10 Million Fireflies

The Last of Us Episode 2 trailer teases a big reveal

Here come the Clickers.

After a harrowing start, HBO’s The Last of Us has audiences hooked and ready for what’s next. With new stakes on the line and a perilous landscape to cross, Episode 2 promises plenty of post-apocalyptic action to unfold.

Drawing 4.7 million viewers, The Last of Us is officially the second-most-watched premiere in HBO history. And even after the revealing events of the video game turned live-action TV series intro, there is much more to learn about the state of the world and the show’s protagonists, including how the deadly contagion got out and why exactly Ellie is so special. Audiences will soon see just how real the dangers are that await the characters in the outside world, with zombie-like humanoids lurking in the shadows of the abandoned city ahead of Joel, Tess, and Ellie.

With the next installment just around the corner, here’s everything you need to know about The Last of Us Episode 2, including its release date, plot, trailer, and more.

When is the release date for The Last of Us Episode 2?

Episode 2 of The Last of Us arrives on HBO and HBO Max on Sunday, January 22, 2023.

What is the release time for The Last of Us Episode 2?

Ellie, Tess, and Joel venture outside of Boston.


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

How many episodes are left in The Last of Us?

The Last of Us Season 1 consists of a nine episode run, which means after this week, seven episodes remain.

What is the plot of The Last of Us Episode 2?

Joel crosses paths with the Infected.


Episode 2 of The Last of Us, entitled “Infected,” will focus on Joel, Tess, and Ellie as they sneak beyond protected Boston in order to deliver Ellie to a group of Fireflies. Along the way, the trio will have to navigate through an abandoned hotel, with Infected complicating their route. Coming in at a runtime of 55 minutes, the second installment will also shed light on the origins of the toxic outbreak.

Who is in the cast for The Last of Us?

Tess understands the importance of keeping Ellie alive.


The Last of Us stars Pedro Pascal as Joel Miller and Bella Ramsey as Ellie Williams. Alongside that central duo, the show features:

  • Anna Torv as Joel's partner and fellow smuggler, Tess Servopoulos
  • Gabriel Luna as Joel's younger brother, Tommy Miller
  • Nico Parker as Joel’s daughter, Sarah Miller
  • Merle Dandridge as the head of the Fireflies Militia, Marlene
  • Nick Offerman as the isolated survivalist, Frank
  • Murray Bartlett as Bill’s partner, Frank
  • Storm Reid as Ellie’s best friend, Riley Abel
  • Lamar Johnson as young refugee Henry
  • Keivonn Woodard as Henry’s younger brother, Sam

The show will also feature new characters not featured in the original video game, including Melanie Lynskey as the revolutionary leader, Kathleen, as well as Elain Miles and Graham Greene as married survivors Florence and Marlon. Troy Baker, Ashley Johnson, and Jeffery Pierce, the video game voice actors for Joel, Ellie, and Tommy, respectively, are also set to appear.

Is there a trailer for The Last of Us Episode 2?

While there isn’t a trailer specifically for Episode 2, HBO did release a teaser for the upcoming weeks. It shows Tess questioning Ellie about who she is and why she is so important, as well as her telling the teen that even if she is immune from the contagion, she’s not immune from being dead. The clip also teases the treacherous trek Joel, Tess, and Ellie take through abandoned Boston in the next episode, with some Infected crossing their paths. Plus, it gives a glimpse of the other threats that await them outside of zombie-like creatures.

What happened in The Last of Us Episode 1?

Joel and his daughter, Sarah, in Episode 1.


Episode 1 of The Last of Us, titled “When You're Lost in the Darkness,” begins with an ominous prologue of a scientist on a 1960s talk show warning of a potentially disastrous fungal plague should the Earth get any warmer in the future. Flash forward to 2003 in Austin, Texas, and we meet young Sarah making breakfast for her dad, Joel, on the morning of his birthday before he heads off to work with his brother, Tommy. Later, she returns home after repairing her dad’s broken watch as a birthday gift and goes over to her neighbors’ house. Inside, we see a glimpse of the elderly, wheelchair-bound mother eerily twitching behind Sarah.

