Ever since The Last of Us began, there has been a certain contingent of game-playing fans who believed that Bella Ramsey was going to be recast as Ellie for season 2 of the show.
The justification there was that since there is a five year time jump between the games (and seasons), that Bella would be too young, and that she wouldn’t be able to convey the overwhelming physical violence that comes with the season 2 version of Ellie, hellbent on a revenge quest.
Not that many people are saying that anymore.
First of all, this never made sense, and there were never any official indications that HBO or the showrunners ever planned to recast Bella Ramsey in season 2. Ramsey, like everyone else, celebrated the early renewal of the show and talked about how she was eager to continue.
As for her age, it seems most people don’t understand that while Ramsey is playing a 14 year old version of Ellie, she’s 19 in real life, and by the time season 2 of The Last of Us airs, she will actually be older than the character of Ellie was in the second game.
Then, as for whether or not she’d be capable of dishing out the extreme violence that we see Ellie exact in the second game, well, do I have an episode to show you. Episode 8 serves as a preview of just how brutal Ellie can be. She starts by biting/breaking David’s finger, and then by the end, she’s killed both James and David with a literal meat cleaver in a nearly 1:1 recreation of the sequence from the game.
The show has been working set up Ellie’s propensity for violence even more than the games, I’d argue, which I don’t believe actually had a full plan for the second game when the original was made, so they didn’t know where they’d take Ellie. But they have absolutely planted the seeds for Ellie to become a hardened killer (though one you’re still mostly rooting for) in the future seasons of the show, where we’ve heard the second game will be split into season 2 and season 3.
There is zero question, absolutely none, that Bella Ramsey will be returning for season 2 of The Last of Us. They will likely change her hair and clothes and they’ll age her up a bit to look less like a 14 year old and more like her actual age, but it will be her. The biggest open question is who will play her rival, the bursting-with-muscle Abby, and how the two of them will feel squaring off in combat. Which I cannot wait to see.
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