Sunday, May 3, 2020

REVIEW: 'Killing Eve' - Niko Reaches Out to Eve While Dasha Tries a New Tactic to Control Villanelle in 'Still Got It'

BBC America's Killing Eve - Episode 3.04 "Still Got It"

It's Eve's birthday and she's trying to patch up things with Niko. Villanelle receives good news about her upcoming promotion but can't shake the feeling that there's still something missing from her life. Dasha seeks a solution to Villanelle's erratic behavior.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of BBC America's Killing Eve.

"Still Got It" was written by Elinor Cook and directed by Miranda Bowen

This season has set out to re-establish the lethal stakes of the narrative. The first season was so shocking and unexpected because it was clear that anything could happen to Eve, Villanelle or anyone associated with them. The central premise has been maintained across three seasons though. That allows the severity of that dynamic to lose its potency. It makes it seem as if certain characters are expendable while others are protected by the narrative at all costs. Nothing too terribly bad can happen to either Eve or Villanelle because that would be too dramatic a shakeup for the core narrative. Carolyn is protected to a certain extent as well because she is such a distinct and unique character who also has a vital perspective in the ongoing conflict. Everyone else can certainly be removed from the picture at any point. Just because a character has been on the show since the beginning doesn't mean that they are inherently safe. The narrative wants the perception of always changing and evolving. It succeeds only to an extent though. It's clear that the Twelve see Eve as a target to be concerned about but not worthy of a hit being placed on her life just yet. That's the information that Dasha receives here. She sees killing Eve as the easy solution to Villanelle's erratic actions. Her charge is lying to her about everything that happened in London. Villanelle reached out to Eve once more. Their dynamic sparked anew. It was intense and volatile. It's enough for Eve to fear living out of her new apartment. That only further enhances the depressive mindset she has been in this season. People want her to fear for her life. And yes, she does to a point. However, she also knows that Villanelle is skilled enough to get to her no matter where she is. That misery is all consuming to Eve's life. Jamie wants her to acknowledge that she isn't the only person who has endured a lot of trauma. He has put his family through the ringer because of his drug addiction. Eve is taken aback by that revelation. She sees a new side of this man who offers some compassion to her. But he also wants to hit her with a reality check. She is right to fear for her life. She has to be willing to share her feelings and information with the team she is now working with. And yet, she has endured so much. At this point, it seems like the show is constantly putting Eve and Carolyn through one traumatic situation after another. The pile may be getting too big at this point as well. The season started with Eve discovering Kenny's body. And now, Niko is killed right in front of her. He tried everything to escape to a potentially better life. He removed Eve from it entirely. He could be happy by returning to the Polish countryside. He is for a moment. However, the world never loses track of him. Dasha always knows where he is. Konstantin does as well. He can leverage that to his advantage. But he has no desire to use him in whatever plan he is creating. He just needs Villanelle to owe him a favor every once in awhile. He does so out of self protection even though his daughter wants to be important enough to be a part of his planning for the future as well. She wants him to want to be a part of her life. She needs to feel like someone loves and appreciates her. She may never get that. Villanelle is on the same path to hopefully find answers about her family and where she comes from. She set a goal of being promoted by the Twelve this season. She has seemingly achieved that. That makes her happy. That isn't enough to make her stable once more. The Twelve need that from her. Dasha killing Niko may provide that to Villanelle. That's what she is hoping to achieve because Eve is protected but the dynamic with Villanelle has to be disrupted. These two complicate each other and terrify the forces they work alongside. Villanelle's handlers want to ensure her ability to perform no matter what. This action is just much more personal to Eve. She wanted to choose happiness with Niko. She thought she was talking with him again. She wasn't. She was just being manipulated once more. That has become a pattern in her life. She no longer has that agency over what happens to her. She will fight to get it back. But it's also apparent that these twists and turns are more forced than they used to be. It's a shocking conclusion meant to surprise everyone involved while being all wrapped up in a unique storytelling device to frame things in a different way than usual. Niko dies but it never really becomes about him in the story. It's how others react which is strange for a character who appeared in all three seasons.