Now we all know the world is a dumpster fire right now, but if there is any silver lining it might just be that we finally have a new season of Killing Eve, which of course comparatively is a tiny thing to be excited about but on the other hand, it’s also about time we got something good. After all, we left off with the season two finale of Eve being shot by Villanelle and left to die in Rome and we’ve waited a whole year to see if Villanelle did in fact finally kill Eve or if and how she got away.
Unfortunately, these writers really are as torturous as you would remember because we start off not with Eve, or Villanelle, but with a gymnast practice in Russia, in 1974, decades before our actual story. You might expect that a show about an assassin would be painful to watch but you have to admit they do keep it fresh by never letting you exactly how or when these agonizing twists are going to keep playing in.
The female gymnast performs a stellar routine with one minor mistake which the coach goes off on her for, but the young trainer on the side catches her in the locker room and hands her a flower and tells her she’s a winner. Cute if not a bit creepy, but we all know that’s not how this show goes and the sentimentality does not last long, no, instead she reacts by beating and murdering him. Back to business as usual, but the finishing touch of the scene is when this mysterious woman dumps a barrel of chalk powder over the corpse.
How does this relate to anything? Well, this is Killing Eve so we really just have to sit and wait for it to be revealed whenever they feel like revealing it. Who’s ready to have fun?
Cut to a beautiful Spanish style villa with a crowd of rambunctious children screaming for cake. It’s a wedding! And not just any wedding, but Villanelle’s wedding! And she is not, I repeat not, marrying Eve but some woman named Maria!
It’s a lot to take in, and we can’t even tell how long ago Rome was, but per the rhythm of this show, we don’t sit in discomfort for long since Villanelle ends up attacking an old woman in a grey suit who we’ve never seen before, which causes a string of fights that breaks up the wedding and ends with Villanelle leaving the event in a car with the old woman and a sullen look on her face. But before we can even figure out what’s going on with any of this we’ve switched tracks again.
We finally get to see Eve and she’s alive!
Turns out a couple of tourists happened to find her in Rome before she bled out, but she is clearly still in deep pain from her bullet wound and even has trouble reaching for things in the grocery stores back in England. Yet, even if Eve did survive the attack there’s no doubt she’s been broken by it. She quit her job at the MI6 and now works long hours in a Chinese kitchen, the only food she buys are noodles and alcohol, and she sees and connects with basically no one. Speaking of, she’s still married to Nico for some reason, even though he’s now checked into a mental facility after that teacher was murdered last season and he now says he’s too good for this relationship. Which is fair, but why have they even been married for this long?
Everything about Eve is a far cry from that bubbly enthusiastic, murder-obsessed woman we met back in season one. There’s no way around it, it’s just sad, and if you’re waiting for her to snap out of it she just doesn’t.
At least not before we jump back to Villanelle. The older woman, Dasha, is revealed to be Villanelle’s old teacher, as in the one who taught her to be an assassin, oh and if you haven’t guessed it she is the Russian gymnast killer as well. Sidenote, gymnast to assassin seems like a legitimate career trajectory but that’s another conversation.
It appears that despite her many faults Villanelle is particularly hard to replace and The Twelve want her back. Naturally, she has some conditions, she wants to be a Keeper, which is a term we have not heard before but apparently refers to a higher level of assassin. To prove herself she has a new target, a shopkeeper she beats up and kills, sort of in the same style as the Russian scene from the start of the episode. Villanelle even pours a powder over her corpse in the same sadistic style as her mentor. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery I guess. Guess Villanelle is back at work.
Sadly, that’s not the only old hobby she’s back to.
Just as Eve finally gives into Kenny’s invitation to hang out with his friends and rejoin society, she shows up to his new office only to not find him. Instead, we see his body thrown from the roof, and when Eve finds him there’s no question who has done it.
And so it begins again.
We’re only one episode in but so far this new season of Killing Eve is giving us a sense of “will they/won’t they” deja vu between Villanelle and Eve that they have been dragging out since the first season, and unless something fully materializes between these two this season the show may not be able to get past those queerbaiting complaints that have dogged it from the start. However, the fact that Kenny died in the first episode is key here. Back in the pilot Kenny barely escaped death at Villanelle’s hands, but once he did we thought he was safe like the fools we are. But here’s the thing about this show, Eve’s not the only one in danger, no one is safe and anybody can be murdered at any time. This season could work out absolutely any way. Let the fun begin, again.