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The Eastern Echo Sunday, May 19, 2024 | Print Archive
The Eastern Echo

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Review: The last of 'The Last of Us' season one is gripping

The television adaptation of "The Last of Us" has finished its first season. The show followed the story of the first game throughout its entirety.

The video game inspired HBO Max show "The Last of Us" has completed the release of its first season, bringing out a plethora of emotions for all of its avid watchers.

Thankfully, viewers will get to see more of this post-apocalyptic story in the coming seasons that the show was recently granted. Luckily, fan-favorite Bella Ramsey will still be cast as Ellie.

Synopsis

In the last half of the season, the focus of the story is much less centered on the infected and more focused on the established characters of Joel, Ellie, and everyone who has influenced them so far.

The relationship between Joel and Ellie becomes more clear and solidified in these episodes.

More cameos appear of actors from the original video game, including Troy Baker who played Joel, Ashley Johnson who played Ellie, and Laura Bailey who played Abby.

Bailey's cameo is especially important to remember for when the second season is released, as Abby will be an incredibly important character.

Closeness to the Game

Most notably, episode seven follows "The Last of Us: Left Behind" DLC (downloadable content). This solidifies the importance of the DLC and its role within the story of the main game.

This episode is also the only episode that shows Ellie living a nearly normal teenage life, until tragedy strikes yet again.

Deviating from the Game

The weapon that Ellie uses in episode eight is a gun, whereas in the video game, she uses a bow. This change wasn't terribly significant, but it does change how the audience perceives Ellie attracting unwanted visitors through the combination of tracks and the sounds of gunfire.

Implications for characters in the game are confirmed in this episode and have the potential to both trigger and empower survivors of grooming and sexual assault, so be mindful of your journey (if that applies to you) while watching this episode.

The final episode is much less physically violent. Joel takes Ellie to the car in peace, rather than while fighting off enemies. This furthers sympathy for all of the characters and creates a canon ending that sets up the next season of the show.

What Could've Been Better

In my opinion, episode six was almost completely character-focused instead of plot-focused. I prefer a healthy medium between these two and want the characters and the decisions that they make to drive the plot; the show meets my standards for this in all other episodes.

While I understand the necessity of the "will they? won't they?" of episode six and how it strains and strengthens character relations, I would've preferred to see this in a more plot-centered way, like while on a mission instead of resting.

The Last of My Words

I would rate the last half of the debut season for "The Last of Us" a 9 out of 10.