I just watched The Queens Gambit on Netflix and was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Normally I am disappointed by the original content as it seems to be cheap copies of better media out there, but this is not the case with this show. If you have not seen the show, it is based on the life of the first woman chess grandmaster. I will warn you, it does start off slow but it’s all worth it in the end. The acting is great, the plot is well written, and I absolutely adored the aesthetics for the show. The sets and the costumes were all well designed. If you haven’t seen the show I would highly recommend it to your watch list.
But I am not here to review this show or even to convince you to watch the show. Instead, I am here to sell you on some anime. Now before you go and dismiss my argument and move on to another article, hear me out. This isn’t what you think. There are no super powers or weird harems. Instead what you get is a slice of life anime about a young professional shogi player and his journey to the top.
The anime in question translates to “March Comes in Like a Lion”. 3-gatsu no raion zenpen for those who wish to watch it in the original Japanese. What makes this anime special I would argue are the same things that make The Queens Gambit so good. I would argue that they are essentially the same plot and wouldn’t be surprised if Netflix borrowed from the anime. What the anime does that the show can’t is that it expands on a lot of the elements that the show can’t address. You get an internal dialogue so you know exactly what the main character Rei is thinking. The supporting cast is given a lot more room to develop into memorable tangible characters for the audience. The show also has a lot more room to address the issues the these players go through in much more detail. Without going into too much detail, it definitely does the Queen’s Gambit a lot a more justice than the Netflix show does.
Now I understand they are not the same story, both are based in entirely different worlds and comparing live action to anime is never fair, but I believe that it is a good refence point especially for those who do not really like anime. I believe both are important bits of media in their own right and if you haven’t already seen them I would motion you to do so as soon as possible. Both are also available on Netflix. But if you have already watched the Queen’s Gambit, make sure you finish strong and watch March Comes in Like a Lion as well.