Tonight, BBC America’s new series Killing Eve will grab you by the lapels and take you on a white-knuckle tour of the most beautiful locales in Europe and the UK, while terrifying you with the unpredictable behavior of a brilliantly unhinged and calculating female assassin named Villanelle.
There’s a fly in our stunning killer’s ointment: The curious, clever and underutilized MI5 underling, Eve Polastri (Sandra Oh). Equally ultra-bright and able to disassociate and mentally re-enact what a killer can do, Oh’s tour-de-force role as Polastri is nothing like we have seen in any female protagonist on TV to date.
The thriller is drenched in female talent from creation to on-screen performances, and the intelligence in the writing, detail and knife-edge and cheeky moments show it.
This is the worthy follow-up Sandra Oh frankly deserved after knocking it out of the park as Dr. Cristina Yang on Grey’s Anatomy. She’s flat-out brilliant and Jodie Comer as Villanelle is mesmerizing in her complete commitment to being the charming psychopath no one can turn their back on.
Make no mistake, this is a familiar premise yet the series is unlike anything you have seen ever. Thank the efforts of writer Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag, Solo: A Star Wars Story), who penned the crackling eight-episode series.
It is so good and has already received such hot buzz from critics that BBC America have already re-upped it for a second season.
Who is in the Killing Eve cast?
Sandra Oh is cast as Eve Polastri, Jodie Comer as the assassin Villanelle. Kirby Howell-Baptiste is cast as Elena Felton, Eve’s Assistant.
Fiona Shaw is cast as MI6 senior Carolyn Martens, while Danish actor Kim Bodnia plays Konstantin, Villanelle’s wary handler.
David Haig is cast as Bill Pargrave, and Sean Delaney as Kenny Stowton, an ex-hacker, who has been recruited by MI-6.
What is Killing Eve about?
Based the novellas by Luke Jennings, Killing Eve the TV series revolves around Villanelle (Comer), a psychopath killer, and Eve, the woman working in a clandestine MI6 operation tasked with hunting her down.
Eve is incredibly smart but was stagnating as a desk-bound pay-grade security services operative who really would rather be a spy — if you asked her.
Villanelle is a natural born killer, an efficient dispatcher of human life with zero remorse and a taste for the high life. The two women are matched in brains, and have a level of admiration so as to become obsessed with each other.
Villanelle is pure tornadic chaos and Eve is the storm-chaser as the two play a high-stakes game of cat and mouse.
Smart and wickedly clever, this darkly comedic thriller will own you on Sunday nights.
Who is Eve Polastri?
An American who was born in London, our titular character Eve is one of the few people at Britain’s MI5 intelligence agency who is smart enough to see a very wily assassin is at work throughout Europe, and she has guessed it is most definitely a woman.
Problem is, no one gives her the leeway to rise and actually reach her potential to effectively capture this person.
After a contentious back-and-forth with her boss’s boss and ultimately her firing from MI5, MI6 senior official Carolyn Martens (Fiona Shaw) sees the brilliance in Eve’s private computer notes of putting pieces together of the person we will come to learn is Villanelle.
Eve is given a second chance in her career in a clandestine intelligence operation set up by Martens.
Eve is ultra bright, a touch manic and appears at times unsure of herself yet, at the same time, she knows her stuff. Her marriage seems to be on a knife’s edge as she compartmentalizes to the point that her husband fears she is in danger but is left completely in the dark.
Eve has a strange chemistry with Villanelle and admires her tenacity as a killer, even though she is tasked with helping find and stop her.
Who is Villanelle?
Jodie Comer is unbelievably good in the role of our Russian-born multilingual killer. She’s deft, agile, charismatic, sexy, deranged, magnetic, seductive, and shows no remorse for any of her bad behaviors. She is a proper killer queen!
Comer’s Villanelle is also flat-out terrifying. Voracious of all appetites…including sex (she appears to prefer women) her Russian handler in London is even wary of her, and by the fourth episode we watched for review, he is in real fear of her.
Villanelle is an adrenaline junkie, fit as a fiddle, and has no idea why she does what she does except she loves the assignments for the kill, showing off, making a statement, making lots of cash and living the good life.
Our killer has an eye for luxurious textiles and has expensive tastes. In one scene, she lavishes Oh’s Polastri with an unexpected windfall of designer clothes after nicking her suitcase in Germany, only to send the suitcase back to Polastri stuffed with gift-wrapped high dollar duds, replacing Polastri’s meager wardrobe.
There’s an animated and subtle comedic vibe that Comer gives her villainess, a siren who lures unsuspecting targets to their deaths quite easily.
She’s brazen and heartless and has learned from her frustrated handler Konstantin that MI6 is on to her, thanks to her showboating antics. He also tells Villanelle that our Eve Polastri is the one who figured her out and is charged with finding her.
Oh, let the fun begin now as the old cat and mouse game never played out so good on a TV series — ever.
Killing Eve airs Sundays at 8pm ET/PT on BBC America.