Parasyte has been one of the biggest horror manga hits in recent years. Originally published in 1988, the series got a boost in popularity when it was adapted into an anime in 2014 and a two-part live-action film series. Today, it is regarded as one of the golden standards in horror manga. But when you think of Parasyte the first thing that comes to mind usually isn’t shojo manga. But that’s exactly what you get in this new anthology that sees some of the top creators working in shojo manga today present their take on the world of Parastyte.
In the original series, the sole purpose of the Parasites is to assimilate with and consume the human race. But in this collection, there’s plenty that’s out of the ordinary. Particular highlights include Missions of Love and Manga Dogs creator Ema Toyama presenting an alternate world where Yuko Tachikawa has a Parasite in her hand and is also a yaoi obsessed fan girl – which her Parasite cannot see the logic in. Toyama does a particularly great job in paying tribute to Hitoshi Iwaaki’s art style whilst still keeping it identifiably as her own. Banko Kuze’s Parasite cooking show which proposes that maybe humans are worse monsters than the Parasites is also a great comedic slant on the series, and Miki Rinno presents a fun but ultimately grisly tale about a Parasite who must become the prince that his romance-obsessed female host dreams of to save her from a dangerous stalker.
But while there are plenty of stories presenting a humorous or overall different take on the series, there are plenty of darker entries that line up with the atmosphere created in the original stories. The opening story by Utsubora creator Asumiko Nakamura is a particularly bleak tale about a man desperate to save his dying wife by getting hold of a Parasite in a misguided effort to save her. Nakamura’s atmospheric artwork and bleak characters are right at home in the Parasyte world. And Alice in Murderland creator Kaori Yuki tells a story of teenage love that goes awry once a Parasite gets involved. Yuki’s art is a constant balance between the shojo and horror styles which makes for a unique tone.
For fans of the Parasyte franchise, this is a great tribute to Hitoshi Iwaaki’s original series which offers of plenty fresh takes both new and familiar. Manga fans in general should also definitely pick this up for a unique collection featuring some of the top mangaka working in their field today.
Neo Parasyte f is published 20 October by Kodansha Comics
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Post by Leo