WARNING! SPOILERS WITHIN! WARNING!
Sentai Filmwork’s Volume 2 of Parasyte is comprised of episodes 13-24 (the whole series is 24 episodes only) and focusing first on the big picture these particular episodes is about leading up to that obvious “showdown” between the parasites and the humans in Tokyo. Barring Shinichi and his parasite, Migi, while most of the public is oblivious to these creatures walking among us the police are well informed about these things and this showdown revolves around them getting a massive SWAT team together to storm the building the supposed infected Mayor and a few other parasitized elites have made their base in hopes of gaining enough power so they can feed on us without incurring the wrath of the human whole. Feeding stations was part of their plan; certain sections of the city where a parasite can bring a human and feed on them. An abandoned parking garage was one of these spots.
Now on the smaller picture front these final episodes are about Shinichi still trying to come to grips with his lessening humanity, while also feeling his way among his fellow humans and most importantly the girl, Satomi, who has a crush on him and he her. Both of these stories, the big and small picture, don’t exactly play out like you think they will, which was a big plus in me liking this series. In the first volume it’s clearly set up to have this parasite woman, Reiko, who posed as a teacher in his high school to be his “personal enemy,” and for a while she clearly is a homicidal bitch on wheels, who even got knocked up so she could “experiment” on her human child. But as she states these parasites are still evolving and still trying to find what kind of relationship they should have with humanity. Her initial theory is like the one we have with pigs and cows. We co-exist with them even though we use them for food. But in volume two the unexpected happens. Reiko gains some unexpected understanding of humanity and that adversarial role I expected she’d be playing in Shinichi’s life was pulled right out from under me. See episode 18, “More Than Human” for her unexpected and heartbreaking closure.
These parasites are evolving. They have learned they can separate themselves from their host for a while. Again this is evident when three members of that elite clan decide Reiko is a liability because of her burgeoning humanity and try and assassinate her to utter failure.
Back to the big picture and that showdown, and another reason I loved this series. As the humans learn a well-placed shotgun blast to the heart can instantly kill a parasite due to the massive blood loss in a short amount of time, during the raid it starts to become evident that, maybe, it’s the humans that’re the worst of the two, and we get a “sermon” on just that when the Mayor is finally confronted. Perhaps, mankind is Earth’s parasite, and he makes a hell of an argument for that theory.
So who ends up being Shinichi’s “personal enemy?” It unexpectedly becomes this experiment Reiko was working on. A super parasite named Gotou. There are five separate parasites within his body, which means there is no human body part on him and he can shape-shift any part of his body. Backing up a bit to see how he and Shinichi “got together,” well, it was all Reiko’s fault, as usual. She hired a private dick to watch the kid and eventually Shinichi and Migi found out about him, but Migi wanted to kill him. Shinichi talked him down and they filled him in on the unseen world in his midst. This led to many other complications and plot points I’ll leave for you to discover, but to make a long story short Shinichi and Migi ended up in that aforementioned abandoned underground parking lot and killed a parasite. The elites were keeping their distance from him at the behest of Reiko, but once he incurred on “marked territory,” so-to-speak, and wasted a parasite the elites decided it was time they put an end to him, so super parasite, Gotou, was sent to assassinate him. Starting at episode 15 one of the five parasites in this body, Miki, is sent to take Shinichi out, but during that battle the Gotou parasite takes control when Miki is defeated, and from here on out it’s Shinichi versus Gotou.
And yet another reason I loved this series was that it actually comes with an epilogue. Once it’s done we get 22-minutes of how life transpired in Tokyo and all over the world after the showdown between the cops and the parasites, and what became of Shinichi and Migi. Be warned it’s a bittersweet ending, though. Actually the final two episodes are bittersweet. There are three people Shinichi loves in his life and that’s his dad, his girlfriend, Satomi, and parasite Migi, (yes, Migi grows on you during the course of this series), but there is a kind of “downbeat ending,” if you will, for one of these characters. I can’t say anymore than that.
The covers on both of volumes are actually scenes from the show, just embellished a little bit. On the first one there is no fountain of blood erupting from that parasite’s head and the face on volume 2 is Gotou’s original monstrous form, which gets revealed in episode 23 “Life & Oath,” but his face isn’t blood red.
Extras included . . .
- Clean Opening Animation
- Clean Closing Animation
- Sentai Filmworks trailers
I really got into this horror anime and recommend it highly!