Jan 17Liked by Decoding TV

Great episode!

As a 35 year old, I feel like a toddler compared to how Hollywood depicts 35 year olds.

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I really enjoyed this conversation Dave! I’m actually a show-only watcher, I’d never even heard of the video game until I heard this show was coming out. I was initially interested in watching it because Craig Mazin is involved in the show and I really enjoyed Chernobyl. And I really liked the premiere! The moment that got me was the scene during the outbreak where the Miller family are all in the truck and you’re watching the chaos from Sarah’s point of view in the back of the truck. I honestly said out loud, damn this show is gonna be good. Very excited to watch more and listen to the pod!

I also loved Christian saying “Game of Thrones-guarded” during the podcast - such a great term! Although I agree with you, I feel super invested in the characters because I feel like the show has done a great job of showing there are really high stakes.

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Jan 17Liked by Decoding TV

Great conversation Guys! I'm a Patreon of both thefilmcast and DLC so really enjoying this!

I have played both games and think they're incrediblly good!

I liked the talkshow in the cold opening, it was a nice way to set up the premise for the story. I believe the creators of the game were inspired by a segment in the excellent Planet Earth documentary: https://youtu.be/XuKjBIBBAL8

The Cordyceps fungi species are a real thing and kind of scary. They are mostly targeting insects. But the premise of the game is what if they started targeting other species…

Looking forward to seeing next episode and listening to your continuing discussions. Take care and keep up the great work!

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I've never played the video game, but I have played older Uncharted games. My reaction to this was that it felt SO much like watching somebody play an Uncharted game. For better and worse...

As an example, the scene where they're driving through the city where all hell is breaking loose. This felt exactly like something I've seen in a video game, not necessarily in a bad way.

Followed by the scene where the cop car slammed into the truck and created a simulated wall between characters, I almost laughed out loud at how much of a video game trope this was.

With that said, I kind of appreciate that the show is keeping the cinematic style of the game and not just the plot and characters. This seems unique to an adaptation.

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Regarding the idea of fungus destroying humanity it isn't that far fetched. There are already a great deal of problem with fungus in some part of the world like in India where they at least had a Black Fungus problem: https://arstechnica.com/science/2021/06/eyeball-destroying-black-fungus-cases-spike-to-over-30000-in-india/

I also was on a get together last year where there was a girl who had a PhD in Biology with the focus on Fungus and she said about as much as they do in the intro of this show. What's "saving" us right now is, like they say in the show, that Fungus usually can't survive over about 34 - 35 degrees Celsius (humans have a body temperature of about 36 - 37 degrees Celsius). However, with Climate Change making the world hotter there is a real concern that Fungus will evolve to withstand a higher temperature which would probably create a problem for us since they then would be able to survive in our bodies.


Now, in the real world it wouldn't take the route of creating essentially Zombies of course but rather some really bad infections that people would die from. But the end point remains the same, humanity faces a really tough time.

Love the show and will continue to listen to the recaps!

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To answer one of your questions, I've never played the game, but I am hooked by the first episode and will definitely keep watching. Why keep watching? That goes to another of your questions has the apocalypse genre worn out its welcome? No I don't think it has because as with any exercise in genre it depends on the world building and the characters. There will be some clunkers (Mother/Android), missed opportunities (World War Z) and those that wear out their premise (The Walking Dead). The Last of Us certainly has a lot to draw on from the game in terms of world and character, and its got the HBO money to deliver on both.

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My take on 1968 and September 26th 2003.

The cold open was set in 1968 to account for the time it would take for global temperatures to rise and the fungus to mutate. Why no specific date? Because no one would remember it. No one heeded the warning. Global warming is not taken seriously in 1968, so neither would a warning about a fungal outbreak. Setting it decades earlier raises the tension because we as the audience know something bad is going to happen and that it could have been prevented if only someone had been listening.

Why is a specific date shown for the outbreak? Because everyone will remember it. Much like September 11th, 2001 it is a date that will be cemented in the brains of anyone who lived it. It is tragic that no one will remember the date of the talk show that could have prevented all of this- but everyone will remember the date of the tragedy that changed the world. By showing a specific date on screen, we as the audience know this day is important. And we as humans have lived through enough remembered dates to know it is likely not for good reason. When we see this specific date fade onto the screen, we are overcome with a sense of dread that "September 2003" would not convey.

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