Chapter 3 of The Last of Us broke hearts and left millions of viewers teary-eyed, all for the moving and romantic story starring Bill (Nick Offerman) and Frank (Murray Bartlett). Although the arc of both characters was well received, fans of the original video game noticed certain changes in their story. What motivated the creators of the series to take certain liberties?
In it videogame, Joel and Ellie meet Bill when they arrive in Massachusetts. The latter has traps to protect himself not only from other humans, but also from infected zombies. Together they escape and enter an empty house, where they discover that Bill, Frank’s life partner, hanged himself after being bitten. By this time, Frank was looking to leave town without Bill, something evident in a suicide note.
But in the Serie, the situation is approached from a different angle. The entire episode, titled “Long Long Time”, allows us to know the love story between Bill and Frank and the life they build, as a couple, over two decades. In this case, Frank’s life begins to deteriorate from a neurodegenerative disease, not a bite. At 70 years old, Frank decides that he wants to end his life in a humane way, but Bill considers that his life is meaningless without Frank. They both die together in their bed. The famous suicide note is now addressed from Bill to Frank.
In interview for Variety, craig mazincreator of the series, explained why an entire chapter of The Last of Us It was dedicated to the story of Bill and Frank.
“I thought it was a very rich story and one that had not been seen. She gave us a chance to look at how time had passed, but also to ask what would happen if you were safe. He was fascinated by the idea of Bill, how someone had created a safe place, and then Frank comes along. From there, in my head it was different from how it happens in the game.
But even with the idea in mind, the other creatives had to agree to tell the story that way. Perhaps the most important opinion was that of Neil Druckman, co-creator of the series, executive producer of the same, and creator of the original video game. At the end of the day, he had developed the characters from scratch.
“Craig had some crazy ideas about what we should do with these two characters. As soon as he proposed to me, I fell in love. He was just beautiful. I felt it was a worthwhile trade for what we were going to get back,” added Druckmann.
And as Druckmann mentions, what they got back was completely enriching. Not only ordinary viewers were fascinated by the new episode of The Last of Usvarious major outlets called the chapter as “the best that television has offered in a long time”. Even some users of social networks have already started campaigns for Nick Offerman, Murray Bartlett and the writers of the chapter to be considered in the next installment of the Emmy Awards, the most important in the television industry.
“The great thing about Neil is he’s never like, ‘What the fuck?’ He always said, ‘Okay, let’s talk and think about it.’ I never have to worry about doing something that will destroy The Last of Us,” Mazin added.
How many tears did you shed with the story of Bill and Frank? The Last of Us premieres a new chapter every Sunday night through HBO and HBO Max.