HBO’s The Last of Us gives Joel a new role from the original game but what are the pills he gives the FEDRA soldier? We look at what Hydro, or Hydrocodone, is and why they seem to be the drug of choice.

So far, it’s safe to say that HBO’s The Last of Us’ first episode has played true to the original 2013 game. With Neil Druckmann guiding the ship, the highly anticipated adaptation will surely make many dedicated Last of Us overjoyed that their favorite game is being treated with as much respect as possible.

Although, with many adaptions, for better or for worse, some changes do creep in and HBO’s The Last of Us is no different. Thankfully, these seem only to be minor details so far and one of them is Joel’s role in the show’s first episode. Instead of only being a smuggler, Joel now has a side gig in dealing drugs which shines a spotlight on how desperate things have gotten for him.

Let’s take a look at the pills Joel was trading with the FEDRA soldier and how his role differs in the HBO show.

What is Hydrocodone and what is it used for?

Hydrocodone, or its street name Hydro, belongs to the group of medicines called narcotic analgesics that acts on the central nervous system to relieve pain. Like Morphine, heroin, or oxycodone, Hydro induces sleepiness, euphoria and alters the perception of painful stimuli.

Like any drug, Hydrocodone can be habit-forming, causing physical and psychological dependence. If not under proper control, the user could then need more of the drug as the effects weaken meaning more is then taken to increase its impact. The opioid is mostly used to treat a wide manner of pain or to help with coughs in adults when it is in its liquid form.

What is it used for in HBO’s The Last of Us?

One of the reasons a soldier, or really anyone having to live in a post-apocalyptic warzone, may need these pills would be to aid them to sleep and also help block out the horrors they have to witness on a daily basis. We also see Joel necking a couple of Hydro pills later on with a glass of what looks to be whiskey and then falling into a deep slumber. It’s apparent Joel suffers from nightmares, flashbacks from the terrible things he has had to do throughout the last 20 years as well as images from the night Sarah was murdered.

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