Warning! Spoilers for The Last of US generally and episode 5 specifically.
The Last of Us, an HBO hit series, continues to impress, shock, and deceive viewers with its grim subject matter, and it seems like every episode has been able to capture the drive for survival successfully. Two characters were introduced in the fifth episode of the series "Endure and Survive."
The viewers are already familiar with Joel (Pedro Pascal) and Ellie's (Bella Ramsey) hard-fought attempts to defy and steer clear of the cordyceps-infected people in the post-apocalyptic world.
We are introduced to a group of rebels (or the Hunters as they called themselves) who are on their quest to defy FEDRA officials or anyone from their ranks who refused to cooperate with the enemies. It is unclear how the group was created, which has prompted many speculations about a possible spinoff.
What is the significance of episode five?
Kathleen (Melanie Lynskey) was introduced to the audience in the last episode. Later, it becomes clear that she was frantically looking for a collaborator named Henry (Lamar Johnson) and his brother, Sam. They are the same people who later assist Joel and Ellie in their escape from the city.
Henry admits to Joe that he was to blame for Kathleen's brother Michael's death. He claims that in exchange for the medication for his younger brother's illness, he rubbed out Michael to FEDRA.
The viewers are introduced to a variety of plotlines throughout the episode, including the friendship between Ellie and Sam as well as a brief connection between Joe and Henry, where the former expresses some of his own opinions about his roles and actions, which make him the adversary of the resistance groups.
Kathleen's internal turmoil comes to light as she recalls her childhood brother. Primarily, the episode centers on Henry, Sam, Joel, and Ellie figuring out how to escape further west to Wyoming without getting discovered by the Hunters. Unfortunately, they were discovered shortly before they could depart.
A horde of infected individuals emerge from under the basement and slaughter every last Hunter, including Kathleen, causing the conflict between the Hunters and Henry to be interrupted by the audience at this point.
Ellie discovered that Sam was bitten and infected by the virus just before her escape from Tess' death in episode two.
Ellie and Joel are left alone and forced to undertake their journey to Wyoming on their own terms.
Will Henry and Sam be included in a spinoff and sequel later on?
Episodes four and five showed significant deviations from the show's main plotline. The details of the actions and events leading up to the revolt and the formation of the resistant group have been hidden. Till now, we have only been briefly aware of FEDRA's actions in killing off civilians.
One needs to obtain an understanding of FEDRA's authoritarian and corruptive practices in order to understand its origins. That would serve as the audience's background information. Of course, Henry's role as the collaborator and his subsequent dismissal from the organization would be a major part of the story.
It's important for the viewers to feel emotionally connected to Henry and Kathleen as it was their personal loss as well as their fear of losing a loved one that pushed them to develop murderous instincts and act upon them. This raises a question: Would the viewers be treated to a prequel or a spinoff series that would highlight the background of this subplot?
The showrunners have kept silent on a spinoff, claiming that the backstory will not be repeated in season two, since the next season will most likely be based on the second part of the game, The Last of Us: Part II, which will follow the later events.
Despite the success of the series, the fans are and will be eager for any additional features to it.
The Last of Us is currently streaming on HBO.