The year is 1962. After a stint running guns for the C.I.A., Flight Lieutenant Silk, a twice decorated former World War II bomber pilot, rejoins the R.A.F. to fly the Vulcan, a nuclear bomber. This is probably the best aircraft in the world. It makes sex look like gardening.
But there's a catch. The Vulcan exists to retaliate against a Soviet nuclear strike. Silk knows that if his squadron gets scrambled for real, there will be no England to return to. In the mad world of Mutual Assured Destruction, the Vulcan is the last --- indeed the only --- deterent.