Jump to content
NEurope
Sign in to follow this  
Happenstance

The Last of Us (TV)

Recommended Posts

I'm looking forward to this. I'm ready. It all hinges on the writing and performances of the two leading actors. It's also a little difficult when you've already got god-tier source material, and I'd hate for this to be constantly compared to the that. It should be its own thing.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
39 minutes ago, Fierce_LiNk said:

I'm looking forward to this. I'm ready. It all hinges on the writing and performances of the two leading actors. It's also a little difficult when you've already got god-tier source material, and I'd hate for this to be constantly compared to the that. It should be its own thing.

I think this will happen whether we like it or not. The game is already a movie/Tv show anyway. It's gonna be hard not to compare them both.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah I do hope this turns out well. I really liked what I saw of the story in the game but I hated the gameplay so much I never got to see it all so this should be exactly what I needed.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If the show is half as good as the trailers...it's gonna be awesome :D 
They seem to have nailed the atmosphere.

And of course they went with Take on Me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay that trailer actually got me interested. The first is one of the few games I've actually finished although I can't remember much about it other than the giraffes (and I think one mission where I had to kill a deer and I dislike those) but the visuals of the trailer were impressive. 

And the song choice was unexpected. 

Although now I want to watch that Covid Community table read thing if for no other reason that to hear Pedro Pascal giggling about semen. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ashley said:

The first is one of the few games I've actually finished although I can't remember much about it other than the giraffes (and I think one mission where I had to kill a deer and I dislike those) but the visuals of the trailer were impressive. 

You dislike those missions or deer? :p

1 hour ago, Ashley said:

 

And the song choice was unexpected. 

It features in The Last of Us Part II. It's one of my favourite scenes in the game.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any missions forcing you to kill an animal. One of the SE Tomb Raiders did the same. 

I never got round to playing part 2 so the song was unexpected to me at least 😋

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, Hero-of-Time said:

It features in The Last of Us Part II. It's one of my favourite scenes in the game.

Gotta admit, that rendition made me tear up when I got to it in the game...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm intrigued and will very likely watch. I don't know much about the video games other than the very main things of it. And of course the outrage with the latest game.

If I'm remembering correctly, the first game (post-flashback?) opens up in Pittsburgh. I wonder if they'll start the series off here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just finished Episode 1: When You're Lost In The Darkness.

I have some scattered thoughts to share, and always knew this would be an interesting show for me to watch at this time just given how many times I played through TLOU last year alone (four times, by the way), so it's hard to not draw very direct and specific comparisons with the game burned into my mind. Yes, I will be comparing this with the game, but no, I won't be jumping ahead and spoiling the game/story, I'll be focusing on the show.

Anyways, scattered thoughts:

Spoiler

• love that we're getting to hear some of Gustavo Santaolalla's OST from the game in this. 

• the opening was...interesting? Going back to 1968 for an explanation of fungi, and giving an example of cordyceps in ants specifically, on a talk show/televised discussion was certainly a decision, but I'm not sure it's one I feel really elevates the source material? Maybe it's just to explain to a more general audience explicitly what's going on, but I feel like TLOU's opening credits did a wonderful job of just diving in and giving you enough of an idea as to what's going on – I don't think you need to be as explicit as this when it comes to a fictional outbreak. 

• didn't know ahead of time the outbreak was going to take place in 2003 (obviously for that 20 year jump to be in 2023, our modern day), and that's an interesting decision. Guess we're keeping an eye out for PS2s rather than PS3s as Easter eggs?

• speaking of the outbreak, something that caught my attention in this episode was just how much they wanted to seem to add what I think, in the eyes of the game's story and extremely lean and brisk pacing (no doubt down to the medium), was what felt like completely unnecessary exploration of what happens leading up to some of the game's key events. Now, I don't mind fleshing things out, but while seeing more of Outbreak Day and adding some tension/things for people who have experienced the story before is nice in that it tries to add a new layer, I feel like it buries the lead on adapting one of the best narrative openings of a video game period, which seems like such a shame. I don't know, maybe this is closer to Neil's original vision (though I doubt it), but seeing how the day before Outbreak Day played out didn't really add much for me: did I need to see Sarah going and getting Joel's watch fixed rather than her just giving him the fixed watch? Did I need to see her hanging out with the neighbours in the afternoon? Did I need her being the one to go over to the neighbours' house and almost get killed? Did I need an explanation for where Joel went when he's not in the house after Sarah wakes up? No, honestly, not at all.

