Queen’s Gambit – Miniseries, Netflix

As per online dictionary, the meaning of gambit (in chess) is: an opening move in which a player makes a sacrifice, typically of a pawn, for the sake of a compensating advantage.

In Hindi the meaning is a bit crisp. It means “पहली चाल”. Meaning, First Trick.

A “Queen’s Gambit” is a “gambit” of the first mover in chess, in which pawns are moved, initially in the game, so as to control the centre of the Chess space. If you are interested watch this video.

The TV series “Queen’s Gambit” is a story of a female character who grows up to be a world class chess player. The story is of a smart girl with troubled childhood who discovers chess while at boarding school which prepares children for adoption.

From the “frying pan” of troubled parents, to being mentored into chess at a boarding school and then “into fire” of dysfunctional family who adopted her, is a perfect bell curve for a story. Chess is just a prop. The traverse of the character through age and various influences is the main plot.

It’s a seven part, one hour each, episodes which will drive you to download a few chess apps and try the game, at least for few hours. The story mentions a lot of chess moves and books none of which I found compelling after few minutes of perusals. But the series is bing worthy.

The story arch seems contrived yet adorned with good storytelling.