Killing Eve season 4 ending explained: Who shot Villanelle?

Killing Eve season 4 ending explained: Who shot Villanelle? (Image via AMC+)
Killing Eve season 4 ending explained: Who shot Villanelle? (Image via AMC+)

Based on the Villanelle novel series by Luke Jennings, Killing Eve follows Sandra Oh’s Eve Polastri, a British intelligence investigator tasked with capturing the international assassin Oksana Astankov a.k.a. Villanelle, portrayed by Jodie Comer.

First premiering on April 8, 2018, the conclusion of season 4 of this British television series, which aired on April 17, 2022, saw Villanelle being shot multiple times by a sniper. It was revealed that Fiona Shaw’s Carolyn Martens ordered the hit and was seen communicating with the shooter.

Who is Villanelle on Killing Eve?

Jodie Comer's Villanelle/Oksana Astankov is a highly skilled assassin in the employment of a secret organization known as The Twelve. The spy thriller follows a bored British intelligence investigator named Eve Polastri (Sandra Oh).

After being dismissed from her role in MI5, Eve eventually joins an undercover division within MI6, where she is tasked with tracking down said merciless international assassin.

As the first season progresses, the two develop a mutual obsession with each other while on their respective missions. In the second season, Eve investigated killings orchestrated by The Twelve, while Villanelle continued to carry out assassinations for them.

However, with the emergence of a new killer, The Twelve and MI6 shifted their focus, compelling both women to collaborate.

Killing Eve season 3 picked up after the duo’s fallout from the previous installment. Traumatized by her near-death encounter with Villanelle, Eve resigned from MI6 and kept a low profile. Meanwhile, Villanelle explored new avenues to earn a living after ceasing her missions for The Twelve.

However, the sudden appearance of her former trainer prompts Villanelle to question her identity and purpose in life. As Eve delves back into investigating The Twelve following the murder of someone close to her, their paths converge once again.

The final season commences with Eve harboring a thirst for vengeance against The Twelve, while Villanelle wishes to transform for Eve.

However, their conflicting approaches to their personal missions lead to clashes, pushing them in separate directions. The series then ends with Villanelle’s death.

Why was Villanelle killed?

Carolyn Martens (Fiona Shaw) is the head of the Russia Section at MI6 when viewers are introduced to her in the series. However, as a young spy, she was part of The Twelve when it was formed in 1979. In season 3, Carolyn's son, ex-hacker Kenny Stowton (Sean Delaney), tragically dies.

Carolyn's life is inexorably tied to the British Secret Service, which exacted a heavy toll on her over the years as her son dies and she is estranged from her daughter. Although her son's death is considered an accident, Carolyn blames The Twelve for the circumstances leading to the same.

This positions her as a pivotal ally for both Eve and Villanelle. When Eve expresses her intent to eliminate The Twelve, Carolyn sees an opportunity to use the situation for her own benefit.

She orchestrates Villanelle's murder, viewing the elimination of The Twelve and all its associated individuals, including Villanelle, as her way back into the top echelons of MI6.

How was she killed?

In the final moments of the last episode of Killing Eve, Villanelle was shot and killed, just as she and Eve were about to achieve their long-awaited happy ending.

After Villanelle completed her mission of eliminating The Twelve and joined Eve to celebrate they were attacked by a sniper from Tower Bridge.

In a desperate attempt to escape, both Villanelle and Eve jumped into the water below. But the multiple shots fired proved fatal for the assassin and she succumbed to her wounds.

Killing Eve is available to stream on Netflix, AMC+, and AcornTV in the United States.

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