Killing Eve 2×01, “Do You Know How to Dispose of a Body?” doesn’t waste a second and starts right where we left off.
What. A. Return. Killing Eve is back with season two, everyone! And instead of wasting our time with long, drawn-out recaps, and trying to explain what happened in the weeks or months between seasons, we start right where we left off: in Villanelle’s apartment, right after the stabbing.
Episode 2×01 has everything: strong emotions, dark comedy, striking outfits, burgers in morgues and brutal murders. And just in case you forgot how crazy things can get on Killing Eve, Villanelle commits her most shocking murder yet, right at the start of this season. What does this mean for the future?
The season one finale finally brought Eve and Villanelle together for extended interaction — but with this season, we go back to the usual format. Both women separate right after Eve stabs Villanelle, and from that moment on, they’re focused on their most immediate problems (although they certainly can’t escape their emotions.)
Eve panics as soon as she realizes what she’s done, and her panic is only intensified by the arrival of paramedics, who are not paramedics at all. They shoot Villanelle’s little old neighbor, proving that they are what Carolyn later calls “the cleanup crew.” Eve narrowly escapes — probably because they weren’t looking for her — and makes her hyperventilating way through the city (awkwardly interrupting a proposal with a murder confession.)
Despite everything, she makes it to the train station. Already in the security check line, she remembers the blood-soaked knife that’s in her pocket — and has to make up a food-poisoning excuse to dispose of it in a bathroom. I love all the little ways Killing Eve acknowledges hidden aspects of life, like the little “period waste” trash bags in public women’s bathrooms.
On the trip, Eve starts to break down. From stabbing herself nervously with a pen and making others think that she’s a junkie, to preparing large amounts of food without enough focus to get it done properly, to sobbing nervously in the bathtub, to buying a ridiculous amount of windows… she’s spiraling.
Niko doesn’t really know how to help, mainly because Eve won’t tell him anything. But it’s a pleasant surprise to learn that their relationship is much stronger that season 1 made us think. When he issues his ultimatum, after weeks of frustration, it isn’t to tell her that he’s going to walk away (as I thought he would)… it’s to ask her to tell him everything.
I really hope that this is a good sign for their marriage. The most frustrating part of season one was how little consideration Eve had for Niko, and how little the two spoke about their problems. Thankfully, Niko has accepted how important Eve’s job is for her, and their marriage seems strong enough to survive this. (Assuming Villanelle doesn’t become a problem.)
Eve lowkey wishes she was fired, but that doesn’t seem to be in her future. Carolyn meets up with her and brushes off the whole incident. Eve lies and says she didn’t meet Villanelle, although Carolyn definitely knows more than she lets on, and a weird battle of wits ensues at the morgue. Oh, and they also eat burgers among the bodies, after the formaldehyde makes them hungry… as you do.
Carolyn makes a good case for Eve continuing her work tracking Villanelle: Villanelle’s coming after her no matter what, so she might as well help catch her. Eve can tell Niko that Carolyn is forcing her, if that makes it any easier. (Carolyn is my mother, giving 14-year-old me permission to tell my friends she’s mean and won’t let me go out when actually I’m the one that doesn’t want to go out.)
And by the way, Eve is looking more stylish than ever in that morgue — maybe some of Villanelle has rubbed off on her?
Making it work long-distance
Bleeding very badly, Villanelle narrowly makes it out of her building, away from the “clean-up crew” and Eve, and figures out her next steps. She ends up stealing a drink and a coat from a poor unsuspecting homeless man, and tries to hitchhike. But looking as beat-up as she does, that doesn’t really work.
Instead, in typical Villanelle style, she finds the easiest way to get a ride: to throw herself into an incoming car and get run over.
At the hospital, we get some insight into how she’s dealing with what just happened. She meets Gabriel, a newly orphaned boy whose face has been severely injured in a car accident. When he asks her what she’s going to do next, this happens:
“I need to go and visit my girlfriend in London.” *moodily sucks on lollipop*
Yes, for Villanelle the stabbing was just a confirmation of how much Eve “cares about her,” which is disturbing, but also… not totally incorrect? Eve certainly wouldn’t have turned back to meet her at her apartment, or kept up the charade to ultimately stab her, if she hadn’t had Very Strong Feelings. Neither would she have freaked out after the stabbing and tried to heal her.
But from now on, Villanelle knows what Eve is capable of — and she’ll be prepared to face whatever she throws at her. Which is scary, but also intriguing. If Villanelle thinks of Eve as her “girlfriend,” what exactly would a successful encounter entail, in her mind?
Villanelle dons crocs (much to her meme-able horror), and uses both Gabriel and her own acting skills to get her hands on money, clothes, and many other things that will come in handy in the future. Throughout this, she and Gabriel develop a friendly (ish) relationship, where they’re completely honest with each other. Which leads us to: “You look like a pizza.”
I’ll discuss that scene in the next section.
Villanelle escapes the hospital and hitchhikes while wearing a bright childish onesie. Only she could ever get away with that. Then she casually stows away in a family’s car — nightmare fuel for any car trip you ever take — and stares straight at us in her final shot. Everything is going according to plan.
Think of the children!
THERE ARE SO MANY KIDS IN THIS EPISODE. What is going on? Did the showrunners realize how much we loved Konstantin’s daughter in the finale? Is this a creative way to give us more laughs?
The more I think about it, though, the more I like that we’re seeing so many kids in this show. It is, after all, a show written by women about women. And although none of the main characters’ lives revolve around children, I think women in general are more likely to be approached by children, are socialized to know how to converse with children, and therefore have more comic relief opportunities when it comes to children.
One of the first scenes with Eve, for example, has her refusing to share a sweet with a little boy. It’s rather reminiscent of the opening scene of season 1, where Villanelle spilled a little girl’s ice cream on her. Maybe Killing Eve is showing us that the two women are becoming more and more similar to each other.
Carolyn was speaking to a child in the park when she had her first conversation with Eve, back in London. We’re led to believe that she knows the kid — but no, he was just talking to her (so he wasn’t being kidnapped when a stranger came and took him away). This is not only funny, but also a pretty relatable experience, at least for me. Kids will talk to anyone, and Carolyn is good at talking to kids.
And, of course, Gabriel. I have to say that his murder was one of the most upsetting scenes I’ve ever seen on television, because it was so brutal and unexpected. I’m kind of shocked that they showed it on screen the way they did. He must have been about thirteen years old, and it’s extremely disturbing to see someone so young and defenseless killed in cold blood. And the noise his neck made is going to haunt my nightmares.
But from Villanelle’s point of view, this was actually a kind thing to do (even though Gabriel’s face wasn’t nearly as bad as she was letting on!). She did it out of mercy. Which doesn’t make it right, of course, but it does show how messed up in the head she is.
Killing Eve is proving to us that Villanelle is volatile and unpredictable, and she’s not going to stop at anything for the sake of our feelings. And that whatever is coming is going to take everyone by surprise.
I can’t wait for these two to have their first post-stabbing date in London.
See you next week, for 2×02 “Nice and Neat.” Who’s nice? Who’s neat? (Not either of these women, that’s for sure!)
Killing Eve airs on Sundays at 8pm on BBC America. See trailers, clips, and the full episode guide here.