The Last of Us Season 1 has already made some changes, and Season 2 is expected to flip the story even more.
The Last of Us is continuing to be one of the best franchises out there, with two stellar games, comics, and now an amazing first season of a HBO show. You can check out our review for the finale here, but spoiler alert: It’s great.
Because of this, fans are now eagerly waiting for Season 2, but like with Season 1, it’s clear that some changes are going to be made when it comes to adapting a game to TV.
Part 2 is arguably a much more complicated – and controversial – story, so it seems like the creators of the HBO show are taking a specific approach to it.
The Last of Us Season 2 will spread over multiple seasons
In an interview with GQ, the show’s co-creators Neil Druckmann (who also created the video game) and Craig Mazin discussed their plans for Season 2, which mainly included the sheer scope of the story.
“It’s more than one season,” Druckmann said, though he couldn’t reveal anything more.
Druckmann also made sure to add how the writing process became easier with Mazin as the show went along, so it will no doubt be easier for Season 2: “There’s more trust, there’s more of a shorthand, I know that I’m working with my friend, that even when we have some very strong disagreements, it’s always light. I’ve been in so many situations, where if you disagree with someone, it feels like life or death. The process here is really a joy.”
Perspectives will be “flipped” in The Last of Us Season 2
One of the defining factors in The Last of Us Part 2 is how it switches the perspective of the main character’s, and thus the player themselves. This is something unique to gameplay; you feel attached to the character because you are literally controlling their every move, therefore it is easier to empathise with them. So question is, how will this come across in a more passive medium like TV?
Thankfully, Mazin and Druckmann have a plan. “I think we know what we’re doing on this one. I’m not saying that in snarky way, I’m saying that in a hopeful way,” Mazin explained.
“There are going to be things that are going to be different, and there are things that are going to be identical. There are things that are going to be added and enriched. There are some things that are going to be flipped. Our goal remains exactly what it was for the first season, which is to deliver a show that makes fans happy. We’ve got an incredible returning cast. It’s a daunting task. But Jesus, so was the first season. You can’t make everyone happy. But we’ve made a lot of people happy and that’s our intention to do it again.”
Druckmann then went on to further hint at future changes to the sequel game’s plot: “Some of the stuff I’m most excited for [in Part/Season 2] are the changes we’ve discussed and seeing the story come to life again in this other version. And I think it’s exciting because it leans into those feelings you had from the game, really heavily, in a new way.”
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Change is something of which the first season is already familiar, such as the expansion of Bill and Frank’s story, and the inclusion of Kathleen. These alterations have generally improved the show’s trajectory, so Season 2 seems to be in good hands.
Season 2 may also have more infected
While Season 1 has been regarded mostly positively, one common problem some viewers had is the lack of infected. Naturally, there were a ton of infected to fight in the video game – had there not been, the game could have been rather boring. But in the show, there were significantly less.
While it’s understandable why this change was made – Joel and Ellie mindlessly fighting infected over and over again would be nowhere near as fun to watch as it is to play – some fans felt let down, which may perhaps influence the creators to include more mindless enemies in Season 2. But only perhaps.
As said by Mazin, “One of my least favourite notes as a screenwriter to receive from a studio is, ‘We really liked this, give us more of it.’ And I always think, well, I’m going to give you more good until you’re like, ‘Ah it’s too much of it.’
“I learned that lesson as much from watching Game of Thrones as anything else. That series had such a slow and interesting build to the presence of the wights and the white walkers. Every time you saw them, your blood pressure skyrocketed. They were special. Had Game of Thrones been a game first, as opposed to a set of novels, there’s no doubt that in the game, you’d be fighting White Walkers all the time. And so of course you would want more of them [in its TV adaptation].
“All that said, we learned by watching the audience watch the show. I personally have noted how much they liked those encounters. And I think we have some really interesting things coming that will be very satisfying without burying you.”
The Last of Us Season 1 is now available to stream in its entirety. You can check out the rest of our coverage here and find out more about Season 2 here.