Last of Us: How a Buzzed About Character Met Their Grisly Fate

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Melanie Lynskey CLAPS BACK at Top Model’s The Last of Us Diss

On The Last of Us, it’s best not to get attached to anybody—even bloodthirsty militia leaders.

During the Feb. 10 episode of the HBO apocalypse drama, the backstory of revolutionary frontwoman Kathleen—played by Melanie Lynskey—is explored even further. (Kathleen was introduced in the Feb. 5 episode, in which it was established a man named Henry was directly responsible for the death of Kathleen’s brother, a cult-like figure named Michael.)

In episode five, Henry (Lamar Johnson) and his 8-year-old deaf brother Sam (Keivonn Woodard) are introduced—and they’re on the run. They eventually cross paths with Joel (Pedro Pascal) and Ellie (Bella Ramsey), and Henry is able to convince Joel to join them in an attempted escape through Kansas City’s underground maintenance tunnels.

As Kathleen tries tracking them down, she makes a detour alone to the childhood bedroom she shared with her brother.  There, she encounters militia leader Perry (Jeffrey Pierce)—who followed Kathleen’s steps thanks to some help from her mother—and shares why seeking vengeance for Michael means so much to her.

“When Michael and I were little, this room seemed so big,” Kathleen tells Perry. “I was really scared of thunder, so when there was a storm, Michael told me that this wasn’t a room at all. This was actually just a big, wooden box. A big, wooden box that nothing could get inside of. It didn’t matter if there was lightning or tornadoes or gunfire, he said as long as we were together in our perfect box, we would be safe.”

However, Kathleen’s sentimental side doesn’t stick around for long.

“If you’ve come to tell me that Michael wouldn’t want me to hurt Henry, that he would want me to forgive? I know that, too,” Kathleen says to Perry. “He told me. The last time I saw him alive, in jail, he told me to forgive. And what did he get for that? Where is the justice in that? What is the point of that?”

Perry, a faithful right-hand man to the bitter end, had no intention of dissuading Kathleen, telling her, “He didn’t change anything. You did. We’re with you.”

And just like that, they’re off.

Kathleen and her cavalcade eventually tracks down the foursome—and that’s when s–t really hits the fan.

After Joel manages to shoot and the kill the driver of one of the militia’s massive vehicles, the car careens into a nearby dilapidated house and bursts into flames. And just as Kathleen and her squad begin to corner Ellie, Henry and Sam, a massive sinkhole emerges where the vehicle crashed and envelopes the thing entirely.

What emerges from the hole, you might ask? Oh, just an army of infected humans looking for dinner.

Liane Hentscher/HBO

Amidst a sea of violence, a fourth-stage infected—called a Bloater—sets its sights on Kathleen and Perry. With the Bloater in pursuit, Perry tells Kathleen, “Run. Find cover, don’t look back. Run!”

Seconds later, Perry’s head is brutally torn off by the Bloater. 

Still, Kathleen refuses giving up on her mission. As Ellie, Henry and Sam are steps away from fleeing the scene, Kathleen catches up from behind, points a gun at them and yells, “Stop!”

At that moment, though, a child-sized member of the infected leaps on top of Kathleen, attacking her with a barrage of punches before ultimately taking a bite out of her face.

The grisly scene marked the end of an eventful week for Lynskey, whose clap back at America’s Next Top Model winner Adrianne Curry on Feb. 8 went as viral as the legions of zombies onscreen.

“I understand that some people are mad that I’m not the typical casting for this role,” Lynskey tweeted about playing Kathleen. “That’s thrilling to me. Other than the moments after action is called, when you feel like you’re actually in someone else’s body, the most exciting part of my job is subverting expectations.”

Consider them successfully subverted.

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

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