The Last of Us HBO co-creator says the TV series fleshes out the game's story: "There is so much in-between"

The Last of Us
(Image credit: HBO)

The Last of Us HBO co-creator Craig Mazin has suggested the TV series fleshes out the game's story.

In a new promotional video shared to Twitter ahead of the Last of Us series' January 15 premiere, Mazin touched on the sensitive subject of making creative changes to the source material.

"When you're adapting something like a video game, changes have to be done smartly," Mazin said. "We are telling more. There is so much in-between."

Just this week, The Last of Us director Neil Druckmann, who also serves as co-creator on the HBO series, assured fans that the TV adaptation doesn't diverge from the source work in a significant way, thereby avoiding the biggest complaint about Game of Thrones' last few seasons. Still, since the first game - which is what the first season of the show is based on - only has about 1.5 hours of cumulative cinematics, there's really only one way HBO can fill out a full nine episodes of story.

Personally, I'm excited to see how the capable hands of Mazin and Druckmann fill in some of the blanks from the games, like, potentially, how Joel ended up in Boston after starting out the game in Texas. There are plenty of other unanswered questions we could see some clarity around in the series.

In case you need any more assurance that HBO probably isn't going to dramatically reshape Naughty Dog's original story, last week Druckmann called the TV adaptation "the best, most authentic game adaptation." He added, "Sometimes adaptations haven't worked because the source material is not strong enough. Sometimes they haven't worked because the people making it don't understand the source material."

We do know the series will tone down a lot of the violence seen in the games, but we've seen no indication that the story will be altered.

The Last of Us TV season one is set to premiere on HBO and HBO Max on January 15.

Here are all of the new TV shows of 2023 to look forward to.

Jordan Gerblick

After scoring a degree in English from ASU, I worked as a copy editor while freelancing for places like SFX Magazine, Screen Rant, Game Revolution, and MMORPG on the side. Now, as GamesRadar's west coast Staff Writer, I'm responsible for managing the site's western regional executive branch, AKA my apartment, and writing about whatever horror game I'm too afraid to finish.