Thoughts about The Last of Us
Spoiler Warning: This post discusses the game’s ending!!!
I finished The Last of Us a couple of months ago and I have to say the production values are way up there; this is excellent work in every department!
But I want to talk a little about the ending. You see, what happened while I was playing it is that I died (like I did many times during the course of the game), but the way that cut-scene was longer than the others and very well staged, I thought it was the REAL ending.
And I was floored. It totally worked for me. Joel was carrying an unconscious Ellie, desperately looking for a door that would lead them outside to freedom. But the armed guards were close behind them; I could hear their voices. The desperation of Joel was palpable, the tension so high. Until finally the guards caught up top to Joel and threw him to the ground. It was chaotic; Joel was thrashing, shouting through his tears for the guards not to take Ellie away. And then one of the guards put his gun to Joel’s head. The gunshot sound boomed and the screen went dark. It was over.
I was speechless. It was a perfect ending in my opinion; Joel stayed true to himself until the end. He wanted to save Ellie, but also to keep her for himself. For very understandable selfish reasons. It was a desperate gesture but it made sense. While the armed forces were too much for him; there was no doubt in my mind that they would manage to stop Joel and snatch Ellie. The odds were too much. Yes, the two protagonists had died, but humanity stood a chance, thanks to Ellie’s sacrifice. Dark. Tragic. Yet also hopeful.
But I guess it’s a little like Blade Runner’s “true” ending; it was probably too much to stomach for people and instead Joel makes it out and his (and Ellie’s) life goes on. Not the ending I would have chosen. Still, that’s one utterly brilliant game.