Spoiler warning for The Last of Us episode five, “Endure and Survive”.The Last of Us episode five was truly horrifying, in more ways than one. Whether it's Henry and Sam breaking your heart, or Kathleen scaring the hell out of you, Endure and Survive kept us on our toes throughout. But of course, the show still didn't feel that it had gone far enough, and had to throw a new big bad zombie at us towards the end too.
Yep, as the previews suggested, the fifth episode marked the debut of the Bloater – a huge infected from the games. It looked beautifully terrifying, dominating the battlefield even as hundreds of others fought for survival in the streets of Kansas City. Yet no matter how hard it was to watch from home, no one would have been more uncomfortable than the actor actually playing the Bloater, as he was decked out in a costume that weighed roughly 40kg, or 6.3 stone.
UK stuntman Adam Basil got the honour of playing the Bloater. Standing at 6ft 6, he was probably one of the few people who could have performed in such a heavy costume. Despite being weighed down by an estimated 88 pounds, Basil had to run around the set, fighting past revolutionaries and fending off their attacks.
Looking at the costume behind the scenes, it's clear that a great deal of effort went in today reducing the need for visual effects. In an interview with Variety, prosthetics designer Barrie Gower went over how they made the costume work.
"We covered him in this gel-like solution, which gave him a gloss to all the fungus," Gower says. "We had lots of little spines and spiky hairs punched into his body, like little growths burrowing out." While filming, they had to stop to re-slime him too, making sure every detail of the Bloater was caught on camera.
It remains to be seen how the team can traumatise us next. The sixth episode will premiere next Sunday, February 19.
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