The release of HBO's The Last of Us is less than a month away for gamers. The series' premiere is in January and has experienced a huge marketing boom. We have received many new trailers, posters and images in the lead up to this highly anticipated horror adaptation. The series is based on the critically-acclaimed PlayStation franchise of same name. Now, the series has released a new image that highlights one of The Last of Us’ most compelling characters. The image was posted to various social media channels and shows Marlene, played by Merle Dandridge. You'll know what's happening if you've ever played the original game. Marlene hires Joel, Tess and others to help her with a 'cargo mission'. It turns out that the 'cargo" is Ellie, a young girl they must safely transport across the country to the Firefly Base in Utah. Joel is a classic Joel. He hates the idea, but reluctantly accepts it because Marlene has been injured. They are escorting Ellie because she is immune to the virus. As we saw in the trailers before, she was infected and never recovered. She is the key the Fireflies are looking for. Dandridge is a fascinating casting because she is the only actor to play the role in the HBO adaptation of the games. It was a perfect voiceover for Marlene in both Last of Us games. It will be interesting to see how the writers and Dandridge add to her character. They don't have to do anything, Marlene is so rich. Image via HBO. Almost a decade after its release, The Last of Us remains one of the most beloved games and has one of the best-written stories in all of media. This was not a generic zombie post-apocalyptic story. It was an emotional, character-driven masterpiece. This was further demonstrated by its Left Behind DLC, and The Last of Us Part II. This HBO series appears to be the most faithful adaptation of a video game ever made, judging by everything we've seen. Fans are delighted to see so many lines and shots taken straight from the games, just like this new image. It helps that both Joel and Ellie, played by Pedro Pascal, are able to fully embody the spirit of their gaming counterparts. The storyline of their relationship with Marlene and the dynamic between them is undoubtedly the most important plot thread in both games. Be prepared to bring a few tissues with you once Season 1 ends. The Last of Us will premiere on HBO on January 15, and will feature nine episodes. Dandridge will be joined by Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson who, respectively, played Joel and Ellie in the games. They will appear in an undisclosed role in the series. You can view the trailer below while we wait for the games to come to life.