Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey Star in New HBO Max Show, The Last of Us

“The Last of Us”, an HBO television series based on a video game by the same name, is now releasing episodes in 2023. The story is based on Joel(Pedro Pascal) who meets Ellie(Bella Ramsey). In an unforeseen circumstance they are forced to work together, trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic America.

 The show starts in a flashback set in Texas, 2003 where Joel and his family are living normally until suddenly a large outbreak of a fungal disease called cordyceps infects the whole world, all at once. This disease causes its host to become violent and attack any uninfected nearby, causing that attacked person to become infected as well. Joel and his family are caught in this chaos, although mostly remain unscathed, and the story picks up in the present, 2023.

20 years later the show switches, where viewers learn that Joel is now a smuggler, and about a girl named Ellie, who is being held captive by the Fireflies(a group revolting against the remaining government called FEDRA(Federal Disaster Response Agency)).

Joel goes to the Fireflies due to a subplot involving a deal. The leader of the Boston segment of the Fireflies tells Joel that they will give him what he wants if he takes Ellie and brings her to a group of Fireflies at the Capitol building in Boston, which Joel agrees to.

They eventually get to Boston’s capitol building, but due to some complications Ellie cannot go with the Fireflies they were meeting there. Joel’s party will have to figure out where to go next on their own, and decide to go to a friend for help.

During episode three, Joel and Ellie make their way to their friends Bill and Frank who hid from the FEDRA and now have a whole town as their turf and have a plethora of supplies that they may be willing to give up. Most of this episode is a flashback explaining what happened to them after the apocalypse.

Bill’s town in episode three is the largest change so far, and keeps the show from becoming too repetitive.  The show gives a more in depth explanation of who Frank is to Bill than in the game and as a result their relationship is more meaningful. This episode is also one of only a few representations in modern media of elderly LGBTQ+ relationships. The change in Bill’s town strays away from zombie apocalypse aspects typically shown in the media and shows a different side, a chance of some normalcy in those bleak, suffering times.

Naturally, many other changes were made between the show and the game as well, one example being cutting out many of the fighting sequences for better flow. While cutting out these scenes were for the better, some viewers argue that there weren’t enough. Also, in the game many of the segments tend to blend together because the player is basically doing the same thing, but in different circumstances. The show provided these different aspects of what can happen during the apocalypse while also making them their own significant moments.

This show provides people who are not interested or can’t play games  a good way to still experience it. It gives a further in depth explanation of how this world works and the relationships between characters. Viewers get a better look into who Joel is, not just being the playable character, viewers can see more of his personality and how he interacts with others, then in turn are able to see more of Ellie’s perspective.

Overall, “The Last of Us” being created into a show allows people who haven’t played the game a way to see it, while also making it more significant and interesting. Compared to other remakes, this show so far is doing considerably well.