I didn’t expect the second episode of THE LAST OF US to match the intensity and world-building of the premiere, but it comes close. As we follow Joel, Ellie, and Tess as they venture deeper into post-apocalyptic Boston, we continue to learn about the nature of the fungus and the myriad of ways that people can be infected – combined with the pre-credit vignettes of 2013, I imagine THE LAST OF US will slowly be revealing how unique and horrifying the Cordyceps fungus is.

Because we didn’t have quite as many characters as last week’s episode, our trio had a chance to shine. Pedro Pascal embodies this role, but it’s nothing we haven’t before (at least, so far.) But along with Bella Ramsey and Anna Torv, this episode shows the long-term, nuanced relationship between Joel and Tess and the budding (sporing?) relationship between them and Ellie.

All in all, this episode felt like a resolution to the events of the last. I just started playing the game (I’m behind our current point in the show), but I feel like the show has just finished the tutorial phase. I’m excited to see what the next episodes will bring, but I’m also a bit afraid (as I should be.)

THE LAST OF US S1E2 INFECTED is now available to stream on HBO Max.

Tarush Mohanti

Tarush Mohant is a playlist curator and music explorer, the creator of illussongs (illustrations of songs), and has a fitness plan motivated by action movies (running, climbing, swimming, hiking).

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