Naughty Dog on Monday dropped a brutal new trailer for The Last of Us Part 2, and it didn’t disappoint. While Joel and Ellie are nowhere to be seen, the new footage may have a bigger connection to the latter than people think.
Once the trailer dropped, people immediately started speculating about who the woman was—and no, it’s most certainly not Ellie. Voiced by Laura Bailey, the new character will quite clearly play a major role in the upcoming game’s narrative.
When the scene picks up, the mysterious woman is being dragged toward the wreckage of a car as rain sops the surrounding environment. She’s hung Old West-style with a noose, and just before her belly is sliced, someone from off-camera saves her.
The savior winds up being part of another group of characters we haven’t seen before.
Is that Ellie’s mom?
People seem pretty convinced the new character is Ellie’s Mom, Anna, whom we know died shortly after giving birth to Ellie. We’ve never met or seen who she is, but Naughty Dog may put fans in control of the character in flashback sequences, which likely take place shortly after the initial outbreak.
From what we can discern from the new footage, the flashbacks could explain how Anna goes from religious fanatic to a member of the Fireflies.
“They’re nested with sin,” the hooded woman in the trailer says.
The religious group may be hunting for people who oppose their views. What their purpose is is unknown at this point.
Adding to the religious motif is the fact that the hooded woman asks the other girl, Yara, where the other apostate is. Apostate is defined as someone who renounces a religious or political belief or principle.
Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann also teases the possibility of today’s footage being a flashback sequence. In an interview about the game, Druckmann says:
As far as who these characters are, what their conflict is, where this takes place, when this takes place, we’re going to leave it up to the fans for now.
Druckmann stresses when, suggesting a flashback is in order. Not only that, but Naughty Dog’s Twitter account teases at the character’s name with four blank spaces. Anna is four characters. It fits.
The trailer also teases that the Yara character and her companion are part of the Fireflies. The hooded woman tells her two cronies to clip Yara’s wings, while it sounds like Yara may be harboring the other apostate, or at least know of her whereabouts.
In any case, the character in the trailer could very well be Anna, which could neatly tie into the first trailer Naughty Dog dropped of The Last of Us Part 2. In that trailer, we see Ellie and Joel in an old home, where she says, “I’m gonna find and I’m gonna kill every last one of them.”
That could hint at the group we see interacting with Anna, who may or may not have had something to do with her death. We know that Anna died shortly after giving birth to Ellie, but we don’t really know the circumstances surrounding her death. Perhaps Ellie learns more about her mom and decides to do something about it.
This is all just speculation at this point. But Naughty Dog is doing just enough to get fans theorizing about what will happen in the next chapter, which gamers should see hit sometime in 2018.