On paper, “The Queen’s Gambit” won’t sound like a compelling drama: Primarily based on a novel by Walter Tevis, the Netflix collection tells the story of Beth Harmon as she rises by means of the world of aggressive chess, finally taking over the world champion from the Soviet Union.

However on the most recent episode of the Unique Content material podcast, your hosts are unanimous of their love for the collection. We speak a bit about among the flaws (a setup-heavy first episode, the unsatisfying remedy of Beth’s good friend Jolene), however for essentially the most half, we’re glad to spend our time praising the present.

A few of that has to do with the interval setting — “The Queen’s Gambit” traces Beth’s life by means of the Nineteen Fifties and ’60s, with some delightfully retro units and costumes, together with a clear-eyed method in the direction of the condescension and sexism that Beth faces in her early matches.

On the identical time, it’s Beth (performed by Anya Taylor-Pleasure) who pulls you thru all eight episodes as they depict her complicated relationship along with her foster mom, her struggles with substance abuse and her friendships with different chess gamers. Whereas Beth has a handful traits you’ll acknowledge from different tough geniuses portrayed on-screen, she’s in the end too complicated to boil right down to a single thought or logline.

And whilst you don’t must know a lot about chess to get pleasure from “The Queen’s Gambit,” the present’s concentrate on character and persona permits it to depict aggressive chess in a approach that’s, in truth, thrilling.

You may hearken to our evaluate within the participant beneath, subscribe using Apple Podcasts or discover us in your podcast participant of selection. In case you just like the present, please tell us by leaving a evaluate on Apple. You can too follow us on Twitter or send us feedback directly. (Or recommend reveals and flicks for us to evaluate!)

f you’d prefer to skip forward, right here’s how the episode breaks down:
0:00 Intro
4:28 “The Queen’s Gambit” evaluate
34:11 “The Queen’s Gambit” spoiler dialogue