Killing Eve has been a fan-favorite show since 2018 and is now coming to an end with the final eight episodes.
Laura Neal, a writer on the show in season three, took over as Showrunner for season four and told us a bit about her approach to the show and the final season.
Check out the interview below!
TVF: Could you give a quick overview of what you do as a Showrunner and what a showrunner is?
Laura: Yes! I would say I'm not a Showrunner in a traditional American sense.
Being the lead writer on this show is a hybrid American/UK system going on here.
The way I describe my role on the show is I shape the creative arcs of the series, and, of course, I'm very involved in the writing of it.
I'm also very involved in the production side of things creatively. I'm involved in that as much as I possibly can be.
TVF: How was the transition from writing one or two previous episodes to being in charge?
Laura: It felt like quite a big jump but also one that I was excited for, wanted, and was ready for.
I loved writing for season three, it felt like a show that aligned with my taste, style, tone, and sense of humor, so I was excited to do more of that.
I was excited to have the responsibility and the privilege of ending a show that I've been a fan of for so long.
TVF: How difficult is it to balance the sense of humor with the seriousness in Killing Eve? It gets very heavy at times but also has a lot of comedy!
Laura: I think the tone is unique. It's challenging to get right, and I feel lucky never to bend my tone to the show.
We're pretty well matched. You certainly have to be careful that you have the balance of the comedy right because sometimes I tend towards the ridiculous, and I had to rein that back in myself.
Certain types of humor don't work on the show: like gag-based comedy. It has to come from character, and that's the kind of comedy that lends itself to Killing Eve.
We're constantly aware that the character comes first and the comedy comes second.
TVF: What were some of your biggest challenges with finishing the series?
Laura: Well, of course, the practical challenges of covid. It threw up a lot of practical difficulties that we had to overcome.
The show is big-scale and high-ambition, and we travel all over the world normally and weren't able to do that. We had to come up with some creative solutions to those problems.
In terms of other challenges, the pressure and the responsibility of ending this extraordinary show with these extraordinary characters that people are now so invested in and that I'm so invested in as well.
[We had to] make sure that the ending felt like the right one for the show and for the characters. That was a huge honor but also a huge responsibility.
TVF: Without spoiling anything: do you have a favorite thing about the final season you can share with us?
Laura: Oh, I love so much about the season.
I think my favorite thing is watching these characters -- Eve, Villanelle, and Carolyn -- cutting loose. We find them in different emotional places, places we haven't seen them in before.
Knowing the final season gave me the freedom to run with some of those things. You'll see that Eve embraces a darker side of herself and acts with far fewer boundaries.
Villanelle is almost doing the opposite: she's trying to put boundaries in place and convince herself, Eve, and the world around her that she can be a good person.
Carolyn has been taken right out of her comfort zone.
She's been taken out of the spy world, the home she's lived in for so long, and has parachuted into this other role that she's very frustrated in and doesn't feel at home.
Watching these characters out of their comfort zones and doing something different got exhilarating.
TVF: Now that the show is four seasons in, how did the actor's influence affect the writing? How did the writing coexist with the acting?
Laura: I think what's helpful is that these actors have inhabited these characters for four seasons now.
No one knows those characters better than the actors. In so many ways, that's a gift for me because I can have a conversation with Sandra or Jodie anytime and discuss if they have anything to add and how they feel.
They're so secure in those characters that the answers are very valuable. It became a collaborative process.
TVF: How do you think fans will react to the final season?
Laura: Well, I hope they will enjoy watching it as much as I enjoyed writing it.
I think it's a show that generates so much discussion, which feels like a fascinating aspect.
I love working on a show that people feel and react with a strong passion.
We're not going to please everybody at all times, but I hope that people feel like they're seeing something both that they already know and love and something different and something fresh.
TVF: What did you love most about this whole journey for you?
Laura: I think it was the opportunity to play with these extraordinary characters.
So rarely does one find female characters like these, and to be able to have custody of them and know the lines that I'm writing will be performed by these incredible actresses.
They just felt like such a gift. I just absolutely loved writing it -- I can't put it any other way.
It was a bit of a dream job. To be able to finish the show? I would never have expected that. It's been incredible.
So Fanatics, are you as excited for the new season as Lauran Neal and we are?
Let us know in the comments below!
Killing Eve airs on Sundays at 8 pm Eastern while also premiering on AMC+ (the show will air episodes a week in advance for subscribers, except for the finale).
Michael Stack is a former writer for TV Fanatic..