If you’re waiting with baited breath to see Eve’s (Sandra Oh) response to husband Niko (Owen McDonnell) being pitchforked by Dasha (Harriet Walter), you’re going to have to hold on a little longer. This week, in Killing Eve season 3 episode 5, we head to Russia to witness Villanelle’s (Jodie Comer) – or Oksana as they know her – family reunion and find out who could have created such a monster.
- READ MORE: Killing Eve season three episode four recap: has Dasha turned Eve against Villanelle forever?
Favourite new face: Elton John-obsessed Bor’ka
— AMC Networks (@AMC_TV) May 11, 2020
There are many different things you might expect from Villanelle’s family, but we bet you didn’t expect a major Elton John stan to crop up anywhere. Bor’ka (Temi Blaev), then, is a curveball – a tiny teenage treat who is saving up to attend Elton’s farewell tour. He’s even got posters of him plastered all over his wall. He is the reason we get to see Villanelle awkwardly stood in the middle of a post-games night family sing-a-long sesh while her long lost relatives air guitar and pogo around to ‘Crocodile Rock’. The killer’s young half-brother is so sweet even she can’t find him annoying, as she proves at the end of this week’s episode.
Most relatable moment: finding out your family are conspiracy theorists
Finding out who your family really are always has the potential to be uncomfortable, no matter if you’ve just reunited with them after spending years thinking they were dead or not. But what could shock an internationally feared assassin who’s about to become very high level at one of the world’s shadiest crime organisations? Conspiracist theorists, apparently.
While she’s back in Mother Russia, Villanelle catches up on some TV time with step-brother Fyodor (Dimitrij Schaad) and his girlfriend Yula (Natallia Bulynia), who are watching a programme about the first man on the moon. “You see this? Giant leap for mankind was in Nevada,” Fyodor says assuredly, starting a conversation that will out the pair as flat-Earthers. For all her faults, even Villanelle thinks this is absurd, letting out a stunned laugh that perplexes the couple.
But it doesn’t stop there – according to Fyodor, every intelligence agency in the world has been infiltrated by a secret organisation plotting the downfall of the planet. It sounds a little like Villanelle’s relatives could accidentally be onto The Twelve, that is until they deliver the killer blow… “Do you know what they are?” asks Yula with a completely straight face. “Lizards.”
Most predictable murder: Villanelle’s family affair
— Killing Eve (@KillingEve) May 11, 2020
From the second Villanelle arrives in Gryzmet, you can sense that something is going to go down. Even when they’re sat around the table drinking and playing games, her mother welcoming her home, there’s a tension there that has to crack at some point. At the harvest festival, when Villanelle is having the time of her life winning at dung-throwing and other carnival sports, it seems too good to be true that this person could just reappear in her family’s lives and live happily ever after.
It takes just 24 hours for the dream to come crashing down. When her mother Tatiana (Evgenia Dodina) finds her in the kitchen chopping tomatoes in the small hours, tomato juice trickling from her eyes like bloody tears, it’s the beginning of the end. She tells her recently returned daughter to leave, sparking an unprecedented display of vulnerability from Villanelle. “You’re not a part of this family, you do not belong here,” Tatiana says softly, sealing her own fate.
Minutes later, Villanelle tells her through tears: “I think I need to kill you.” And so, she douses the ground floor in petrol, turns all the gas on the oven on, and lights a lighter, while her mother lies prone on the floor. She’s lured Bor’ka out to the barn, where her brother Pytor (Rob Feldman) sleeps, saving the only two members of the family she seemed to like from the fireball the house is about to become. While her family reunion might not have ended quite how she wanted, it did finish in a manner that you couldn’t see coming.
This week’s biggest question: how will Villanelle’s family reunion shape her future?
Finding her family has been a long time coming for Villanelle, with much of the subplot of this season based on her hunt for her long-lost relatives. As this week’s episode ends with her on a train out of Gryzmet, agitatedly moving around to the music on her headphones, tears in her eyes, it’s clear something in her has snapped. The Villanelle we knew has changed, but the question is how? Will offing her mother send her back out into the world on a bloodthirsty killing spree or will she hang up her weapons and let her unsuspecting victims get on with their lives?