Breathless follows the lives of a group of doctors and nurses working in a London hospital, a world in which everything and everyone has their place. But underneath this veneer simmers a cauldron of lies and guilty secrets, driven by love, ambition and sex. Breathless opens in 1961, a time when Britain was on the brink of the 60s revolution abortion is illegal and the contraceptive pill is only just available to married women. Set in and around a busy gynecology unit, medicine becomes the perfect stage to play out the shifting and complex moral codes of early 1960s society.. In 1961 London, when abortion was illegal and the Pill a rare commodity, the brilliant, charismatic surgeon Otto Powell (Jack Davenport, Pirates of the Caribbean, Smash) presides over a busy hospital gynecology ward. With a passionate commitment to the women he treats, Powell provides safe and highly illegal abortions in private practice.
But under the shiny veneer of pre-sexual revolution Britain, troubles don't afflict just the patients. Trapped in a loveless marriage, bound by a dangerous secret, Powell lacks the surgical control that he commands in the operating room when it comes to his passions and his staff. The heady threats of sex and ambition effect doctors and nurses alike in Breathless, where perfect lives are built on lies, and everything depends upon guilty secrets remaining buried.
Starring alongside Jack Davenport (Pirates of the Caribbean, Smash) in this stylish story of a dark secret amid the complexities of the sexual revolution are Zoe Boyle (Downton Abbey), Catherine Steadman (Mansfield Park), Iain Glen (Downton Abbey), Natasha Little (Case Histories), Oliver Chris (Sharpes Challenge), Joanna Page (Love Actually), and Shaun Dingwall (Touching Evil).. Episode 1
When the brilliant Dr. Otto Powell takes over a surgery before his junior colleague, Dr. Richard Truscott, botches it, Truscott's long-simmering resentment is compounded. But the encounter is lost on the powerful surgeon who whisks his striking new nurse Angela off to assist him, against her principles, on a highly illegal procedure: abortion. Incurring her wrath for making her complicit, Otto trapped in a loveless marriage, bound to his glamorous wife Elizabeth by a dangerous secret is ablaze with attraction for the young nurse who is determined to resist temptation. Richard's marriage to Angela's sister Jean begins with a wedding day deception; Powell's oldest friend and possessor of his dark secret, anesthesiologist Charlie Enderbury, desperately depends on Otto's help; and a chance sighting of Otto by a menacing figure sets in motion the dredging up of an event from the past that will threaten Otto 's very existence.
When a private procedure goes wrong, Otto, Charlie and Jean have a brush with the law, increasing Charlie's desperate sense that he stands unsupported, alone. As Jean and Richard's marriage crumbles, Richard embraces his newly-returned first love, Margaret, as Jean embraces the her new role of housewife. But for consummate housewife, Elizabeth, the very foundation of life begins to crack when the sinister Inspector Mulligan pays a visit to her home.
Secrets and guilt hamper doctors, nurses and lovers as Charlie and Lily attempt to make a fresh start, Richard and Jean try to find a way back to each other, and Otto struggles to start a relationship with Angela based on truth. Elizabeth, trying to manage Inspector Mulligan, is alone with her secrets and guilt. But when a lavish fundraiser and beauty pageant force Otto and Elizabeth's secret into sharp relief, Otto and Charlie both take drastic measures to bury the past, once and for all. . Catherine Steadman...Angela Wilson
Zoe Boyle...Jean Truscott
Shaun Dingwall...Charlie Enderbury
Jack Davenport...Otto Powell
Oliver Chris...Richard Truscott
Natasha Little... Elizabeth Powell
Joanna Page... Lily Enderbury
Melanie Kilburn... Mrs. Johnstone
Dystin Johnson... Sister Neville
Ronny Jhutti... Dr. Omprakash Mehta
Rudi Goodman... Thomas Powell
Holli Dempsey... Maureen Mulligan
Diane Fletcher... Matron Vosper
Iain Glen... Inspector Ronald Mulligan
Cheryl Campbell...Mrs. Truscott
Finbar Lynch...Monty Meecher
Sarah Parish...Margaret Dalton
Michael Troughton...Mr. Truscott
Tom Rosenthal...Sam Roth
Sophie Scott...Patricia Mehta
Gordon Kennedy...DI Thompson
Cathy Sara...Mrs. Beatrice Mulligan