The Last of Us Season 1 Ep 4 is the fourth chapter of the first season of an American post-apocalyptic zombie horror TV series, based on the best-selling video game of the same name. The series stars Pedro Pascal as Joel and Bella Ramsey as Ellie, as the duo make a dangerous trek across the dystopian American landscape seeking a cure against the fungal infection that runs through the veins of Ellie.
S P O I L E R S
Entitled “Please Hold on to My Hand”, The Last of Us Season 1 Ep 4 finds our two heroes making a wrong turn into a deadly scenario that could cost them their lives. After finding the highway blocked, Joel tries to find a route back through a town that has overthrown FEDRA and exacting retribution accordingly. The duo’s truck is ambushed and they have to kill their attackers to survive.
However grim the situation might appear to be, for some reason, the violence is sugar-coated, with deaths all taking place off-camera. We feel that this is a poor narrative choice as we are unable to experience the ugliness of the violence and especially death. This choice does a tremendous disservice to the plot and the characters. We are introduced to Kathleen, the leader of the townspeople, and while the episode attempts to portray her as a cold-bloodied killer (like Joel), we are denied a depiction of the killing. Why?
This self-censorship is somewhat surprising for a HBO series considering the shocking violence seen in The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones. Is it because this is a video game adaptation? Especially after the ‘feel-good’ vibes of episode 3, there is no intrusion of the dark and gritty real world to keep things in proper perspective.
The Last of Us Season 1 Ep 4 was thus disappointing for the reasons enumerated above. No tension or engagement whatsoever… boring.
… still there’s more …