Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 11

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This week Kana has a Very Special Dream about being saved from a parasyte orgy/buffet by the gallant, dashing Ser Shinichi. It’s pretty over-the-top, but it gets the point across quickly: Kana is a girl enthralled, and she won’t go gentle into that good night; whether Shinichi already has a girl or not.

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She tries greeting him in the popular style, by plucking a hair, but he stops her, telling her it’s dangeorus. It is dangerous, as the cold open showed: plucking the hair of a parasyte just means that parasyte now has a reason to kill you! Shinichi isn’t interested in Kana, and Migi seems repelled by her, but nor can Shinichi feel he can leave her totally alone, as her parasyte-sensing power could get her in serious trouble.

The High School Love Wars are fully on this week, as Satomi, after seeing Kana with Shinichi again, asks her if she thinks anything’s changed about him. Kana has only really known the ‘intermittently ferocious’ version, so she can’t say. What Kana does discern from Satomi is that there’s trouble in paradise, and she still has a chance with her valiant knight.

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Parallel to the land of young love, the parasytes aren’t standing still. In the wake of the school incident, a few of them have started ‘experimenting’, intentionally picking fights with big groups of armed tough guys (yakuza) and seeing how much damage they do before they’re all wiped out. This smiling fitness buff-parasyte never even transforms, such is the latent strength of his host — nor does he stop smiling, which is a change of pace from their usual vacant expressions.

I’d also point out while I didn’t really shed any tears for the gangsters, any more than I would if a parasyte ripped those cat-abusing kids a new one, it’s still disturbing to see they’ve moved on from using humans as mere food, but are employing them in their ‘exercise’ routines. Fighting the most aggressive humans will make them that much more effective against humans who would rather not resort to violence but have no choice.

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But Never mind that shitShinichi asks Satomi out on a date. A DATE! SQUEEEEEEE! XDDD

Seriously, these two are too adorable for words. It’s so good to see them doing normal things like going to the movies (not The Ring 2), having coffee, hanging out with dogs, or relaxing at the park and trying to ignore child abuse. That last thing sets something off in Shinichi, however, and only highlights to Satomi that something is still wrong; something he still won’t tell her.

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Kana happens to sense Shinichi and run to his side only to find him locking lips with Ms. Murano, but what neither she nor Shinichi do see is Satomi’s expression after they leave, or her tears. She weeps for the same reason I do: because just such a dreadful bummer that this pure, wonderful, natural, otherwise normal romance is so very very doomed in the midst of all this parasyte crap.

Satomi still doesn’t know much about it or Shinichi’s role, but a part of her she can’t ignore or dismiss fundamentally doubts Shinichi is really Shinichi, and that’s no way for a relationship to grow.

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Despite having just seen the happy couple on cloud nine, Kana doesn’t give up the fight, asking Shinichi to meet her in town for ‘one last favor’. That town just happens to be the site of a political rally…in which all of the politicians — including the mayoral candidate — are parasytes! Even worse, one of them spots Shinichi just as Kana is showing up.

Could an…ahem…less stylized version of Kana’s dream about to unfold in real life? Another question: how long will Kana survive her precarious position, being drawn to forces that could kill her? We’ll find out next week!

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 10

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Tachikawa was a combination of stupid and heroic when she confronted Shimada Hideo alone last week, but the universe isn’t ready to snuff out her candle yet, as she trip-dodges his first blow and tosses the nearest thing at hand — a bottle of paint thinner — that just so happens to give the monster nasty burns and render him unable to morph. Hey, who said fine art is useless!

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That same universe must have determined that it had tortured Shinichi and Satomi enough for the time being, as Shimada’s rampage proves the perfect opportunity for Shinichi to not only play the hero, but mend fences with his sweetheart. Shinichi’s desire to get rid of Shimada himself is another case of his human desire for revenge — combined with the knowledge he has the ability to Do Something — overpowering Migi’s cold logic.

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The ep gives Shinichi and me one last shock when we see a corpse with hair similar to Satomi’s in the hall, but it’s not her. In a vicious beat of dark humor, Shinichi repeats Satomi’s line of “I mistook you for someone else.” The other two students wig out and run right into their deaths, but Shinichi goes into full Get Hitomi To Safety Mode, and damn the consequences of the abilities he exposes.

