‘The Last of Us’ Episode 9 ‘Look for the Light’ Review: A Perfect Season Finale

‘The Last of Us’ Episode 9 ‘Look for the Light’ Review: A Perfect Season Finale

Bella Ramsey as Ellie in episode 9 of HBO’s The Final of Us.

The Final of Us got here to an in depth with Sunday’s episode 9, which solidified the primary season of the sequence as one of many biggest runs in current tv historical past.


What Neil Druckmann and Craig Mazin have achieved with this present is nothing in need of miraculous, and I’d dare to say, turned The Final of Us right into a worthy successor to Sport of Thrones on the community. Succession positively caught lots of people unexpectedly, however watching the most recent episode from an HBO present hasn’t been a real popular culture occasion for the reason that Westeros days. It’s been a minute since followers of the unique supply materials and new followers joined arms and watched collectively the occasions of the brand new sequence unfold, and all of it got here down to 1 purpose.


It’s not the truth that this was a preferred online game. It’s not about whether or not it stayed true to the supply materials, or deviated from it. It’s not about together with zombies (contaminated, I do know) or large motion set items. It’s concerning the writers growing characters and spending time to see them bond. Joel and Ellie received over the viewers’s hearts, and the true success of the present is how human it felt. And it felt so human as a result of folks made fallacious, however justified, choices on a regular basis; this episode is the final word instance of that.


Bella Ramsey as Ellie and Pedro Pascal as Joel in episode 9 of HBO’s The Final of Us.


Druckmann and Mazin share co-writing credit score on the finale, titled Search for the Gentle, with Ali Abbasi returning as director following final week’s episode. The title is an apparent callback to the premiere’s title, which contained the primary half of the saying: “While you’re misplaced within the darkness, search for the sunshine”. It’s not the one callback to the premiere that the episode has; in reality, the episode is basically a mirror picture of what occurred within the premiere.


The important thing to this episode’s success was cementing, as soon as and for all, the connection between Joel and Ellie, which we received from just a few exchanges and poignant moments originally of the episode. The sequence had already achieved the homework of increase the bond between these two, however by spending the primary 20 minutes of the episode falling in love with them, and most significantly, reflecting on how far they’ve come, individually and collectively, served as a definitive arrange for the decision of the episode, and the season general. And it is very important keep in mind that this can be a season finale — an ending that concludes the characters’ arcs from these previous few episodes, however one which additionally leaves the door open for extra issues to return.


Spoilers forward for The Final of Us episode 9


Ashley Johnson as Anna Williams in episode 9 of HBO’s The Final of Us.


We begin the episode with a fully devastating scene; Ashley Johnson, who performed Ellie within the sport, cameos because the younger lady’s mom, already hinting at why Ellie was immune within the first place. Watching a lady understand she is going to flip right into a zombie inside hours after giving start ought to be essentially the most heartbreaking second of another story; and but, in The Final of Us, it’s merely an afterthought after all the things we’ve been by, from Invoice and Frank, to Sam and Henry, to Riley, for starters. She palms it off to Marlene, who returns from the primary episode to play a pivotal position right here.


What comes subsequent are a few of my favourite 20 minutes from the present. Mirroring the preliminary exchanges between Joel and Ellie, one of many characters is usually quiet, whereas the opposite one may be very talkative; solely this time, the roles have been reversed. The 2 strategy the tip of their time journey along with a way of desperation to cherish each single second they’ve collectively. As typical with the sequence, I used to be on the sting of my seat ready for an contaminated to point out up from behind one of many automobiles, or a gaggle of raiders to interrupt the dialog. However this isn’t the sport, the place you must hold the participant engaged by forcing him to do one thing. Right here, Mazin and Druckmann can inform the story they need as a result of what’s participating concerning the present is these two characters speaking.


The Last of Us

Bella Ramsey as Ellie and Pedro Pascal as Joel in episode 9 of HBO’s The Final of Us.


By falling in love with the characters we will perceive why Joel determined to kill everybody on his method to saving Ellie later within the episode, even when they didn’t current any actual menace. Joel’s loss within the first episode comes again to hang-out him as soon as once more, making the affect even more durable from what was misplaced within the darkness, and us rallying behind him when he seems for the sunshine. Ellie is now the daughter that was as soon as taken from him, he’s realized over the previous few episodes, and his anger in the direction of the world manifests as soon as once more when he decides to save lots of her and let everybody else die.


Pedro Pascal’s highway to the Emmys simply cleared up for him after the ultimate moments of the present, once we see him bodily wrestle to mislead Ellie about what actually occurred. The ultimate scenes between the 2 are really stunning, and cap off the super accomplishment that The Final of Us has been. We get closure when Ellie brings up Riley once more, and confirms what all of us suspected — she was pressured to kill her in that mall. It was the proper method to deal with it, as a result of it wasn’t one thing we wanted to see in episode 7, however Mazin and Druckmann nonetheless discovered a method to ship it to us as a method to construct character and relationship. It additionally leaves the door extensive open to a nail-biting season 2, which is able to hopefully come earlier than we understand.


In the event you haven’t, you’ll be able to try all of our opinions of The Final of Us right here. I’ve no drawback saying that this is among the finest seasons of tv I’ve ever seen, and I already can’t wait to rewatch it.