Is The Last Of Us worth watching on Sky Atlantic?

Is The Last Of Us worth watching on Sky Atlantic?

Is The Last Of Us worth watching on Sky Atlantic?

Pedro Pascal as Joel and Bella Ramsey as Ellie in The Last Of Us.  (Sky/HBO)

Pedro Pascal as Joel and Bella Ramsey as Ellie in The Last Of Us. (Sky/HBO)

It’s game over for the so-called video game curse, as Sky Atlantic’s The Last Of Us, due for release on January 16, is a masterpiece, just like its source material.

When PlayStation developer Naughty Dog released The Last of Us in 2013, it seemed like an impassioned response to Roger Ebert’s claim that video games “can never be art.”

Visually stunning and maturely written, it was a captivating, character-driven epic that elevated storytelling to heights rarely seen in the medium of games, even if the story itself, Cormac McCarthy’s The Road with added zombies, it wasn’t entirely unique. The Last of Us is usually cited when debating whether games can be as good as movies and shows, so when HBO first announced that they would be adapting it for TV, anticipation (and expectations) reached a point. algid.

Read more: Bella Ramsey ‘encouraged’ not to play The Last Of Us games before joining the show

Set in post-apocalyptic America, The Last of Us follows Joel Miller (Pedro Pascal), a smuggler and black market dealer tasked with escorting 14-year-old Ellie (Bella Ramsey) across the United States. 20 years earlier, a worldwide epidemic caused by a mutated fungus wiped out human civilization.

Watch a trailer for The Last Of Us

Zombie-like creatures labeled “Infected” roam the Earth, while the remnants of the population try to survive in oppressive militarized quarantine zones. Those two decades have hardened Joel. She has become numb to her surroundings after suffering a terrible loss on the night of the outbreak.

At first, Joel is reluctant to hug his traveling companion, viewing her as nothing more than “special cargo.” In turn, Ellie is worried about this curmudgeon who is supposed to be her protector during her trip.

Read more: Everything new on Sky in January 2023

Over time, their arduous road trip through a country plagued by bandits and beasts forges a strong bond between the couple. Despite Joel’s jaded skepticism, he grows fonder of Ellie’s innocent enthusiasm and determination to accomplish her mission. Their travails from one dangerous situation to the next only strengthen their collective resolve, and you can’t help but become fully immersed in their blossoming relationship.

Pedro Pascal as Joel Miller and Bella Ramsey as Eliie Williams in The Last of Us.  (Sky/HBO)

Pedro Pascal as Joel Miller and Bella Ramsey as Eliie Williams in The Last of Us. (Sky/HBO)

Already familiar with one another from their work on Game of Thrones, Pascal and Ramsey have an undeniable chemistry that serves as the emotional core of The Last of Us. Given what Joel has been through, Pascal plays it with a bitter sadness that radiates across his screen.

It is devastatingly clear that he has been struggling to contain the pain that has consumed him for years. On the other hand, Ramsey has fun as the impetuous Ellie, who begins her adventure as a precocious teenager still dealing with the outside world.

Over time, we see her slowly realize the horrors around them, with one incident in particular (in the season’s fantastic penultimate episode) shaping her world view and forcing her to grow up faster than she ever expected. . Enhanced by two-time Oscar winner (and original game composer) Gustavo Santaolalla, it’s hard not to be moved every time they share a tender moment.

Pedro Pascal as Joel and Bella Ramsey as Ellie in The Last of Us.  (Sky/HBO)

Pedro Pascal as Joel and Bella Ramsey as Ellie in The Last of Us. (Sky/HBO)

The central plot of The Last of Us was already good enough to be an HBO series, but it helps that Chernobyl showrunner Craig Mazin has experience navigating through tragedy and the toll it takes on the human psyche. .

Along with the game’s creator, Neil Druckmann, they manage to succeed where so many adaptations failed: expanding on their source material while remaining faithful to it. From the jump, we get a glimpse of how a city’s population is affected by breaking news of a potential plague, and the backstories of some memorable supporting characters are fleshed out further, with an early episode sure to subvert. whatever expectations you may have. show.

Although the visceral violence, synonymous with the game, is reduced here, devoted fans will still appreciate the similarities between the two iterations in dialogue, tone, and dramatic approach.

Pedro Pascal as Joel Miller in The Last Of Us.  (Sky/HBO)

Pedro Pascal as Joel Miller in The Last Of Us. (Sky/HBO)

That radical departure is a stark reminder that The Last of Us was never about the monsters taking over the world, but about how people would be affected by such a catastrophic event. It’s a heartbreaking story that focuses on pain and how it pushes people to do terrible things in dire circumstances. By the season finale, it becomes painfully apparent that gray morality is the prevailing spirit of this unforgiving universe, and you’re left wondering if you’d make the same choices as our tragic heroes.

Read more: New to Disney+ in January 2023

For too long, attempts to alchemize games for the big and small screen have resulted in a plethora of mediocre offerings. Aside from Detective Pikachu and the Sonic the Hedgehog movies, the live-action adaptations of Street Fighter to Resident Evil have been the subject of mockery and mockery.

However, the complex and emotionally wrenching story of The Last of Us was always ideal for a television season. Cynical fans and critics with a deep love of the game’s lore won’t be disappointed, and what was once a groundbreaking PlayStation game could become HBO’s next big hit.

The Last of Us is available to watch on Sky Atlantic and NOW starting January 16. See a trailer.

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