(Contains spoilers for The Last Of Us Part: II)
Your eyes are not deceiving you. Jordy’s back with another blog post on a website I probably won’t return to again for months. My return is spurned by a great injustice, and as I’m a recent graduate with nothing but time on my hands, I might as well say something.
The Last of Us: Part II was one of the most hotly anticipated games of 2020. I, much like most who played the first game, was a massive fan of the first. I even went as far as to avoid trailers so I can enjoy it without any of the surprises that can be spoiled in said trailers. I even managed to avoid the leaks, which usually hit me like a hangover does a depressed 25 year old.
The initial reviews were very glowing, painting a bright and painful picture of the game.
And then the player reviews started to roll in. It was like watching a church on fire, only the fire was started by the congregation.
There are enough that to focus on all of them would require another post and even more work, so if you’re interested in learning more about those issues, you can read more here.
The Last of Us: Part II is, at it’s core, a cautionary tale about revenge, as told by our protagonists Ellie and Abby. Each is painful and full of harsh truths in a cruel world, forcing both of them to confront the darkest aspects of themselves.
We’ll start with Ellie, the beloved, foul-mouthed teenage girl from the first game whose now a young adult navigating the loss of her father figure, Joel, the protagonist of the first game. Ellie’s story is interesting, as we see her sacrifice bits of her morals on a dark, painful journey. It’s a heartbreaking tale, as Ellie struggles to let go of hate at the sacrifice of family and friends.
Abby’s story follow’s a different, but parallel path. Abby brutally kills Joel in the prologue of the game, seeking revenge for Joel killing her father in the climax of the previous game.
Abby’s story shows the consequence of seeking revenge. She’s a member of the Washington Liberation Front, a paramilitary organization at war with the Seraphites, a religious cult. While going on her journey, she encounters Seraphite siblings Yara and Lev, thus beginning a trail of redemption that mirrors Joel’s own story in the previous game.
But as she bonds with these new people in her life, her friends are quickly and violently meeting their end at the hands of Ellie and Tommy, Joel’s brother.
The two are on an inevitable crash course of young adult angst, and it does it surprisingly well.
It’s a painful story, as it should be. It’s a tale of moral ambiguity where each protagonist is meant to be the villain of the others story. It takes similar elements of what made the original game so powerful: it’s human. Humanity is complex and emotional, and The Last of Us: Part II captures that in an agonizing, yet beautiful picture.
Hello! My name is Jordan but you can call me Jordy! I’m an aspiring young writer/creator who focuses primarily on video arts such as movies and video games, as well as anything else that catches my attention. I’m a pretty mellow, introverted guy but I welcome conversation so feel free to reach out! Thank you for taking the time to read this!