Sunday, May 26, 2019

REVIEW: 'Killing Eve' - Eve Realizes Just How Little Control She Still Has Over Her Life in 'You're Mine'

BBC America's Killing Eve - Episode 2.08 "You're Mine"

Eve's mission is disastrously compromised. Carolyn briefs Eve on her current status as an employee of the British government and leaves Eve's future in her own hands. Villanelle does everything she can in order to get to her ultimate target.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the season finale of BBC America's Killing Eve.

"You're Mine" was written by Emerald Fennell and directed by Damon Thomas

At the start of the series, the conflict and bond between Eve and Villanelle was defined by two intelligent and capable women trying to outsmart each other. And now, both of them have essentially been reduced down to nothing more than murderous psychopaths. That is obviously a simplification of the twists and turns that have occurred this season. But it was a huge journey for Eve as she builds to that moment of feeling the need to kill Raymond. The audience is fully aware that she doesn't have to do it. Villanelle is armed with a gun that is more than likely loaded thanks to Konstantin. But Eve feels the compulsion to stab him repeatedly with an ax in order to save Villanelle. That shows just how far she is willing to go for this bond. Eve and Villanelle both trust that they would choose each other above anyone else in this world. However, this finale also highlights just how easy it has been to manipulate them as of late. That would have seemed crazy once upon a time. But now, it's the entire basis for the big reveal that happens here. Eve and Villanelle were manipulated into doing what Carolyn and Konstantin wanted because their obsession with one another blinded them to everything else that was going on. Kenny warned Eve not to go to Rome. He knew that something was going to happen. Eve didn't heed his warning. Up until the very end, she thought he had his trust and could even turn him against his mother for the actions she has taken. And yet, Carolyn has simply been playing this game of spycraft for much longer. She knows that there are many different ways for operations to end. Eve and Villanelle were told repeatedly not to kill Aaron Peel. But that's exactly what occurs here. The show articulates that it is simply Eve and Villanelle's nature. Eve feels compelled to run to Villanelle to save her from a dangerous situation. Meanwhile, Villanelle uses murder in order to solve all of her problems. These have become repetitive and known patterns of theirs. As such, it's easy to estimate what they are going to do next. That's what the various organizations controlling this story ultimately ask of them. But it's also so compelling to see the appeal to get them to rejoin their various organizations with their eyes wide open now. Eve understands it's dangerous to return to the hotel after Hugo is shot and left bleeding out. She does so because of the value of the recordings now that Aaron is dead. She can't simply go on the run with Villanelle at that moment. She still has a job to do. Instead, she is confronted by Carolyn who informs her that this was always the expected outcome. It's a brutal reality of the job. Eve may have been manipulated. But now, she has to learn to trust the organization she works for with the understanding that this was always who Villanelle was going to be. Eve doesn't want to believe that. She bought into the idea that Villanelle could be an effective spy and partner in this endeavor. Villanelle feels the same way about Eve. She just sees them as kindred spirits. Eve just needs the right pushing to become exactly like Villanelle. That too has been a foreboding idea throughout this season. It finally comes to fruition here as well with Eve actually killing Raymond.

And yet, none of this is as simplistic as those at MI6 or the Twelve would like to make it seem. Eve and Villanelle are very much in danger. They believe that they can only trust each other. But Eve has been manipulated by everyone in this world. She was so distraught and paralyzed after stabbing Villanelle at the start of the season. As such, her reaction should be much more severe to actually killing a man. It's her evolution as a budding psychopath. The show may be throwing around that word a little too casually. It's also revealed here that Aaron likes to kill the girls he brings on these lavish trips and spies on. That's his fetish. Villanelle uncovers it and puts him right in his place despite his seemingly perfect offer. She could be set up for life if she came to work for him as the assassin in his orbit. Instead, he dies. Raymond dies. Carolyn and Konstantin return to their respective families. Eve and Villanelle are on the run together. It's a mystifying journey through Rome as well. It takes the central pair through the beautiful ruins that symbolism a civilization that existed centuries ago. It's such an unusual but fitting location for yet another confrontation between them. Villanelle is so casual about the gun. She could have used that to save herself. She was never a damsel who needed Eve as her knight to come rescue her. She always had the upper hand against Raymond. There was no reason for her to be afraid of him. But now, Eve has become like that as well. Villanelle got so much power because of the unequal balance of brute strength between her and Eve. But now, Eve has actually killed. She has proven that she's willing to take those extreme and lethal actions. It may have been paralyzing and nauseating for a time. But it's not something that actually lasts. She is no longer afraid of Villanelle. She knows how to pick her apart too. Villanelle believes that she is in love with Eve. And yet, she doesn't know what that emotion actually feels like. To her, it's all about possession. She proclaims to Eve that she is hers. That's absolutely horrifying and articulates just how toxic and destructive this central dynamic actually is. They are in love with each other. They are so enchanted by what the other is doing. But it's an evolution that is forcing Eve to do increasingly dangerous and insane things. She kills here. That is so far from the life she left behind in London. That's a life she aspires to get back to after all of this goes awry. Even then, the audience is fundamentally aware that it won't be the normalcy she craves. Niko's life has been ruined and traumatized by Villanelle as well. He doesn't even have to appear in this finale for that to be clear. But it may even end in a more tragic place because Villanelle decides to shoot Eve. That too shows just how far apart they have become. They may never be alike in the way that Villanelle craves. Eve may not be a psychopath. That rejection just forces an immediate reaction by Villanelle who understands that the fantasy she has created of a life in Alaska is never going to be as ideal as she wants it to be. And so, this is just a way to repay what was done to her at the start of the season with it possibly being even more lethal to Eve. She is bleeding out with no one immediately there to save her. That's a huge mess that the next season will have to clear up immediately.