Enola Holmes 2 the sequel to the hit Netflix movie Enola Holmes is on its way to becoming one of the hits of the year. With its witty and well-constructed side, the adaptation of Nancy Springer’s play is a sequel that explores the best points of its predecessor. On top of that, it gives Enola (Millie Bobby Brown) a whole new dimension. This time, the character is in search of his identity and, also, of a bigger mystery to solve.
But this time, the film’s plot (based in part on the second installment of Springer’s saga) explores a real event. This is the match makers’ strike at the Bryant & May in London in 1888.
This is a complicated historical circumstance, which has not only demonstrated the harsh working conditions endured by a large part of the English population. It also showed how far employers and businessmen were willing to go to increase their profits.
On Enola Holmes 2the event is part of the main plot of the scenario. Indeed, from its first sequences, it shows that it will be of considerable importance. The protagonist, who wishes to embark on a lucrative profession of private detective, will take care of a missing woman for the first time.
Later, everything will point to a more sinister, more complicated and harsher plot. Which, finally, will make it possible to link the plot to the famous story of the workers of Bryant & May in Bow (East London).
The difficult story behind the charming fiction of Enola Holmes 2
The circumstance referred to Enola Holmes 2 is the strike of the “matchwomen”, which took place in July 1888. Until then, working conditions in London were at the discretion of the bosses. This has given rise to all kinds of abuse and violent situations in which the law has not intervened.
Even less if they affect female workers. Rigid British society considered it completely incomprehensible for a woman to have a job outside the home. Thus, any possibility of legal protection against abuse and excess had to pass through the prejudices of a hard time for women.
In the case of the Bryant Match Factory & May, it was grueling hours of work for low pay. Each worker had to stay in the stuffy stone-walled building for at least 14 hours a day if they wanted to be paid. And as if that weren’t enough, the workers also had to perform their work amid the toxic fumes of white phosphorus.
This last chemical compound began to harm the health of the workers. If a worker complained about these extreme conditions, she was immediately fired. This almost always meant that no other place in London could hire him, as the City required a recommendation from the previous employer.
A historic event with a forgotten ending
To Bryant & May, the situation came to a head when, on July 2, 1888, a female employee was fired. This prompted, for the first time, a group of women to organize to demand better working conditions. A context that takes as a backdrop Enola Holmes 2. The situation quickly escalated and became a symbol of something more complicated than the factory might let on. In the end, the group of six women who led the rebellion ended up meeting three deputies.
To the astonishment of London society, their demands were met and some of their demands were considered valid. In particular, the requirement to prevent women from coming into contact with deadly white phosphorus which has caused most female workers complicated health problems. It was one of the great triumphs of the English working class.
Strange as it may seem, such an important event has been forgotten in English trade union history. But her indelible mark was a milestone in the fight for British women’s working rights in the Victorian era. An element that the film Enola Holmes 2 takes on a contemporary setting that highlights its interest and quality as a historical fact of considerable value.