'Killing Eve' Season 2, Episode 1 Recap: Not the Crocs
I want very badly to write about Killing Eve every week because it is one of the best shows on television, but what makes it one of the best shows on TV also makes it one of the most difficult to regularly write about. Killing Eve does not lend itself well to recaps, because it’s not a plot-driven series. It’s entirely driven by character. There’s not much of a mystery to speculate upon, either, beyond who belongs to The Twelve, what the nature of The Twelve is.
Honestly, Killing Eve is more like a sick, twisted and dark romantic comedy about a woman, Villanelle (Jodie Comer), obsessed with murdering, and a woman, Eve (Sandra Oh), obsessed with tracking down the murderer. But they’re also obsessed with each other in a really unhealthy, lustful, and delightful way. At the end of last season, when Eve shared a bed with Villanelle and then stabbed her through the stomach, that was … I don’t even know what to call it. Traumatizing? But also sexually gratifying? I don’t know! I don’t understand it. But I’m also really fascinated by it, because when Villanelle tells Gabriel — the cut-up kid in the hospital bed next to her in the season premiere — that she “needs to go visit my girlfriend in London,” she really means it, but by “girlfriend,” she also means, “The woman who stabbed me,’ and by visit, she means “kill or maim” because that’s how she “shows how much she cares.”
What? See, men don’t have these kinds of relationships. Negan never wanted to stab Rick to show how much he cares about him. There was no sexual chemistry between Walter White and Gus Fring. This is a novel wrinkle in the cat-and-mouse game, because the cat and the mouse are both drawn to and repelled by each other, like Clarice and Hannibal if they were sexual beings with unhealthy, lustful obsessions with each other.
That’s not to say that Killing Eve doesn’t contain a few moments worth highlighting. For instance, seeing Villanelle — who gleefully talks about both her stab wound and the mutilated face of Gabriel — get squicked out about putting her feet into a pair of Crocs. It’s such a remarkably telling moment, not unlike the moment when Eve — who dodges phone calls in an effort to block out reality — accepts a phone call from a window salesman because it allows her to get out of her own head for a few minutes (“Yes. Tell me about your windows,” Eve says, relieved. “Tell me everything about them.”)
Villanelle also loves stickers and lollipops and can rock a pair of kid-themed pajamas like a good girl!
That’s not to say that there wasn’t some story progression. Carolyn gives Eve her job back, because Eve is needed again to help solve the mystery of Alistair Peele, a guy who died under what were thought to be normal circumstances two months ago. However, in light of a note left for Eve by Nadia before she was killed in prison last season, there’s reason to believe that Alistair was murdered, and Eve is on the case. Peele may also tie into The Twelve, the shadowy organization who hired Villanelle as their assassin in the first place, and with which Carolyn may have some unknown association.
Things between Eve and her husband Niko are also a little dicey at the moment. Although by the end of the episode, Niko gives Eve his blessing to continue working for Carolyn, because 1) he knew she’d do it anyway, and 2) because he also understands how much it means to Eve. He does demand, however, that Eve provide him with the details of her work, details that she thus far has managed to keep to herself, save for that one revelation: “I bought a shitton of really expensive windows.”
Meanwhile, after Villanelle is stabbed, she escapes, throws herself into a moving cab and manipulates the cabbie into taking her to the hospital. There, she meets and befriends Gabriel, before she decides to break his neck, making his decision about whether or not he wants to live with one eye and a disfigured face for him. She manages to sneak out of the hospital and into the trunk of a mini-van en route back to London, where she can be reunited with Eve.
And so, the will they/won’t they relationship dynamic between Villanelle and Eve continues, although who the hell knows what they will or won’t do to each other. It’ll be interesting to see how long the show can sustain this dynamic, especially as the series has now been officially renewed for season three (although, with a new showrunner, Suzanne Heathcote, will take over as the show’s third showrunner in as many years).
Header Image Source: AMC
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