Parasyte

Parasytes have taken control of human brains. They rip apart people with razor sharp limbs feasting on the remains then hide themselves behind a human face. Shinichi Izumi is dragged into this secret war when a parasite burrows into his hand. He´s just become a huge target. The only way to stay alive means relying on his parasite´s deadly skills. Can he stop a murdering invasion without losing his own humanity or are humans doomed to become parasite prey?

My Review (Part 1)

I would cut off my parasite hand too

Shinichi is a normal high-schooler until a parasite attempts to get into his brain. When he blocks the blighter it takes over his hand instead. I completely agree with Shinichi on what he immediately tries to do. I would cut off my hand to get rid of that thing too. The idea of parasites invading the brain is not new (in fact, I was a huge fan of the Animorph series growing up). The idea of a parasite living in a person´s hand, developing its´ own personality, and growing to be a deadly team is far more unusual.

The Characters
Shinichi Izumi is a compassionate young man who is

at the center of a battle between hidden parasites and humans. He closes himself off after worrying people will discover he is the host of a parasite. Shinichi is terrified he will lose his humanity and compassion after having to kill humans who were invaded by parasites. When he finds Migi and him have merged a bit he starts to wonder if he is going to lose his humanity. As the battle between humans and parasites becomes more obvious Shinichi´s confidence in his abilities grows stronger.

Migi is the parasite who failed to invade Shinichi´s brain. Because he takes up residence in Shinji´s hand

Migi studies up on this world

he develops his own personality instead of subduing his host´s. Migi views survival as top priority. He is often confused by Shinji´s moral conflictis and doesn´t understand the need to play ´hero´ if it risks his well-being. Migi often comes up with the tactical plans for the two. He is highly curious and occasionally prone to downright embarrassing Shinichi with his remarks.

Early romance beginnings for Satomi-Shinichi

Satomi Murano is Shinichi´s love interest and childhood friend. She hates how secretive Shinichi has become and often accuses him of not acting like ´himself.´ At the same time she is jealous when Shinichi appears to have another romantic interest. Satomi can act extremely childish when she feels slighted and often plays with Shinichi´s emotions when he won´t answer her questions. Throughout the manga Shinichi and Satomi´s romance runs from red hot to frigid but never completely goes away.

The Art

The ultra cool 80s cig in a leather coat look

I have a weakness for beautiful mangas their sweeping lines, starry eyes, hair with a wind of its own, bloody details, and whatnot. Parasite is not what I typically see as beautiful. There are gorgeous horror mangas and then there are those who are well-drawn just not eye-popping.At first I was off-put by the artistic style of parasyte. The early nineties/late eighties had returned! Of course they had, the manga was published in 1990.

The time explains the outfits but does not answer the

Just to mannish for my taste

obvious question: why do all the women have such mannish features? Instead of the softness, changes in measurements, and facial details which point to the fairer sex their is surprisingly little to distinguish between the two. I hesitate to call all the women ugly. Some of them just look more like a man than a woman. Added to clothes which make gender look neutral you could be forgiven for mistakenly thinking a man had come into play.

The manga´s best moments to see are those where a parasyte takes control of the host body and emerges. The movement is exceedingly well-done making you almost feel the action as a body is decapitated. Migi takes admiring as his form is so unique. He can be near hand-like then suddenly transform completely. He´s the ultimate weapon with a brain of his own. Hands together for such an excellent work of art. I loved it.

Review (Part 2)
This review took a very very long time in the making

And suddenly we aren´t hungry for humans?

because of 1) laziness and 2) mixed feelings. Initially I really did love Parasyte and had high hopes about it. Then the manga fell out of sync with me. The global chaos initially presented seemed to suddenly be restricted solely to a single part of Japan. Shinichi´s actions were still awesome but got more and more downplayed. In fact the ending was a bit of an overall let down. I just do not agree with the idea of assimilation being done so well on a race of creatures which supposedly chose to dine on humans. Then the whole factor of it being like, ´o well. To bad for the humans taken over just now becoming mindless to a parasite´s whims.´ What is the deal on that? Shinichi, himself, showed amazing growth throughout the manga which did add a definite factor to this piece of work. I still despise his romantic relationship with Satomi as she is ultimately more annoying then admiring. And how they culminate it? Um. Well that was a bit adult suddenly awkward. At least her figure was less mannish underneath then with clothing on.

Would I read Parasyte all over again? The first half of it for sure. The second? Probably not. When it takes three months to get a review of thoughts out on the subject it clearly took back seat priority.

To the Reader

The anime cover

I am glad the anime has brought parasite to the forefront of people´s minds. Far to often older mangas get left in the dust when they should never have been forgotten to begin with. This is a definite manga for those with a taste for action, drama, and suspense. Instead of standard bad vs good you have areas of in-between grays which make one consider just who the enemy always is. Those with a hankering for romance may enjoy the Satomi-Shinichi fantasy idea but don´t bet on it. You are better off looking at the review on Orange Marmalade or 24 Colors for a romantic binge.

Overall Rating: 7.5
Give it a solid read with a grain of salt.



Details:

Name: Parasyte; Parasite; Kiseijuu; Parasitic Beasts; Kiseiju
Artist(s): Iwaaki Hitoshi
Author(s): Iwaaki Hitoshi
Year: 1990-1995
Chapter(s): 64
Complete: Yes
Genre: Horror, Suspense, Action, Drama, Seinen, Sci-fi
Anime: YES