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Things really escalated fast for Shimada, who was probably going to try to keep the experiment going as long as he could, but the universe wasn’t having it, and in the end he resorted to his killer instincts. A firing squad of pea-shooting cops riddle him with holes before he kills them all. Migi wants Shinichi to leave it to the cops, who will eventually bring something of a larger caliber to bear, but feeling responsible for the Shimada mess to begin with, Shinichi insists on ending him personally.

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He does so…with BASEBALL. The most violent and deadly sport in human history — if a few rules were tweaked a bit, that is. Conceding to Shinichi’s wishes, Migi makes sure this is done right, giving him an awesome muscle monster arm to nail Shimada mortally through the heart from over 300m away.

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The final butcher’s bill? 17 deaths, including students, faculty, and police. But because everyone who saw Shimada in Battle Formation is either among those 17 or scarred from the trauma of the situation, the police and media keep the incident under wraps.

In a big room with a big desk (and a Big Board!), Professor Yui cheerfully briefs the assembled authorities on the nature of the parasites, which he calls “sentient muscle”, and how to detect them: By plucking a hair from the one you suspect. Of course, that assumes it will let you live long enough to pluck the hair and do something about it, which is assuming a lot.

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Still, I guess it’s better than nothing. After a few days, school starts back up (presumably after all the blood was mopped up) and Shinichi runs into a cautious but cordial Murano, who apologizes for not responding to his texts, but thanks him profusely for saving her.

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Shinichi suggests they not dwell on the horrors of the past, and when he does, he doesn’t just mean forgetting about the harrowing bloody experience Satomi just went through, nor the fact he bounded around around like a superhero while she was in his arms. No, he also wants her to forget about all the awful exchanges they had prior to Shimada going postal.

Satomi seems receptive to that arrangement, and just like that, they’re incredibly back on good terms. Just because things went pretty well for Shinichi this week doesn’t mean the trend will continue. But at this point in the show’s 24-episode run, it was nice to see a glimmer of hope that things will turn out okay return, even if that turns out not to be the case at all.

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 09

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu 9 has a rather full plate by the series’ standards. Or maybe I’m just responding to all the little plot elements, which seem less focused than usual?

It’s not like other Parasytes haven’t stolen the spotlight from Shinichi before — both Not-Mom and Ryoko got plenty of camera time, narration, and agenda building — but, for some reason, Shimada Hideo comes off as more significant character. Like we’re going to see a lot of him for a while, because he interacts with many characters, and not just Shinichi?

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Or maybe it felt fragmented and unfocused because Shinichi himself doesn’t really have an agenda? He knows what he is, he knows who his enemies are and what they are capable of, he has a strong understanding with Migi now, and he isn’t even particularly driven to fix his relationship with Maruno or grow another one with Kana.

Basically, he spends the episode running from place to place, exerting his influence and growing physical presence… while every other character we’ve met gets on with more specific, plot advancing activities.

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For example, Shinichi’s dad gets interviewed by FBI types, who explain that the government knows what’s going on, but has no way of identifying the intruders yet. He even agrees not to go public because doing so would accomplish nothing but panic.

Really, by the end of the episode, Shinichi’s dad has come to terms with his wife’s death, alien invaders, and given up drinking (maybe?) to seriously address his son. This is all character growth for him, mind you, as Shinichi is basically locked in Vulcan Mode after his heart-bonding, which isn’t new or news to us at this point.

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If Parasyte 9 is about Shinichi at all it, it’s about how he’s basically good at everything except not acting like a crazy person around Murano. No seriously! He can identify complex social orders with a casual glance, shut down fights without causing damage to his opponents, and generally keep his cool…

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…Except if he’s within earshot of his would-be-girlfriend.

I have to say that, if this show were cut differently, it would make a hilarious comedy about a bat-shit-insane guy who’s finally hit puberty late in high school and the poor girl who used to love him for his innocence!

