/The Last Of Us Show Finally Explains Ellie’s Immunity

The Last Of Us Show Finally Explains Ellie’s Immunity

Anna is seen in a forest clinging to a tree while looking at something in the distance with a shocked expression.

Image: hbo

As an adaptation, HBO The last of us It has been a fairly faithful recreation of the original Naughty Dog game. However, during the first season yesterday final, “Look For The Light,” the HBO series explored a character the game had only talked about in passing mentions. In doing so, the show reveals a long unanswered question from the source material: why is Ellie immune to the cordyceps fungus that has destroyed the rest of the world?

Why is Ellie immune?

The episode begins with a flashback to Ellie’s mother Anna, played by Ashley Johnson, who plays Ellie in the games. She is running from an infected while she too goes into labor. she holeHe is in an old farmhouse with only a razor to protect himself. Eventually, the infected finds her and the two have a scratch on the floor in which Anna is bitten, but she also gives up.it’s Ellie’s birth in the process. Anna cuts the umbilical cord, but this occurs after she has been bitten, and she herself begins to succumb to the infection. When Marlene, a longtime friend and leader of the Fireflies, arrives, Anna lies and says that she cut the cord before she was bitten, and asks Marlene to find a home for Ellie and give her the razor to remember her by.

Fast forward to 14 years later, and Ellie is in the care of the Firefly doctors, and Marlene explains to Pedro Pascal’s Joel why they think she’s immune.

“Our doctor believes that Ellie’s cordyceps has grown with her since she was born. She produces a kind of chemical messenger. She makes normal cordyceps think that she is cordyceps. That’s why she’s immune. He’ll take it away, multiply the cells in a lab, make those chemical messengers, and then we can give it to everyone.”

Marlene goes on to say that this could be a cure for the infection, but this process would require Ellie’s death, as cordyceps grows throughout the brain. Due to Joel’s violent intervention, this never actually happens, but it’s the most context we’ve gotten for Ellie’s immunity in the decade since the original game. This in-game scene simply points out Ellie’s resistance to the infection that has killed so many others as some kind of mutation, but it never got too far into science.

Marlene and Joel are seen talking in a hospital room with Joel sitting on a bed.

Image: hbo

Is this conclusive or is this just Marlene’s speculation?

Despite this, series director Neil Druckmann said the edge this isn’t necessarily meant to be a conclusive line drawn between the circumstances of her birth and why she’s immune, though we (and Marlene) can speculate. Instead, he says that revisiting Anna’s story was meant to build on her relationship with Marlene, which, again, was only explored in passing mentions during the games and american dreams comic books.

“Knowing how close she was with Anna, and that Anna’s last wish was ‘to take care of my son,’ I think it gives more weight and perhaps more tragedy to Marlene and the sacrifice she’s trying to make for the good of the family. humanity”. Druckmann said the edge.

In particular, the circumstances surrounding Ellie’s birth seem a bit different from the games. In the first game, Anna was able to write a letter to Ellie, which is visible in her inventory during the segments where you play as her. It’s clear that she died shortly after giving birth, but it’s unclear if this fight with an infected was part of it.

Anna’s scene is one of the few moments to deviate from the ending, which plays out pretty close to the game’s story beats. Although the framing feels a little different after the conversations between Joel and Ellie do a lot of work for contextualize Joel’s actions in the final moments.