Killing Eve: Is Grizmet a Real Russian Village?

Villanelle, one of the central characters in ‘Killing Eve,’ alongside the titular Eve Polastri, is an assassin from Russia whose psychopathic tendencies clash with the other woman, crafting a complicated narrative of obsession and morality. As with any complicated personality, Villanelle’s backstory, particularly her childhood and early teenage years, serves to mold her into a cold-blooded killer. Likewise, in order to overcome years of apathy and brutality, Villanelle must first confront the part of her life that started it all.

As such, Villanelle’s home in the Russian motherland— a small village named Grizmet— becomes a part of the show’s narrative as the storyline delves into the woman’s past. However, in bringing the assassin’s backstory to life, the show ends up highlighting Grizmet in a way that is bound to make people wonder about its connections to reality.

Grizmet: A Fictional Town Abundant with Outdated Russian Stereotypes

The fifth episode of season 3, ‘Are You from Pinner?’ prominently features Grizmet as the center of the storyline’s unraveling. The narrative follows Villanelle on a quest to find her family and heal old wounds. Nevertheless, the trip only brings more complication for the woman, who leaves Grizmet with more inner turmoil than she possessed upon entry. While the village remains an excellent tool for exploring Villanelle’s backstory— it isn’t the most authentic account of modern Russian communities.

Despite sporting a Russian protagonist, ‘Killing Eve’ has been known to often equip inaccurate cliches and stereotypes in depicting Russian culture. Grizmet, Villanelle’s native village in the country, remains one such composite of cliches put together to build a fictionalized Russian community. Since the location’s introduction, several viewers have noted the inauthenticity of the village— from its internal culture to even its name, which apparently translates as Гризмет in the Russian script. Since the Russian name for the locality holds no translation or ties to the region’s nomenclature conventions, the name seems to be nonsensical for the most part.

Furthermore, the show’s depiction of the Russian village harbors multiple outdated references, such as the dung-throwing competition and the oatmeal cookies— that would have been more prevalent in the bygone era of the USSR. Consequently, it would seem the village of Grizmet remains steeped in unrealism as well as fictionality. Moreover, the show exhibits the same inauthenticity within its location choices. Reportedly, the show employs Romania as its filming location for several scenes depicting the Russian country.

Therefore, the Grizmet village has a real-life connection to Romanian Cucuieți Sudiț, which poses as the locality for the settlement’s train station. Likewise, Comandău, another Romanian community, became the background to represent the on-screen Russian village. As such, it remains evident that Grizmet is a fictional Russian village and sports many real-life inaccuracies to prove the same.

Read More: Did Jodie Comer Learn Russian? What’s Villanelle’s Accent in Killing Eve?