Later that night, Sarah wakes up to the sound of jets overhead and her dad out of the house. Trying to bring her neighbors’ spooked dog home, she wanders into their house to discover a gruesome scene of one neighbor dead and bloodied, with the elderly woman on the floor eating the other. Sarah flees the house with the old lady chasing her and runs into Joel and his brother pulling up in their truck. To Sarah’s shock, Joel bludgeons their frenzied neighbor with a wrench, and they speed away.

Seeing the freeway blocked off by the military, the trio cut through a field, but end up in a town that has descended into chaos. After their truck crashes, Sarah has a broken ankle and she and her dad are separated from Tommy. Amid the bodies on the street, one of the Infected spots them and sprints their way. With Sarah in his arms, Joel runs to escape the manic creature. As it gets closer, a soldier shoots the infected human but then aims his assault rifle at Joel and Sarah. After hearing a command from his radio, the soldier apologizes and begins to fire at them, but a surprise shot from Tommy takes down the soldier. Unharmed and lying on the ground, Joel turns to see that Sarah has been shot, and in a heartbreaking scene, his daughter dies in his arms.

Twenty years later, we meet Joel in a military-controlled zone in post-apocalyptic Boston, after the zombie-like outbreak has destroyed human civilization. The zone is controlled by FEDRA, which enforces strict curfews and is looking to stamp out an anti-authoritarian militia group called the Fireflies. Joel is currently working odd jobs to make money, including the disposal of infected bodies into a mass firepit. We see him pick up the body of a child in the same manner he carried his daughter and throw it into the bonfire. As another one of his jobs, Joel smuggles opioids, among other things, into the restricted zone, and sells them to FEDRA agents and civilians, alike. We also learn that his brother, Tommy, is missing somewhere outside of Boston and hasn’t been heard from in weeks.

Elsewhere in a secret location, a brazen teenage girl is being kept locked up and monitored in a room. When Marlene, the head of the Fireflies in Boston, goes to see her, we learn that the girl’s name is Ellie and she is an incredibly important asset for the Fireflies to have and keep away from FEDRA.

Meanwhile, Joel’s partner, Tess, has been beaten up and abducted by someone who betrayed them by selling their car battery, but a bomb goes off by the building and she escapes. When she returns home to Joel, they decide to go after the traitor and retrieve their stolen car battery. Traveling through the off-limits subway tunnels, they stumble across a horrifying dead creature with an advanced form of the infection. After breaking into a blocked-off area, Joel and Tess find a dead car battery, along with a few people freshly dead on the ground. They run into Marlene, another member of the Fireflies, and Ellie, who runs at Joel with a knife, which he kicks aside. With her original plans gone astray, Marlene tells Joel and Tess that in exchange for transporting Ellie safely to a Fireflies outpost, she’ll give them a running truck, which Joel is seemingly going to use to find his brother. Tess and Joel agree to the job.

Beginning their escape at night, Tess and Joel lead Ellie through a secret tunnel they’ve dug for smuggling. While avoiding being caught, they run into a FEDRA agent outside of his post. He commands them to stay still while he holds up a device to each of them to test if they’re infected, but when he gets to Ellie, she attacks him with her knife. With the agent’s weapon now pointing at Ellie, instinct takes over Joel and he beats the soldier to a bloody pulp. Tess then alerts Joel that the device shows Ellie tested positive for the infection. However, Ellie insists she was bitten weeks ago, while people typically succumb to the infection and change within a day. With the military approaching, Joel and Tess flee with Ellie.

Will there be a The Last of Us Season 2?

A series renewal hasn’t been announced yet, but there likely will be at least one more season of The Last of Us, given that showrunners Neil Druckmann and Craig Mazin have hinted about the future of the show. Plus, there is plenty of source material to adapt from the video game plot in The Last of Us Part I and Part II — with a Part III potentially on the way.

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