PM @ TILT: The Last of Us Season 1 Episode 7 Review – “Left Behind”
Set against the backdrop of a broken down, dilapidated mall, “Left Behind” is perhaps the most simple proposition an episode of The Last of Us will ever have. On the surface this seems pretty obvious – “Left Behind” is Ellie’s backstory boiled down to one night – but in a more metaphysical sense, it is an episode about innocence, and examining how it shapes our worldview, particularly as the realities of the world (and unfortunately, this specific world) begin to shatter the naivety of young minds. A rather expertly crafted episode, “Left Behind” is a fine hour of television that, like the other episodes and stories of the series, is only slightly held back by its own inherent lack of creativity.As expected, “Left Behind” is the true showcase for Bella Ramsey’s performance as Ellie; and on a purely technical level, The Last of Us shines with the scripting and acting choices made throughout the season. While Ellie’s character traits are not exactly mysterious, “Left Behind” offers a rare glimpse of something The Last of Us is often not able to do, with its gruff set of characters fully vested in the world that existed before the outbreak. Through Ellie, “Left Behind” is able to experience such a wider gamut of emotions, on full display before, during, and after her last night together with her (recently estranged) best friend Riley (Storm Reid).