Killing Eve season 4 has begun, but the show isn’t quite reaching the heights you may be used to according to critics.
Season 4, which is the show’s final outing, features Jodie Comer back as the assassin Villanelle, while Sandra Oh returns as the titular Eve. After the duo separated at the end of season 3, season 4 picks up with Villanelle seeking religious redemption and Eve on the trail of the mysterious group The Twelve.
But it seems the show isn’t off to an explosive start, with lukewarm reviews based on the first three episodes hitting the internet. We’ve rounded up a selection of those below to give you an idea of the initial response to Killing Eve season 4.
The Independent (opens in new tab) – Nicole Vassell – 3/5
“The programme is entertaining, and no viewer will regret spending an hour or two with it. But it’s hard not to expect and want something more from a project with this calibre of performers; it shouldn’t just be “fine”. Fans will surely be sad to see Killing Eve go, but it may be a good thing for the showrunners to wrap the show up now while they still have a chance to control where it goes. Even if that does mean killing Eve.”
IndieWire (opens in new tab)– Ben Travers – C
“Like a bad romance, Killing Eve is keeping its couple apart without logical or emotional justification. In the process, it’s dulled the spark provided by these two excellent actors as well as the tension sustained by their taste for danger. Little moments pop up here and there that speak to rich themes established long ago –delicious food is ignored, nudity is shared without attraction – but the pops of passion once injected into each interaction are gone. There once was a time where every shared glance carried some kind of significance. Now, Eve and Villanelle can face each other and feel nothing. Far worse, the audience can, too.”
The Hollywood Reporter (opens in new tab) – Angie Han
“If Villanelle can try to change, though, so too can the show she’s on. Perhaps it’s true that, as one character suggests, ‘reinvention is a form of avoidance’ – Killing Eve can only change so much before it stops feeling like Killing Eve. But dangerous unpredictability has also been part of the show’s DNA from the beginning, and it’s what seems to be lacking as the series nears its end. With just five episodes left beyond the three sent to critics, the road is running out for Villanelle and Eve’s twisted romance, whether it ends in the two of them running off together, killing each other, or some combination of both. Here’s hoping for a few more swerves along the way.”
NME (opens in new tab)– Rhian Daly – 3/5
“Living their lives mostly apart, though, makes the first two episodes of the series feel flatter than you’d expect of a show renowned for its wild twists and exhilarating energy. As they unfold, there are flashes of its typical dark humour and inventive bouts of violence, but these are few and far between. Even Eve’s mission – which could be packed with tension – feels like it’s had the fizz taken out of it.”
Collider (opens in new tab)– Carly Lane – B+
“‘I think reinvention is just another form of avoidance,’ one new character remarks, and it’s a note that coincidentally holds weight – not just for Eve and Villanelle’s separate attempts to redefine themselves, but how the series is poised to resolve its most important relationship. What will keep season 4 from feeling less like a frustrating reset of its main duo and more like a satisfying slow burn is, ultimately, where it ends, and at this early stage in the show, it’s difficult to say what that will even look like. Eve and Villanelle have been engaged in this careful dance that can all-too-frequently feel like one step forward, three steps back, particularly when it comes to each of them acknowledging the truth of the other’s presence in their life. With an attachment as twisted and complex at its center, Killing Eve can only aim its sights on a finale that ends with a bang rather than merely a whimper.”
AV Club (opens in new tab) – Lisa Weidenfeld – B
“This show has always worked best as an exploration of the dynamic between Eve and Villanelle, but as the seasons have gone on, that relationship has often taken a backseat to other, more ambitious storytelling. It looks, for now, like the big focus of the final season is going to be on taking down the Twelve, which is somewhat unfortunate – faceless power brokers simply don’t have the visceral appeal of those two trying constantly to get the better of each other. After a pandemic-lengthened absence, let’s hope they still get in a few good battles before the show signs off for good.”
If you’re all caught up on Killing Eve season 4, check out our guide to the best Netflix shows streaming now to fill out your watchlist.