Thoughts on The Last of Us ENDING (WARNING MAJOR SPOILERS)

#1 Edited by thegamingjunkie (232 posts) -

I know there have been plenty of threads about this in the past year, but I just can't help but to bring it up again because I'm among those few who recently finished the game. And of course, don't continue the thread if you haven't finished the game, it will spoil the ending.

The ending was completely overwhelming that I couldn't bring myself to do anything else other than think about the ending. Everyone had different opinions and beliefs about how the ending played. Some people considers Joel as a sociopath, or a psychopath even. I personally think, throughout this journey, Joel was having a battle with himself. Joel is fighting the feelings he has for Ellie, remember the time he said, "You're not my daughter, and I sure as hell ain't your father.", but as it turns out, he truly cares about her. Eventually, Joel stopped fighting, and accepted it and allowed this feeling inside. And when he heard that Ellie was not going to live in the process of creating a possibly vaccine for the virus, he couldn't accept her death. He straight up lied to her at the end, but I think Ellie knows that he isn't being honest but still decides to go with it.

We don't know if Ellie wanted to live or sacrifice herself to save the world, but surely, the choice was hers. But Joel chose to save Ellie instead of saving the world- or at least, saving those who are still alive. Even if they managed to create a vaccine, it still not a cure. It won't bring back what is already lost, it will just prevent more from what is already happening. And I'm pretty sure the Vaccine won't get to everyone. And yes, I agree that Joel is selfish, but he is human. Humans are selfish. At the end, he said you gotta keep going and look for something to fight for. Joel finally found someone to fight for, and that is Ellie.He has killed people for Ellie, and he put his life above hers.

I think, this is about The Last of Us. The Last of Humankind. Not humankind as a population in whole, but the last of true humanity. The last of those who still care about each other enough to solely save the life of a single beloved person and leave the rest of the world to die. Remember The Hunters? They kill people for their own needs, and I'm pretty damn sure they would kill each other when the time came for them to do it- and Joel said he used to be one of them too. Joel is only one out of a million, a single person that decided the fate of humanity- who chose a girl over the possible guaranteed life of millions- who knows, maybe only thousands. But he is also, one of The Last of Us. :)

Its not a happy ending for the world, but its a human ending. And I think Joel made the right choice.

Remember what that cannibalistic David from winter said: Everything happens for a reason.

Anyone else?

#2 Posted by SaintSatan (686 posts) -

They created a strong bond towards the end so if he choose to sacrifice her for humanity it would have made little to no sense in context of the story. Even the small chance that they did create a vaccine how would they distribute it to the world? A single man killed like a hundred of them, they're not very competent. Not mention they immediately start surgery the second they get her. Maybe run some tests first or something? Not rip her head open 5 seconds after you acquire her? I think Joel made the right choice.

#3 Posted by Lulu_Lulu (11535 posts) -

Wouldve been better as a movie..... Or a book.

#4 Edited by MethodManFTW (25659 posts) -

Good write up, and I agree with ya.

#5 Posted by MondasM (1234 posts) -

i was a little bit shocked, since i would have sacrificed ellie for the rehabilitation of the mankind, however i am ok with the fact that naughty dog chose otherwise, ellie and joel got to bond most probably more in one year than joel got to bond with his daughter emotionally...

#7 Edited by porkchopxp (1153 posts) -

Remember, it's not our choice as gamers to make, it's Joel's(as the lead protagonist). We're playing through his(and Ellie's) story and based on evidence from events prior to the climax, Joel made the only decision that was right for that character. A decades-in-the-making, survivor of hell on earth gets a second chance at expressing/receiving love from a surrogate daughter figure only to have her taken away? In a world where love is the rarest commodity, Joel made a selfish choice but a human one . . .

#8 Edited by filben (34 posts) -

Yep, you got it.

I find the ending, reached it three times until now, very pleasent. Not only in a way how Joel acts but because of the writing. It's not all that like a greek tragedy but it's no happy end either. And Joel is a very unique charakter, not that typically hero who does everything for others. Right from start he wasn't content with escorting Ellie. After Tess have died I think he made Ellie responsible to some extend. She does either. And it's interesting that Joel never ever want to talk about the losses. Everytime Ellie starts over he stonewalls. He don't want to talk about Tess, not about Sam and Henry and sure as hell not about Sarah. As he "struggled with surviving", which has given Tommy nightmares since they probably killed both delinquent and innocent people as Joel mentioned he was "on both sides". All those years did make him a real and mean SOB. At some period in his life he probably were one of those bandtis you kill lots of on your journey with Ellie and Joel.

