Last year, Killing Eve was a strong success story. As we followed to journey of Eve Polastri (played by Sandra Oh), we immersed ourselves in a world full of gray characters, offbeat humour, dreamy European settings and a mystery. Acting in opposition to Eve (much to the delight of the audience) was Villanelle, played by Jodie Comer.
Season Two gives the audience what they love- the rich dynamic between Villanelle and Eve.However, this season doesn’t reach the heights of the first one. In this Killing Eve Season Two Review, I’ll explain the highs and lows of a captivating show.
The first episode opens minutes after the season one finale. We all remember it- Eve just stabbed Villanelle. Having to deal with the guilt, Eve becomes more closed-off, much to the annoyance of the people in her life such as her husband Niko (Owen McDonnell) and her co-worker Kenny (Sean Delaney). Villanelle herself becomes more obsessive over Eve. This leads her to killing a possible future lover for Niko, Gemma. Following from that, the killer declares her love for Eve, only to be rejected.
What I enjoyed about the season was not just the relationship between Eve and Villanelle, but also the ambiguity of other characters such as Carolyn (Fiona Shaw) and Konstantin (Kim Bodnia). Because of their terrific performances- Killing Eve is a delightful show that makes you question everyone’s intentions. Those two characters are hilarious, as well.
Adding onto the fine performances are the rich locations: we visit Oxford, Rome & Amsterdam. The cities look stunning. This is because Killing Eve has the ability to capture the beauty of the finest places in Europe. Special attention must be given to the high production values during Villanelle’s rampage during the red-light district of Amsterdam.
Whilst I am giving Killing Eve season two a positive score in this review, I will say that it’s not perfect. I find that with Niko, who isn’t necessarily a bad character- isn’t given much meaty content. It’s also predictable in parts: from Villanelle killing Aaron Peele, to her raising her gun against Eve after being rejected. Plotlines that season one took time to build up- such as “The Twelve” are hardly relevant here. They are only really mentioned in the last episode. Of course, Killing Eve‘s greatest strength is the dynamic between Eve and Villanelle, not a spy conspiracy plotline. Still- I would have appreciated more detail.
This season features many great character moments. A personal favourite is where after Eve kills someone, she is lost in her thoughts and trauma. However, the realisation that she was manipulated by Villanelle leads to a shining declaration that she’s not the mess Villanelle wants her to be. It’s powerful, and is strong writing. Adding onto that, appreciation must be given to the pace of Killing Eve– it’s fast, yet never feels like a strain. Eight episodes per season is the perfect amount.
Yes, the dynamic between Villanelle and Eve is amazing. However, there needs to be more story and stakes at play. Luckily for the writers, Villanelle is a fantastic villain and Eve is intriguing. Make no mistake about it- Killing Eve is an amazing show. Going forward, I believe it can be stronger if certain writing choices are employed.
Overall, I recommend this terrific season.