A really completely different type of apocalypse. The Final of Us follows a gaggle of survivors after a pandemic wipes out most of humanity, but it surely’s not a virus that causes the disaster — it’s a fungus.
The perpetrator is cordyceps, an actual fungus that within the present has advanced to contaminate people, who turn out to be zombie-like after publicity. Whereas minor characters come and go, the collection focuses primarily on Joel (Pedro Pascal), a middle-aged survivor who’s charged with defending Ellie (Bella Ramsey), a teen woman who’s seemingly resistant to cordyceps.
The sci-fi drama relies on the 2013 online game of the identical identify, which was written by Neil Druckmann. The Naughty Canine co-president can also be a creator and government producer of the HBO collection, so he’s well-placed to make sure the present maintains the spirit of the sport whereas additionally deviating the place obligatory.
One of many greatest differentiations got here in episode 3, “Lengthy, Lengthy Time,” which pulled again from Joel and Ellie’s story to give attention to Invoice (Nick Offerman) and Frank (Murray Bartlett). Invoice seems within the sport, however by the point Joel and Ellie encounter him, his associate, Frank, is already lifeless. The present, nevertheless, devoted a full episode to Invoice and Frank’s love story, from their first assembly to their heart-wrenching deaths.
“After we acquired to this half within the season, [co-showrunner] Craig [Mazin] introduced up a extremely attention-grabbing level which is … there’s a whole lot of examples of issues not turning out effectively for folks, and infrequently these are reflections and cautionary tales for Joel of, ‘Right here’s what you stand to lose,’” Druckmann informed IGN in January 2023. “It was, ‘What if we present them what you would stand to win?’”
Whereas Mazin and Druckmann used the sport as a jumping-off level for the present, they suggested their actors to not do the identical — although not all of them obeyed. “I hadn’t heard of the sport. Their instruction was: Don’t play the sport,” Pascal defined to Wired in January 2023. “I ignored them. I attempted to play the sport, and I used to be very, very unhealthy at it. … It was vital to me to play notes that have been immediately associated to what was initially within the sport — bodily, visually, vocally.”
Ramsey, in the meantime, waited to play the sport till after the present premiered in early 2023. “I’ve not acquired to the bit the place Ellie is available in,” the Recreation of Thrones alum stated throughout a February 2023 episode of the “Blissful Unhappy Confused” podcast. “It’s truly not as bizarre as I assumed it might be. I simply must get on with it. I get in a room, I take a look at all the small print and I’m simply wandering round. Then I find yourself getting misplaced. I simply must go ahead and get to the purpose.”
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Hold scrolling to see how the Final of Us forged compares to their online game counterparts: