The Road, A Quiet Place, and the golden age of prepper pop culture

It first hit me during A Quiet Place, as John Krasinski and Emily Blunt’s fictional kids quietly played a board game by firelight on a reclaimed wood table, a vertical garden growing out of planters on the wall. I had noticed earlier how nicely Krasinski stayed dressed in the film’s post-apocalypse, in unfussy but…

Don’t be afraid of The Last Of Us Part II’s violence

Earlier this week, Sony held a press conference during the Paris Games Week trade show. If you follow games, you’re intimately familiar with what ensued: a lot of blue lights, a handful of enthusiastically delivered sales notes from a charisma-less executive in an ill-fitting suit, and a series of short trailers and…

The end is the beginning: 17 characters who found a fresh start in the apocalypse

A pompous, awkward, acne-spotted 16-year-old, Harold Lauder is one of the few immune to the superflu that wipes out 98 percent of humanity in Stephen King’s post-apocalyptic masterwork. But while others mourn the dead, Harold revels in the demise of his bullies and naysayers. The end of the world means the end of his…

Home sweet wasteland: 7 perfectly livable post-apocalyptic communities

As Matt Gerardi noted in his review this week, the nuke-ravaged world of Fallout 4 places a greater emphasis than ever on community—a point that Matt extends in the first entry below. Fallout 4 is part of a long tradition in games where indefatigable survivors carve out a tiny slice of heaven in a world sent to hell.…

What women in ’70s slasher films tell us about women in games today

In her 1992 book Men, Women, And Chain Saws: Gender In The Modern Horror Film, film academic Carol Clover noted that at the peak of slasher films’ popularity in the late ’70s and early ’80s, they presented an intriguing shift in gender representation on screen. More strong female characters were being pushed to the…

Which games don’t need a sequel?

Today’s question is something of a follow-up to our last Q&A about in-game pop culture, and it comes from our own John Teti: Most of the time, when a video game is successful—artistically or commercially—we start anticipating the sequel. But once in a while, you play a game that feels truly finished, one that doesn’t…

Watch This: Sony posts feature-length YouTube video about the making of The Last Of Us

Yesterday, Sony published a feature-length documentary on YouTube that chronicles the making of The Last Of Us, the post-apocalyptic drama from Naughty Dog (and The A.V. Club readers’ choice for the best game of 2013). The behind-the-scenes look, titled Grounded: The Making Of The Last Of Us, was previously…