Pearl Jam fans who watch HBO’s The Last of Us got a pleasant surprise when one of the band’s deep cuts played during the most recent episode, which aired last night (Feb. 26).
The episode, which was the seventh of the season, was based on the expansion pack for the first Last of Us video game titled The Last of Us: Left Behind. The episode served as a flashback that focused on Ellie’s relationship with her best friend Riley, who paid her a surprise visit after fleeing their military school to join the militia group, the Fireflies. The storyline also explains how Ellie got bit by an infected person, though as viewers know, she never got infected herself.
Pearl Jam’s “All or None” was part of the episode’s soundtrack, which is a deep cut from the band’s seventh album Riot Act (2002). It’s the closing track on the record, but Eddie Vedder’s distinct crooning is unmistakeable, even when heard in a show about fungus zombies.
See a clip featuring the song below.
The band and the franchise actually share a history, though. During The Last of Us: Part II (the video game), Joel sang and played “Future Days” on an acoustic guitar for Ellie, which is from Pearl Jam’s 2013 album Lightning Bolt. Without giving any spoilers, those who are familiar with the storyline of both games understand why the lyrics, “If I ever were to lose you / I’d surely lose myself” are so sentimental and significant.
Television shows have played a big part in the popularity of songs over the last few years — Metallica’s “Master of Puppets” in Stranger Things, for example. It’s too soon to tell whether “All or None” will go viral because of The Last of Us, but a song by Depeche Mode received a spike in searches after it played at the end of the first episode, and Linda Ronstadt’s “Long Long Time” has spent a few weeks in Spotify’s Viral Top 50 U.S. playlist after it appeared several times in the show’s third episode.
Fans have also been reacting positively to hearing the song in the episode on Twitter. See some of their reactions, and listen to the song below.