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Season One [Premiere]

Aired On: Max

Release Date: 01/15/23
Action. Adventure. Drama.

"Joel and Ellie, a pair connected through the harshness of the world they live in, are forced to endure brutal circumstances and ruthless killers on a trek across post-pandemic America."


After nearly 10 years, we have finally gotten a live-action adaptation to the seminal video game, The Last of Us. The gripping survival-horror game defined the late years of the Playstation 3 generation, and it was really only a matter of time until we got an adaptation into live-action. For years, Sony threw around the idea for a movie, they even once had Sam Raimi as a producer, but ultimately the rights to the property were acquired by HBO. So now, Chernobyl’s Craig Mazin, alongside creative director Neil Druckmann, bring The Last of Us to live-action with a tremendously promising premiere that not only proves to be entirely faithful, but also digs deeper and draws certain ideas even further. 


The Last of Us takes place twenty years after civilization is brought down by an infectious cordycep. Joel, played by Pedro Pascal, is a smuggler - bringing unauthorized material in and out of Boston’s quarantine zone.  In the Quarantine zone, we get peeps at an underground rebellion called The Fireflies who are being hunted by FEDRA, who hold Marshal Law over the zone. He’s soon tasked by The Fireflies to escort Ellie, played by Bella Ramsey, outside of the quarantine zone and through the United States. This premiere only shows the start of their relationship and promising hints on what’s to come. It already seems as if Pescal has Joel down, and Ramsey’s approach so far seems very graceful and true to the character. 

In reality, it all comes down to the characters and how close to the original story Mazin and Druckmann want to stay for this series. So far, it’s nearly one-to-one, with some added characters and ideas added to certain dynamics, but any other efforts to be different is solely to flesh out characters and ideas even further than were explored in the video game. These efforts were more than worth it as they delivered some of the best aspects about this premiere episode including once spectacular detail in its first half. In a way, it was like playing the game for the first time, but this time, it was bigger and almost better. There were more details to sink into and explore - Mazin and Druckmann bring this to TV as if it was a story that was meant to be told on TV, and to see how this story revolutionized the future of storytelling in gaming, I can only imagine what this is going to do to the medium of television. This looks to most definitely be The Last of Us adaptation that does true justice to the video game - and we’re about to get weeks and weeks of more emotional punishment, devastation, and bleakness, as Joel and Ellie find their way through this world together. I cannot wait to take all of it in.

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