggests — neither the Walrus nor the Man O’War have snack tables or squashy couches — but the walls around us are adorned with the sorts of old-timey maps that Silver has spent many scenes pondering. For another, although there is no mistaking Arnold for his character when he has short hair, is wearing jeans and a t-shirt and offering a smile that is far more sincere, he’s also wearing a decisively Black Sails-esque gold skull ring on his index finger.
It flashes under the overhead lights as he stretches on the couch, a little gingerly, as if he pulled a muscle. Clutching his side, he explains, “My body’s still recovering.”
He’s referring to Silver’s physical state in Season 4. As featured in Treasure Island and the latest trailer, the pirate’s leg has been even further removed. “It sucked,” he laughs. “The peg leg in Season 3 was alright, but Season 4, the left leg is pretty much strapped up all the time and we also made the crutch a bit short, which looked good but is physically a terrible thing to do. Most physios say you should use two crutches, not one, because your alignment will tilt to the side. And that’s what happened. Everything on my right side got stretched; everything on my left condensed.”
The crutch was also a challenge to Arnold’s double, Ben de Jager, who really is missing a leg. “A lot of the iconic shots of Silver, generally from the back, are [de Jager]. But he either has a really good prosthetic or two crutches. We both struggled with having to get around on one leg and one crutch for shooting this.”
Lest you worry that this new development will restrict Silver’s involvement in the action, Arnold hints at a horse scene in Silver’s future. “There are ways to get on a horse that are practical, but there are ways to do it that looks good,” he says. “Between [Ben and I], we’d work out making sure that in all these things, we put Silver in the strongest looking position.”
By “strongest,” he doesn’t mean he wanted to look cool. As we saw in Season 3, Silver feels he must look the part to his men, even if he’s in excruciating pain. “I can’t look weak,” he told Madi in Episode 6.
How will Silver’s horse maneuvers compare to Charles Vane’s? Only Season 4 will tell.
According to Arnold, Silver’s life won’t only get more complicated on a physical level — it will also see change in his mental state.
“There’s a bit of a Godfather thing going on,” he says. “Usually, he’s running around getting information delivered to Flint or working it out with Billy. But in Season 4 he’s at the center of everything that’s happening. We’ve never seen him in that position before.”
But, like everything else about his characterization, it will feel natural, because Silver’s entire journey has been leading down this path. “When you’re not emotionally connected to people, it’s easy to bounce from one place to the next and not worry if things go bad,” he says. “Because he could always just move onto the next thing. That’s gone in Season 4. He’s rooted to the spot in a different way that he never was in the seasons before. Silver’s evolved to a point where it’s not about him anymore.”
Although Silver is a different man than he was in the first two seasons, there’s one plot thread from earlier that will be revisited. Recall that during his turn as the crew’s resident storyteller, Silver used the name “Solomon Little” at various points. Early in Season 2, he featured in one of Silver’s stories as a fellow boy in his orphanage; in a later tale, he was a man Silver knew who had gone to Charleston.
“He talks about Solomon Little, and they’ll be hearing him using Solomon Little again in another story. You get a sense it’s not the complete truth,” Arnold says. “We delve into this a bit in Season 4 — the idea of Silver’s backstory and how truthful he’s being with people around him.”
But, he adds, Silver’s backstory is less important to his identity than it is for others. “For some characters, it’s really important to know where they came from, because that influences who they are. With Silver, it’s so much more about who he becomes than who he was.”
Between that fireside chat with Flint, and Billy building the legend of Long John Silver back in Nassau, the Season 3 finale saw Silver become his most dynamic self yet. But though that hour was filled with epic battles on land and sea alike, one of its best moments was simple: Finally seeing Silver share a scene with Jack Rackham. As it turns out, it wasn’t only a treat for viewers.
“It was a long time coming,” says Arnold. “He stabbed me through a wall in Season 1, but then that’s the first time we actually got to have a moment. [Toby] Schmitz and I are such good mates; to finally get to work together — even when it was essentially him handing me a bottle of rum — was nice. There are some great meetings that happen in Season 4. We get to see some new people come together.”
Aside from new character pairings on the horizon, of course Silver’s most intriguing relationship is always with Flint. About their dynamic going into Season 4, Arnold says,
“They’re best buds is really the thing. Flint’s a rock star, and when the rock star brings you into their world, everyone succumbs to it. Even though Silver and Billy were always on the outside like, ‘Fuck him, he’s our leader but we never want to be seduced by what Flint is,’ I think when we begin Season 4, Silver has been sucked into that. They’ve got a mutual respect. They’ve accepted that they’re friends. They’re the pirate kings together.”
But, anyone with a cursory knowledge of Treasure Island knows it won’t be smooth sailing between the two men. The seeds are planted during their fireside chat at the end of Season 3, when Flint finally opens up to Silver about his motives and his past with the Hamiltons.
“You follow Flint because you think he’s the smartest; the best tactician,” says Arnold. “He’s saying that he’s going to lead them to a better future, that it’s all about changing civilization for the good of all, but when you find out it’s about something so personal and vulnerable then you start to question whether you should put your faith in someone who’s doing something for personal means. For someone as intelligent as Silver, I think that rings some alarm bells.”
About whether he has a favorite Flint and Silver scene from all three seasons so far, Arnold says,
“That scene by the chest in the Season 3 finale was special. We did all those as one block, and with [Toby Stephens] being a theater actor, it was great to do that like a play; this 15-minute scene that goes through all these big moments. But [my favorite] would have to be the two of us trying to get that rubber fucking shark in the row boat and everything that entailed. That was the first time it got to be just the two of us doing a big sequence together to that extent. We definitely top that in Season 4 — there is so much Flint and Silver stuff and it gets really, really deep. There’s a lot to look forward to on that side.”
Season 4 premieres January 29 on Starz. In the coming months, look out for video interviews with Luke Arnold, Tom Hopper, Hannah New, Clara Paget, and Jessica Parker Kennedy, as well as with the showrunners.
I think it's worth taking a walk to the barn. I will look at him while he is still a virgin, she forcedly smiled and stood up, putting down the magazine. Come on, I'll take care of the accounts for now. Christina walked over to the writing desk, piled high with papers.