Moving On: Drowning Not Waving (2009) John Mulligan

“Drowning not Waving” is the third episode in a 5 part series executive produced by Jimmy McGovern and was written by Sarah Deane. It is the story of Ellie Morgan (Christine Tremarco) offered an apparent lifeline to get her out of debt by an old school-fellow, John Mulligan (Richard Armitage). But is John Mulligan all he appears to be? It aired in the UK on May 20, 2009.



Production details

Richard Armitage – John Mulligan
Christine Tremarco – Ellie Morgan
Jo-Anne Knowles – Maria
Sharon Duce – Sue Morgan
Andrew Vincent – Debt collector

Executive Producer (LA Productions)

Jimmy McGovern

Executive Producer (BBC)             Series Producer
Liam Keelan                                     Colin McKeown

Director                                          Writer
Gary Williams                                  Sarah Deane


John Mulligan is an enigma. Not particularly bright at school and from a fairly deprived background. A childhood lived with ‘holes in his kecks’ and on an estate where the kids rubbed shoulders with the druggies gave John a place to flee from and make something of himself. (BBC Press Pack, 15 April 2009)





I enjoyed the simplicity of the storytelling, in that, this was mainly a four-hander which relied on the characterisation and the unfolding events to create a gripping story. (BBC Press Pack, 15 April 2009)