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The Last Of Us will continue to be "different" from the game, showrunners warn

Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann emphasize the importance of diverging from The Last Of Us gameplay while writing the HBO series

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The Last Of Us showrunners teases season 2
Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey in The Last Of Us
Photo: Liane Hentscher/HBO

The Last Of Us is looking forward to the future. HBO’s hit series concluded its first season on Sunday, experiencing unprecedented levels of success for a video game adaptation. Still, even though the post-apocalyptic drama held major crossover appeal, some fans of the original game still wish it would have been a little more faithful to the source material, particularly when it comes to the action.

Co-creator Craig Mazin addressed this and other concerns during a virtual press conference last week (per Variety). “Ultimately, we generally stressed the power of relationships and trying to find significance within moments of action,” he said. “And so there may be less action than some people wanted because we couldn’t necessarily find significance for quite a bit of it, or [there was] concern that it would be repetitive. After all, you’re not playing it, you’re watching it. And although a lot of people do like to watch gameplay, it needs to be a little more focused and purposeful when we’re putting it on TV.”

The body count for The Last Of Us television series is pretty high, but even co-creator Neil Druckmann (who wrote the game) admits that the game’s body count is “much higher than we would want for the show.” He noted that if an action sequence “doesn’t move character, and it was only there for spectacle, it was an easy cut for us.”


That doesn’t mean there won’t be spectacle in the second season: “There is more The Last Of Us to come. It’s quite possible that there will be a lot more infected later. And perhaps different kinds,” Mazin hinted during the press conference. He went on to say, “We will present things, but it will be different, just as this season was different. Sometimes it will be different radically, and sometimes it will be barely different at all, but it’s going to be different. It will be its own thing. It won’t be exactly like the game. It will be the show that Neil and I want to make.”