You know: in a foolish, undiscriminating way, I've been happy these last few months. I don't know why. I just am. I love my friends; I love my pupils; I love what I read; I -- dammit -- love my thoughts. I love the taste of oranges.
Thornton Wilder in a letter to Gertrude Stein, Aug 14, 1936

Thursday, September 1, 2011


Parasyte, Volume 2Parasyte, Volume 2 by Hitoshi Iwaaki
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Japanese really know how to set up primal situations for adolescent protagonists.

Sinichi and Migi, the alien parasite that inhabits his right hand, are getting along pretty well. But when Sinichi's parents leave for vacation, his mother has her head stolen by a parasite in need of a new one, and Sinichi is faced with the reality that he must kill his mother, or what used to be his mother, before she gets either himself or his father.

Along the way he meets up with a kinda pathetic possessed human, a loser contemplating suicide over his lost girlfriend about the time a parasite becomes lodged in his jaw. He also discovers that thanks to Migi's ability to subdivide himself, he is developing something close to superpowers. He quits taking shit and starts kicking ass.

Iwaaki's images in this second volume are more extravagant than the first. The transformation scenes and the scenes of two parasites swapping stories while their human hosts stand around with nothing to do have a loopy nuttiness about them that can make the parasites, whose only interest in self-preservation,  strangely appealing.

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