REVIEW: Killing Eve, S2 Ep5 – Smell Ya Later

Killing Eve S2 P5 - Smell Ya Later

The two leads finally meet again in an elaborate but ultimately underwhelming episode of Killing Eve.

After all the tension building up to Eve and Villanelle seeing each other again, when they finally do, the confrontation lacks the tension of previous occasions. There’s a sense of danger, yes, and there’s the seductive setting of the kitchen, complete with poison and mourning clothes. But something just doesn’t sizzle.

Killing Eve S2 P5 - Smell Ya LaterEve proves to be more and more problematic in this episode as she comes up with a plan to get answers from the Ghost by having Villanelle interrogate her. And to lure out Villanelle, Eve puts a hit out on herself, something that even the assassin finds difficult to believe. But it’s an invitation that Villanelle cannot resist. Kenny points out that Villanelle did murder Bill but Eve does not even seem bothered by that, so obsessed has she become with the assassin for hire. She also wishes the ghost was more “fun” and one begins to worry about her. She almost tries to murders someone on the train.

Killing Eve S2 P5 - Smell Ya LaterCarolyn is just as shady as ever, sending a new associate named Martin (played by Adeel Akhtar), to evaluate her team, Eve especially. After showing a boring (and poorly made) presentation about psychopaths, he notices that Eve is the only one who doesn’t flinch at the sight of a gruesome murder. Jess also points out that Eve doesn’t have to put up with the paperwork everyone is required to do so Eve’s presence in the organization and the ease with which she is able to execute her plans is questionable, in the least. But Killing Eve will keep its secrets and we will need to wait until the ulterior motives of each character as they all prove to be suspicious.

Even the Ghost, for all the talk of her being a rival to Villanelle, isn’t given much time to shine. She sits silently as she is being interrogated and calmly reveals nothing. When Eve sends Villanelle in to question her, we don’t even get to witness their interaction and all the excitement happens off-screen. Villanelle extracts the predictable information that it was the internet magnate’s son who ordered his murder and that’s it. Both of them seemingly resume their lives as if this interaction had little impact. This was one of the rare disappointments of Killing Eve this season but I’m hoping that the show gets better in the second half.

Showrunner Emerald Fennell talked to The Hollywood Reporter about the love between the two leads, despite everything. Fennell said:

“Villanelle overtly loves Eve, she is obsessed….Eve is still in that phase of an affair, to liken it to something more mundane, where you say to your friends, ‘Oh, my God, I hate so and so, they’re so pathetic’ And they sort of go, ‘Well, you’re talking about how you hate them an awful lot.’ Everyone else can see what’s happening, but she can’t admit it to herself. It would be too horrible for her, too awful to admit her true motives. But Villanelle is undeniably sexy, and the tension between them is undeniable. So it’s just a matter of how long it can be denied.”

Killing Eve S2 P5 - Smell Ya LaterPoor Niko is sent away on “last-minute spelling bee” duties where Villanelle (in another fabulous outfit) confronts him and apologizes for all the prank complaints she made to his school. She taunts him by saying,  “I was just trying to get Eve’s attention…But she does not care about your life at all.” Niko attempts to retaliate but we know that he is no match for Villanelle and she doesn’t even try to fight back. She does reveal that Eve stabbed her, going so far as to show him her scar. Niko is taken aback by the revelation and whatever is left of his marriage to Eve is about to crumble. With Villanelle and Eve kind of back together, I’m curious to see how their dynamic will change as Killing Eve continues its second season.