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Back to the serious stuff at hand, Mitsuo and Hideo keep coming into conflict. Luckily for Mitsuo, Hideo wants to avoid a bloodbath and then, when that’s no longer avoidable, Shinichi intercedes before anything can happen.

Badass super-jumps and punch-stopping aside, Parasyte really sells these scenes through everyone’s reaction to Shinichi. Hideo is totally blown away by Shinichi’s prowess (way beyond what he should even be able to do as a full parasyte) and Yano-san, Mitsuo’s boss, is emotionally shaken more by Shinichi’s gaze and presence than the effectiveness of his blocks.

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On the lesser side of the bad-ass spectrum, we get sanity-deficient Glasses Girl stalking Hideo. She goes from lusting after him to questioning his reality to identifying him as an alien to confirming that with her brother (who draws alien pictures for the government) to…

deciding not to tell anyone about this and confronting Hideo alone in the art room the following morning. What. The. Heck. Is. Wrong. With. Your. Brain??

Of all the plot threads, this was the most ham-fisted.

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However, judging by Parasyte’s pacing, I’m pretty sure Shinichi will save the day quickly next episode, probably without revealing that he too is partially an alien and, with glasses girl’s help, win Murano’s heart and trust back.

Hideo is nice and terrifying though. So…kudos? I guess.

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For some reason, Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu episodes 8 & 9 went live at the same time and I’m a little embarrassed to admit that I didn’t realize this for several minutes. No, really! 9 starts in a bus station with Kana looking through the crowd…just how episode 7 ends!

Ignoring that weirdness, what did I think of the episode? Well… too ambitious and unfocused I think. For goodness sakes! Kana could have used the screen time that was given over to Ryoko’s evil parasyte secret society meeting or Glasses Girl talking to her brother about faces or any of the instances where Shinichi scares the piss out of Murano.

Still good looking, creepy, and original though. So I’m only taking it down a point from last week.

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 08

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Franklin, sorry if I may have insinuated you were a cold unfeeling insect; I may have gone too far. Not to mention, you ain’t got nothing on Shinichi! Or rather, the New, Improved(?) Shinichi who has taken form in the last couple episodes, the result of the further cementing of him and Migi. The title of this episode is “Freezing Point”, and Shinichi seems to be arriving at his with all due haste.

Granted, there’s still plenty of the “old” Shinichi in there; the one who would take a dying puppy to a quieter place to expire; the warm, kind, humane person Satomi fell for. When she sees Shinichi caring for the puppy, she’s relieved to see that side of him after her initial contact with him was chillier and less “him”. Heck, Satomi pretty much admits she felt “safer” when Shinichi’s kindness was mixed with his former nervousness.

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Then Shinichi instantly burns that just rebuilt bridge by unceremoniously dumping the dead puppy in the trash. That action is harmful enough, but the chilly way he explains his actions to Satomi makes things much worse.

He asks Migi what he said wrong (never a good sign!), and Migi replies that he didn’t say anything wrong per se, it’s just that he sounded like Migi; saying the kinds of horrible things that used to appall Shinichi when Migi said them. His mind’s changed along with his body so much, now he doesn’t even realize when he says the same kind of horrible shit!

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What this boils down to (or rather freezes down to) is that merging more fully with Migi may have given Shinichi amazing gifts, but those gifts are wreaking absolute havoc on his love life, to the point that there may no longer be any hope for him and Satomi. Still, I guess there’s something to be said for that being your biggest problem at the moment, rather than, say, being worried about getting killed by a parasyte.

In fact, this is a relatively action and violence-free episode, and ironically the most dangerous-seeming person for most of the episode is Shinichi himself, as we wonder just how much more he’ll adopt Migi’s behavior. Then a Shimada Hideo shows up and changes all that. Claiming to wish him no harm, Hideo was sent by a preggers Ryouko to ‘observe’ Shinichi, saying their seeking ways to coexist with humans without killing.

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Hideo, like Ryouko and unlike A, is a parasyte to be reasoned with, or is at least sophisticated enough to play along with that notion. But I like the idea that he’s come to the school out in the open as a new transfer student, and proceeds to one-up Shinichi in a number of P.E. activities, as if he’s trying to approximate an ego. He even succeeds in attracting the ladies.

