Last Of Us Actor Makes Bold Claim About HBO Show That Should Hype Up More Than Just Gamers And Horror Fans

Pedro Pascal in The Last of Us.
(Image credit: HBO)

The TV-viewing public is closing in on two months before the premiere of HBO’s The Last of Us. The highly anticipated video game adaptation is drumming up plenty of buzz amongst fans of the franchise, especially after that first trailer (which teased Clickers). Of course, the series will have to appeal to far more than franchise devotees if it’s to be a smash hit for the premium cable channel. On that note, one of the show’s stars has made a bold claim that should hype up more than just gamers and horror fans. 

The Last of Us totes a stacked cast, which includes Murray Bartlett, who most probably know from his roles in shows like Looking and The White Lotus, for which he became a 2022 Emmy winner. As evidenced by his resume, Bartlett has definitely been around and done some quality productions for the small screen. The veteran actor recently chatted with Collider about his work on TLoU and reflected on reading the scripts for the show. And during the conversation, he declared one particular episode to be “one of the best hours of television” he’s ever laid his eyes on: 

The scripts that I had to work with, one particular script is one of the best hours of television I've ever read. It's beautiful. It's beautifully written. There are these zombie creatures in it, but it's tender and it's human. I think it's gonna be really special. I haven't seen any of it yet, but I'm really proud of the work we did and I think it could be really, really wonderful. It will be really wonderful.

That’s some serious praise, when you consider that audiences have witnessed some incredibly compelling television over the years. The past decade alone has featured prestige series like Mad Men, The Handmaid’s Tale, Better Call Saul and Succession. The actor’s declaration is indeed something that should intrigue casual viewers who may still be deciding whether they want to check out the post-apocalyptic drama series. 

The notion of The Last of Us providing some of the best TV we’ve ever seen isn’t too far-fetched. After all, it comes from the mind of Craig Mazin, who created the Emmy-winning miniseries Chernobyl. He’s joined by co-showrunner Neil Druckmann, who co-wrote and directed the two video games on which the show is based. It’s also worth noting that the show has plenty of resources at its disposal, as it’s reportedly one of HBO’s priciest shows since Game of Thrones. In the same interview, Murray Bartlett spoke to the time and care that’s being put into the production: 

As far as I know, in my research, because I went into a deep dive on what the game is, it's incredibly cinematic. The characters are really fantastic. It's an amazing, complicated story with really deep themes in it. It's an amazing creation. They've really beautifully adapted all of those elements into this show. It's an incredible team. Part of the team created Chernobyl, which is another amazing piece of TV. There's an amazing cast. They've put a lot of love and resources behind it. I think it's gonna be a fantastic show.

Murray Bartlett is set to play the character of Frank, the partner to Nick Offerman’s Bill. The former only had a dialogue-less cameo in the original game, so it would seem their roles will be expanded in the series. Neil Druckmann made note of changes to the story, but Craig Mazin has also said it won’t “undo” anything from the game. Let’s hope their efforts live up to the spirited assertion that Bartlett made.

The Last of Us is set to premiere on January 15, and episodes will likely be available to stream with an HBO Max subscription as well.

Erik Swann
Senior Content Producer

Covering superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. I eat more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.