A star rating of 3 out of 5.

Villanelle, the stylish, psychopath assassin played by Jodie Comer, has unexpectedly got religion – or at least, that's what she wants everyone to think. At the start of Killing Eve season four, she's charmed her way into a church community, and is bombarding Eve with invitations to her "party" (her upcoming baptism).


It's an unexpected choice to have Villanelle trade pink Molly Goddard frills for crucifixes, white nighties and the cherry-red cassocks of a chorister, but it's entirely in keeping with her character: after all, what could be more theatrical than a church?

But that's precisely the problem for Villanelle, who's only concerned with the trappings and theatre of religion, and more specifically, of the appearance of holiness. She sings and recites Bibles verses, but she doesn't believe in God.

It's an issue that Phil the vicar clocks onto pretty quickly, and it also neatly points to the show's overall problem. Killing Eve remains one of the most stylish shows on television, and the opener certainly has plenty of fun (unlike the season three premiere). The problem isn't with the aesthetics, it's with the bare bones beneath.

Season four is the final instalment of this award-winning series, first penned by Fleabag's Phoebe Waller-Bridge before a new female head writer took over for each subsequent season. But with each new writer, there's a reset, and any progress the show has made in terms of defining Eve (Sandra Oh) and Villanelle's relationship, or to answering exactly who or what "The Twelve" is (who really cares now?), seems to come undone.

When it comes to that central relationship between the two female leads, the show has historically seemed as reluctant as Eve to actually address its nature, or progress it. This new season will (hopefully) look to bring some kind of definition and closure to Eve and Villanelle's will-they-won't-they connection, but I have a horrible feeling that it will either be left open-ended, or else end in a similar fashion to season two (when Villanelle left Eve for dead) – only this time, the show's title will become a self-fulfilling prophecy, but without the original shock factor.

Jodie Comer in Killing Eve
BBC/Sid Gentle Silms

Still, there's fun to be had with the first two episodes, which include plenty of fan-service moments – Fiona Shaw as Carolyn, delivering one-liners and spending her "unfashionable amount of inherited wealth" – and moments that fans didn't expect, but will no doubt be instant fodder for social media and future Halloween outfits (we won't spoil, but if ever you've wondered what Comer would look like in a full beard, you won't be disappointed).

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As ever, Eve's storyline gets overshadowed by the flashier Villanelle and her thigh-high gold boots (wait until the end of episode one), but she's certainly more active and confident than she was at the beginning of season three, riding motorbikes around Russia and embarking on a casual relationship with a new colleague.

Happily, Eve and Villanelle do reunite before the end of episode one, even if it's only for one scene. Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet remains a touchstone for recent TV series, specifically the scene where Claire Danes dresses as an angel for the masked ball. HBO's Euphoria paid homage to the scene in season 1, and in the first episode of Killing Eve's season 4, we see Villanelle appear to Eve from behind a large tropical fish tank, dressed in virginal white, just as Danes did to Leonardo DiCaprio's doomed Romeo.

Of course, no matter how much Villanelle adheres to the mantra "dress for the job you want", she's very far from an angel – and Eve, unlike Romeo, isn't best pleased to see her.


Killing Eve season 4 will premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer on 28th February 2022. Check out what else is on with our TV Guide, or visit our Drama Hub for all the latest news.