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Shinichi considers what Hideo has said, but just because he’s starting to act more like one of them doesn’t mean he’s ready to trust one. Again, the old Shinichi surfaces as he remembers what a parasyte did to his mother; only now his rage needn’t be internal and stewing; now he has the strength to do something about it.

He wears that moment of rage all too openly on his face, startling an already unsteady Satomi in a moment that had me laughing out loud. Along with the easy alley fight with Mitsuo, the puppy-tossing, and the Hideo pissing gym contest, Shinichi startling Satomi with his RAGE FACE are all examples of this episode’s cheeky but welcome sense of black humor. It lightens the mood at times, but not so much that the serious horror themes are undermined.

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Getting back to the theme of Shinichi now having the absolute worst luck with regards to Satomi, Kana is now essentially stalking him, making use of her latent ability to sense him coming, which she’s taken to believe means they’re soul mates, creating a tidy love triangle Shinichi wants nothing to do with. Even so, his gallant rescue of Kana from Hideo is another example of him doing something he never could have done before without even thinking about it: be a hero.

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Kana can’t just sense Shinichi, but Hideo as well, which means she can detect all parasytes. And thank goodness Shinichi gets to Kana and warns her to stay away from others, or Kana would have met a sticky end. Along with Satomi, Shinichi’s late mother and now his self-medicating father, everyone who has a close bond with him knows something’s very very different. In his dad’s case, he simply can’t comprehend how Shinichi can be so calm and cool about the tragedy that just befell them.

He wonders if Shinichi is “made of steel”, another not-subtle dig at his new status as a hero-in-waiting. And like any superhero worth his salt, Shinichi’s abilities and duty also serve to isolate him from everyone, especially those he loves and who love him. It’s a lonely road, but if he really wants to avenge his mother, he must walk it without fear.

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On second thought, a healthy dose of fear might be called for, after witnessing Hideo change his face to that of a model’s to ‘bait’ a random young woman into following him into a dark alley where he proceeds to eat her. Shinichi did tell him he’d kill him if he harmed anyone…he knew.

Still, Hideo was less than honest with Shinichi, as Shinichi rightly suspected. Unless something else is going on here, and Shinichi’s aggressive attitude towards Hideo goaded him into falling off the human-killing wagon. Whatever the case, Shinichi must continue to keep his friends close…and Hideo closer.

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 07

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Shinichi lands from the jump he began last episode and turns to find a parasyte… just not the parasyte he was expecting. As it turns out, Shinichi discovers he’s not alone in this crazy world: Uda Mamoru, a cry-baby but moral fellow, is also in an alliance of sorts with a parasyte.

Uda’s situation is a bit different from Shinichi’s, in that he lives in a rural area and hasn’t run into any other parasytes yet. On top of that, his parasyte (simply called Parasyte — it didn’t want a name) comes off as generally more up-beat than Migi. Maybe even ‘nice?’

parasyte72Oh Yeah! Mikako is in this episode! I guess.

You see, Uda fell into the water during the transformation process and Parasyte had to save his life from the get go. Sure, he probably would have died if he’d tried to just eat Uda’s brain, but that thought process, and Uda’s love of movies over books, has lead to a quirkier, less edgy relationship.

And for goodness sakes! His face is delightful!

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Uda and Shinichi quickly become friends and Uda promises to warn Shinichi over the phone if he encounters another parasyte, which happens about 5 seconds later and then there’s a show down with Shinichi’s Not-Mom on a cliff.

Unfortunately, Migi has just fallen asleep and Uda is stabbed through the heart very quickly. So Shinichi has to go it alone… albeit with a sword-hand Migi left him at the last minute.

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In simple terms, Shinichi wipes the floor with Not-Mom. While he has a moment of pause when she shields herself with her brun-arm, Sinichi’s new speed and reflexes let him see how simplistic not mom really is.

