The Queen’s Gambit: Why The Orphanage Lied About Beth’s Age

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When Beth is adopted in The Queen’s Gambit, the orphanage lies about Beth’s age — so how old is she, and why lie in the first place? The Queen’s Gambit is Netflix’s hit miniseries based on the Walter Tevis novel by the same name; it’s a coming of age story about a young American chess prodigy who learns to overcome her personal demons. The Queen’s Gambit follows Beth from her childhood until adulthood — but is unclear about her exact age throughout.

Beth is orphaned in The Queen’s Gambit when her mother dies in a car crash, which is implied to have been an intentional murder-suicide attempt. Beth’s father, whose identity is never confirmed, is not in the picture, which leaves the young woman an orphan. She is sent to the Methuen Home for Girls, where she remains until she is adopted, as a teenager, by Alma and Allston Wheatley.

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