In Parasyte: The Maxim, science fiction and psychological horror collide in an innovative way. Check out these 14 other shows for more examples of this trend.
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The horror anime Parasyte: The Maxim, based on a vintage Hitoshi Iwaaki manga, quickly became a hit with horror fans. As a result, otaku praised theanime for successfully fusing classic body horror tropes with existential themes. There were two live-action movies based on The Maxim, and it inspired a new generation to seek out similar shows.
In spite of the fact that Parasyte: The Maximi isn’t the only anime to do so, it stands out. Fortunately, those who missed Parasyte: The Maxim in 2015 and are looking for an anime to fill the void will find plenty to choose from in 2016.
Leah Thomas’s June 30th, 2021 update:
Other shows have continued the tradition of retro sci-fi and body horror since Parasyte: The Maxim made waves in anime by reintroducing them. Retro anime has gotten a boost from nostalgia for the 1980s, and several successful shonen series with darker plot elements have been in the spotlight in the last year alone.
1. Tokyo Ghoul Makes A Monster Of Its Protagonist
After a dangerous encounter with a vicious stranger in an alley, Ken Kaneki, the protagonist of Tokyo Ghoul, ends up in a hospital. Just days after he’s been released from the hospital, Kaneki discovers he’s been changed forever, turning into what’s been called the Ghoul. As a result, Kaneki ends up serving as a sort of human-ghoul link.
After an encounter with a monster, Kaneki, like Shinichi, loses his humanity. With classic horror tropes like questioning what constitutes monstrousness and a life worth saving, both shows follow the same formula. It’s safe to say that fans of Parasyte will enjoy Tokyo Ghoul’s first season despite the fact that the show has its detractors.
2. Deadman Wonderland Indulges In Gore & Mystery
The story of Deadman Wonderland centers on Ganta Igarashi, whose entire class is wiped out by a mysterious red figure who appears in their classroom out of nowhere. Ganta is imprisoned in Deadman Wonderland after being falsely accused of the crime. While Deadman Wonderland is convoluted and overwrought at times, it is engrossing to say the least.
Ganta, like Shinichi, meets someone who bestows superhuman abilities on him. Another battleground for Ganta is the use of the same power source by his opponents. Despite the fact that the studio only adapted a portion of Deadman Wonderland’s story for the anime, the experience is still worthwhile.
3. Inuyashuki Contemplates What A Life Is Worth
Ichiro Inuyashiki, an elderly man with a strained relationship with his family, is the focus of the film Inuyashiki. When Inuyashiki is crying in a park, an unusual light turns him into a living weapon that looks like a robot. The story revolves around Inuyashiki, a hero trying to make the most of his waning years.
An encounter with an extraterrestrial has a profound effect on both Shinichi and Inuyashiki, who were previously the same person. Despite their tonal differences, Parasyte and Paradox have a lot in common thematically.
4. Mushishi Presents Its Own Unique Parasites
To deal with invasive parasites,Parasyte suggests using the following strategies: The Maxim can’t compete with Mushishi in any way. In a world that feels both timeless and far away, Mushishi is a critically acclaimed and widely adored series. Mushi are creatures that exist in this world that are neither plants nor animals, but rather, fungi that are aware of their surroundings.
While the mushi are not malicious, they have a tendency to curse or infect humans with various ailments, and a man named Ginko travels around the world on foot to make sure the mushi don’t cause too much damage. Mushi raises all the right existential questions while also being deeply unsettling and beautiful.
5. Claymore Showcases Gray Areas
Claymore is a half-human, half-demon warrior who pursues Clare. Clare meets Raki and saves him from a yoma, a terrifying monster. Raki joins Clare in her yoma-slaying quest after being expelled from his native land.
The main monsters in both shows have the ability to pass for humans. Like Shinichi in Parasyte: The Maxim, Clare has been granted superhuman abilities due to her genetic make-up. Despite the fact that Claymore is more gory and takes place in a fantasy world than Parayste: The Maxim, both series have similar themes.
6. Ajin: Demi-Human Is Parasyte Without A Heart
Follows the life of Kei Nagai, a young man who perishes in a car accident. In the end, Kei is spared because of a special substance that had lain dormant in his body for years. Every government agency on Earth wants Kei dead or alive because he is an immortal Ajin. Kei is on the run after being accused of abounty.
Ajin: Demi-Human, like Parasyte: The Maxim, is enigmatic, tense, and brutal. Kei, like Shinichi and Migi, must eliminate other Ajin to ensure his own survival. As much as the style of animation and the characters in Ajin may be unappealing at first, there is a lot for viewers to think about when they watch it.
7. Kabaneri Is Flawed But Features Classic Horror Moments
The events of Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress take place during the nineteenth century. People are being attacked by vicious beasts known as Kabane, who turn their victims into beasts like Shinichi. There is a story about a brilliant young man named Ikoma, who has created a weapon specifically to kill the Kabane. Unluckily for Ikoma, the days of slaying Kabane have arrived sooner than he had anticipated.
