Tom's interpretations of so many aspects of this game are just so far off the mark compared to that of Shaun and Chris. He repeatedly makes remarks about the story, timing of events, relationships between the characters etc that Chris and Shaun pretty much without fail demonstrate to be just plain wrong.
There's nothing shady about Joel at the start of the game .. NO IDEA how Tom comes to this baffling conclusion. From the wiki for the game (or even just by paying attention to your surroundings when playing .. which I guess Tom didn't) ..
"Joel worked in construction, possibly as a carpenter. In the prologue, during a phone conversation with Tommy he mentions desperately needing to keep his job with a contractor. Building plans lay on his bedside table and several copies of a book called Construction Regionalism can be seen on top of his bookshelf.
He seems to have ambitions of starting his own business before the outbreak, with Everything You Need To Know About Creating A Startup also on a table next to his bed. His job kept him fit, and he also owned a treadmill (seen in his bedroom). Additionally, he tells Ellie that he often went on hikes with his daughter, reinforced by pictures of hiking scenery in his house.
Despite his long working hours he still found time to spend quality time with Sarah, as seen in photographs displayed throughout their home showing the two on a cruise, at a carnival and at one of Sarah's soccer matches. In the hours leading up to the outbreak, Sarah gives him a new watch as a birthday gift to replace one he had broken months before. This becomes a cherished memento he manages to keep in the turbulent years ahead"
Pretty sure he's not a drug dealer, hitman or some other shady character ...
This video removes any doubt in my mind that Tom really has no ability to interpret and appreciate the subtleties used in the story telling in this game (and others like it). Of course, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but the next time I see Tom's name attached to a review of anything more complicated than a side scrolling platformer, I'll just look elsewhere for an unbiased and perceptive review before spending my money on said game.