Killing Eve Season 4 mid-point recap & review

Killing Eve season has already released the first 3 episodes, where we see where each character is in their lives and how they’ve developed from the previous seasons. 

Killing Eve Season 4 mid-point recap & review

Episode 1 - Just Dunk Me

We first see a woman visiting Konstantin, who is now working in politics. Naturally, she’s presumed to be Villanelle because of how she behaves, but the helmet comes off to reveal Eve. She wants to know about Helene, a member of the 12, and wants Konstantin to tell her how to find her. She goes as far as to shoot his hand, so he took her more seriously. Konstantin gives her the name of Rhian Bevan, an assassin that Villanelle pushed in front of a train last season. It then cuts to Villanelle in church using the name ‘Nelle Petrova’, now living with new characters: May and her father Phil, the Vicar, who does not appear to like ‘Nelle’.

We then see Eve with another new character: Yusuf. He is her colleague at a private security company, who is helping her look into the 12. We see Eve get an invitation to Nelle’s Baptism, which she later does not attend. Yusuf then has a brief discussion with Eve regarding her shooting Konstantin, and when asked “how did it feel?”, she replies “How you said it would feel” with an eerie, expressionless look on her face, similar to the one on Villanelle’s when she hurt or killed someone. 

It is then time to see what Carolyn is up to, who appears very bored at her new job, not in MI6. She shortly meets with Czech intelligence, informing her about members of the 12 being tortured. Their meeting is interrupted by Hugo from season 3, who is quick to boast about getting her old job. He warns her to “stop meddling” and makes her aware that he knows she shot former double agent for the 12 and MI6, Paul Bradwell. We then see Yusuf finding Rhian Bevan’s funeral home, which Eve visits shortly after. She meets a peculiar coroner and asks for any contact information for anyone that visitedfor Rhian.

Villanelle does commit murder in this episode: a cat, May’s cat, because like Phil, this cat does not like Nelle, and tries to bite her. She then pushes it off and unfortunately, it dies. She is later caught on CCTV, with a shovel and the cat by the vicar, who then questions her. She says she found it dead and was burying it to spare their feelings. During this conversation, the Vicar tells Nelle that she comes across more bothered about someone seeing her baptism than the actual ceremony after asking to reserve a seat for Eve, and asks if she believes in God. Nelle answers: “I believe that people who believe in God are good for me to be around,” and that she’s “not as shitty inside as some people think.” Which suggests she is trying to prove to people, and herself, that she can be a good person.

Carolyn then meets with Eve unexpectedly to hand her a folder of information she has been collating about the 12. Although Eve pretends to not be interested, once Carolyn departs, she picks it up and admits “of course I want it.” Much to Villanelle’s disliking, Eve does not show up for her baptism, which evidently enrages her, as she doesn’t even wait for the vicar to finish his words before she ‘dunks’ herself in the holy water. 

Nearing the end of the episode, we see Eve tapping the glass on a fish tank in a hotel she’s staying at. Soon after, we see Villanelle on the other side, forgiving Eve for not attending, who still has a lot of animosity towards her, as she exudes aggression throughout the conversation. Eve states “if you had really changed you wouldn’t have come”, Villanelle replies “If you’d really changed, you wouldn’t have let me.” This seems to hit a nerve with Eve because she then slaps her. Eve exits saying “see, different person,” which to me feels like she is trying to prove to herself that she is different from how she used to be and that she is not bothered by Villanelle anymore. 

The episode ends back in church, with Nelle talking to the statue of Jesus, not appearing to believe that he’s real. Her desperation for change is prevalent in this scene because she says “it’s very much in your interest for me to believe in you.” These words show a hint of the old Villanelle as she is almost threatening him, but also that she believes she needs to be shown that she is doing the right thing by not continuing her old lifestyle. She is then greeted by May, who couldn’t be more complimentary of her; May tries to kiss her and is then quickly shown the bottom of the baptismal font by Villanelle. She appears to have a change of heart when she stops holding May’s head and successfully recovers her. The look of relief on her face as she holds May and says “I didn’t kill you” is almost endearing to me as it feels that, for the first time, her desperation to change is genuine.

Episode 2 - Don’t Get Eaten

The episode begins with Helene at a tour of the Tower of London, with her young daughter Chloe, seeing a reenactment of a hanging. Chloe asks her mother if it hurts, to which she replies “only if you let it.” We then notice a disguised Eve standing close behind them, listening in on the conversation. 

