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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Read This: The makers of Last Man On Earth talk viruses, budgets, and tennis

Illustration for article titled Read This: The makers of Last Man On Earth talk viruses, budgets, and tennis

Fox’s post-apocalyptic sitcom The Last Man On Earth airs its second-season finale on Sunday. It’s been an eventful, tumultuous year for Will Forte’s hapless Tandy and the other members of the Malibu Crew, the scant survivors of a planet-emptying virus. Season two has seen a couple of prominent deaths, a few pregnancies, various romantic entanglements, and one extraordinary episode that didn’t feature any members of the core cast at all. Having already provided in-depth backstage coverage of the series in the past, Den Of Geek now continues its Last Man walkthrough with an article in which the show’s writers and producers discuss the episodes “Pitch Black” and “Valhalla” as well as the general direction of the series. As goofy as the series can get at times, executive producer Andy Bobrow clearly takes the characters and their dire situation seriously. The fact that this season featured two major funerals, one for an established character and one for a character the audience didn’t really know, allowed Last Man to show different depictions of the grieving process.

The article also reveals how the show’s writers react to criticism of the series. Some viewers have remarked, for instance, that Last Man seems to avoid showing the devastating effects of the virus, so “Pitch Black” addresses that very directly with a shot of corpses in body bags. Bobrow explains:

Will had wanted to do the sea of body bags for a while. I think he brought it up in season one, and we definitely considered it for 201. Just to have a silent scene where Tandy and Carol are driving and they go right through a CDC tent village full of body bags. Since the pilot, we kept seeing people online saying, “Where are the bodies????” We knew some people just had to see them. This was our way of saying, “Here. A buncha bodies, happy? Can we get back to the show now?”


Other surprising revelations include the fact that a memorable scene in which characters play tennis while wearing hazmat suits was a late-in-the-process inspiration by producer Phil Lord. Also, somewhat disappointingly, a sequence in which Jason Sudeikis boards an abandoned luxury liner and enjoys “a pleasure cruise by himself” was ditched due to budgetary concerns. Such are the realities of network television. Friggin’ suits.