Killing Eve: How are we supposed to feel about Carolyn?


Killing Eve season 2 is officially under way and Eve’s mysterious boss is as strangely shady as ever.

One of the biggest mysteries in Killing Eve season 1 involved Eve Polastri’s boss, Carolyn Martens. Ostensibly the head of a secret MI-6 division that’s recruited Eve to their cause, Carolyn is a character that remains largely closed off to us as viewers, despite her snap-worthy snark and casual chic professional dress.

Who is she, really? What does she want? And whose goal is she really working toward?

Thus far, season 2 seems equally content to leave us in the dark about all that.

By the end of season 1, we learned that Carolyn had not only lied about the fact that team member Kenny was actually her son, she also had a hidden past with assassin handler Konstantin and paid an off the books visit to serial killer Villanelle while she was holed up in a Russian prison trying to kill the same target that MI-5 was attempting to turn.

What is up with this lady? Season 2 doesn’t seem to be in any sort of hurry to tell us.

Though Eve and Carolyn are reunited almost immediately – and Eve confesses her fears that she may have killed the very woman she’s spent all this time chasing – things get back to normal pretty quickly. Or, I guess, as normal as it gets for these two.

But Carolyn never really explains anything, even when Eve directly questions her about her involvement with Villanelle or her past with Konstantin. She even straight up asks if she’s one of the Twelve. Carolyn, naturally, doesn’t answer. Instead, she turns the questioning back around on Eve, wanting to know more about her young protégé’s frankly bizarre relationship with Villanelle.

It’s honestly kind of masterful, because she doesn’t even pretend for a second that she’s going to give Eve the information she wants.

But why? Is Carolyn part of the Twelve? It’s certainly possible.

“If you went high enough, you’ll find we work for the same people,” Villanelle told Eve during the first season. It would explain a lot.

But Killing Eve is being so obvious about the fact that something isn’t what it seems with Carolyn, that the idea of her being a member of the Twelve feels almost too convenient. I mean, isn’t that basically what we all think now? Could the show have been anymore deliberate in making sure that every viewer noticed precisely how many questions Carolyn was refusing to answer? Or how pleased she seemed to send Eve back out into the field?

This isn’t the sort of show that does anything you expect. And it certainly feels like it wants us to think Carolyn’s some undercover Big Bad – which is the best evidence possible that she’s probably not.

(Though she really does need to explain that Russian visit to Villanelle, ASAP.)

But if that’s true – who is Carolyn, really? What is she working toward? And can Eve trust her, really?

Fingers crossed season 2 doesn’t make us wait but so long to find out the answers to these questions.

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Killing Eve continues Sunday, April 14 at 8 p.m. ET on BBC America.