Episode 4 : Middle Game


Episode 4 starts with Beth who is attending a Russian language lesson — at that moment, she really wants to rule the world. Then a man comes in and asked her for a date- he actually knows that she is the co-champion of the US Open. During a party, she phones her mother and tells her that she is at a party with some college students and she tells her to sleep because she won’t be back home for the night. In this fourth episode, Beth tries to emerge from her shyness and starts little by little having a social life. But at the same time, she is always motivated to control the world of chess.


Beth enjoys partying


Beth had finally sex with one of her mate. Actually, it was not like she always thought it would be in her mind, the boy actually took her so brutally and in such a dry way. In the morning, the students all leave and let her clean everything after them. She drinks and smokes while tyding everything. Then, Beth informs her mother that the sleep over will continue for the next night and that she won’t be back home before. She also lets her know that she’s now a woman.

Discovering life time Mrs. Wheatley’s pen pal


Beth gets her diploma, which makes her mother so proud of her. Then, she received a luxury watch as a graduation gift. Beth informs her that the next tournament will take place in Paris. Mrs. Wheatley evokes for the first time her lifelong pen pal’s Manuel. She pursued that before the tournament, they will meet him in Mexico airport.


The Mother wants Beth to take rest


The Queen’s Gambit don’t overtly say to Beth that she thinks she’s permanently stressed as she’s constantly playing chess in her head. And the “Middle Game “watches her mother evidently constructing a point concerning her moves. Mrs. Wheatley falls in love with Manuel. She then tells Beth that chess does not represent the only thing in life that matters. She should also think about enjoying life, growing up and taking rest a day before the tournament. But Beth explains to her that she will face a grandmaster and that she should make some reviews. Her mother says that she already has good performance only using her intuition, that’s why she should take time to relax. Beth desists and goes out to free her mind.


In the meantime, at the Russians


Mrs. Wheatley and Manuel hooks up during the chess tournament. She finds that the hotel suits her convenience and enjoys being with her friends. At the tournament, there is the Russian Borgov. Beth really seems to fear this candidate. The following day, Manuel had to leave for business. Fortunately, Beth stays with Mrs. Wheatley to bring her some relief.


Her first Russian tournament


All the scenes about the Russians are based with anticipation- the fear which raises through the screen cans be obviously felt. Beth plays first against Georgi, a Russian candidate. The game lasts for a long time. But her rival asks her to seal her move after five hours. After, Georgi and Beth talked about American movies. The day after, she still has to face Georgi. This time, Beth stands up and walked away between his moves. She only comes back to make hers. This situation really infuriates Georgi more and more. Finally, he resigns? This is the first lesson that her first professor taught Beth: respect the game and resign if it should end. Beth confesses that she’s never been to a drive-in cinema. Georgi said that he wants to become the champion at 16. And tells him that if he wins this title at 16, he won’t have nothing else to do for the rest of his life. That confuses him but Beth reassures him when she said that he’s the best rival she’s ever had. “Until you’ll play with Borgov”, he says.
The time has arrived…

A little bit after, she joins her mother who is playing piano for an audience. They decided to go out to eat something together. Beth looks then at the tournament’s schedule and she finds that Borgov will be her next rival. She is wound up. In the elevator, the Russians suggest her destruction to Borgov. This lasts reminds them that as an orphan, she will do everything to win the competition because she has no other option.


Beth faces Bergov


As usual, Beth is still keeping her unique weakness which is no one else than herself. Her flaw is that she rather plays the player than the game itself. The game begins and the atmosphere is heavy. Mrs. Wheatleys stays at the hotel. Beth has remarked that her mother does not assist to the tournament. This fears her. And it seems that she can’t help thinking that she will lose the party. She doesn’t move and when she tells it to her mother, she soon realizes that she is no more moving. In fact, Mrs. Wheatley passed away.

The ending


After all these events, Beth was completely shocked that she begs the doctor to give her some tranquilizers. Then, the hotel manager tells her that she won’t have to pay the bills because somebody already did it. Afterwards, Beth calls M.Wheatley to announce the bad news. She also says that she does not know where to bury the corpse. But this last rejects all responsibilities concerning the situation and only throws up some brief suggestions about the house. On her way back home, at the plane, she raises her glass and gives a toast to the empty seat next to her –her mother’s seat. From this moment, you can really feel that she will adopt a new self-destructive character.
The Queen’s Gambit episode 4 shows Beth’s flying social life and a real attachment for her mother. It’s a chapter which gathers challenges, missed opportunities and tragedy.