HBO’s The Last of Us co-creator Neil Druckmann reveals that episode 2’s viral piano frog only exists due to an error while filming the adaptation.
HBO’s The Last of Us co-creator Neil Druckmann reveals that episode 2’s viral piano frog exists due to an on-set error. Following their escape from the Boston Quarantine Zone, The Last of Us‘ second outing saw rugged smugglers Joel Miller (Pedro Pascal) and Tess (Anna Torv) escort 14-year-old Ellie (Bella Ramsey) across a post-apocalyptic, infected-filled city to meet a contingent of the militant revolutionary faction known as the Fireflies. With their path blocked by debris-stuffed roads and dilapidated buildings, the reluctant group is forced to cross through a flooded hotel lobby, and one establishing shot catches a frog kicking keys on a grand piano.
Following The Last of Us episode 2‘s release, fans took to social media to share their love for the piano frog moment.
Druckmann now shares a behind-the-scenes detail explaining that the scene would have gone in a completely different direction if it had gone as planned. In a Twitter post, the creator reveals that the frog was supposed to have been eaten by a seagull. However, due to the bird not cooperating, the scene instead featured the frog jumping away unscathed.
The Last of Us Excels In The Details
Prior to The Last of Us series premiere, Druckmann and co-creator Craig Mazin assured fans that the HBO adaptation would be a faithful one, adhering closely to the beloved award-winning PlayStation video game of the same name. Leaked set photos and videos showed the production’s meticulous recreation of the original game’s environments and character designs ahead of its premiere. The Last of Us‘ attention to detail shows the filmmakers’ great care for the source material.
Following the series premiere, it has become even more apparent that the Last of Us show is a very faithful recreation of the game. The first two episodes held a wealth of details that flesh out the world and contain Easter eggs only game players will catch. For example, The Last of Us episode 1 contained various breadcrumbs left by Mazin that hinted at the origin of the Cordyceps fungus plaguing the world, sparking fan theories on social media. Episode 2 later proved those ideas to be true.
The care evident in The Last of Us‘ writing and world-building allows the audience to become immersed in the horrific post-apocalyptic world while actively engaging in an otherwise passive medium. Although Piano Frog may be seen as a brief moment of insignificance, the scene, filled with overgrown moss and a family of ducks, represents the world’s lost humanity with nature now reclaiming land where it once thrived. As Joel and Ellie’s journey heads into its next chapter, there are bound to be more details that enhance HBO’s The Last of Us adaptation for casual viewers and die-hard gamers alike.
Source: Neil Druckmann/Twitter