In fact, the hybrid’s appear to be smarter than pure-parasytes in general. Uda survives because Parasyte understood Not-Mom’s attack pattern and moved his heart elsewhere. Uda even lands the killing blow, as a courtesy to Shinichi.

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Soon there after, Shinichi is reunited with his dad, has a nice moment where they sort of indirectly come to understand each other, and Mikako gets totally left behind because… wait why was she introduced as a character in the first place?

I’m not even sure Shinichi remembers her name…

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So it was a good episode but I can’t figure out how it deserves anything higher than an 8? Honestly, between the multi-character voice overs, the DBZ style ‘flurry of fists’ fight animation, and the completely obvious and predictable outcome of all this build up, none of episode 7 was notable.

Sure, Shinichi finally got to be mister bad ass and Udo/Parasyte were a cute duo, but I’m scratching my head over Mikako and Not-Mom. I was waiting for some twist to happen with the first, and bewildered why the later was still hanging around this remote town AFTER she’d already gone to Tokyo.

Maybe we’ll get some answers later on but I don’t get the feeling we’ll see Udo or Mikako again, which just made the last 3 episodes feel like a fetch quest style ‘whatever’ side mission.

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 06

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Shinichi’s not-mom may have stabbed him through the heart, but obviously our protagonist can’t die a quarter of the way into the show. I mean, he could, like this guy (spoilers!), but I’d rather he stick around, and obviously so does Migi, since he won’t last long without a living host. His revival is a “how, not if” situation. But that doesn’t meant the “how” won’t change both host and parasite.

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I like the juxtaposition of Shinichi on the floor dead with a scene at school in which a concerned Satomi is grilled by another classmate who seems to be into him. This is all the drama Shinichi would have had to bear had he never “met” Migi. High School Drama, with rumors and innuendo and love triangles, not creepy-as-fuck monsters and massive internal injuries.

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Migi’s manner of reviving Shinichi is plausable within the construct of a show in which a character like Migi exists. The stabbing last week could have been construed as a cheap cliffhanger we knew would be resolved relatively simply, or the show intended it to feel like just another day in Shinichi’s Hell. It must also be pointed out that if Shinichi ever shows his chest to a physician ever again, there will be questions. Many, many questions.

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Poor Satomi has the worst timing this week (you could say, timing-wise, she’s…snake-bitten), as she stops by Shinichi’s just as he’s leaving to see his father at the hospital on the island where he and mom were staying. Satomi’s no fool, and sees that Shinichi is troubled by something; for Pete’s sake, he looks like he’s aged ten years! Dying for several minutes can do that.

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Shinichi’s relative cold shoulder isn’t just a factor of him wanting to protect her from the truth; he’s simply so emotionally on edge right now he simply can’t deal with something from his “normal world”, right now, which must’ve felt like it happened hundreds of years ago. His dad is in the hospital, his mom is dead, and he’s through with being Mr. Evolved Sensibility. He wants revenge.

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Did you notice how differently Shinichi’s father acted when his son was there, as opposed to earlier, when he was recounting his crazy story to the cops? He talks of a monster murdering his wife, but both the detectives and doctor believe he’s mixing reality and nightmares after suffering a head injury falling into the sea. A perfectly logical explanation. When Shinichi sees him, not only does Dad not want to cause a fuss in front of his son, but truly believes the explanation the others gave him.

When Shinichi mentions a monster, his dad just assumes he got the idea from an erratic phone call he made. In any case, Shinichi remains utterly alone in his knowledge of the Parasytes. Not that his dad’s continued raving would have accomplished anything. Two voices speaking about things like this carry no more weight than one.

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While staying at the inn owned by the family of a cute schoolgirl who he met on the boat to the island, Shinichi ponders his next move, and Migi finally awakens with important news: In his current physiological state, he now has to sleep four hours every day, and cannot be woken, even in an emergency. That’s bad news for Shinichi, who chose the inn specifically because it was within Migi’s detection range, but he can’t detect anything while asleep.

Still, Shinichi makes it clear that despite what his biology is saying to Migi, he no longer considers him an enemy, but a lifesaver and an ally. Admittedly, Shinichi could just be saying this because he doesn’t have a change against Not-Mom without his slippery friend.