As he and Ellie get to know each other and the likeness of Ellie to Sarah (Joel refers to that by saying they would have liked each other), he obviously care but he don't want to loose another one he do really care about. That's the reason why he wanted to hand her off to Tommy. His excuse trusting him more than himself is just that –an excuse. He don't want to be responsible. And that Ellie do cares about Joel is evident in that moment she says that everyone she cared about either died or left her. Except for Joel. As she brings up Sarah, which is a rage topic for Joel, she crossed a line, walking "on might thin ice, here". Fortunately he doesn't stay stubborn and decide for the better.

Just before reaching the Fireflies, the giraffe-scene, he decided to just live with her. No higher purpose. That was the very moment he clearly states that he don't care about the vaccine. But Ellie probably still feel guilty for what happened. She couldn't help Riley, nor Tess and Sam and Henry. I can understand her, coming so far just to "give up".

The interesting this is, did Ellie KNOW about the surgery before? She was on her way with Marlene back then. And Marlene states "that's what she wants". We don't know if Marlene just think that or did she really spoke to Ellie about that. There MIGHT be indicators that Ellie already know all way long about the surgery and she will die. As you enter Salt Lake City, Joel states that she is "rather quiet this day". And she really feel absent. It could just be a normal poetic/thoughtful day for her but maybe more, too. But Marlene probably haven't talk to her since the hospitle because she asks what she's wearing in the back of Joels car. So they probably draged her right into anaesthesia after finding Joel and her unconsciousness. So much for the "that's what she wants." So either Marlene have talked with her very early on or it's simply just what she thinks Ellie wants.

There is also a great plot-frame as Sarah is the first person we play, followed by Joel carrying her. And Ellie is the last person we play, following Joel carrying HER. But THIS time. He won't let his "daughter" die. No way he would ever do that. Dooming mankind which have propably doomed itself or is not worthy to be cured. They are definitely the last of us.

#9 Edited by yixingtpot (1398 posts) -

it's just a BS story, it's pure science fiction that they couldn't extract the vaccine without killing her... that's just a complication fabricated to create a moral dilemma that doesn't exist, only within the BS story. I don't recall if they got into some "oh, but we'll have to get it from her stem cells, she's got to die" BS but they just made it complicated for no reason other than plot. What were they going to call the vaccine the 'Ellie Necrogenesis Vaccine'? it's just BS.

I looked at the ending like Joel had been F'd over one too many times and he'd had enough corporate corruption BS in his life... or what was left of his life and it was the last straw with them or him finding out he'd struggled and protected Ellie only to realize they drop the info that she'd die in some lab, like a lab rat. He just said Fkuc you to their world and made his own choice.

Also, Ellie had THE RIGHT TO LIVE since she had natural immunity to the disease, she shouldn't be asked to die for anybody else. Her children would pass on the immunity to the disease, it's the natural way of life. Some doctors shouldn't have the right to ask her to die for a possible vaccine which might not even work.

#10 Posted by slimdogmilionar (548 posts) -

@thegamingjunkie: There is a room somewher near the end of the game and in that room Joel finds a document that details how they found more people like Ellie but they all die during the experiments to try and extract a cure. Once I read this I was able to sympathize with the ending a little more but most people don't find that document so they just think Joel is covering something up.

#11 Posted by thegamingjunkie (232 posts) -

@thegamingjunkie: There is a room somewher near the end of the game and in that room Joel finds a document that details how they found more people like Ellie but they all die during the experiments to try and extract a cure. Once I read this I was able to sympathize with the ending a little more but most people don't find that document so they just think Joel is covering something up.

Me too, I also found that recording, and while sneaking around the hospital I listened to it xD At first I thought there were more people like her, but then I went online to research a bit more and others kept saying there weren't more of the others and the recording meant they tested it on normal infected patients? And it said they have 'never seen anything like her'? I'm unclear on that bit, but I hope it did mean that there were others like Ellie.

#12 Posted by thegamingjunkie (232 posts) -

From an interesting perspective, you're actually right. :)

I looked at the ending like Joel had been F'd over one too many times and he'd had enough corporate corruption BS in his life... or what was left of his life and it was the last straw with them or him finding out he'd struggled and protected Ellie only to realize they drop the info that she'd die in some lab, like a lab rat. He just said Fkuc you to their world and made his own choice.

#13 Posted by filben (34 posts) -

and while sneaking around the hospital I listened to it xD

How'd do that? As soon as I close my backpack it stops playing :/ I had to stay in the menu.

#14 Edited by thegamingjunkie (232 posts) -

@filben: Well, I couldn't play it while I was walking :D I just hid behind a counter and played it until it was done to kill time because I kept repeatedly dying in that part xD.