Ditto for everything leading up to Joel waking up 20 years later – the kid we cut to (urgh, that's some weak cut compared to the original, I'm sorry), the weird CG shot of Boston, seeing what Tess went through earlier in the day before Joel wakes up, and so on. 

The shock of what happens and how quickly it happens in the game is what makes the game's opening so strong, and it takes us a bit over 30 minutes to get to the time skip to 20 years later in this episode, a feat which the game achieved in half the time or even less. I can see what they were going for – in lieu of us inhabiting Sarah's shoes, they wanted us to become endeared to and empathise with her before Joel loses her, but I don't think spending the day with her made her loss any more tragic than if it stuck to the game's script. 

• briefly, speaking of the game's script, it's funny to me how they copy some lines and interactions incredibly closely, but at other times I'm almost distracted by when they switch it up; it's definitely more a distraction just because the game is pretty fresh and burned into my mind, but I feel the need to mention it. For example, when Joel jokes about his watch still being broken, because the interaction flows pretty much the exact same, my mind instinctively jumped to Sarah sarcastically going "oh HA HA" as she retorts in the game, but being surprised by the line we end up with because it doesn't match ("That's lame. You're lame."). It's a small thing, but I'm really curious about why they decided to switch that line up considering how close the rest of it is. 

• speaking of switching things up, found it hilarious that the burning house of their neighbour was on the opposite side of the road (it's on the left in the show and on the right in the game). Felt like switching things up by any means possible to try to keep it somewhat different/fresh :laughing:

• okay, so if there's one *actual* major issue I have with this episode, it's how they end up crashing. Loved the fakeout of the "look out!" and the other vehicle stopping, and I then expected a vehicle to come from the other side and catch those of us that played the game off guard. Haha, nope. Let's go as elaborate and as Hollywood as we can and have a plane crash and have some of the debris fly through the rear window and have that cause the crash. Urgh... *sigh*

• found it hilarious just how fast the Infected was that chased Joel through the diner, dude was clearly a track athlete the way he was sprinting and leaping around. 

• there's a minor change to Sarah's death scene that felt absolutely major to me, and that's the way the soldier acts after saving Joel and Sarah from the Infected. In the game, he calls it in and his superior advises that he kill them (we don't hear this), to which he seems shocked and responds that there's a little girl – it's clear he's hesitating. In the show? "Yes sir", "yes sir", "yes sir". Again: urghhhhhhhh. There's so much lost in that minor change I feel, as you go from someone who reluctantly carries out orders to a mindless drone executing Order 66 (he does still say "I'm sorry" when pointing his gun at a beaten Joel, so I guess that's something, but it feels like we lost something here). It emphasises the tragedy of the situation, not just the loss of Sarah for Joel, but even for the soldier losing a piece of himself. 

• love the addition of Joel saying "Tommy help me!", felt like a very natural addition for that scene. 

• again...the cut to 20 years later was. so. damn. weak. compared to the cut we get to Joel in the game. I really want to emphasise this. My eyes rolled a little when I saw what they were doing. 

• and again, didn't care to see what Joel and Tess were up to before Joel wakes up. Really don't feel like it added much. 

• curious that they've already set Tommy up as being in Wyoming, but needing saving? Wonder if Jackson's going to have any major changes to it's story beats based on this (such as his reason for being out there? The show makes it sound, at least so far, like he's been detained and is in serious trouble, whereas in the game Tommy isn't mentioned for a good while longer)

• Ellie not knowing who Marlene is until the day of is certainly another interesting choice compared with the games. Especially when Marlene knows who Riley is, seems like a super strange choice. 

• Ellie's interaction with Joel about the 80's song and it being for trouble was probably my favourite addition to the story's introduction. It adds so much implied depth to Ellie's character. 

• Joel seemingly knowing who Frank is, or being aware of him, is one of the tweaks I actually don't mind. It makes perfect sense. 

• the show committed what I feel is a cardinal sin in live-action by having an explicit flashback to justify Joel punching the crap out of that FEDRA soldier. Just...subtlety guys, come on. 

Overall, for a first episode lasting nearly 80 minutes, if this is a sign of things to come, then this is very easily going to be one of the best adaptations of a video game to live-action to date. It's a bit shy of perfect, but honestly, I'm surprised they got it as close to perfect as they did. I'll gladly take it. 

That being said, there are already some creative decisions made in this first episode which have me scratching my head a little bit when I think of how much the game absolutely nailed every story beat we've seen so far, and it falls short of reaching that bar a few times. 

With all that in mind, I'm going to give this first episode a 9/10 – I can't wait to see how they go about adapting the rest, and certainly hope they can stick to this high bar they've now set themselves, but am a little nervous about how other major scenes might be tweaked in this adaptation. 

