‘The Last of Us’ Recap: Season 1, Episode 8 “When We Are in Need”


Joel is gravely injured in the care of Ellie, and with winter approaching resources, will be even more scarce, leading to some desperate measures being taken by Ellie.

He Shall Provide

Liane Hentscher/HBO

Another settlement of survivors is established, this one with a much more religious undertone to it. A man is preaching the Bible to a room full of people, one girl crying over the loss of her father, who the man promises will be buried once the ground begins to thaw. As the group files out, a discussion between the preacher, David, and another man, James (played by Joel’s mo-cap and voice actor Troy Baker!), reveals a gruesome truth, they only have enough rations for one more week at best. David and James decide to go hunting to search out some more food.

Liane Hentscher/HBO

A Different Kind of Infection

Joel’s wound is very clearly infected, the food for him and Ellie running out. She has no choice but to go out in search of any form of prey to bring back to get them through Joel’s recovery. A rabbit escapes, but she stumbles across a deer which would be more than enough to last the two of them for quite a while. Her target practice with Joel comes in handy, the deer wounded by one shot, but it’s not enough to take it down.

Unfortunately, David and James follow the bloody tracks to her kill, finding it before she can. They opt to steal it, Ellie threatening them from behind, rifle pointed. She and David make a deal, half the deer for antibiotics, James heading off to grab the penicillin.

Since the trip back to the village is four miles each way, the two have no choice but to make a fire in some wreckage to keep warm. David offers her (and presumably Joel) a place in their group, and he assures her he’s a good man just trying to take care of the people in his care. He tells her a story about how he’d sent four of his men to a nearby town to scavenge for supplies and that one of them was murdered by a crazy man traveling with a little girl.

Liane Hentscher/HBO

James has returned and has his gun raised, he knows she was with the man that killed Alec. Despite this revelation, David makes James give her the medicine anyway, but David assures her she won’t survive for long. She makes it home and administers the antibiotics, and slides onto the mattress beside Joel to go to sleep.

The Hunt for Ellie

Although James and David return with the deer after dinner is served, there was enough venison to make the group some stew. They’ve heard about how David has found the person who killed Alec, and he’ll be leading a search party to find her tomorrow and bring Joel to justice. Alec’s daughter suggests he kill them both, and that earns her a slap across the face. He sits with her and her mother at the table to say grace.

Ellie gives Joel another dose of penicillin the next morning before discovering their hideout has been found by David and his men. The mission is to kill Joel and bring Ellie back to the settlement. James questions the decision but is quickly silenced. Joel is still too weak to move, and Ellie promises she’s going to lead them away from him, handing him a knife and blocking the entrance to the door before taking off on Callus.

She does just that, firing at the group before galloping off, David reiterating his command to bring her in alive. James takes Callus out, killing the horse and stunning Ellie with the fall. David takes her back while the three of them stay to search the town for Joel.

One of them finds him, Joel mustering enough strength to stab him with the knife Ellie gave him.


Ellie is being held in a cage at David’s settlement, David watching over her. He expects her to be grateful for him not killing her despite the others wanting him to, but of course, she isn’t. David knows Joel’s state, and he reminds Ellie that she is alone and he’s her only option for survival now, she has to learn to trust him.

Liane Hentscher/HBO

Joel manages to get the other two of David’s men captive, beating one into giving up Ellie’s location, killing both of the men before leaving.

David brings Ellie a bowl of food, and she rightly refuses after spotting a human ear on the floor. That probably wasn’t venison in the soup last night. However, David assures her that her bowl is actually deer meat. She assumes she’s next on the dinner menu, but he tells her she isn’t. David sees a lot of himself in Ellie, they both have violent hearts. He wants her to be an equal, a friend, someone who understands him. He promises her he’ll call his men off Joel if she agrees to stay and be amicable, help him lead, grasping her hand, and she breaks his finger.

Looks like she is next on the menu.


Joel finds the resort, breaking in and finding Ellie’s backpack in a storage closet, along with poor Callus’ body, and some humans…

James and David grab Ellie from the cage and plop her on the table to cut her up, and she tells them she’s infected after she’s bitten James. She shows them her bite mark, and while they deliberate, she grabs the cleaver and kills James, taking off in a sprint. In her attempted escape, she sets fire to the building, David continuing to pursue her through the restaurant. The only problem, it’s locked from the inside, and he has the keys.

Liane Hentscher/HBO

She manages to stab him, but it’s not enough, and he tosses her to the ground. She grabs his discarded cleaver, slaughtering him ruthlessly before running outside, where Joel finds her and wraps her up.

The season finale of The Last of Us premieres March 12 at 9 p.m. ET on HBO and HBO Max.

Kaity started with Harry Potter in second grade and it’s been a losing battle ever since, or maybe a winning one ... She lives in New England with a small herd of cats, two dogs, three chinchillas, and one daughter. You can definitely find her either watching anime, reading manga, or playing the same five video games over and over again. Contact: kaity@nerdsandbeyond.com

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