The Last of Us co-creator made child clicker extremely terrifying using just a T-shirt
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Featured Image Credit: HBO
Warning: Spoilers for The Last of Us ahead
Thanks to the Super Bowl, we got our The Last of Us fix a little earlier than usual this week - and it was a total horror show, with just a pinch of emotional devastation for good measure.
One of the most gripping moments of the episode occurred when Ellie was attacked by a child clicker.
The intense jump-scare scene had viewers feeling deeply uncomfortable - but in the best way.
Fans of The Last of Us are well-familiar with the brutality of the infected by now, but there was something particularly unsettling about this young clicker.
Later in the episode, the little clicker girl absolutely rips into Kathleen (deserved?) but thankfully leaves Sam, Henry, Ellie and Joel some time to escape.
Viewers who had tuned in to watch the child clicker could hardly process what they had just seen.
"I’m still not over #TheLastOfUs," tweeted one traumatised fan. "The little clicker girl was frightening."
Another wrote: "That child clicker was... horrifying. Even the games didn't have the balls to show infected children outside of poor Sam. This show isn't f***ing around."
Now, series co-creator Craig Mazin has delved into the making of the dreadful child clicker, and how one simple detail made her utterly terrifying.
Speaking on the official The Last of Us podcast, Craig revealed that the creepy clicker was played by nine-year-old contortionist Skye Cowton.
"She’s this beautiful little girl, but... it’s so creepy how she can move her body like that.
"And so, it was a combination of her performance, and then Wētā [FX] kind of creating, taking, drafting off of what Barrie Gower had created with prosthetics, and then making this little girl."
Aside from her freakish contortionist moves, there was one thing that made the child clicker particularly freaky for viewers - which was, of course, Craig's idea.
"I insisted that our child clicker wear a Blue’s Clues shirt," he said, "because I’m really sick, and I just loved the contrast of innocence and horror."
Craig added that he and co-creator Neil Druckmann sat through plenty of child contortionist auditions for the horrifying character, but when nine-year-old Skye came in, there was no question that the part would be hers.
"[Skye] was the most terrifying," he shared.
I can believe that.
The only character I could see matching Skye's unsettling child clicker is our funky little robot friend M3gan.
Other than her, it's game over for anyone who tries to fight off a body-contorting, fungally-infected, echolocating demon child.
The Last of Us episode six is set to drop on 19 February on HBO Max and Sky.