Killing Eve recap: Killer klowns in kouture kaftans
A confession: In the first moments of this episode, we see Eve Polastri standing in the rain, a nearly-empty wineglass in one hand and a pack of cigarettes in the other, and reader? I thought she was drinking at a bus stop. (Come on, it's not like it would be out of character.) Then a man approaches, also holding a glass, and says, "I saw you talking to yourself earlier," and Eve flees inside, into what turns out not to be a bus stop but a crowded pub. The man follows her — she calls him a dick, loudly — and oh boy, the bus stop scenario would've been a treat compared to this, because the gathering at which she's making a scene is Kenny's funeral.
So, this is terrible. The gang is all here: Konstantin, Kenny's coworkers (the nudgy fellow from earlier turns out to be his boss from Bitter Pill, Jaime), and Carolyn, elegant and utterly composed in a cream-colored coat. She chides her daughter, Geraldine, for the lachrymose playlist: "Couldn't we be sad and listen to good music?"
She also tries to talk to Eve, who not only refuses to engage but flounces (flounces! out of the funeral!!!), with a sneer and a twinkling little wave, after Carolyn says that she, too, believes Kenny's death was a suicide.
Of course, Carolyn does not actually believe this, and Eve is (albeit forgivably) a jackass to think otherwise. But when Carolyn visits Eve at work and explains that she can't let anyone know she's investigating her son's death, Eve still refuses to work for or with her. Not after Rome, she says, which is the opening Carolyn needs. Because hey, speaking of the serial killer who shot Eve when she wouldn't go all in their mutually-obsessive emotional affair: she's baaaack. And she's killing again.
Eve stumbles back inside while the soundtrack swells in the background. And I already know how it ends, the song goes — and so do we, because we've all been here before. It ends in heartbreak, in tears, in blood. But first, at least this time, it ends in vomit, as Eve is so overwhelmed that there's nothing left to do but barf.
Meanwhile, Villanelle is settling in to yet another unbelievably, unfairly gorgeous apartment and readying for her next assignment. Dasha was totally thrilled by Villanelle's spicy kill last week — hey, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery — and is pleased to offer her a new job, one with more responsibility but less actual murder involved. Villanelle will instead be overseeing another assassin's assignment, which is the kind of thing you have to do on the way to becoming a keeper, apparently (and again, whatever that is), but Villanelle isn't happy, and Dasha empathizes: “Management is not easy. It's watching someone do a job worse than you. That’s why it sucks.”
Villanelle's charge isn't just a newbie, but a fresh-faced and freshly-shorn teenager who has never killed on assignment before. (He did, however, kill a boy who bullied him at school… along with the boy's sister, father, best friend, uncle, dance teacher, and grandma, who were "in the same car.”) He's nursing a broken heart, too, which makes it seem like he and Villanelle are better-matched than she imagined — but when it comes time to hit their target, things go sideways. After infiltrating a child's birthday party dressed as clowns (sidenote: Villanelle looks better in clown makeup than most of us look on the most attractive day of our lives), the newbie is dispatched to do the dirty work. When her charge doesn't come right back, she knows something has gone wrong. She told him to make it clean and quick; instead, what she finds is an assassination that's drawn-out, messy, and worst of all, still not finished.
"I improvised!" says the kid, his clown makeup smeared across his face, as he slams his target's head against the floor.
Villanelle shoots them both, and groans, "Management suuuuuucks."
Back in London, Eve sits at a bar and considers her secret souvenir from Kenny's murder: his phone. It's password-protected, so she can't get past the lock screen (sidenote: why does Kenny have a picture of himself as his phone wallpaper? Who does that?), and she's startled when it starts ringing in her hand and then dings again with a series of text messages. The first reads, PICK UP YOU BLOODY IDIOT. The second calls Eve by name. The phone rings again.
Turns out, Jaime (the editor-in-chief of Bitter Pill) has made a good guess that Kenny's missing phone is in the hands of the drunk, belligerent woman from his funeral. He tells Eve to bring the phone to him. She says she won't, and hangs up. A moment later, another text comes in, and suddenly the weirdly narcissistic choice of phone wallpaper makes perfect sense: it's a little flourish by the showrunners so that Eve has to stare at the word "Please" superimposed over Kenny's sweet, dead face.
Calling it now: this will be how Eve ends up back in the game. Her meeting at the Bitter Pill offices turns into a hard-driven bargain for quid pro quo, as she demands access to Kenny's work files in exchange for the phone. She's the only one who knows that Kenny was still investigating The Twelve, and when Jamie tries to bait her with a sarcastic comment about her being the one person who can solve this mystery, he unwittingly speaks the truth. It really is all down to her.
It's this realization that brings her to Carolyn's house, where Eve finds the formidable woman drunk and uncharacteristically disheveled, which is to say that one strand of Carolyn's hair has fallen over her forehead and she's not wearing a perfectly-tailored jacket. (Fact: Dishevelment on Carolyn Martens is a typical weekday look for the rest of us.) Earlier, we saw Carolyn sitting in her car, trapped between two worlds as everyone else tries to tell her what to do with her grief. MI6 won't allow her to work; her daughter won't leave her alone at home. As Eve faces her mentor, Carolyn is the most uninhibited we've ever seen her.
"I miss his smell," she says.
Eve tells her about the phone, the files, the thumb drive that holds Kenny's most recent investigative efforts.
So, now Carolyn knows… and so does Konstantin, who used the unwitting Geraldine to plant a bug in Carolyn's home. He's still working for the Twelve after all.
He also still has a soft spot for Villanelle, and in Barcelona, the assassin comes home from her botched first job as manager to a familiar sight: Konstantin is sitting in her apartment, waiting. He tells her Eve is still alive.
"I'm fine," says Villanelle, but she isn't. She's crying and laughing at the same time, like a woman who's just witnessed a miracle. So, here we go again — and like the song says, we already know how this ends. But with so much unfinished business to attend to, and an innocent life to avenge, won't it be fun to get back on this ride for yet another spin? Until next week.