The Last of Us spin-off about queer couple Bill and Frank is on the cards

Frank and Bill could return to screens in a potential The Last of Us spin-off

After landing an impressive eight wins at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards on Saturday night (6 January), The Last of Us star Nick Offerman has teased a potential spin-off.

Few can forget the impact of last year’s beloved The Last of Us episode “Long Long Time“.

The third episode in HBO’s acclaimed post-apocalyptic video game adaptation saw the good-natured Frank (Murray Bartlett) and hardcore survivalist Bill (Offerman) come together in a powerful romance that left viewers in tears.

Praised by video game fans, LGBTQ+ viewers and critics alike for its powerful depiction of a gay love story, the culturally-defining episode of television also bore its fair share of homophobic backlash.

The episode’s bittersweet ending sees Bill and Frank dying peacefully in one another’s arms, closing off any future appearances on the show.

Nevertheless, fans have been clamouring for a spin-off telling more of Frank and Bill’s story and now, their dreams may actually come true.

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Bill and Frank in The Last of Us.
Bill and Frank in The Last of Us. (HBO)

On Saturday, Offerman landed his first Emmy win for Best Guest Actor in a Drama series for his role as Bill. He was joined by Storm Reid – who played Ellie’s (Bella Ramsey) love interest in season one – who won in the Best Guest Actress category.  

During his acceptance speech, the Parks and Recreation star thanked his “magnificently generous partner” and Barlett, his “rightly lauded Aussie top man – the Girth from Perth”, who was nominated for the same award.

But the real shocker came backstage when Offerman revealed that a spin-off exploring Frank and Bill’s lives before they met one another has already been “pitched” to executives.

When asked if future Frank and Bill cameos were possible, Offerman said: “Oh, great question but I would have to ask somebody with a higher pay grade than myself. It certainly has been pitched.

“I think we pitched a whole mini-series of a prequel of their lives before they met each other.”

He then joked: “It could be a musical. We’re not short on ideas. We’ll just see what [creators] Craig [Mazin] and Neil [Druckmann] come up with.”

Given the popularity of the characters, we wouldn’t be surprised if the idea came to fruition.

But in the meantime, Ramsey and co-star Pedro Pascal (who plays Joel) are gearing up to film the second season.

The upcoming series of The Last of Us will feature Ellie in a lesbian relationship with fellow survivor Dina, as shown in the Naughty Dog video game plot.

In an interview with PinkNews, Ramsey shared their excitement at exploring Ellie’s sexuality.

“I’m really excited. Actually, the first time I’d ever heard of The Last of Us was a PinkNews article,” they said about bringing the storyline to life.

“This was before the show, before I even got the audition. [The article was] saying that it was the first lesbian kiss in a video game. I remember seeing that and being like: ‘That’s really cool’.”

The Last of Us season one is now available to stream on HBO Max. There is currently no release date for the second season.