The Last of Us Season 2 promises to fix Season 1's biggest complaint

The Last of Us Season 2 promises to fix Season 1's biggest complaint
Images via HBO

Written by 

Tom Chapman


14th Mar 2023 10:44

The curse, that infamous video game curse has been broken. While it's true that the likes of Detective Pikachu and Sonic the Hedgehog were proving it's possible to turn a video game IP into a half-decent outing years ago, HBO's The Last of Us took us in a much darker direction.

At a time when we've had middling outings like Paramount's Halo series and Sony's Uncharted movie, The Last of Us has rightly broken records and done justice to Naughty Dog's 2013 game. It's heralded as a near-perfect outing, but as we head into Season 2, those at the top are listening to your grumbles.

The Last of Us Season 2 will tackle Season 1's biggest complaint

The Last of Us Infected
Click to enlarge

We know The Last of Us' core is the adoptive father-daughter relationship between Ellie (Bella Ramsey) and Joel (Pedro Pascal), with the first nine episodes allowing that to grow between them. Still, it's important to remember the world has been ravaged by the Cordyceps infection.

Although the first few episodes started with flashbacks to explain the outbreak, the Infected largely became a background nuisance (as we'd argue they should) when things progressed. When not slamming the series being "too woke" and pushing an "LGBTQ+ agenda," critics were asking for more Infected. 

Speaking at a press conference (via IGN), showrunner Craig Mazin explained, "There may be less action than some people wanted because we couldn't necessarily find significance for quite a bit of it, or a concern that it would be repetitive. After all, you're not playing it, you're watching it."

Mazin said that while some people like watching gameplay, it needs to be "a little bit more focused and purposeful when we're putting it on TV." He added that just because he and Game Director Neil Druckmann were given a one-season order, it didn't mean they weren't looking ahead.

As for more mushroom monsters in Season 2, Mazin concluded, "There is more The Last of Us to come. I think the balance is not always just about within an episode or even episode to episode, but season to season. It's quite possible that there will be a lot more infected later and perhaps different kinds."

The Last of Us has never been about the Infected

After the big horde and Bloater reveal of Episode 5, the Infected were pushed even more into the background. There was just one in Ellie and Riley's mall flashback, while Episode 8's harrowing clash with David was entirely free of Infected. Is that really a problem, though?

The Last of Us reportedly banned the word "zombie" from the set, and remember, it isn't your classic zombie series. Similar to AMC's The Walking DeadThe Last of Us has set out its stall that the surviving remnants of the human race are arguably the most dangerous threat out there.

For those who know what's coming in the following seasons, a faithful adaptation of Naughty Dog's The Last of Us Part 2 will introduce Abby Anderson as the show's answer to The Walking Dead's Negan. Still, that doesn't mean there won't be Bloaters and a certain Rat King to contend with when The Last of Us returns. 

Tom Chapman
About the author
Tom Chapman
Tom is Trending News Editor at GGRecon, with an NCTJ qualification in Broadcast Journalism and over seven years of experience writing about film, gaming, and television. With bylines at IGN, Digital Spy, Den of Geek, and more, Tom’s love of horror means he's well-versed in all things Resident Evil, with aspirations to be the next Chris Redfield.
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