The Last of Us fanbase is divided over Episode 3’s story, with some praising the new direction creators gave Bill, while others lament the loss of one of the game’s most explosive action sequences.
The Last of Us has been praised as one of television’s most accurate video game adaptations to date — but the show’s latest episode struck a unique chord within its fanbase.
Episode 3 promised to introduce Bill, an isolated survivalist who booby-trapped an entire town in an effort to ward off infected and intruders (to great success).
However, there were some stark differences between the AAA game and its Hollywood counterpart that made some fans a little disgruntled.
Differences between The Last of Us game vs show: Episode 3
Warning! Spoilers for Episode 3 and The Last of Us game ahead.
In the game, Joel and Ellie meet up with Bill after dismantling many of his booby traps and attracting some Runners. The three get into a bit of a scuffle before deciding to work together to get Joel a car battery, which includes a heart-pounding action sequence inside a school full of infected and a Bloater.
Most notably, Bill’s partner, Frank, ended his own life after becoming infected. He left a suicide note for Bill to read, in which he claims he hated him. In the game, it was never confirmed that Bill and Frank were romantically involved since the player never sees them interact with each other, though it was heavily implied.
The show takes a drastically different turn from this narrative. In HBO’s series, Bill and Frank live out a relatively comfortable life together (albeit with the occasional spat or two) until Frank is overcome by a disease that hampers his mobility.
Rather than living out the rest of his days with his condition, Frank asks to have one last day with Bill — and at the end of it, be given a wine glass full of crushed pills. In the end, both Bill and Frank leave this world together in the same way, with both their bodies sequestered away in a bedroom with the window open.
While many fans were hugely impressed with Nick Offerman’s portrayal of the fan-favorite Bill, others criticized the show for leaving out one of the game’s biggest action sequences.
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Fans react to big change in The Last of Us Episode 3
Still others found themselves missing the humorous squabbling between Bill and Ellie, who constantly grated on his nerves throughout their encounter.
“Loved episode 3 of the Last of Us, but I also understand why people disliked it and no I’m not talking about the people who are clearly hating because of Frank and Bill being a couple,” one user wrote on Twitter. “But more of the reason that they didn’t have any of the iconic Bill’s town moments from the game.”
“The Last of Us ep was so damn good, but I really wish we had gotten to spend more time in the post-outbreak world and getting to know Bill as a character more so that it could have REALLY hit,” another said. “As a stand-alone episode it was great, but as a facilitator to the series it felt empty.”
“I’m not sure how I feel about Ep 3 of The Last of Us,” another posited. “It was good, BUT the story in the game was so different. I was really hoping to see the first encountered Bloater. Bill was still alive. Joel found Frank’s body. Frank left Bill a mean letter about their relationship.”
That being said, plenty of fans praised the episode for its deep dive into Bill and Frank’s relationship, on top of giving the couple a happy ending that they didn’t receive in the source material.
“The latest episode of The Last of Us was beautiful,” one user wrote. “And what a great show about very angry mushrooms. I wish Bill’s story from episode 3 was now in the game.”
For more on the Last of Us, check out our comprehensive list of Easter Eggs from the game found in every episode.