Acclaimed video game and now already-hella-popular television series The Last of Us premiered over the weekend on HBO, and the postapocalyptic show’s first episode includes a very blink-and-you’ll-miss-it nod to Austin.
After an opening where two scientists talk about pandemics, the show begins in Austin in 2003. A young girl, Sarah Miller (played by Nico Parker), wakes up in her bedroom, and then she rushes into the bedroom of her father, Joel Miller (played by Pedro Pascal). On his walls are a landscape painting featuring a stag, a poster with a guitar, and, of interest to Ausinities — a concert poster promoting a showcase dubbed Tacos and Beer that took place at Club de Ville.
Club de Ville, a noted Red River music venue and bar, known for rock music and general good vibes, opened in 1997 and suddenly closed in October 2013 (which tracks for the show’s timeline) when its lease abruptly ended due to more than $27,000 in back rent reportedly owed by owner Michael Terrazas.
Texas Monthly writer-at-larger and Austin City Limits Radio host Andy Lager shares a full-res image of the poster, seen below:
Also, this is the poster for the New West party. The 2002 ACL poster is also visible and in the very next shot, there's a glance at the 2003 ACL poster, so I suppose we know the plague didn't set in until after September 2003. pic.twitter.com/ufMgH3t0Gh— Andy Langer (@Andylanger) January 20, 2023
Club de Ville’s 900 Red River space is now home to the LGBTQ bar Cheer Up Charlies, which relocated to that address in late 2014. The venue’s iconic light-up crown signage was used in the now-closed Austin diner Holy Roller. The bar was also featured in director Terrence Malick’s mostly Austin-based film Song to Song.
Although it was filmed in Alberta, Canada, The Last of Us starts off in Austin and features the requisite bunch of food trucks shot in episode one.
The Last of Us airs on HBO on Sundays at 7 p.m. CST.
Update, 6:13 p.m.: This article, originally published at 4:44 p.m., has been updated to include a full image of said-poster.