Killing Eve has all come down to this. What better way to begin the final episode than picking right up where we last left off. The Twelve assassin, Gunn, decides to hunt the most dangerous prey, Villanelle, but crosses path with Eve in the process. (Spoilers ahead!)
The showdown has glimpses of both old and new Eve. She begins as her bumbling self, grasping at anything that can help her escape. She even climbs a tree hoping to evade Gunn. But Yusuf’s training hasn’t gone to waste and we see a more vicious side to the titular character. Someone who isn’t afraid to play dirty. Though she doesn’t kill her assailant, she incapacitates her enough that the Twelve assassin won’t be a problem and both she and Villanelle can escape.
The two leads are finally together and Killing Eve takes a detour into rom-com territory as the pair take part in a familiar road trip story. Judie Comer and Sandra Oh are in their element drawing the viewer back to their characters’ compelling relationship. Some hard truths are spoken, such as Eve finally admitting how much she needs the other, and awkward conversations had, including Bill’s death.
Later, there’s a charm to their shared disdain for cutesy couples and Bonnie and Clyde type adventure to defeat the Twelve. The flirting and playfulness are reminiscent of the honeymoon period of any new romance. The gentle caresses and holding of hands to a sweet peck on the cheek and smack on the butt is endearing and adorable. If the series is to end, at least Villanelle and Eve had these final moments that we are fortunate enough to witness.
Meanwhile, Carolyn is using her own means to investigate the Twelve through Lars’ ledger. She also picks up an assistant in Pam, who reaches out to her in her twisted sense of morality fulfilling Konstantin’s dying wish. The series portrays their partnership as if Pam is adrift and looking for a new mentor and it’s interesting when she parts ways with the superspy. Maybe she’s had enough of the assassin life or she feels she’s done enough to carry out Konstantin’s last request. There doesn’t seem to be anything on Killing Eve that can shock Carolyn but this rebuff has her in disbelief.
In order to destroy the Twelve once and for all, our new “It” couple must crash a wedding with Eve posing as an officiant. Despite a rough start, one look at Villanelle inspires her to give a stirring speech about the work needed for a relationship and she uses the Japanese process of kintsugi as an apropos metaphor for the ceremony and to describe her bond to Villanelle.
The actual Twelve demise is glorious with plenty of slow-motion action shots revealing Villanelle’s ruthlessness and resourcefulness for weapons. It’s brilliantly paired with Eve dancing and having a ball at the reception. The two scenes are parallels of each other focusing on both a celebration of unity and violent destruction of an organization.
When it seems like our protagonists will have their fairy tale ending together tragedy strikes. Carolyn shows her opportunistic streak giving the assassin up to save her own hide. At first, it’s a little shocking and there is some hope the two can still be together and escape.
However, it is naïve to think Villanelle would not be held responsible for her actions throughout Killing Eve despite turning over a new leaf. Plus, how affectionate and positive the two were becoming is only a setup for heartbreak. There is some nice artistry using the blood from the wound to form angelic wings around Villanelle in the water displaying how she is blessed with a celestial light as her tarot reading predicted.
Furthermore, the conclusion could rub people the wrong way. With such an imposing threat the Twelve were the entire show, they are dispatched with relative ease. But the series was never really about them and they only served as a method to bring the two leads together. Once that took place, the ups and downs of their relationship was always front and center, even when they had their breaks. The abruptness of the final scene is a little jarring. There’s no epilogue of the aftermath or any exploration of Eve’s feelings. But it is still engaging and doesn’t deter too much from any of the emotional impact.
Up until the ending, the Killing Eve series finale is an uplifting story of two lost souls who found each other in the turbulent world of espionage. You can be disappointed in the destination but the journey there, particularly the endearing road trip, makes it all worthwhile.
Watch Killing Eve on BBC America.
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