The Last Of Us TV Show: Release Date, Cast, Story

The Last Of Us TV Show: Release Date, Cast, Story
Image: Naughty Dog

Written by 

Aaron Bayne


11th Jun 2021 13:42

Despite decades of being let down by video game adaptations, we can't help but get excited for The Last Of Us TV show. Often cited as one of the best narratives the medium has ever seen, The Last Of Us and its sequel Part II were a mix of both critical appraisal and fan division.

Now, it's all heading to the small screen in the form of an HBO show with a star-studded cast and some serious talent attached. Will The Last Of Us TV show break the video game adaptation curse? Let's break down everything you need to know about The Last Of Us TV show so you can decide. 

The Last Of Us TV Show Release Date

We've been waiting some time, but finally, we know that The Last Of Us' TV adaptation's first episode will air on January 15, 2023. Before that, though, there were a lot of palpable rumours as to its appearance.

There was some speculation as to whether we'd be seeing The Last Of Us TV show release date land in the early months of 2023, due to pandemic restrictions. However, a recent post from IMDb seemingly confirmed that the show was aiming for a 2022 release window, which one of the series stars' Bella Ramsey posted on her Instagram story. US audiences will be able to watch the show on HBO Max, whereas UK viewers will turn to Sky/Now TV. 

What Is The Last Of Us TV Show? 

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For those unfamiliar with The Last Of Us video game series, it’s a character-driven narrative set 20 years into a fungal post-apocalypse. Joel is tasked with smuggling a 14-year-old girl, Ellie, across America in hopes of developing a cure for a zombie-like infection called Cordyceps. The video game saw players control Joel as they fought their way through both infected and bandits. The two form a father/daughter relationship as they progress through their journey. 

It quickly became one of the highest rated video games ever when it launched in 2013. It was followed by its sequel The Last Of Us Part 2 in 2020, which was well reviewed by critics but proved controversial to some fans. The Last Of Us TV show aims to bring that video game experience to the small screen.

The Last of Us TV Show Cast

Pedro Pascale and Bella Ramsey will take on the lead roles in The Last Of Us TV show.
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Game of Thrones fans will be happy to hear that two of the fantasy show’s alumni will take on the lead roles of Joel and Ellie in The Last Of Us TV show. Pedro Pascal, who can be seen in series such as The Mandalorian and films like Wonder Woman ‘84, will play Joel. And bringing the boisterous teen to life is Bella Ramsey, who is best known for her role as the fan-favourite Lyanna Mormont in the final season of Game of Thrones. 

Outside of Joel and Ellie in The Last Of Us TV show, Gabriel Luna of Agents of Shield fame has been cast as Joel’s brother Tommy. Tommy featured sparingly in the original game, however was a far more prominent figure in its sequel The Last Of Us Part 2. 

Additionally, Anna Torv from Netflix’s Mindhunter will take on the role of Tess, Joel’s partner in crime with a hint towards some form of romantic relationship. Fans are mostly hoping that like the video game, this won’t be a focal point of The Last Of Us TV show. We also know that the grumpy recluse Bill will be played by Nick Offerman (Parks And Recreations/ Devs) after replacing Con O'Neill. 

The cast on the set of The Last Of Us TV show.
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Returning from the video game, Merle Dandrige will reprise her role as Marlene, hinting at the presence of the Fireflies in The Last of Us TV show. She’s not the only person returning from the video game showing up here. Jeffrey Pierce, who voiced Tommy originally, will play a mysterious character named Perry “that has huge implications for things that did occur in the game”

We’ve also had confirmation that Murray Bartlett will play Frank and Nico Parker will take on the role of Sarah, Joel’s daughter. The latter confirms that we’ll be seeing the heart-breaking prologue from the first game, especially after seeing this shot from Luna’s Instagram. And the latest to be cast in this epic is Storm Reid (Euphoria) who will play Riley, an important character in the Left Behind DLC and integral to Ellie's character arc. 

The Last of Us TV Show Story

The Last Of Us TV show will teel the story of Joel and Ellie.
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Story details on The Last Of Us TV show are relatively light, despite knowing a lot about the show itself. Neil Druckmann, a writer on the show and creative director of the original games, claimed that the TV show script will “deviate greatly in some episodes”. From the show’s synopsis however, it seems as though the base narrative will remain. The synopsis states: 

“Joel and Ellie, a pair connected through the harshness of the world they live in, are forced to endure brutal circumstances and ruthless killers on a trek across post-pandemic America.”

Pairing this up with some of the casting we can assume that we’ll see familiar locales like Bill’s Town and Joel’s Miller’s home pre-pandemic. We know from the co-writer Craig Mazin (Chernobyl) that The Last Of Us TV show will include segments that were cut from the original game. This means that even long-term fans will find something new from the show.

The Last Of Us TV Show: Episode Count And Future Seasons

The Last Of Us TV show could go on for multiple seasons.
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The Last Of Us TV show already had a mighty task of fitting the first game's narrative into a single season. From what we've learned from the cast and leaked set-pictures, it looks like we'll be seeing narrative threads from The Last Of Us, Part II, and Left Behind. That is a whole lot to fit into the reported 10 episodes that will be arriving with this season. Many fans have speculated that the show could continue beyond this season, and oddly a crew member's hoodie hints that that could be the case. 

A behind-the-scenes shot posted to Twitter held a key piece of information that fans zeroed in on immediately. With The Last Of Us logo on a crew member's hoodie, it was accompanied by the sub-title of "Season One". While not confirmation, it certainly hints that this is the first of many seasons to come, and with the stories of both games and DLC, there is certainly enough story to cover at least a couple of seasons. 

That's everything we know about The Last Of Us TV show so far, but we'll update this page when more information becomes available. In the meantime, check out everything we know about The Last Of Us Part 3

Aaron Bayne
About the author
Aaron Bayne
Aaron Bayne was a Guides Writer at GGRecon. His previous experience includes BBC and Fraghero.
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