Nelle is off on a camping trip with the church, with May still ignoring her. We then see her enter her tent to the Jesus character, who explains that “everyone sees me differently…but for you, I’m you in drag” to Villanelle, who encourages her to make amends with May. She quickly leaves her tent to talk to May, and during this discussion she gets very candid; “I’m a bad person who’s trying to be good.” This shows Villanelle has some self awareness and does not like how she has previously behaved, which is a big change for her. 

Eve is looking at Villanelle on the church’s social media, before Yusuf interrupts by saying he has tracked Helene to Paris and booked them a flight. Eve then leaves to meet Martin, a psychologist from the previous season, and on her way out she is still seemingly mesmerised by the same fish tank. This could suggest she enjoys the simplicity and consistency of the fish in the sense that they don’t change, which contrasts with Eve’s hectic, forever changing life. Moving forward, Carolyn meets Vlad and expresses her continued interest in The 12, and confesses that she “wants it slightly more because one of them ordered the death of my son.” Carolyn’s continued pursuit of The 12, despite the threats of jail from Hugo, show that getting justice for her son is her one and only focus. 

After rekindling their friendship, May confides in Nelle and reveals that her father caused the death of her mother by drink-driving, and lies to everyone about it. She quickly asks Nelle not to tell anyone, which she agrees to do but soon goes back on. The campers are playing guess who with post-it notes, and Nelle is given Hitler, which she, unlike Phil, does not find amusing. She then decides to write a person for him to guess: his dead wife Mary. It’s worth drawing attention to Nelle’s facial expressions whilst Phil is guessing who he is, because she slowly looks more and more like Villanelle again, and the music even changes to that of Villanelle when she was murdering somebody in the previous seasons. Once the name is revealed, Nelle disappears inside and talks with ‘Jesus’, who tells her she did a good thing and that everyone at camp will love her for it. This turns out to be incorrect as she is told to leave. 

Yusuf and a seemingly nervous Eve arrive in Paris. Whilst out for dinner she immediately wants to leave and tries to take the steak knife with her. She reveals she thinks there's a chance she’ll die if she encounters Helene, which is not like the new, fearless Eve we have been seeing this season. She later goes to Helene’s home to “cook dinner” for her, where they discover that they both want the same thing: “to cut the head off the monster”. Both women are after The 12, but as soon as Helene sees the opportunity for intimidation, she takes it. While pressing Eve’s hand on the stove, she asks if it hurts, much to her surprise Eve replies “only if I let it.” Helene instantly lifts her hand off of the heat and gives her something to help cool her hand down. Eve quickly works out that it is Helene who is torturing her way to the top of The 12 and wants to work together. After Eve tells Helene’s daughter a story, at Helene’s request, Eve asks “who is at the top?” She is told to work it out herself, so Eve agrees and gets up to leave. Helene seems to change her attitude quickly when she follows Eve to the door and asks her what she wants to do, to which she is essentially told to wait for another time. This encounter seems to gain Eve some brownie points with Helene, which I’m sure that she will use to her advantage later on. 

The episode ends with Nelle overhearing May and her father talking about her. May says “I don’t think anyone could love her; I think she’s the devil.” Villanelle seems to take over and brutally kills Phil and May. She then has one final talk with ‘Jesus’ where she exclaims that she thought she could do it, by it we must assume she means change her ways. ‘Jesus’ then responds “you didn’t stand a chance.” I think this had a profound effect on Villanelle as she genuinely appeared let down and angry. Both Villanelle and Eve have exhibited behaviour from their old selves in this episode; Eve looking up Villanelle online, asking a psychologist questions about her, and being fearful of death, and Villanelle killing May and Phil out of sheer anger. To me, this suggests that the apparent ‘new Eve’ and ‘Nelle’ are temporary and they both know it, but are desperate to fight it. This is because the old version of themselves allowed themselves to be hurt by the other, and I don’t think either of them are ready to revisit those negative feelings. 

