To call “Long, Long Time” the best episode of The Last of Us is technically true. But considering there’s only been three episodes of the HBO series, it’s not giving it enough credit. The Bill and Frank-centric episode will likely go down as one of the best episodes for any show this year. “Long, Long Time” has it all: Ron Swanson making out with Armond from The White Lotus; a Linda Ronstadt song; a lovely but devastating ending.
So why is it being review-bombed on IMDb? Some one-star users are claiming it’s because the episode was boring, or whatever, but it’s mostly (and sadly) for the reason you think. Here’s a sample review: “To fit the preferences of all people, feel free to create separate shows about gay romance and love stories but don’t mix this up with regular shows most of us are trying to follow the story of.” And another: “Just forget everything good you built in the first two episodes and focus on your propaganda.”
The unequivocal quality of the episode has not stopped trolls from going after it on IMDB, where 30,468 people have given it 1 star reviews, creating a familiar “review bomb split” where a hugely disproportionate number of 1 stars, 28.4 percent of reviews in this case. By contrast, the first two episodes had 1.4 percent and 1.6 percent 1 star reviews instead. Those episodes have an average of 9.2/10, while “Long, Long Time” is a 7.9/10, far lower.
Bill and Frank’s sexuality is only hinted at in the video game, but the HBO series takes “a deep dive into a Queer post-apocalyptic love story that had no space to grow and flourish within a pixelated RPG world,” as our own Jessica Toomer wrote in her recap.
To quote someone who’s been on both Parks and Recreation and The White Lotus, “I hate people.” Unless those people are Bill, Frank, Joel, or Ellie. Then I love them.