The Last Of Us' Bloaters Just Got Even Scarier

Last of Us showrunners Neil Druckmann and Craig Mazin revealed a terrifying fact about the massive zombies.

We may earn a commission from links on this page.
No that’s not Thanos, it’s a bloater from The Last of Us.
No that’s not Thanos, it’s a bloater from The Last of Us.
Screenshot: HBO Max

In The Last of Us, few enemies are as terrifying as bloaters. They’re like clickers, but with the shape and size of a professional wrestler, so when you see one it’s scary and you know it’s gonna be a battle. That same fear translated to HBO this weekend when a bloater made its debut on the TV version of The Last of Us but, co-showrunner Craig Mazin revealed a big difference between the game’s bloaters and TV bloaters.

“We also thought, look, whatever this thing is and however it got that way, there was this notion that it might be scarier that at some point you realize, you’re not killing it,” Mazin said on the official podcast (via TV Line). “No one’s killing it, ever.”

That’s right. While bloaters are difficult to kill in The Last of Us video games they can, of course, be killed. However, it seems that’s not the case in the TV world, where these bloaters cannot be killed. We aren’t sure if that theory will be tested at any point later this season, especially since the show is sticking so closely to the original game narrative, but I’d love to see an extended cut of Joel and Ellie trying to kill a bloater with increasingly destructive weapons. Are we saying a rocket launcher can’t kill these things? A flame thrower? A nuclear bomb!?! How literal is this statement?


All kidding aside, the appearance of the bloater was a super cool moment as they represent the full evolution of the infected on the show. In the same podcast, Mazin’s show running partner (and game co-creator) Neil Druckmann explained the differences between infected, clickers and then, bloaters. “There are certain people that are so strong and big that can survive even longer, and those are the bloaters,” he said. “That’s why you’re seeing this person is so tall and massive in their strength. And it just becomes that much scarier, again as we go forward, there’s just these new types of infected.”

Check out the bloater in action in the fifth episode of The Last of Us, “Endure and Survive,” streaming right here.

  • Off
  • English
Heartbreak, Pain and ZOMBIES | The Last of Us Episode 5 Review

Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.