The Atlantic

Hulu’s Harlots Takes a Modern View of 18th-Century Sex Work

Starring Samantha Morton and Jessica Brown Findlay, the series has a surprisingly sharp perspective on the dynamics of pleasure and power.
Source: Hulu

In 1763 London, Harlots baldly reveals in its opening scene, one in five women made a living by selling sex. It’s a provocative statistic that—coupled with images of petticoats trailing in the filthy streets and corseted bosoms thrust skyward—sets the series up to be a genially bawdy historical drama. But Harlots, a co-production with ITV that debuts on Hulu Wednesday, is something more complex. Created by Alison Newman and Moira Buffini, it takes an unflinchingly clear-eyed look at the 18th-century sex trade, seen from

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