Blackbeard in popular culture

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Blackbeard (c. 1680 – 22 November 1718) was a notorious English pirate who operated around the West Indies and the eastern coast of the American colonies during the early 18th century.


Tim Powers' historical fiction novel On Stranger Tides has Blackbeard searching for the Fountain of Youth in 1718.

In Rick Riordan's novel Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Sea of Monsters, Blackbeard is shown to be stranded on the evil sorceress Circe's island. He, along with his crew, has been turned into a guinea pig. Annabeth and Percy turn them back to human and also escape with his ship, The "Queen Anne's Revenge". Here Blackbeard is shown to be a son of Ares. Blackbeard makes an appearance in Neal Stephenson's The System of the World.

A younger Blackbeard appears in Wayne Thomas Batson's Isle of Fire as the new quartermaster of notorious pirate captain Bartholomew Thorne.



The 1952 film Blackbeard the pirate, starring Robert Newton in the title role, and directed by Raoul Walsh

The 1960 film The Boy and the Pirates, starring Murvyn Vye as Blackbeard

The 1968 film Blackbeard's Ghost, starring Peter Ustinov in the title role, based on a novel by Ben Stahl.

The 2011 film Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, adapted from Powers' novel, features Ian McShane as Blackbeard, the film's antagonist, who somehow survived the battle at Ocracoke Island with the help of his quarter master who has foreseen his fate. This Blackbeard is a master of black arts and wields a sword with supernatural powers which allows him to make his ship come alive to attack his foes. He is also described by Jack Sparrow as "the pirate that all pirates fear". He seeks the Fountain of Youth so that he can redeem his soul and escape his prophesied death.

Hugh Jackman will be portraying Blackbeard in the upcoming film Pan.[1]

Comics and manga[edit]

In the popular Japanese manga and anime One Piece three characters are named after the famous pirate — major antagonist Marshall D. Teach, who goes by the nickname Blackbeard, his former crew mate Thatch, and his former captain Edward Newgate, who goes by the nickname Whitebeard. Teach fled the crew after killing Thatch (an alias for the real-life Blackbeard), and then would go on to kill Captain Whitebeard after insinuating a war between the Whitebeard pirates and the Marines by arresting on behalf of the Marines one of Whitebeard's division captains, Portgas D. Ace.

Blackbeard was also an antagonist in the Belgian comics series Vieux Nick et Barbe-Noire by Marcel Remacle.

In a Shazam comic Blackbeard was one of six American villains brought back to life by evil scientist Doctor Sivana to cause chaos in Pittsburgh. He is defeated and like the other villains sent back.

Video games[edit]

  • Blackbeard appears in the 2004 video game Sid Meier's Pirates! This portrayal of Blackbeard correctly depicts him with lit cigars in his beard. However, the Queen Anne's Revenge is under the control of Henry Morgan, with a ship called the Adventurers Prize.
  • He appears as an NPC in the 2013 video game Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, voiced by Mark Bonnar. In the game, Blackbeard is an infamous English pirate captain who sails the West Indies and the eastern seaboard of the American colonies during the early 18th century, aboard the Queen Anne's Revenge. He aids the game's protagonist, Captain Edward Kenway, during various missions throughout the game. Instead of terrifying people by nature, Thatch is presented as putting on an act and is in fact not a bloodthirsty man at all in this rendition. Thatch becomes a playable character in multiplayer modes with the downloadable content "Blackbeards Wrath"

Other media[edit]