Jodie Comer as Villanelle, Sandra Oh as Eve Polastri- Killing Eve _ Season 3, Episode 8 - Photo Credit: Laura Radford/BBCAmerica/Sid Gentle

‘Killing Eve’ Author Rejects Show’s Tropey Ending: ‘[Spoiler] Will Be Back’

The finale of Killing Eve’s TV run has left many longtime viewers unhappy, and the writer of the original book series agrees with the backlash.

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**Spoilers for Killing Eve.**

Luke Jennings is the author of the Villanelle books that provided the basis for the television series. He wrote a piece for The Guardian comforting fans, especially queer ones, who were emotionally devastated at Villanelle (Jodie Comer) being killed off after four seasons of teasing romance between her and Sandra Oh’s Eve. “I learned the outcome of the final episode in advance, and suspected, rightly, that fans would be upset. But to those fans, I would say this: Villanelle lives,” Jennings wrote. “And on the page, if not on the screen, she will be back.

In the final episode of Killing Eve, hours after their first real mutual kiss, and during a warm embrace, Villanelle is gunned down and murdered on top of a bridge. She and Eve leap into the water, but Villanelle is unable to make it as Eve reaches out for her bloody form in the water. It was an exhausting and deeply tropey “bury your guys” moment for fans of the show—a cliché and problematic convention brought back to end a show that started fantastic, but quickly fumbled its own success.

“When Phoebe Waller-Bridge and I first discussed Villanelle’s character five years ago, we agreed that she was defined by what Phoebe called her ‘glory’: her subversiveness, her savage power, her insistence on lovely things,” Jennings shared. “That’s the Villanelle that I wrote, that Phoebe turned into a screen character, and that Jodie ran with so gloriously.”

Phoebe Waller-Bridge was the writer behind the most successful and critically acclaimed first season but left after that, causing the series to go through multiple hands. Clearly, there was a loss of what that “glory” was.

“But the season four ending was a bowing to convention. A punishing of Villanelle and Eve for the bloody, erotically impelled chaos they have caused,” Jennings wrote. “A truly subversive storyline would have defied the trope which sees same-sex lovers in TV dramas permitted only the most fleeting of relationships before one of them is killed off (Lexa’s death in The 100, immediately after sleeping with her female love interest for the first time, is another example). How much more darkly satisfying, and true to Killing Eve’s original spirit, for the couple to walk off into the sunset together? Spoiler alert, but that’s how it seemed to me when writing the books.”

While this doesn’t erase the hurt feelings of fans of the show, it is good to know that the person behind the series has seen the pain from others and respects they have been hurt. It matters, and hopefully writers are seeing and relearning the lesson we hoped they got in 2016.

(via The Guardian, image: BBC America)


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Princess Weekes
Princess (she/her-bisexual) is a Brooklyn born Megan Fox truther, who loves Sailor Moon, mythology, and diversity within sci-fi/fantasy. Still lives in Brooklyn with her over 500 Pokémon that she has Eevee trained into a mighty army. Team Zutara forever.