Jessica Brown Findlay is best-known for playing Lady Sybil Crawley in Downton Abbey, but has starred in a variety of films and television series such as Winter’s Tale, Black Mirror, The Riot Club, Victor Frankenstein and This Beautiful Fantastic. Findlay currently stars in Hulu’s drama series Harlots, as the gorgeous and stylish Charlotte Wells, the eldest daughter of a brothel owner, who is at the top of London’s list of ladies.
Set against the backdrop of 18th century Georgian London, Harlots is a powerful family drama offering a brand new take on the city’s most valuable commercial activity: sex. Based on the stories of real women, the series follows Margaret Wells and her daughters, as she struggles to reconcile her roles as mother and brothel owner. When her business comes under attack from Lydia Quigley, a rival madam with a ruthless streak, Margaret will fight back, even if it means putting her family at risk.
These women helped to build the London that we know today – but they have largely been written out of history. They bring into focus the whole question of people as property and product; the role of sex in the birth of capitalism.
Harlots is provocative and sometimes shocking, but will fascinate and never be bleak. The season one finale of Harlots airs on Hulu Wednesday, May 17th.