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New Escapist Column! On How the Fungus at the Heart of “The Last of Us” is a Monstrous Metaphor…

I am doing weekly reviews of The Last of Us at The Escapist. They’ll be dropping every Sunday evening while the show is on, looking at the video game adaptation as the show progresses. To start with, though, a look at the season premiere.

The Last of Us is effectively a survival horror show. It’s very clearly riffing on archetypal zombie apocalypse narratives. The show’s opening scene evokes I Am Legend. Its depiction of the collapse of civilisation recalls everything from Night of the Living Dead to Shaun of the Dead. However, what makes this particular show interesting is the way that its central apocalyptic force, a infectuous fungus, ties into the show’s core themes of co-dependence and mutual support. The fungus at the heart of the show is a monstrous parasite, but The Last of Us argues that the only way human beings can survive is together.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.