On 12/9/2022 at 8:49 PM, FalcoLombardi said:

If I'm remembering correctly, the first game (post-flashback?) opens up in Pittsburgh.

It opens up in Boston, Pittsburgh comes down the road (heh) :p

Edited by Julius
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As someone who has never played the games and doesn’t know anything about this, is it worth a watch?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, BowserBasher said:

As someone who has never played the games and doesn’t know anything about this, is it worth a watch?

My opinion? Absolutely. 

Again, only one episode in, so it's tough to tell how it'll flow overall, meaning I'm not sure if it'll be better to wait and binge it all or just keep up with it weekly, but - if they can keep up the pace they've set with the first episode - a 9/10 adaptation of a 10/10 video game story is still excellent and well worth checking out. It's really clear that they've taken the time and care the source material deserves with this adaptation with what we've seen so far. 

Would love to read your thoughts if you do check it out, especially as someone who isn't familiar with the source material, because I feel like that would be a very valuable perspective to hear! :peace:

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like the adaptation has turned out well.  Good to hear.

I mean, TLOU was basically a HBO show in video game form anyway; so it should've always have been ripe for this kind of adaptation, but it could easily have gone wrong if they started messing around with the source material.

By all accounts though, it sounds like it's very faithful to the original game.  Hopefully it sparks a trend for other "movie games" to get similarily faithful adaptations :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Dcubed said:

I mean, TLOU was basically a HBO show in video game form anyway; so it should've always have been ripe for this kind of adaptation, but it could easily have gone wrong if they started messing around with the source material.

Yep, totally agree. I mean we've still got eight episodes to go, so it could still go that way...but I'm pretty confident it won't. Well, I really hope it won't... :p

I think the interesting thing about the games you mention which are already heavily reliant on narrative that could be adapted is that it speaks more than anything else to strong writing, whether it be in terms of dialogue, pacing, or structure, in ways many other games just aren't (and in fairness, may not even be attempting to). I think it just speaks to a very strong understanding of good storytelling based on the foundations of the last 50 years of film and learning lessons from that and then finding ways to make that fun to experience interactively. 

I think the really exciting thing with narratives in games like TLOU is that we are still incredibly early in terms of really seeing where great storytelling in games can go, and I do think the possibilities are pretty much endless. Not to say there weren't great narratives in games before TLOU and the like, but being able to convey emotions through voice and motion capture in HD allows for easy interpretation of the source material.

I think of something like MGS which is heavily reliant on its medium at some of its most interesting story beats, and it's clear there's just so much in a game of that time that would be difficult to translate without losing something – the experience of it being a game for and depending on the medium for great moments for one, but then also the limitations of the hardware really help your imagination to fill in the gaps.

Bit of a ramble but oh well, that's what I'm here for  :p

11 minutes ago, Dcubed said:

By all accounts though, it sounds like it's very faithful to the original game.  Hopefully it sparks a trend for other "movie games" to get similarily faithful adaptations :)

Looks over at Uncharted...

giphy.webp?cid=6c09b952363155f1b1ce1478c

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a bunch of UK-only stats, and shouldn't be much of a surprise, but the show has resulted in a huge jump in sales for both Remastered and Part I. 

Seems like it would be really smart to announce something around the time the show ends, huh? :p

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Spoiler

OK, so first things first, I did get through it all without getting bored of it. As with all first episodes I guess there is always a bit of introducing the characters and story, so it took a little for me to really get into it. Seems there was going to be a few characters being introduced at first there, but by the end it seemed to have not been as many as I thought and the main few seems to have converged and its all go from here.

I'm assuming if I knew more of it then somethings would have made sense there and then, or I would have got even more out of it, but even without, it was a good start to keep me interested and waiting for the next. I'll hold off on more for now as like I said, I don't know too much about it all so want to let things settle and progress to see how it goes. But first impressions were good and I liked what I saw so far.

@Julius

Right, decided to give the first episode a go as I thought if I didn't like it then I haven't wasted time by waiting for them all.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Already been renewed for a second season after just two episodes have aired:

Find this super interesting, and I don't feel like it's a foregone conclusion that they jump straight to adapting Part II.

For one, II takes place roughly five years after I, so they might want Bella Ramsey to age up a bit (was shocked to learn she's already 19!). I could see them maybe trying to do that through having her lose weight (I think her round face and cheeks are definitely what helps her portray an early teen), and considering where Part II takes Ellie it would make sense, but personally I'm never a fan of that being forced on someone for a role. 

