By Erin Caine
If you’ve been waiting since the end of season one of “Killing Eve” for another serving of spy intrigue and lethal, complicated women, then you’re in luck. The second season of the Emmy-nominated thriller premiered April 7 on BBC America.
Once again, “Killing Eve” seems poised to be the kind of sleek, smart, darkly entertaining female-centric drama series rarely—if ever—seen on television.
Developed by Phoebe Waller-Bridge, who is also known for the award-winning dramedy “Fleabag,” the show follows MI6 agent Eve Polastri (Sandra Oh) as she attempts to track down a charismatic yet psychopathic female assassin, Villanelle (Jodie Comer).
The two become mutually fascinated by each other, and it’s not long before that fascination spirals into something closer to obsession.
It is perhaps this tension—this complicated and delightfully twisted relationship between Eve and Villanelle—that most absorbs viewers into Waller-Bridge’s world. Not to mention, Comer and Oh’s performances are consistently mesmerizing to watch.
The first episode of the new season picks up immediately where the last season left off: at Villanelle’s apartment in Paris, where the two women’s paths have finally converged—only to diverge again.
The aftermath of their clash finds both Eve and Villanelle worse for wear, with Eve dealing with the psychological fall-out of her actions, and Villanelle appearing to be on death’s doorstep.
The story’s biggest uncertainty right now seems to be how the relationship between the two women will change after Eve’s act of betrayal.
For this second installment, Waller-Bridge has handed over the screenwriting reigns to actress and author Emerald Fennell, who, according to Vulture’s Jen Chaney, “demonstrate[s] a command of the show’s suspenseful, cheeky, and deeply feminine tone.”
In other words, this is a show that has women’s experiences of the world baked into its plot and dialogue, and the interactions between those women always take center stage.
Allison Keene of Collider gave the first episode five out of five stars, praising the showrunners for daring to mix things up, thus avoiding the “sophomore slump” other popular shows have fallen into in the past.
Keene added, “The world that Waller-Bridge has built and that Fennell is continuing is one worth spending endless time in. Oh and Comer are vitally magnetic in their roles.”
The stakes for this season are higher than ever, and, along with season two’s second and third episodes that have already dropped, the momentum just keeps on snowballing toward an inevitable breaking point.
The show is built on all kinds of unexplored territory in television, so it stands to reason that it’ll keep us constantly guessing about where it’s going to go next.