The Last of Us showrunner and stars address Joel’s fate in Season 2
Executive producer Craig Mazin says he doesn’t “feel constrained by the source material”
The co-creator of HBO’s The Last of Us adaptation and its lead actors have commented on the potential fate of the character Joel in Season 2.
Warning: this article contains spoilers for The Last of Us Part 2.
Season 1 was a largely faithful retelling of the first game in the PlayStation series, and if the next season follows suit there’s a major twist in store for viewers.
In the opening act of The Last of Us Part 2, Joel is brutally murdered by Abby, who is the daughter of the surgeon he killed to save Ellie’s life at the end of Part 1.
Pedro Pascal, who portrays Joel in the HBO show, hasn’t played the game or watched the scene in question, although he’s well aware of it.
While he claimed to be unsure of the plan for his character, Pascal told Esquire: “It wouldn’t make sense to follow the first game so faithfully only to stray severely from the path. So, yeah, that’s my honest answer.”
“If that does take place in the show, I don’t know that I’m emotionally ready for it, Bella Ramsey, who plays Ellie in the adaption, also commented.
Craig Mazin, who is co-writing and executive producing The Last of Us with Naughty Dog co-president Neil Druckmann, appeared to suggest nothing is off the table when it comes to where the show might take Joel’s character.
“This should be fairly obvious to anyone by now, but I don’t fear killing characters,” he said. “But the important thing to note is that neither Neil nor I feel constrained by the source material.”
Fans may have to wait a couple of years to find out what happens in Season 2, Ramsey suggested during an interview last month.
“It will be a while,” she said when asked when the second season might air. “I think we’ll probably shoot at the end of this year, beginning of next. And then it’s a long, it’s like a year filming, so it will be probably the end of 2024, early 2025.”
HBO announced that The Last of Us had been renewed for a second season just two and a half weeks into the first season’s nine-episode run, which concluded in March.
The show enjoyed an overwhelmingly successful debut season which saw HBO viewership figures that were second only to House of the Dragon in recent years.
Last month, Mazin and Druckmann seemingly confirmed their intention to make a third season too, by suggesting that Season 2 wouldn’t be able to contain the entirety of The Last of Us Part 2 game.