"Enola Holmes" by Millie Bobby Brown, on Netflix

Remigio Civitarese
Settembre 24, 2020

Based on the young adult novels by Nancy Springer and adapted by Jack Thorne (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child), we are thrust back into the 19th Century and introduced to the youngest Holmes sibling. As Enola goes about her business, riding her bicycle or getting dressed, she whips her head around to impart insights. What did you think of Milly Bobby Brown's participation? It's an upbringing unencumbered by corsets or society's strict gender expectations.

Anchored by Brown's sturdy, self-possessed performance as Sherlock Holmes's teenage sister, this sprightly paean to mothers, daughters and female autonomy often feels like the spiritual sequel to last year's similarly lively "Little Women", albeit with more jokes, fight scenes and clever interstitial inserts thrown in for the viewer's enjoyment. Although the young lord is a runaway, he soon finds that a man in a brown bowler hat (Burn Gorman) has been hired to kill him. Armed with a sharp mind, masterful jujitsu skills and talents in deduction that would rival her brother Sherlock (Henry Cavill), Enola sets out to claim her own path whilst on the hunt for her mother who has mysteriously vanished; much to the disappointment of her elder brother, Mycroft (Sam Claflin), who insist she take refuge at a boarding school to get her fantastical whims "educated out of her". That is until Enola turns 16 and her mother vanishes, leaving behind a series of clues. And Brown has ample charisma to pull off a risky tactic. Not only has she found the ideal vehicle to advance her clever and progressive image, but she's also drawn hefty talent around her.

This whole situation connects Enola Holmes to another non-canonical, modern-day reinterpretation of the Sherlock Holmes universe. From Mindy Kaling's teen sex romp "Never Have I Ever" to the "quiet revolution" of "The Baby-Sitters Club" to even the musical stylings of "Julie and the Phantoms", Netflix's YA offerings are empowering the next generation of young people.

And even better, she's out to change the world.

Enola Holmes arrives on Netflix tomorrow.

"The mother Eudoria was so far ahead of her time and the way she educated Enola is to be courageous and free-thinking, just like her", Boyle explains. "Enola Holmes" meets around the stakes of democracy, including the work of suffragists fighting for widespread representation.

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