Altena's Chess Game
This is the update of what I think Altena's chess game really meant...
After viewing the entire series (last two episodes were seen 3 times in 4 hours), I found myself unable to hate Altena.
The hatred people have against her was intentionally orchestrated by the director, but more about that in a different post.
I looked at her tactics and means which she used in the series, and found it to fit perfectly with my chess-play philosophy.
As a victorious Chess player, one has to have respect for all the pieces at one's disposal, as well as those of the opposition. Never ignore any piece or pawn; no matter how little value they have, they all HAVE value. Anyone who plays a game with only Queens and (Misery forbids!) Rooks in the opening game would be crushed faster than the Knights of Paris.
This is the reason why Altena is so kind and loving to her people... She needs them, and cared for them. It's the motivation that's suspect.
Regardless of what the word 'Pawn' means in everyday language, they are extremely powerful in the right hands. (I felt sorry for that guy I checkmated two years ago... death by a Pawn is so humiliating...)
In many ways, the villagers in episode 22 are Pawns of Altena. They are there to die protecting others more important than they.
Notice how the 'human wall' they created look like the Pawns at the opening game of Chess.
In the same way that one should not neglect weak pieces, one should not be over-protective. As much as one respects them, the pieces are still pieces, roaming the 8 x 8 world with their sole purpose being to bring victory to the Master. Sacrifices WILL be made in any Chess game. You nurture and protect your pieces as they march towards their goal. But as they reach the final stage, a player must be prepared to loose all but the minimum number of soldiers required for checkmate.
Chloe was nurtured and protected over a very long time, yet her destiny was death, so the true Noir will be born. Even Altena's own life is fair game to herself. There was no right or wrong in Altena's mind. Just a simple Chess game. She knows the rules, but her pieces are people.
Sometimes when three pawns reached the end of the board, only two will be able to be promoted into queens. One has to die to slow the opposition. Question is, which pawn? Chose falsely and all three pawns could die. This is very common in chess, and Altena took this to heart...what's left of her heart after her spiritual and mental death, that is.
What is Altena's 'Checkmate?' To protect children and avenge those who couldn't be protected. I will write more in a different post...