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The innkeeper girl Mikako pretty much falls for Mr. Tall-and-Dark during his visit, and again, Shinichi simply has no time for love, as Migi finally detects a Parasyte. Shinichi rushes after it after only getting half of Mikako’s directions, but it’s all good because Migi further merging with his body has not only bestowed upon him heightened senses, but increased speed and strength. Are Not-Mom’s days numbered…or is Shinichi mistaken about the Parasyte Migi detected even being her?

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 05

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu episode 5 brings us yet another no name/ no personality Parasyte to deal with… but it’s clever about it. No-name gets a lot of brutal screen time from the get-go, and none of the dots it will connect are clear until it the end.

Cheap? Predictable? Maybe? At least, if you guessed like me about the end-potential of last episode…

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So Nagai, one of Shinichi’s classmates, is being beaten to a pulp by high school thugs of some sort and of course Shinichi has to dive in for an inept rescue. This wouldn’t be so bad if Shinichi ever thought anything through before diving headlong into it (or whining about it) but of course he doesn’t.

I mean, 5 seconds to remember ‘fighting is a bad idea unless I want to lose or accidentally kill someone because Migi has no sense of control or value for human life’ would do this idiot some good.

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Ultimately, the thugs get bored and wander off. However, not before Kana, the maybe-girlfriend of the thug-boss, gets a good deep look into Shinichi’s soul and is massively disturbed by what she sees there.

It looked like an eyeball to me. So, who knows where that’s going but Migi warns that women (and Kana in particular) seem to be better at detecting the energy waves created by the Parasytes.

Hrm… bummer.

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Later, because the evil thug leader wants to teach Shinichi a lesson for being a poser hero or something, Murano gets captured and it’s implied the thugs are going to rape her for a while and…timeout.

Is it me or am I just ignorant of the total shit-hole status of Japan and Japanese culture? I mean, are rape gangs really a thing there? Are there no police and no consequences for rapists? This whole segment just seemed questionable.

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S’okay though: Shinichi & Murano’s whole class show up and, presumably, beat the life out of Mutou’s gang. It’s also implied that Kana was the one that lead them there.

I guess she’s trying to figure out Shinichi and, juggling her thoughts about him already having a girlfriend, trying to figure out what to do with him?

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Then Shinichi’s mom gets her head cut off by the nameless Parasyte that was crawling around after the car wreck. Apparently they can only control one gender after their initial blending so it needed a fresh lady and Shinichi’s mom just happened to be on a near by oceanside cliff and bang: plot convenience!

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Before coming, Mommasyte gives Shinichi some time with his two ladies. First up was Murano, who confirms that Shinichi is no longer really human — he’s too nice and goes too far to protect others. He basically asks if she wants to have sex tonight but she smiles and goes home.

Second is Kana, who wants to apologize and also get a closer look at Shinichi. Not much happens beyond a hand shake and a glum face. Migi says she’s dangerous and should be avoided if possible. I assume she’ll just become a Parasyte soon, get killed, or both mere minutes after having sex with him.

May as well just get that over with…

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Then Shinichi’s dad calls to tell him about the murder monster, then probably dies in a public phone booth. Then Mommasyte shows up and Shinichi loses his shit and she kills him with her stabby-blade-head.

He’s obviously not dead but next week will take some explanational back-bending to tell us how it didn’t happen.

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At it’s heart, Parasyte is a discussion about what makes a human human. Is it our culture? is it our individual behavior? A-chan looked like a man, and could even make human babies, but he is a murderous beast.

Not too different from a lot of selfish people we’ve seen in Shinichi’s world, really.

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Questions and philosophy aside, this week was a little bumpy, flow-wise. I really did find Shinichi’s mom’s murder a little eye-rolling and Shinichi’s rather constant whimpering about being human or not got a little tiresome. (In all fairness, he is a teenager)

Regardless, the action was good, the people are weird, and the character development is obvious. All good things, creepy and brutal, and it has my attention all the way.

Lets just hope none of the female characters get bitten by a snake any time soon!

