The Last of Us showrunner suggests when it will end

The Last of Us showrunner suggests when it will end
Images via HBO

Written by 

Tom Chapman


17th Aug 2023 13:58

It seems like we're just getting started with HBO's The Last of Us, but unfortunately, we're already looking toward its end. With only two games from Naughty Dog to adapt - and promises we won't outlive the source material - we always knew Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann's live-action revamp had a limited shelf life.

The Last of Us Season 1 wrapped after just nine episodes earlier this year but was greenlit for a second run of episodes before the first had even aired. As we look ahead to The Last of Us Season 2, Mazin has been looking even further ahead to its eventual swansong. 

How many seasons will The Last of Us have?

Pedro Pascal as Joel in HBO's The Last of Us
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Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Mazin has confirmed he's got a general plan for The Last of Us to run for four seasons. Explaining his hopes for The Last of Us, Mazin said, "It can end up being three or five. But four seems like a good number."

Saying that it's not a case of giving a season a certain number of episodes, he continued, "Some seasons, because of the story we're telling, will need fewer episodes and some will need more. The best news is the audience wants more." 

Mazin reiterated they won't be making more episodes simply because the fans want it: "I think the wisdom of how we lay it out will hopefully be clear." Concluding that the number of episodes isn't important, Mazin said, "What's important is when they get to the end of the season, they’re like, 'That was a good season.'"

If sticking with the plan, it means 2020's The Last of Us Part II will have an epic arc spanning the next three seasons. The Last of Us finale neatly lined up with the end of the first game, while we've previously been told Season 2 will only adapt some of Part II.

Given that Part II is a much bigger game, this makes sense. Also, as the second part of the sequel switches perspectives to the morally complex Abby Anderson, we can see The Last of Us Season 4 doing the same to redeem the villain and give us Abby's side of the story.

Could The Last of Us have more than four seasons?

The Last of Us Bill and Frank HBO
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All of this is a way off yet, and thanks to the ongoing WAG SAG-AFTRA strikes, The Last of Us Season 2 has been put on hold. Still, there are hopes it'll still hit that mythical 2025 release date. By this point, who knows where the rest of the franchise will be up to?

Melanie Lynskey has already pitched an origin story for Kathleen, while Episode 3 director Peter Hoar teased a Bill and Frank spin-off. We've seen HBO's Game of Thrones lead into House of the Dragon as a prequel, with other shows on the horizon. By the sounds of it, Druckmann and Mazin are only interested in the here and now.

If we're locking in for four seasons, it means we'll hopefully avoid the fatigue that plagued the likes of The Walking Dead in its twilight years. Then again, with continuous whispers of The Last of Us Part 3, Druckmann and Mazin could soon have more material to adapt if they want to keep the fandom infected a little longer.

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