Both series feature protagonists who make use of their opponents’ advantages to their own detriment instead of helping them out. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress, an animated film by Wit Studio, features zombies and the kind of gore found in slasher films. Kabaneri, despite its flaws, could be just the ticket for those looking for less reflection and more action.
8. Banana Fish Is Another Testament To The Power Of Nostalgia
For a story about defying criminals and uncovering conspiracies in New York City, Banana Fish appears to be an odd choice at first glance, but it shares many similarities with Parasyte. Since these two manga were first published in the 1980s, they exemplify 1980s aesthetics and narrative choices.
The story also features an isolated protagonist who finds solace in a stranger and a dangerous world that is actively hostile to the main cast. Both series have an air of originality about them, as if John Carpenter had written them.
9. Death Parade Weighs Morals Against Circumstances
Death Parade is still a bit of a misfit in terms of anime. The majority of the series takes place in the Afterlife, and it’s a fascinating mix of existential questions and supernatural mythology. It’s a hotel lobby in perpetual darkness in Death Parade, and the fate of a soul is partly determined by the bartender. Decim puts incoming souls through their paces in a series of games that determine their eternal destiny.
Death Parade and Parasyte, despite their divergent approaches to storytelling, are both concerned with the delicate balance between life and death and the ripple effects one’s decisions have on the rest of the world. Shinichi must weigh his options against his values, and the same is true for the rest of us.
10. Made In Abyss Goes Only Darker
The visual style of Made in Abyss differs greatly from that of Parasyte’s story. Nevertheless, both series serve as excellent examples of the psychological horror genre’s range of approaches. Most of the horror inMade in Abyss comes from sources outside of the player’s control; Parasyte takes on monsters head-on by placing a familiar foe inside the protagonist. Another protagonist has no idea what makes him monstrous in the void that he finds himself in.
While the series starts out as an adventure in a strange land, the true nature of the world beneath the characters’ feats becomes increasingly horrifying as they descend through the series. Few television series have done as well as this one at creating tension and suspense. Fans of Parasyte will enjoy this excursion.
11. Attack On Titan Confronts Humanity’s Ugliness
Is there anyone left among the geek community who hasn’t heard of Attack on Titan? At this point, the series is both lauded and derided, and most otaku have already formed opinions about it. Nevertheless, there are numerous similarities between Attack on Titan and Parasyte that seem warranted bringing up.
Three things Parasyte: The Maxim and Attack on Titan have in common are fear, action, and survival. Other than the excruciating gore, Attack On Titan and Parasyte: The Maxim have a similar tone. However, both shows have a bleak outlook on human nature and leave their viewers with plenty to ponder.
12. Jujutsu Kaisen Blends Body Horror & Shonen Action
Popular shonen series have become so dark that the distinctions between them and other, more traditional forms of media have vanished. The most popular shonen series in recent years have featured a lot of death, destruction, and, perhaps most bizarrely, body horror, so bloodshed and violence are par for the course.
We now have Jujutsu Kaisen on the scene. A demon named Sukuna unexpectedly takes up residence in the main character Yuji, much like Migi did with Shinichi. While it’s unlikely that Sukuna will develop as much of a conscience as Migi does, the idea of being the host of a monster is once again compellingly illustrated. Now that Shinichi and Migi’s fates have been revealed, the public is left wondering what will happen to Sukuna and Yuji. For the rest, Jujutsu Kai is a fantastic shonen horror series that will keep you entertained to the point of being annoying.
13. Dororo Brings An Old Story Back To Life
Hyakkimaru’s father turns him into a monster by trading in his son’s organs and limbs for money and success. Later, Hyakkimaru must travel the land with an orphan named Dororo in order to reclaim the parts that were taken from him.
Parasyte’s journey to the screen has nothing on Dororo’s. It’s fair to say that when it received an anime adaptation in 1989, it was still pretty retro for a 1988 novel. Osamu Tezuka, the man behind the manga’s original creation, began writing the series in the 1960s. Although the manga was briefly adapted into an anime in 1969, it was never given a proper conclusion. It wasn’t until 2019 that MAPPA released a stunning reimagining for viewers.
14. To Your Eternity Boasts An Unforgettable Inhuman Protagonist
Few series have ever made as grand an entrance as To Your Eternity has.
A cinematic masterpiece, the series’ premiere is one of the best anime pilots ever.
Most impressively, To Your Eternity centers its narrative around an inhuman protagonist with no sense of morality from the start.
When Parasyte did what it did, To Your Eternity took it a step further by making the protagonist not the boy who is infected, but rather the parasite itself. Is it possible for Fushi to evolve into a human being without the aid of a host? Is it possible for a shape-shifting monster to develop empathy? The passage of time has demonstrated that the answer is indeed yes. If you’re a Parasytefan, To Your Eternityis the ideal candy.