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 04

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Our fourth taste of Parasyte starts off tense and gross, with A-san and Migi initiating a furious battle of fleshy, sharp-pointed protuberances as Shinichi struggles to see what’s going on. But Migi is only defending; it’s up to Shinichi to take that sharp chair leg and attack A-san.

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That means walking through a constantly-moving forest of limbs and trusting that Migi won’t mess up and let him get torn to shreds. Once again, Shinichi, welcome to your new life: constantly in mortal danger, and having to make decisions you never thought you’d be faced with, like “It’s him or us.”

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Migi’s plan works perfectly, exploting A-san’s arrogant assumption that Shinichi won’t participate in the battle. This is a guy who had sex, and yet still doesn’t understand that two are stronger than one; he’s a lost cause. Oh, and the blood spout Shinichi makes is super-gross!

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It doesn’t kill him, though. Fortunately, Shinichi can walk away from this not only alive, but knowing he did not take a life. He just made that easier for Tamiya-sensei, who senses A-san coming for her, fills a lab with oxygen, and jumps out the window. The explosion finishes A-san off.

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Then…things kinda settle down, though unfortunately, there’s no interaction between Shinichi and Satomi this week after he was very brusque with her last week. And funnily enough, Tamiya-sensei’s “quiet, normal life” experiment isn’t blown by her role in destroying A-san (though you’d think arson experts would have noticed organic remains in the destroyed lab). Nope, it’s blown by the fact she’s an unmarried pregnant woman!

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Tamiya-sensei isn’t interested in trying to fix this mess; it’s easier to simply start over with a new host and “life.” To that end, she essentially tells Shinichi and Migi that the truce is over, and even reveals her weapon form, in another super-creepy transformation. It doesn’t look like our hero and his hand will get out of this one, but at the last second Tamiya reconsiders and spares their lives. Why? Not clear yet.

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Then, one morning Shinichi wakes up missing his whole arm, and learns of a fresh terror: Migi can detach from him for a maximum of three minutes. Having a sentient hand is disconcerting enough, but knowing it can hop off whenever it wants for a morning walk? Even more unnerving. Stay attached to me, dammit!

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Meanwhile, Tamiya-sensei’s mother visits her, worried sick, and almost instantly realizes that she’s not her Ryouko, but an impostor. When Mom tries to call the police, Tamiya is forced to kill her, but she’s surprised and vexed to no end: how did the old woman know?

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See? The internet corrupts everyone! Anyway, Satomi first hinted at it by asking Shinichi if he was really Shinichi, then later switching hands with him, and then further reinforced by Shinichi’s mother’s increasing unease. It would seem people with strong emotional bonds, like love, in both Satomi and Shinichi’s mom’s case, seem to be able to sense their loved one isn’t themselves. Of course, Shinichi is still mostly himself, but still enough of something else that both of the main women in his life notice.

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With circumstances being what they’ve been, Shinichi owes Migi his life several times over (even if in most cases Migi is the cause of the mortal peril to begin with); his alliance with the parasite in his hand hasn’t really been that big of an issue. The issue, besides not getting killed by other parasites, is a much heavier weight than Migi will ever be, and that’s the truth.

He chose not to reveal it to his parents, because let’s face it, as kind and loving as they are, they could very likely recoil and disown Shinichi on the spot. His mom is already suspicious of whether he’s even the same Shinichi she got burned with hot oil protecting. He can only conceal the truths for so long before the weight crushes him; it must be shared. Will Satomi be a different story?

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 03

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I love that Shinichi Izumi-kun’s dad is more invested in the news about the next fantasy writer award winner being handed out than the 84th murder. To be fair, I can see how murder news in this quantity could get boring, but as a ‘Murican, I can’t imagine 84 serial murders achieving anything less than total, insane, frothy mouth panic in all my fellow countrymen (and ladies)!

However, Izumi-kun has more specific worries, in that he may be the only human to know the true nature of the murders. Worse, he may be the only human in a position to stop them…and he’s not in a position to stop them, what with being a teenager and all!

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Worse worse, at least at first, is Izumi’s new school reality: his new math teacher Tamiya-sensei is clearly another Parasyte. This puts him on total edge, as she is also his love interest’s homeroom teacher and bloody antics could soon be afoot!

