Season 1, episode 2 of HBO’s The Last of Us, “Infected,” contains a few surprises, even if you’ve played the game. Why? Because while it’s still following the plot of The Last of Us Part I, there are some notable changes. So let’s discuss a list of all the differences between the HBO The Last of Us show episode 2 and the video game.
Differences Between The Last of Us Episode 2 and the Game Include One Big Twist to the Infected
Before we get around to listing all the notable changes, we’re going to focus on what may be the biggest game-changer for the series, or for the infected at least. You’ll know from episode 1, “When You’re Lost in the Darkness,” that the infection is transmitted not via spores but via tendrils or fibers. This episode reveals that the fungus grows underground, and every infected who isn’t actively pursuing someone is connected to the rest via underground fibers.
So far, so gross. But that also means that, when one infected is alerted, the other infected in the district, maybe even the whole city, are alerted. So when Joel foolishly shoots an infected, the basic non-clicker infected (runners, as the game calls them) descend upon them.
In the game, the infected were entirely unconnected, and while shooting one might alert nearby infected, the rest would remain unaware. We’re certainly looking forward to seeing how that shakes up future episodes.
Here’s the full list of of other differences between episode 2 of The Last of Us the show and the video game:
- There’s another pre-apocalypse opening, set in Indonesia, where a fungi expert, Professor Ibu Ratna, examines the corpse of one of the first infected. She’s not “Patient Zero,” but it suggests the outbreak originated there. The game doesn’t specify any such origin.
- Joel is better armed than in the game, having taken a rifle off episode 1’s dead FEDRA soldier.
- Joel and Ellie have an awkward talk, which reveals that, while some infected can remain active for months, others are still walking around 20 years after Outbreak Day.
- Joel, Ellie, and Tess don’t encounter any infected — close up at least — as they traverse the office buildings.
- But the trio does have to cross a flooded hotel lobby, revealing much earlier than in the game that Ellie can’t swim.
- They also look down on the city to see at least a hundred semi-dormant infected lying next to each other. It’s this mass of infected that pursues them later.
- Outside the museum, Joel deliberately steps on a fungal tendril, concluding that, since it’s dry, the infected inside have died out. He’s wrong.
- In the museum, Ellie is bitten a second time — this heals, which convinces Tess that she’s genuinely immune. In The Last of Us Part I, she only has her initial bite.
- As in the game, the Fireflies they were supposed to meet in the Statehouse are dead, but here it’s not FEDRA’s doing. In fact, FEDRA is nowhere to be seen. In the show, one of the Fireflies was infected, which led to the death of the rest.
- Tess shows Joel her bite, but he flinches and briefly recoils from her.
- Instead of telling Joel to take Ellie to Tommy, who is still AWOL in the series, Tess tells him to take her to Bill and Frank.
- Joel shoots a not-quite-dead infected, which brings the rest of the horde running.
- Instead of being gunned down by FEDRA, Tess pours gasoline over the lobby and sets it on fire, also setting off several nearby grenades.
- Between that and the infected racing in, her death is much more horrific than in The Last of Us Part I.
And those are all the differences between the HBO The Last of Us show season 1, episode 2, “Infected,” and the video game.