Warning! This article contains major spoilers for The Last of Us episode 6 and The Last of Us Part II.The Last of Us episode 6 was vital in ushering in the last few episodes of season 1, though it also presented a lot of elements that foreshadow the events of The Last of Us season 2. In the episode, Joel and Ellie manage to find Tommy and his community of Jackson. After trekking through the heart of the wilderness of Wyoming, Joel and Ellie are welcomed into Jackson by Tommy in a slower first half of the episode, setting up major things for each character for the end of The Last of Us season 1.
Sprinkled throughout these elements, however, were smaller details and references that set up things beyond The Last of Us season 1. Mainly stemming from the setting of The Last of Us episode 6, the episode contained many things that will go on to be essential for the already-confirmed The Last of Us season 2. From character cameos and thematic aspects, here is every way The Last of Us episode 6 laid the groundwork for season 2 and beyond.
Firstly, the broadest setup for The Last of Us season 2 comes in the form of Jackson itself. Tommy and Maria’s community is where the bulk of The Last of Us episode 6 takes place, setting up its future importance to the beginning of The Last of Us season 2. Should the upcoming sophomore season closely follow the events of The Last of Us Part II, Jackson will serve as the starting point for the season. After a four-year time jump, Ellie and Joel will be shown living in Jackson before tragic events kickstart the events of The Last of Us season 2’s story.
While the bulk of the story for The Last of Us season 2 will undoubtedly take place away from Jackson, it was important for The Last of Us episode 6 to get the initial introduction of the community right. Not only does this keep up the fantastic world-building of The Last of Us season 1 overall, but it gives Ellie and Joel a “home base” setting from which The Last of Us season 2 can kick off. While not a direct setup of The Last of Us season 2’s story, Jackson provides The Last of Us episode 6 with a footnote that will lead to something much bigger.
4 Maria’s Distrust Of Outsiders Foreshadows Abby In Last Of Us Season 2
Also introduced in The Last of Us episode 6 is Maria, Tommy’s wife. Maria does not trust Joel, with the reason for this stemming from the things Joel did during The Last of Us’ timeline gap between 2003 and 2023 and the fact he is an outsider. In terms of the latter, Maria’s distrust of outsiders stems from her drive to protect her community and also sets up the character of Abby for The Last of Us season 2. Abby is an interesting character, in that The Last of Us Part II presents her as both the main antagonist and secondary protagonist of the story.
When concerning the antagonist part of Abby’s character, The Last of Us Part II begins with her killing Joel after he and Tommy trust her and her group. Abby and her group are shown as outsiders, which will harken back to Maria’s distrust of outsiders once shown in The Last of Us season 2. Maria’s distrust is useful for keeping her people alive, something Joel is quickly shown to learn in The Last of Us Part II.
3 A Major Last Of Us Season 2 Character Makes A Cameo In Episode 6
Outside of the thematic foreshadowing of The Last of Us season 2 characters like Abby, The Last of Us episode 6 actually includes a cameo from a season 2 character: Dina. In The Last of Us Part II, Dina is Ellie’s love interest and the secondary protagonist of Ellie’s section of the story. She plays a vital role in Ellie’s journey, meaning her subtle introduction in The Last of Us episode 6 makes a lot of sense.
Upon Ellie and Joel first being welcomed into Jackson, they are taken for some food. Ellie is told by Joel to watch her manners before she notices a girl staring at her from across the canteen. Ellie then shouts at this girl, who quickly walks away. Despite not being revealed as such, this girl is Dina. In The Last of Us Part II, Dina describes her and Ellie’s first meeting as Dina being shocked at how much food Ellie could eat, which links to this scene in The Last of Us episode 6.
2 Another Minor Last Of Us Season 2 Character Is In Last Of Us Episode 6
While Dina’s introduction marks the first true appearance of a major The Last of Us season 2 character, The Last of Us episode 6 also sets up an interesting side character. In The Last of Us episode 6, Ellie is shown around Jackson’s stables where she takes a liking to a foal named Shimmer. This young horse is the eventual companion she and Dina will travel with in The Last of Us season 2, should it follow the game’s story. Shimmer is the name of the horse in The Last of Us Part II, in a neat, subtle reference to a future The Last of Us season 2 element.
1 Joel Opening Up To Ellie Sets Up An Iconic Last Of Us Part II Scene
Finally, one of the last major moments from The Last of Us episode 6’s ending that foreshadows season 2 comes when Joel and Ellie reach the University of Eastern Colorado. Joel is shown opening up more to Ellie and reveals that he wanted to be a singer when he was younger. This scene, while seemingly only included to show the two bonding, actually sets up a scene from The Last of Us Part II. The scene in question comes at the start of the game, with Joel singing to Ellie on guitar and setting up the emotionally harrowing journey of The Last of Us’ sequel.
New episodes of The Last of Us release every Sunday on HBO.