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The Last of Us Showrunner Discusses Cut Plans for Tess' Origin Story

The Last of Us showrunner revealed a backstory for Tess that they wrote but never shot.

The following contains MAJOR SPOILERS for The Last of Us, Season 1, Episode 2, now streaming on HBO and HBO Max.The Last of Us HBO adaptation has already killed off one of its main characters, Tess, in the first two episodes of its first season. The death of the character, played by Anna Torv, was in line with the source material and had a profound impact on viewers who tuned into the series. However, fans may be surprised to learn that there was originally a much more in-depth story featuring Tess that was ultimately removed from the series because of time restraints.

In the latest episode of The Last of Us podcast, Creator Neil Druckmann revealed that they had written a backstory for Tess, which included the fact that she had a kid and a husband who were both infected, and she had to kill them. In the original story, Tess kills her husband, but she couldn’t bring herself to kill her son, so she locked him in the basement. This decision would have added an even more heartbreaking and emotional element to the character, as it would have shown her struggle with the moral implications of her actions and her love for her child.


“There is something we had talked about, and we wrote it. We never shot it. It was a little bit of a backstory for Tess, and the fact that Tess had a kid,” Neil Druckmann said. “She had a husband and she had a son, and they were infected and she had to kill them. She killed her husband, but she could not kill the son. She couldn’t do it. She locked him in the basement, where theoretically, he’s still a Clicker.”

RELATED: The Last of Us Co-Creators Talk Creepy Clicker Moment in Episode 2

Tess’ Tragic Backstory and Heroic Sacrifice in The Last of Usthe-last-of-us

The Last of Us is off to a strong start, and fans are eagerly awaiting the next episode to see how the story develops. The show is packed with action, emotion, and tragedy, and it is clear that the creators are not afraid to take risks and push the boundaries of what is expected. Despite these cuts, The Last of Us is still keeping in line with the source material it pulls from. This can be seen in the way the characters are portrayed and the way the story is developing. The show creators are dedicated to staying true to the source material while also adding their own unique perspective. It is a delicate balance, but so far it seems to be working well.

Tess’ past would have made her death much more heartbreaking and painful. Knowing that she had already lost her family in such a traumatic way would have added to the emotional impact of her passing and made her sacrifice more meaningful. The show also had a planned cold open based on Tess’ story, but it was ultimately cut.

“We had a cold open where we just, where the camera pushed on this door and you just hear this pounding coming from this basement, and then we cut out. And then later, Tess would tell the story of how she couldn’t kill her son,” Druckmann said. “It just didn’t fit. But it was fun to think about.”

The Last of Us airs on HBO and HBO Max at 9 p.m. Eastern every Sunday.

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