On the other hand, though, I don't think you'd call an adaptation of Part II, well, The Last of Us Season 2? At least not with Druckmann around, considering how clear an homage it is to The Godfather and Part II, which he loves. A second season could absolutely get rebranded to Part II down the line and this could just be an early marketing thing, but I also feel like waiting a few years and then coming back to adapt Part II is the obvious way to secure platform growth (more people will watch the show in the years that pass once it's finished ending, streaming will become more widespread, etc.). 

Selfishly, I also do just think they could do a prequel series here with Tom and Joel earlier on in their adventures, which is a new and unique story they could tell designed from the ground-up for this medium. Druckmann seems like the type (kind of like Kojima) where he loves the idea of tackling actual film/TV just as much as he does games, so I feel like not needing to adapt an already beloved story could give him free reign again. I also just think it'd be smart to potentially tie into their new live service Factions game. And it bides them time to prep for adapting Part II, which will likely be at least twice as long as adapting Part I, and is much, much, much heavier. 

Anyways, as for why this is happening after only two episodes, well the numbers and growth they've seen week-on-week over at HBO are all kinds of nuts: 

Lastly, I didn't write up my thoughts on Episode 2, and I don't think I'll flesh it out as much as I did for Episode 1: it's still a great adaptation (still solid 9/10 for me), but much more than in Episode 1, there's a lot of creative liberty taken. Some additions, like the intro, I loved, whereas elsewhere they've grabbed distinct lines from later on in the game than when the show is currently up to and kind of forced it in earlier, which was...honestly, really disorienting. And the way the episode ends, well, that's a very interesting change (you'll know what I'm talking about if you've seen the episode). There's also a change to how the Infected work here compared to the games which makes me wonder if it's a hint at some mechanics for next-gen TLOU, such as Part III or Factions II? 

But yeah, still 9/10 for me. Can't wait for Monday! 

Edited by Julius

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Finished catching up on this week's episode, Episode 3: Long Long Time

Spoiler

Once we got around 20 minutes in, with time jumps taking place to bridge the gap between 2003 and 2023 not completely bridging that gap, and not seeing the main street or the school or any Infected inside Bill's Town, I knew that there were going to be changes, especially when I started to think about how difficult it would be to have Infected running like crazy in narrow spaces, or how you'd shoot the upside down chain scene, and so on. I had an increasing suspicion as the episode went on that Joel and Ellie were going to make it there to retrieve the car, and nothing else would happen in Bill's Town in the "modern day".

Going into this episode I expected flashbacks to Bill's and Frank's meeting, how they would eventually fall out, and just flesh them out in general – flashbacks which we would never really see in the game, because it just wouldn't be suited to the medium, but it is suited for television. 

What I wasn't expecting to get hit by trucks filled with emotional bricks, and found myself tearing up towards the end (the neurodegenerative disease Frank is implied to have struck a chord, as did how they went out), which very rarely happens to me with live-action television. The choice of songs were brilliant too - On the Nature of Daylight and Long Long Time - as was the timing of bringing in Vanishing Grace from the game's OST. 

We're three episodes in of nine now, and while the first two episodes certainly felt like a near 1:1 adaptation with some reshuffling (for pacing and to throw off players a little bit, and definitely more changes in Episode 2 than in Episode 1, which was virtually 1:1 with some stuff added in) and stuff thrown in to give context to new viewers, this is the first episode to feel like it was taking the source material of the game, fleshing it out, and taking it to greater heights. Again, still some weird stuff when it comes to reshuffling the deck on lines, like getting the final line from the Boston QZ at the end of this location instead, but it still kind of works, it's just a little distracting. 

To sum up my thoughts, this wasn't just a great episode of The Last of Us, this is a damn great episode of television, and a beautiful one at that. There is no doubt in my mind that this is the best episode yet, and honestly, I think it's going to be a hard one to top. That I'm saying that about this part in the story, though, when my favourite parts are yet to come? 

69b2e69846aad72a618340d4f4da33f1.gif

This episode is a 10/10 for me, the first (and hopefully not last) episode I'm going to give that score to. Adapted excellently where necessary, built out the world naturally, and expertly handled fleshing out two characters we simply didn't get enough of in the game and were excavated wonderfully in a medium suited more to doing so than a game. 

BRA-f'ing-VO :bowdown:

If you aren't watching this show already, I've got to ask – where the hell have you been, what on earth are you doing, and why are you still waiting for me to finish this sentence before bringing up Episode 1 on your TV?!

Edited by Julius

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a damn fine TV. Not sure how that happened. This and Andor were definitely two that I had low expectations for, and couldn't have been more wrong.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

×