Episode 3 - A Rainbow in Beige Boots

As Villanelle is no longer protected by The 12 or Konstantin, she is not protected from the police for murdering May and Phil. In search of help, she turns to Eve and waits for her in her hotel room. After a quick discussion, Eve tells her to take whatever she wants but asks that she’s gone by the time she gets back, which seems to shock Villanelle somewhat. The coroner that Eve met, who we now know as Pam, gets verbally abused by her brother and colleague Elliot. He goes as far as to make cruel claims like “no wonder dad hated you.” This drives Pam to ask Helene if she is “ready”, presumably to be trained as an assassin, which she is quickly told “no.” Yusuf manages to track Helene’s car, so naturally Eve investigates and ends up finding Fernanda, a woman who believed she was dating Helene, until she broke it off. Eve snatches the opportunity to get some more information by befriending Fernanda and taking her for a drink. During their discussion, Fernanda describes Helene and asks Eve about Eve’s ex-girlfriend, who she claimed to have just broken up with her, in order to bond with Fernanda. Despite not giving a name, there’s a strong insinuation that Eve is describing Villanelle, which shows she is not as “done” with Villanelle as she portrays herself to be. 

In a nasty confrontation between Pam and her sibling, she ends up stabbing him 19 times, embalming him, then informing Helene, who quickly reminds of “how disposable” she is. 

Villanelle meanwhile, is with Martin, the psychologist that met with Eve, asking for therapy. During their conversation, she gets very candid about her thoughts and feelings and admits that she doesn’t “even trust my own thoughts right now.” Martin then addresses the “elephant in the room”: Eve. He wants to know why Eve isn’t dead, which we find out that in part, it is because she enjoys the hold she has over Eve, she also acknowledges the hold that Eve has over her. Villanelle truly believes that she and Eve are connected on a deeper level saying that “in our bones we understand each other” and goes on to describe Eve as a “rainbow in beige boots.” 

Eve returns to her room to see messages Villanelle had sent to Martin, quickly working out that she is at his house. With Martin passed out as a result of Villanelle blocking his airflow for a bit too long, which did not appear to be on purpose, Eve joins her on the sofa. She asks how her therapy was, which seems to please Villanelle. She then tells her the ending of the scorpion and the frog story: the scorpion cannot change its ways and they kill each other. This is clearly meant as a metaphor for their relationship to get the message across to Villanelle that Eve doesn’t think she can change and as a result, does not want to be involved with her any longer. Villanelle quickly grasps what she is saying and replies “maybe you’re the scorpion” which seems to bother Eve. 

The episode ends with Helene and Konstantin meeting to discuss him training a new assassin, who is presumed to be Pam and Villanelle in jail, as Eve had called the police to arrest her at Martin’s house shortly after their discussion. 

Eve calling the police on Villanelle initially came as a surprise to me, but looking back it makes sense for Eve’s character and what she is trying to achieve: to get rid of Villanelle from her life. Eve seems to be taking on the ‘out of sight, out of mind’ approach to Villanelle and perhaps thinks they will stop thinking about each other if they can’t see each other. I suspect this won’t be the case because it’s clear that they both have a connection on a deeper level than with any of the other characters. 

Review

This season feels like it wants you to get a different feel for the characters, but slowly gives you more hints that they haven’t truly changed. I think this fits well because that’s what Villanelle and Eve are trying to convince themselves, and each other, of. I’m enjoying Helene’s character being brought into the foreground more and learning more about her slowly because I feel like she will play a key role in finally discovering who The 12 are. Until I saw Konstantin meeting with Helene at the end of episode 3, I was a bit worried that he would be taking a back seat this season, but it seems like he hasn’t changed a bit, and I love it. Despite some of the bad things he has played a part in, to me he is still a very charming and lovable character so I hope we keep seeing more of him. How Carolyn has ended up isn’t exactly shocking, but is still upsetting to see, especially when Hugo of all people revealed he got her old job! We know Carolyn is a master of keeping her emotions hidden, but the devastation and heartache she is feeling as a result of her son’s death is clearly eating her up. Carolyn is an incredible character and I hope she finally gets the closure that she needs to allow herself to properly grieve for Kenny soon. As for Villanelle and Eve, well, where do I start? I’m not happy with Villanelle being in prison, but hopefully she is somehow able to come out ASAP! Perhaps Konstantin or Helene will give her a hand? My heart really went out to her when she was talking to Martin about Eve, especially when the police arrested her. I hope that she can overcome her inner demons and finally be happy in herself by the end of the season. There is clearly a lot that goes on inside Eve’s head, daily, and somehow it always circles back to Villanelle whether she likes it or not. To me it seems like she knows how she feels for her, but is fighting them, so my wish for Eve this season is that she gets closure on The 12 and can finally be honest with herself, instead of avoiding her feelings.

Header Image Credit: BBCAmerica/Sid Gentle Films/Paola Kudacki

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