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Fans Want More Pedro and Bella—But Will They Get It?

Ramsey looks like a 19-year-old, because she IS a 19-year-old.

Image of Pedro Pascal (Joel) and Bella Ramsey (Ellie) in a scene from 'The last of us' on HBO. Joel has dark, scruffy hair and a mustache and wears a dark jacket and a brown backpack. He's carrying Ellie, who is unconscious and in a hospital gown. He's walking through a parking garage.

Warning: implied spoilers for The Last of Us: Part 2 and possibly the second season of The Last of Us.

If you watched the Season 1 finale of HBO’s The Last of Us on Sunday, you’re not alone. You, along with 8.2 million other people enjoyed the finale on the night it dropped, Oscars or no Oscars. As the viewership grew and grew with every passing week, so too did the audience’s love for Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey as Joel and Ellie.

Despite that, there’ve been some weird murmurings among fans about Pascal and Ramsey coming back for another season. About how they’ll return in Season 2, and whether Ramsey should.

Joel’s journey, and what that means for Pascal

Image of Pedro Pascal as Joel on 'The last of Us' on HBO. Close-up image of Joel, who is outdoors and looking at something with a serious expression. His brown hair is shaggy, and he has a salt-and-pepper mustache and a light beard. He's wearing a rifle on his back and a green backpack and a greenish jacket.

As reported in Variety, showrunner Craig Mazin has confirmed that they won’t be trying to cram all of The Last of Us, Part II into one season. While he and co-showrunner and game creator, Neil Druckmann, aren’t sure whether the rest of the story will need two or three seasons to tell, it will be spaced out.

If you’re aware of Joel’s journey in the second game, the way they space out the story of Part II would certainly impact Pascal’s participation, if not in Season 2, then possibly in Season 3 depending on how certain plot points play out. There are also plenty of ways he can participate all the way through—in spite of everything.

Considering the near-universal praise Pascal has received for his performance as Joel, not to mention his skyrocketing popularity lately, I have a hard time believing that HBO or TLOU‘s showrunners would let him go until the last possible moment.

Ellie’s journey, and the upcoming time jump

Image of Bella Ramsey as Ellie on 'The last of Us' on HBO. Close-up image of Ellie, who is outdoors and looking at something with a serious expression. Her dark hair is pulled back into a pony tail, and she's wearing a red plaid collared shirt.

The fan enthusiasm for Bella Ramsey returning for Season 2 has been slightly hesitant, particularly for fans who’ve played the second game.

Despite even those who originally doubted Ramsey’s casting coming around thanks to their* immense talent in the role, folks who are familiar with Part II know that there’s a five-year time jump between the first game and the second. So, while Ellie is 14 in the first game, she spends most of the second game as a 19-year-old (save the occasional heartbreaking flashback).

Some fans have expressed concern on social media that Ramsey, who is a small person, might not be convincing as an aged-up Ellie, or be up to the grueling physicality that the rest of the story will require.

However, Mazin reminds us in another Variety piece that Ramsey was 17 when he* filmed what we see in the first season. He* is now 19. And considering that Season 2 is only now being written, Ramsey (whose birthday is in September) might be 20 or 21 when the next season films.

Mazin also says:

“People were like, ‘She doesn’t look like the character.’ It doesn’t matter. Just watch what happens. I think there is still this anxiety, like, this constant drumbeat of anxiety. All I can say to people is: I have so much anxiety myself, about doing a good job on this. Just know, I am also very anxious. If you’re anxious about something, I’m probably anxious about it, which means we’re talking about it and thinking about it. We will present things, but it will be different, just as this season was different. Sometimes it will be different radically, and sometimes it will be barely different at all, but it’s going to be different. It will be its own thing. It won’t be exactly like the game. It will be the show that Neil and I want to make.”


He puts an end to any debate by saying that, when they make Season 2, “We are making it with Bella.”

So, yes! We can expect both Pascal and Ramsey to return for Season 2 (and the inevitable subsequent seasons)! And thank goodness for that. Their chemistry is one of the most beautiful things on television right now.

*Ramsey is non-binary and they use all pronouns. Generally, when I write about her, I try to alternate between pronouns. Whereas any role he plays will be referred to by the character’s pronouns.

(featured image: HBO)

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Teresa Jusino (she/her) is a native New Yorker and a proud Puerto Rican, Jewish, bisexual woman with ADHD. She's been writing professionally since 2010 and was a former Mary Sue assistant editor from 2015-18. Teresa's returned to play in the TMS sandbox as a freelancer. When not writing about pop culture, she's writing screenplays and is the creator of your future favorite genre show. Teresa lives in L.A. with her brilliant wife. Her other great loves include: Star Trek, The Last of Us, anything by Brian K. Vaughan, and her Level 5 android Paladin named Lal.