'The Last of Us': Ellie Will Never Be the Same After Episode 8, Fans Predict

The Last of Us has quickly become a talking point week on week, with fans of the Naughty Dog game sharing their thoughts on the adaptation and predicting the ways in which the show will go.

Episode 8's teaser trailer has particularly inspired fans of the original, with many taking to the comments section to share why the appearance of certain characters in the preview are key to Ellie Williams (Bella Ramsey) and her character arc over the first and (future) second season.

The critically-acclaimed drama follows Ellie and Joel Miller (Pedro Pascal) as they navigate the treacherous landscape of post-apocalyptic America in order to try and make a cure to the Cordyceps Brain Infection, and Episode 8 is set to be one of the most dramatic chapters in their journey.

Warning: This article contains some spoilers for Naughty Dog's The Last of Us: Part I and II games.

Why Troy Baker's 'The Last of Us' Character Is So Important for Ellie

Bella Ramsey in The Last of Us
Bella Ramsey as Ellie Williams in "The Last of Us," fans of the show have shared their thoughts on the teaser trailer for Episode 8 and how important her encounter is with Troy Baker's James and Scott Shepherd's David on her overall character development. Liane Hentscher/HBO

In the previous episode, Ellie was desperately trying to find a way to save Joel after he was badly injured at the end of Episode 6, and the trailer for Episode 8 showed that she will be turning to a new set of characters for help.

The group that Ellie encounters is led by a man named David, portrayed by Scott Shepherd, and his second-in-command James—who is played by none other than the original voice actor for Joel, Troy Baker.

In the The Last of Us Part I game it is revealed that David and James are part of a group of survivors who have turned to cannibalism during the apocalypse, and their gruesome encounter is a key moment in Ellie's life.

Without giving too much away, the bloody clash between Ellie, James and David has a significant impact on the protagonist mentally. It is an event that weighs heavy on her mind, and her guilt over how things turned out also filters into the character's psyche in Part II, where Ellie is forced to face the extreme lengths she must go to in order to survive.

The Last of Us game's co-creator Neil Druckmann—who acts as co-creator, writer and executive producer of the HBO show—told Newsweek why it was important to have Baker play James and also include Ellie's original voice actor Ashley Johnson in the drama as Ellie's mother.

"Troy and Ashley were such a part of realizing the story for the first time, they kind of define who Joel and Ellie are in many ways and they will forever be the first versions of Joel and Ellie, and we really wanted to honor that and make them part of the show," Druckmann said.

"And not just a cameo, a kind of wink [to fans of the game], we wanted to give them significant, meaty roles because they're really fantastic actors that can play well on the show with the rest of our amazing cast."

'The Last of Us' Ellie Will Never Be the Same After Episode 8, Fans Predict

Fans of the original shared their hopes that the HBO show will follow the storyline from the game, and took to the comment section of the teaser trailer to explain why.

Reflecting on Ellie's character arc, one YouTube user explained how the events of the game, and in particular her clash with David, are "a real turning point for what makes Ellie what she is in the rest of the game and even more so in TLOU2."

They added: "It's gut-wrenching how they display her pure anger and grief in the game, and after seeing Bella Ramsey's performance, particularly in the 'you don't know what loss is' scene and in tonight's scene where she yells at Joel for telling her to leave, I can't wait to see their performance next week."

Another added their predictions for the show, saying: "Hope this is gonna be one of the best episodes. This is a very significant moment for Ellie and Joel. The creators have done a wonderful job so far, so hopefully they do this justice as well."

In a similar vein, one user added: "the ellie vs david fight is one of my favorite parts of the game i'm really excited to see how HBO adapts it [sic]."

One user commented on how the teaser trailer suggested that viewers would get a more detailed look into David, James and their group's dynamic: "Love that they're going to build on David and his group. Always wanted to see more what they were like in the game, so I'm happy that they're doing that here."

Another shared their thoughts on Shepherd's portrayal of David in comparison to the game, saying: "Dude David actually looks creepier than in the game and I honestly can't wait to see his point of view next episode."

And one fan of the game-turned-viewer also said: "This is the episode I've been most excited for. The events that happen during this chapter in the game are some of my favorite scenes in any game."

The Last of Us airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on HBO and HBO Max.