The Last of Us review – one of the finest TV shows you will see this year
This desperately moving drama set in a zombie-ravaged US is a phenomenal blend of horror and heart, with a cast that could not be more perfect
What if it wasn’t a flu-like virus that threatened the existence of humankind, but a parasitic fungus that used rising temperatures to evolve and switch hosts, from ants to humans? That is the terrifying premise of The Last of Us, another post-apocalyptic prestige drama in a TV landscape that, for understandable reasons, is stuffed with game-over scenarios. While its zombie skeleton brings immediate comparisons to The Walking Dead, its beating heart is more in line with last year’s Station Eleven, with which it shares a surprisingly steady and meditative pace.
Much has been made of its origins as a video game, in part because the source material looked as if it might offer the best chance yet of a convincing transition from console to screen. The series was adapted by the game’s creator, Neil Druckmann, and Chernobyl’s showrunner, Craig Mazin, a combination that suggested it might buck the trend of video games reworked into another format. (Thirty years on, the Super Mario Bros film is still cited as a cautionary tale.)