BBC America’s ‘Killing Eve’ first framed itself as procedural: a show about assassins and the UK’s Secret Intelligence Service that attempts to take them down. More than that, though, the show tangoed through an elaborate cat-and-mouse game between Jodie Comer’s assassin and Sandra Oh’s MI6 agent. This season, that game evolves for the better, and our weekly coverage will keep an eye on how this show’s transforming, and it (along with those kills) is only growing bolder with the passage of time.
Recently on Killing Eve, we learned that Eve’s long-suffering husband, Niko, somehow survived a pitchfork attack (actor Owen McDonnell was surprised, too). That episode also dove into Villanelle’s increasing unhappiness with assassin life (she earns the label “Beautiful Monster” this week from her new The Twelve boss) and magnificently brought together the ways that Konstantin’s scheming tactics are coming back to bite him in the duplicitous butt. This week, Konstantin has realized the error of his ways, and he nearly meets his demise. He’s not the only one to almost die this episode, and there’s one character who’s not-so-lucky. Yep, the cat-and-mouse game takes a professed backseat, while the grim reaper takes three swipes with one deadly success.
1. Konstantin: He’s no longer wearing the face of denial after a four-point takedown from Villanelle (who guilt-tripped him into helping her leave The Twelve); Carolyn (who booted him out of a car after a revelation of their past affair); Paul (who’s willing to throw him under the bus the assassination of Charles Kruger’s wife); and Irina (who illuminated his terrible dad skills by transforming into a killer before his eyes). As a result, Konstantin realizes what a terrible life he’s been leading and figuratively pummels himself.
“I used you to spy on your mother,” he admits to Geraldine when she becomes the third person (after Villanelle and Paul) to scare the bejesus out of him this season. I’m almost feeling sorry for him on that note. He’s a god-awful person, but damn, it’s a stone-cold move to hide in the dark to give someone a fright, and everyone’s doing it to him. Geraldine leaves their confrontation (where she receives confirmation that he was using her for Carolyn-related intel) while wishing Konstantin dead. In turn, he concedes that it’s possible that she’ll get her wish. Oh boy, he has no idea what’s coming next.
After ranting to Villanelle about how he deserves to die, death indeed takes a pass at the assassin handler. “I’m a prick,” he argues at the train station. “And the only thing I’m waiting for is another prick… another prick to…” Aaaand what happens next is slightly nebulous. Villanelle wonders if he’s faking a heart attack, which doesn’t seem likely. The heart attack appears to be real after hospital confirmation, but there’s a nagging detail here that makes me want to be a Killing Eve conspiracy theorist. Did that random guy really bump into Konstantin by accident? Moments after Konstantin jokes about that guy, he suggests that some “prick” should take him out, and then he collapses. Is it possible that “a prick” did indeed give Konstantin “a prick”? Paul wants him dead, after all, and The Twelve might collectively want it, too.
I’m probably overthinking the prick-subject because it’s far more likely that Konstantin had a simple heart attack. At least he receives some apparent tenderness from Villanelle. Yes, she’s a sociopath and previously tried to kill Konstantin, and she’s worried about where he put the money. Yet she does make it a point to express her wish for him to stay alive. That’s huge for her.
Well, Konstantin lived — great news for viewers because he’s one hell of a character — and could not stop laughing over a nurse’s inquiry about “increased stress,” but look who got the last laugh of the episode.
2. Dasha: The former Russian assassin GOAT also ends the episode in a hospital bed, after somehow surviving two attempts on her life: (1) Villanelle’s golf-club assassination swing; (2) Eve’s vengeful lung-crushing stance. The first effort would have been a hit on the direction of The Twelve after Villanelle, seeking to prove her continued worth to the organization, delivered a stinger of a line (“I took a shit in her shoe when I was three… a really big one”) about her mother. Man, Villanelle is not-so-great at sticking around to see if people (from her inner circle) are actually dead after she tries to kill them.
The follow-up effort is born from Eve’s fury after Dasha (either delirious or fully alert, it’s hard to tell) starts raving about Niko’s “lovely mustache… like Stalin.” And now, perhaps Eve is becoming a “beautiful monster” as well? Those ribs were crackin.’
These could have been Dasha’s last words, had Eve (after receiving confirmation of who executed the pitchfork attack) not fled with the sounds of an approaching siren. Dasha survives, obviously, but here’s who didn’t make it out of this week alive.
3. Mo: This poor guy. He’s awkwardly endured Carolyn’s bathtime meeting, and he’s finally uncovered proof that Paul’s linked to The Twelve. All Mo wanted was to end a stressful work day with an omelette and a bath, but instead, he ends up swimming with the fishes, courtesy of The Twelve. It’s a relatively low-stakes death for the show (sorry, Mo, but you’re no Kenny), all things considered, but news of his demise does propel Carolyn into new, volatile territory.
– Villanelle and Eve catch a glimpse of each other in the train station and give each other a little wave. Frankly, I’m a little over this dynamic and am relieved that the writers aren’t devoting much screentime to their mutual obsession. Even Villanelle attempts to tell Eve (though it may have been a taunt) that they’re seriously bad news for each other, but their separation can’t last forever. We’re almost in season-finale land, which could bring their story back into the spotlight.
– Irina’s not looking remorseful by any stretch of the imagination. She’s not simply “a little sh*t taking a sh*t on a big sh*t and three sh*ts combined into one enormous sh*t.” She’s an unrepentant, psychotic sh*t. I wonder if Konstantin never intended to return for his daughter, though I could be wrong, and we may never find out the answer to that question with him in the hospital.
– Carolyn’s outburst was a relief to see, since it’s been a long time coming for Carolyn to show any emotion. Only one episode remains until we see if M16 or the Bitter Pill gets to the bottom of who killed Kenny, but beyond that, there’s still the mystery of his parentage to be solved. We don’t have a clear timeline, but clearly, Kenny was not only digging for answers on The Twelve but also searching for part of himself. Is Konstantin his dad? Who knows, but isn’t it fitting that the jester is the common thread for this season’s messes? We’ll find out whether he pays the ultimate price in next week’s season finale.
BBC America’s ‘Killing Eve’ airs on Sundays at 9:00 PM EST with simulcasting on AMC.