The Last of Us game ends the same as the show. Just like in the show, Joel makes the divisive choice to take Ellie back from the Fireflies.
The final shot of the game and show are the same. Ellie looks at Joel forlornly and realizes the only person she trusts has lied to her.
This lie and the doubt it creates in Ellie will carry over into Season 2, which may air sooner than you expect!
Like in the show, the ending of The Last of Us video game begins with Ellie and Joel going to the Salt Lake City hospital where the Fireflies are waiting.
On their way there, they encounter a giraffe that Ellie feeds, just like in the Season 1 finale. They then follow it and see a whole herd of giraffes wandering the city.
Joel then tells Ellie that she doesn’t need to go through with this if she doesn’t want to. However, Ellie insists they carry on, otherwise it would have all been in vain.
The show has the Fireflies knock Ellie and Joel out with a stun grenade. In the game, they are knocked unconscious while drowning in a sewer.
The Fireflies then rescue them from the sewer and, much like the show, begin prepping Ellie for surgery. However, before the operation begins, Joel wakes up, and Marlene tells him that Ellie will have to die for the surgery to work.
Joel then turns on the Fireflies and, like in the Season 1 finale, kills them all in search of Ellie. Once he reaches her, he shoots the surgeon operating on her and takes her unconscious body from the table.
He then drives Ellie back to Jackson, but on the way there, she wakes up and asks him what happened. He lies and tells her there was never a cure and that the raiders killed the Fireflies and Marlene.
As he lies, it flashes back to Marlene trying to stop him in the parking lot, like in the show. Joel shoots her as he knows she’ll keep hunting him down if he doesn’t.
After the car breaks down on the way to Jackson, Joel and Ellie make their way on foot. Halfway there, Ellie stops Joel and makes him swear that what he said about the Fireflies was true.
Joel keeps up the lie by reassuring her it’s all true. Ellie seemingly accepts his answer, but her final expression makes it obvious that she is doubtful.
You can check a side-by-side comparison of The Last of Us video game ending and the Season 1 finale in the video below:
Does The Last of Us Season 1 End the Same as the Game?
Yes, the ending of The Last of Us Season 1 episode 9 is identical to the ending of The Last of Us Part 1 game.
This includes even the ending’s structure, with Joel telling Ellie there is no cure while it flashes to him shooting Marlene. There are no differences between the video game ending and the TV series ending.
Of course, there were major additions in the finale of The Last of Us season 1, including the addition of Ellie’s mother, played by a returning cast member from the video games.
There was even a surprise cameo from the actor who plays Abby in The Last of Us Part 2 that many fans likely missed!