The Last Of Us is definitely one of the most popular TV series of 2023. The HBO TV show is inspired by the popular video game released on Playstation in 2013 (with a Part II published in 2020). The characters are well-developed, and viewers quickly form a bond with them. While the plot proceeds, the spectators get increasingly curious about the destiny of the protagonist, Ellie: does she die in the series? Will they develop a vaccine thanks to her, and how will her life go? In this article, we will describe what happens to Ellie along the plot of the video games The Last of Us Part I and II, providing the necessary spoilers regarding the HBO TV series you are probably watching.
You can watch a video recap of the key scenes of Ellie’s life from the video game here on Youtube.
Does Ellie die in The Last of Us? What happens to her?
Ellie is the main protagonist of The Last of Us. And those who formed a bond with her while watching the HBO TV show can be reassured about one crucial point: in the video game The Last Of Us (both Part I and II), Ellie doesn’t die.
Part I of the video game The Last Of Us covers the adventures of Joel and Ellie and is pretty aligned with the plot of Season 1 of the HBO series: Joel is tasked to bring Ellie to the fireflies in Salt Lake City, hoping that they can create some sort of vaccine out of her immunity. Although Joel is reluctant to bond with Ellie, he’s at least moved by a sense of duty and commits to protecting Ellie. Joel and Ellie experience many misadventures; they risk being killed in Pittsburgh (the city where they meet Henry and Sam, set in Kansas City in the TV series). They also meet Joel’s brother, Tommy, in Jackson, a community in Wyoming. This part of the plot is covered by the HBO TV series until Episode 6.
As the events go on, Joel and Ellie will continue their journey. Joel risks dying, and Ellie will fight hard to protect him and let him heal. There will be a prolonged, serious battle with David, a man who threatened their life. With a lot of determination, Ellie shows her affection toward Joel, and this will ultimately create a strong bond between them: after months spent protecting Ellie, Joel realizes she’s also able to fight for him if he needs.
Joel and Ellie will finally reach the fireflies in Salt Lake City in 2034. The group of doctors studies Ellie’s body, and here, a crucial point of the plot in The Last Of Us occurs: Joel discovers that the only way to create a vaccine from Ellie is by extracting the mutated fungus from her brain, but this will cost her life. Joel firmly denies his permission: although this may be the only way to save humanity, he’s too attached now to Ellie to allow her death, even if it serves a greater cause.
While Ellie is still unconscious, Joel rescues her, killing many doctors in the hospital. Only after Ellie wakes up, Joel will reveal what happened, triggering in Ellie an enormous sense of guilt: she’s a survivor, and her life means that humanity will never have a chance against the fungus infection. To mitigate this guilt, Joel will lie, revealing to Ellie that other people were immune and the doctors were already studying them, so her death would not have changed much. With this awareness, Joel and Ellie return to Jackson and settle there. This ends The Last Of Us Part I and Season I of the HBO TV series.
The Last Of Us Part II will have a more complex plot, introducing a key antagonist, Abby, a soldier of Washington Liberation Front (WLF) whose task is to take down Joel as revenge for the people he killed among the fireflies in Salt Lake City. She will succeed: Abby will kill Joel in The Last Of Us Part II, before Ellie’s desperate eyes. And Ellie will start a long, complex revenge journey, hunting Abby over the entire Part II. Ellie will finally have the chance to kill Abby, but she changes her mind at the very last minute, keeping her alive, and returning to her life, trying to come to terms with Joel’s death.
Among the many characters that die in The Last Of Us, Ellie remains one of the few that will always be present, from the beginning to the end. She never dies in the video game, and there is no reason to think that the HBO TV Series will make any change to this.