Rating – *** (3/5)

For anyone new to the world of K-dramas, this one ain’t the romcoms that you would have popularly known or read about elsewhere, this instead is also what Korean cinema is known for – masterful thrills, spectacular use of gore and graphics, decent jump scares, and technical prowess across all departments. And if you add an engaging story with a beating heart to it – cherry on top.

Parasyte: The Grey comes from Train To Busan director, Yeon Sang-ho and stars Jeon So-nee, Koo Kyo-hwan, Lee Jung-hyun, and Kwon Hae-hyo in lead roles. Based on the Japanese manga, Parasyte by Hitoshi Iwaake, this series takes several different routes than what the original product is mainly known for.

One cannot deny that seldom anyone does zombies, mutants, aliens, weird creatures and parasites as well as Korean films and shows do. There is just such precision in the way the goriness and graphic violence are executed, where you do flinch just like you would for anything else but marvel at the realism with which it is shown. This show is no different. Apart from a couple of shoddy instances with the CGI, the parasite attacks, the sound design, action choreography, and cinematography are what keep you hooked consistently.

Review of 'Parasyte: The Grey': Getting over the life-sucking monsters & gore with technical excellence, it appears as a convoluted mess 890253

But there is only that much the technical department can do as Yeon’s reimagination of this manga world is filled with convoluted plotlines and an array of loopholes. It is also fascinating how Yeon uses religion as a tool and that seems to be a constant trend in all his projects; here though the treatment is much more subtle and understated. The first episode is filled with timeline jumps and the jumbled tonality of these shifts from one scene to another might momentarily slip your interest. There is only to an extent where a CGI parasite popping out of a human head will surprise you and still feel scary, isn’t it? The repetitiveness takes away from the novelty and then you feel even more as a viewer – where is the story hook that I need to latch on?

The original manga and its lighter treatment to the storyline made Parasyte what it is but the decision to make it darker doesn’t make the same impact. Parasyte: The Grey lacks the depth and intelligence that a Train To Busan or Psychokinesis had and more so gives you a better-produced and shot Peninsula. The set pieces begin being fun, campy and urgent but keep getting monotonous and hence, meh! after a certain point of time.

You need to be a hardcore K-drama fan to be hooked on a show like this that solely rides on the cliches and usuals at the cost of immersive storytelling, and if you are – Parasyte: The Grey is for you. And then there are fans of gore and pandemonium (just like me), then this is for you as well.

Parasyte: The Grey is now streaming on Netflix.