“The Last of Us” is a perfect live action adaptation


Image via Sony Pictures Television

After playing the game “The Last of Us” early last year, I was astounded by how the story made me feel so attached to the two main characters. That feeling came right back to me as I made it to the finale of the “The Last of Us” show. Both the show and game filled me with so much love for the characters, and every single detail of the world around. “The Last of Us” is the most perfect game-to-live action adaptation I’ve ever seen.

Released Jan. 15, “The Last of Us” follows Joel (Pedro Pascal), a man torn with emptiness after losing his daughter in an outbreak of evolved cordyceps (a type of fungi that essentially turns humans into zombies). Years after her death, Joel takes on the task of delivering Ellie (Bella Ramsey), a young immune girl, across the country, hoping to find a cure for humanity. Instead of just a world ravaged by the infected like they expected, the two find people overtaken by the apocalyptic world.

The show takes the already complex and intricate plot from the games and expands on everything. From side characters with little-to-no background in the game, to simple cities that Joel and Ellie visit along their way, the series gives time to expand all of it. For example, one of the side characters, Bill (Nick Offerman) had almost no backstory in the games, but in the show, he was given more background and character development. His overall significance in the story changed, but that didn’t hold him back from being a great addition to the story.

Before the premiere of “The Last of Us,” I was skeptical of how well the writers were going to adapt the game to the show, but I was wrong to question it. The series does a phenomenal job of mixing scenes ripped straight from the game, as well as adding new scenes on top of it. It really goes to show how much the team behind “The Last of Us” cared about the work they were doing. 

One of the show’s greatest strengths and  flaws was the lack of infection in a series about a world supposedly overrun by the infected. It was something I didn’t think about until the credits started to roll on the finale, and in the end, the lack of this aspect makes the world feel empty at times. However, this also allows the series to show even bigger underlying threats than the infected, like the people who live in this world. You see some become followers to ruthless leaders and some religious followers of a cannibalistic community. 

It encapsulates everything I wanted out of the show, from the subtle callbacks to the game to some shot-for-shot recreations of fan favorite scenes. With season two already announced from the high fan reception to the show, there will be plenty more to come from the series. If you have any interest in the apocalyptic world, then “The Last of Us” is the show for you.