Fortunately, at least for now, Tamiya intends to blend into human society and maintain her host’s place in society. Migi thinks very highly of her for this. Rather, he thinks she is very gifted, to be able to control her host and maintain the status quo so effectively.

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Unfortunately, A-san, a male Parasyte who seems incapable (or unwilling?) of even the most basic human fitting-in is not far off. According to Tamiya, she and A-san had sex and now she is pregnant with a completely normal human child.

This is not to say A-san is targeting her. Quite the opposite! He finds Migi and Izumi-kun dangerous and, as a base animal, he quickly loses it and launches an attack on the school.

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A-san is not even his name. He doesn’t have one, since he see’s no point in even trying to blend into Human society…

After a lengthy, brutal, but low body count attack, A-san corners Migi and Izumi-kun on an upper floor. Except they aren’t exactly cornered. They’ve identified that the ture difference between them and him is not anything highfalutin.

It’s simply that they are two beings, and that as two beings, they can fight together, overwhelming a single one, no matter how strong he is alone.

We’ll just have to wait until next week to put that to the test…

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu gave us another solid creep-fest this week. Migi is, as always, equal parts disgusting to look at and super-cute. Not only that, his self-centered detached reasoning reminds me of my old P.E. teacher. (talk about nightmares layered on nightmares!)

A whole new character will obviously outlive A-san here and now we have so many questions we didn’t even know we had to ask as of last week. Will Parasyte-sensei continue to observe Izumi-kun or attack him when the time is right? Does she really have an urge to blend in? Will she eat her own baby (Gross! – Ed.)? Will she even bring it to term? I can’t wait to find out!

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Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu – 01

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This is how you design an original, shocking, and completely screwed up super natural/scifi high school slice of life story! The world? As it is today! The danger? That people may not be who they seem, and if they are not, they will eat you. Even if you aren’t human anymore either!

Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu (Parasyte – the maxim-) starts us off right by having a husband eat his wife’s head for breakfast. No warning. No real explanation. We only get bits and pieces from what protagonist Shinichi Izumi thought was a dream and, later, through the conversations he has with his hand.

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So what’s going on? Shinichi narrowly escapes being carved out by an alien parasite by tying off his arm with his headphone cord (his head phones preventing the parasite from entering his ear the normal way)

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After a few weird moments the following day, where his hand appears to be up to its own business without his input, Shinichi learns that his hand now has an eyeball, talks to him, and can stop a speeding car. Stopping the car was good for the little girl it was about to flatten, but I imagine splat or save would have given him equal trauma.

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Later, after the hand has read many books and improved its speaking skills, the situation is laid out between them: they’re gonna need to coexist or at least one of them will be dead and the other won’t have an arm anymore.

Also, lots of strange murders going down around Japan but that’s probably just a coincidence…

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Parasyte is very well drawn, in that the characters are of average design and style, but the creepy hand monster is extraordinarily dynamic and fluidly animated. So far, we’ve only seen a short fight with an overrun dog but I’m sure, when the stakes are high enough, we’re in for an animated treat.

Hand is gross and funny and creepy and adorable all wrapped up in one. I found myself missing subtitles just because I wanted to see him stretch and waggle his eyeball stalks around.

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Parasyte culminates in a showdown with another ‘failed’ alien (they only want to eat their host’s brains). Dog, as he is given no name, does not trust protagonist because, unlike all the other aliens, Shinichi is partially still human.

The fight is short and sweet and there’s nothing to complain about: a small dog sprouted organ-looking wings out of its face to chase a high schooler around a park. Unique!

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I have no idea where this is going to be honest and I love it. I assume Shinichi’s family and 2 school friends will bite it or get infected or become his enemies, at least for an episode.

However, there’s no sense of the aliens’ goals, reasons, or what we’ll see beyond people getting eaten. You have my attention, Parasyte! (and my nightmares!)

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Moving forward, Kiseijuu: Sei no Kakuritsu reviews will be shared by Oigakkosan and MagicalChurlSukui.