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‘The Last of Us’: Will it be a smash or flop?


During the premiere of the anticipated “House of the Dragon”, excessive leaks and teasers of a new series appeared. HBO announced the premiere of a video game adaptation called “The Last of Us”, starring two “Game of Thrones” veteran actors.  

I was shook. 

Dystopian futuristic and post-apocalyptic genres are always going to be my number one pick of movies to watch on a Saturday night. Despite that most movies like “Divergent”, “The Host”, “The Maze Runner” and all possess great cinematography with chilling plots, this series looks equally intense. 

I could not wait to watch because of the history and thought process behind the show.

“The Last of Us”, created by Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann, takes place in 2023. This series is not based on true facts, but it was developed from the 2013 video game developed by Naughty Dog. 

I will avoid spoiling any of the scenes, but here is a basic run down of what to be prepared for: 

The world experiences a global pandemic after a mass fungal infection. Society falls, friends kill friends and everything people once knew is gone. The world has now become overrun by zombie-like creatures with monstrous spores growing out of their heads. Yet, that is just the beginning of the main character’s journey, Joel. He is portrayed by Pedro Pascal and tasked with smuggling 14-year-old Ellie, played by Bella Ramsey, across what used to be the United States. 

The Hollywood Reporter Magazine has raised questions whether this series will be another flop for the video game adaptation industry. 

The magazine mentions games from “Street Fighter” to “Doom” to “Halo” to “Assassin’s Creed.” It also says that “aside from a few kid-targeted titles like “Sonic” franchise, the result has been billions of pixels of meh.”

Hollywood Reporter asked Craig Mazin to shed light on how they captured the essence of the game without becoming disappointing like all the rest have.

“The way to break the video curse is to adapt the best video game story ever — not by a little, but by a lot,” Mazin said. “So I flat-out cheated.” 

Critics from Rotten Tomatoes are also noting how impressive the content is.

“Retaining the most addictive aspects of its beloved source material while digging deeper into the story, ‘The Last of Us’ is bingeworthy TV that ranks among the all-time greatest video game adaptations,” Critic Consensus said. 

Out of 7,547 ratings on the audience score, 91% loved the series.

“The Last of Us” has become HBO’s new raving television show, but the question still remains: will the next five episodes risk everything they have or become another gaming industry disappointment?

Overall, I give the series four Lopers out of five. 

I love the series so far. The story has adventure, but with trust issues. There’s comedy, but also death. It also opens so many question about what would happen if this actually occurred? We have already faced 249 pandemics, according to a Howie Baum, a student at the University of Cincinnati. However, I wouldn’t want to live in a world that is infested with gruesome fungi monsters who eat flesh. 

There are five episodes on HBO currently, but I definitely recommend sticking it out until the end. The series premieres every Sunday at 9 p.m.

With only five more episodes remaining, I’m excited to see where the journey of Joel and Ellie goes. 

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