In Pirates of the Caribbean: the Curse of the Black Pearl, the titular curse can only be broken by the return of every stolen coin and a blood offering by each cursed individual (or one of their descendants). Every crew-member save Bootstrap Bill apparently paid the blood cost. However, it seems they lack blood, as crew-members are regularly stabbed and shot without any wound appearing.

How did the crew-members give blood if they don't have blood?


3 Answers 3


They have blood

During the Dinner scene, Elizabeth Swan stabs Captain Barbossa with a knife. Barbossa proceeds to pull the knife from his chest and shows the knife covered in thick, dark red blood.

There is a possibility that Elizabeth was using the knife to spread jam before stabbing Barbossa; however, when she stashes the knife, under her dress, she appears to be wiping the blade while covering it. (This is a joke). :)

  • 3
    Any chance you can get a screen capture of this? Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 0:15
  • 1
    Are you sure it is not just appearance? Does the blood stay there under moonlight?
    – user65648
    Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 0:43
  • @C.Koca: Does it matter? So long as it's there when you put the coin in, it would count. Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 3:50
  • @NicolBolas if it is just appearance, it means there is no blood. Besides, Jack did not give any blood to the chest but his curse was lifted.
    – user65648
    Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 4:34
  • 1
    @C.Koca Jack did sacrifice blood: scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/140852/… Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 8:07

There are a few possible explanations.

  • Their transformation to undead did not happen overnight.

    We spent 'em and traded 'em and frittered 'em away on drink and food and pleasurable company. The more we gave 'em away, the more we came to realize...the drink would not satisfy, food turned to ash in our mouths, and all the pleasurable company in the world could not slake our lust.

    So there is a chance they paid their blood offerings prior to their full transformation.

  • Their blood offerings referred to their transformation, so they do not need to offer any blood directly onto the chest.

    Jack Sparrow did not give any blood to the chest, however the curse is lifted.

  • The blood requirement referred only to the ones with blood.

  • 7
    I don’t think that they had a gradual transformation. Both Jack Sparrow and the monkey (in the post-credits scene) transformed instantly when they took a coin. Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 0:14
  • @Thunderforge You are right. But also, we know that Jack did not give any blood of him. I'll update accordingly :)
    – user65648
    Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 0:37
  • 3
    Jack did sacrifice blood: scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/140852/… Commented Feb 10, 2018 at 8:06
  • 3
    I still think this is the right answer. The quote clearly suggests the curse took time to fully manifest, and we know the pirates definitely did make a blood sacrifice themselves (they tell us so). Therefore the only thing to reconcile is Jack and monkey-Jack's sudden transformation. Out of world clearly they just wanted the more impactful visual affect. In world, hard to say, maybe the curse takes time to build to full strength, and anyone newly drawn into the curse suffers the full effects of the curse's strength at that point in time, not as though they were freshly cursed?
    – delinear
    Commented Feb 13, 2018 at 13:18

They still have blood. They just heal relatively quickly, which prevented them from truly dying.

When Barbossa was stabbed by Elizabeth, and he pulls the knife out, there is visible blood on the knife, showing they can still somewhat bleed.

This is bolstered by the fact that the rest of the crew were able to repay their blood debt despite being cursed. You could say they have "no blood" when under the moonlight. We see Will put a bomb into a skeleton, then he pushes him out of the light, turning him back into "human form," so to speak. So the moonlight does slightly affect them along with showing their true nature. But otherwise, they can bleed.

This is also shown when Jack Sparrow (not in moonlight) is able to slice his hand while under the curse.

Any wounds they sustain can be lethal if the curse is lifted before they can heal quickly enough. Like how Barbossa was shot and the curse was lifted before he could quickly heal, same with some of the other crew members, along with Jack having time to heal from Barbossa's stab wound while he was cursed before it was lifted.

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