The Queen’s Gambit And A Rise In Online Chess Playing
A new mini-series on Netflix about chess has suddenly been trending, and people are talking about it everywhere on social media. Based on a novel by Walter Tevis, The Queen's Gambit is proving in 2020 that chess is certainly not boring, uncool or obsolete. In the series set in the '50s and '60s, actress Anya Taylor-Joy plays the fictional Beth Harmon, an orphan who is quiet but by no means mediocre. Placed in an orphanage after her mother’s death in a car accident, at nine years old she discovers an unexpected talent, learning to play chess with the orphanage's janitor. Her senses and intuition of the game grow sharper and sharper each day and for the first time in her life, Beth feels fully in control. She is eventually adopted in her teens and then begins entering the professional circuit of chess. As the stakes get higher, Beth's journey is not with struggles with addiction, relationships and herself.
With only seven episodes, The Queen's Gambit has managed to breathe new interest to a game that has been around for over 15 centuries. Mobile chess games currently stand at number 14 in the most downloaded paid-for games on Google Play in the US. According to app specialists AppAnnie, daily downloads have also grown by 63 per cent in the US and 11 per cent worldwide. Walter Tevis’s novel was first published in 1983, but it is now up to the 16th place in most-downloaded fictional e-books in Apple's iBookstore. If you're not already into chess or haven't yet watched The Queen's Gambit, perhaps it's time to dust off that family chessboard in the study and hit that play button on Netflix.
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