There are lots of enviable things in the BBC series Killing Eve. Sandra Oh's hair, for starters, Jodie Comer in that Molly Goddard dress we still haven't stopped thinking about from last season, Fiona Shaw's ability to look down her nose at anyone who displeases her in the most magnificent manner.
But the thing we want most in the whole wide world? That apartment in Paris.
Villanelle (Comer), international assassin and millennial psychopath, may have settled into a new floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall brown apartment in London as she works as a sort of honorary MI6 agent in season 2, but we're still holding out for her to return to her stylishly decaying apartment in Paris. Think: peeling wallpaper, high ceilings, incredibly tall windows with shutters that open to reveal views of Montmartre and the rooftops of Paris beyond. It's incredibly chic, but also incredibly eclectic.
Amazingly though, the apartment isn't actually real. It was actually a studio set built in the U.K. The view of Paris is an amazingly detailed backdrop, lit as if it were in daylight.
"We wanted to create space for [Villanelle] that was both real, but also a fantastic space, a grandiose apartment, but without being showy," production designer Kristian Milstead told Apartment Therapy back in April 2018. "We don't want her to live like a supermodel. She needs to have some darkness to her world."
Just because the apartment wasn't technically a real space wasn't to say that everything in the apartment was crafted from scratch too. The old-but-expensive looking fixtures and furnishings? All sourced from days gone by. Even the bedspread — the one Villanelle asks about during a kill, and then orders for her own home later — is antique or second hand.
"If you go to most people's houses, the furniture wasn't all bought at one time, it's acquired over time," says executive producer Lee Morris. "So we've tried to give the impression of something that has organically developed."
This look is no doubt helped along by the huge number of objects in the house. Every surface, shelf, and wall is covered in eclectic ornaments, posters, and eccentricities — from a gold cast skull to a Soundgarden poster, empty Champagne bottles to a decades-old radio. Jodie explains: "There's loads of little knick-knacks that just don't look like they belong in the same room. But I feel like she's collected them all because she travels a lot." Sadly, something tells us Villanelle didn't put all those items in storage when she fled the Paris apartment at the start of season 2.
For Phoebe Waller-Bridge (creator of Fleabag and the one responsible for bringing Killing Eve to the silver screen) the apartment perfectly sums up Villanelle. "I said [to Kristian] she has style but she also doesn't completely know who she is and he managed to crash those things together so beautifully. So you walk into this gorgeous flat that does feel like [it belongs to] a young woman in her twenties who just so happens to have wigs and guns in her drawers."
And Jodie Comer, Phoebe says, was the perfect actor to express this mishmash."You'll make the mistake of falling in love with her," she laughs. "And then she'll kill you!"