Her hair is dark blonde, maybe honey. It was tied back. Uh, she was slim, about 25, 26. She had very delicate features. Her eyes are sort of catlike. Wide, but alert. Her lips are full, she has a long neck, high cheek bones. Skin is smooth and bright. She had a lost look in her eye that was both direct and also chilling. She's totally focused yet almost entirely inaccessible.

–Eve describing Villanelle, "Don't I Know You?"

Oksana Astankova, aka Villanelle, is a hired assassin who soon becomes involved in a cat-and-mouse game with MI5 security operative Eve Polastri. The two women becoming mutually obsessed, sharing what has been called a "crackling chemistry... between bitter enemies and would-be lovers".[1] Agent Polastri tracks the "utterly unforgivable" assassin Villanelle across Europe, not as hero and villain but as "two broken women whose flaws bind them together in a twisted pas de deux".[2] As the series progresses, Villanelle's backstory is revealed: she is an orphan with a violent reputation who once developed an obsession for an older, nurturing, French instructor—and who castrated the instructor's husband because of her jealous infatuation with the instructor. She works for an organization called The Twelve.

Background Edit

Villanelle possesses a cold brutality under her innocent-looking exterior. With an appetite for killing groaning in her gut, she is a living, breathing, shopping, killing psychopath. Contentedly living outside any human moral code, Villanelle kills with flair, recklessness and absolutely no conscience.

She can be adorable, playful, funny, frightening, warm, chilling, vulnerable, impenetrable…anything you want her to be. She’s trouble – and she takes great pleasure in pushing the boundaries with her eternally patient handler Konstantin. As much of a goddess as she is a devil, either way, she is extraordinary. And she knows he knows this.

Paid with a lifestyle; a comfortable living expense, her own apartment and a wardrobe to literally kill for, Villanelle glides freely through the streets of Paris, an understated beauty who can be both breath-taking and anonymous.

Closer Look- Villanelle's World - Killing Eve - BBC America

Closer Look- Villanelle's World - Killing Eve - BBC America

Villanelle had nothing before she was trained to become a purpose-built killer. Her instruction is to, without question, assassinate individuals around the world. She doesn’t care how many people have to die; this has bought her a lifestyle she loves.

Villanelle outwardly appears charismatic and charming, funny, polite and engaging yet she has a look in her eye that seems to go on forever...something dark that’s hard to name. It’s impossible to know what she is thinking or feeling, because something is missing.

She has an impulsive side that lets her down. Her ego requires her to feel invincible and essential, and then there’s a certain kind of woman...early 40s, dark full-bodied hair, no make-up, ill-fitting clothes, a quiet kindness. Any or all of these things could tip her into orchestrating her own downfall.

In her world, she is a masterful assassin with her own inimitable style. To the security services, she is a pest – and potentially a lead to the shady organization she works for. The closer Eve gets to uncovering who Villanelle really is, the more reckless she becomes and the more her precariously-curated existence starts to unravel.[3]

Significance in series Edit

Known kills Edit

Closer Look- Art of the Kill - Killing Eve - BBC America

Closer Look- Art of the Kill - Killing Eve - BBC America

Notes and trivia Edit

  • Villanelle likes killing in bathrooms.
  • Villanelle enjoys national anthems.
  • Villanelle’s native language is Russian, but she is also fluent in English, French, Spanish, German and Italian, and is currently learning Mandarin.
  • Villanelle does not like speaking Russian and refuses to do so.
  • Villanelle is very fashionable and spends a lot of the money she earns from kills on trendy clothes.
  • Villanelle is bisexual with a preference for women.


  3. BBC America