I have a zero tolerance for zombie-related media. (I blame Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” video, which came out when I was a tender 5 years old.) But when I heard about the buzz around the HBO adaptation of “The Last of Us”, which is based on a highly regarded video game, my interest was slightly, and cautiously, piqued. When Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey were cast as the leads, I decided to steel myself and try to make it through the first episode. I watched with my thumb hovering over the Stop button, ready to bail the moment a lurching, groaning (or in this case, clicking) undead being appeared and made my insides crawl.
The show is fantastic, though, and “the infected”, as they’re known, are not the focus. The show is actually about breaking your heart into a million little pieces by capturing the brutality, love, loss, beauty, terror, sadness, moral compromise, resilience, and impossible choices that make up a post-apocalyptic world. I guess maybe the only way to work through the emotional damage inflicted on me by this amazing show was to turn them into marshmallows.