Just like the video game franchise it’s based on, HBO’s zombie wasteland starring Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey will be back for a second installment. The network has ordered another season of The Last of Us from co-creators Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann. Not that there was much doubt about that based on its reception. In addition to overwhelming critical praise the show has proven to be a hit with viewers, too. It garnered the second biggest premiere audience for a new show at HBO. (Coming in only behind House of the Dragon‘s debut.) And since the pilot aired HBO says more than 22 million people have watched it.
Episode two’s ratings also showed off the appeal of the series. Its initial airing notched 5.7 million people, a million more than tuned in for the first’s episodes original showing. HBO says that 22% increase is the largest in its history.
“Craig and Neil, alongside EP Carolyn Strauss, and the rest of our phenomenal cast and crew, have defined a genre with their masterful debut season of The Last of Us,” said Francesca Orsi, Executive Vice President, HBO Programming, Head of HBO Drama Series and Films, in a press release. “After pulling off this unforgettable first season, I can’t wait to watch this team outshine themselves again with season two.”
While fans of the video games might have some idea what to expect from a second season, newcomers to the franchise still have a long way to go before getting there. This announcement comes as season one still has eight episodes left. That’s a lot of time to live inside a monster-filled wasteland. But clearly not enough time to watch others do it.