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E1 of 8
Series 1 - Episode 1
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It’s London in 1763, where a woman’s only opportunity for economic advancement is to marry well or be a prostitute. The city’s bawdy houses are teeming with shrieking harlots and run by canny, cruel businesswomen such as Margaret Wells and Mrs Quigley (Samantha Morton and Lesley Manville).
Mrs Wells plans to auction her youngest daughter’s virginity to the highest bidder, just as she did with her oldest daughter (Downton’s Jessica Brown Findlay with a “cor blimey” accent).
But there’s a new morality in the air as religious crusaders demand the closure of brothels and the constables are only too happy to launch brutal raids.
It all adds up to a noisy, very colourful (the clothes and production design are magnificent) and of course a very bawdy boobs-and-bums romp that feels a bit like Desperate Romantics, though with women and without the paintings.
Period drama set in London in 1763 following a woman as she struggles to reconcile her roles as mother and brothel owner. Samantha Morton and Lesley Manville star.
Cast & Crew
Jessica Brown Findlay
Rory Fleck Byrne
Full Episode Guide
Meet the cast of Harlots
Jessica Brown Findlay, Lesley Manville and Samantha Morton star in ITV Encore and Hulu's Georgian sex industry drama
Will there be a second series of Harlots?
Meet the real-life women who inspired ITV's Harlots
Harlots star Jessica Brown Findlay: Using whoopie cushions in sex scenes helps "breaks the ice"
Sex in the city: how the Georgian London of ITV's Harlots was built on the profits of prostitution
Harlots uncovered: behind the scenes of ITV's new period drama
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