Over the years, cinema has tried to recreate stories from video games on the big and small screens. It saddens us to say that few have made it to the successful list, and even fewer have appeased gaming fans while climbing the rating charts. But HBO Max’s The Last of Us, based on the 2013 game of the same name, has definitely made it as the select few.
But even though The Last of Us has stuck closely to the source material, showrunners Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann were bound to make some changes to adapt the story for a TV series.
But the game’s fandom has taken to complaining online about the timeline change and the show deviating from the original “spores” theory about the infected.
Druckmann, who was one of the writers for the 2013 game and is serving as the show’s co-creator, responded to the said criticism in an interview with Variety. Read his full quote below:
I’ve learned to expect backlash from sneezing. I think it speaks to the kind of fans that we have, who are so protective and love the world and these characters so much that anything they see as a deviation, without the full context of what it means, they assume the worst and push back on it.
I think that addition is something worthwhile. It’s actually one of those additions where I’m like, “Oh man, I wish we had it for the game. I wish we had thought of it years ago because I love it so much.”
His fellow creator Craig Mazin also had some thoughts on the matter, stating he doesn’t blame people for hating them. Mazin admitted that he knew they wouldn’t be able to keep everyone happy but added, “if you just see how it goes, I think you’ll be OK.”
The creators talked about how they lifted the Clickers straight for the game but decided to take a different route when explaining how the infected spread the fungus to others. In the game, the very air near the infected was hazardous, and spores from their bites could turn a person into the same.
The show scrapped the hazardous air theory and developed another idea to rid the characters of the oxygen masks, adding that the infected can communicate through the fungal collections. They replaced the spores with moving tendrils that need to come in direct contact with the skin or mouth of someone to spread the infection.
Though the fans might be taking issue with these changes, the showrunners seem comfortable with said tune-ups and plan to explain them going forward. New episodes of The Last of Us premiere on HBO Max every Sunday.
About The Last Of Us
The Last of Us is an upcoming HBO TV series adaptation of the award-winning video game of the same name originally developed by Naughty Dog. It is set in the future of 2033, as a fungal infestation plagues humans turning them feral and blind before finally finishing them off. The series will follow Joel’s journey trying to escort an immune 14-year-old Ellie to doctors, who hope to study her in order to procure a vaccine.
The cast is made up of Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey, both famed for their roles in Games of Thrones, along with Gabriel Luna, Merle Dandridge and Nico Parker. Naughty Dog co-president Neil Druckmann will be running the show partnering with Craig Mazin, c0-producer and writer.