The Ending Of ‘Parasyte: The Grey’ Teases A Shared Universe With The Manga

By Jonathon Wilson
Published: April 5, 2024 (Last updated: last month)
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Parasyte: The Grey Ending Explained - Who Is Shinichi?
Parasyte: The Grey (via Netflix)

There’s a surprisingly happy ending to Parasyte: The Grey, but it’s also one that hints at a wider universe tied into the original manga by Hitoshi Iwaake. Season 1 tells the broader story of alien parasites infiltrating humanity by taking over humans, but also a more personal one about supermarket cashier Su-in forming a symbiotic relationship with the alien she’s hosting, and both come to a crossroads in Episode 6.

Thanks to Pastor Kwon’s parasite and the efforts to organize the aliens into a collective, infiltrating higher levels of government and gaining more influence, Su-in and her parasite, Heidi, cross paths with Grey Team Leader Choi Jun-kyung and Kang-woo. The finale provides satisfactory arcs for all three, despite hinting at more to come from the universe.

The Parasite Plan

The parasites’ plan hinges in large part on taking control of a local mayor. Through political influence, the parasites can spread dramatically. Kwon’s parasite, which now infects Chul-min, targets the mayor at a music festival, planning to take over his body.

But as with all religious cult leaders, Kwon’s focus on his ends led to him betraying the parasites as a whole, leading the Grey Team to their hideout. Kang-woo’s infected sister Kyung-hee tells Su-in and Heidi that they must work together to thwart this plan, and Heidi calls Jun-kyung to inform her of the plot. She abandons her mission to investigate parasite sightings in Gangwon-do and heads to the festival. All roads must converge!

Won-seok and Chul-min Are Defeated

Parasyte: The Grey Ending Explained - Who Is Shinichi?

Parasyte: The Grey (via Netflix)

Won-seok, who has teamed up with the parasites, attacks the mayor with Chul-min. Unfortunately, the loose parasite manages to kill Kyung-hee when she tries to attack it, before attaching itself to Won-seok. This leaves him to face off against Heidi, while the mayor manages to escape with Kang-woo.

Jun-hyung arrives just in time for a good old-fashioned stand-off. She’s pointing her gun at Heidi, not realizing that the parasite is about to sneak attack her from behind. Heidi reaches out and skewers the parasite just as Jun-kyung fires… but at Won-seok. Luckily, she had seen in the reflection that he was infected, and blows a hole clear through him.

With Won-seok and the parasite dead, the crisis is averted. But that leaves the matter of Su-in and Heidi to deal with.

Su-in Is Finally Not Alone

Su-in’s life has been defined by her loneliness and trauma. All she has ever wanted was to fit in and be a part of something rather than being isolated, and through Heidi, in a very odd way, she has managed to achieve this. Heidi communicates this to Jun-kyung, who accepts that Heidi is no threat and that Su-in can carry on as normal.

So, she does. Through Su-in, Heidi learned a lot about humankind, which she communicates to her in a letter. However, the finale purposely doesn’t reveal all of the contents, allowing Su-in a little moment of internal privacy as she goes on with her life, finally not alone anymore.

Kang-woo is now a member of the Grey Team, who go on hunting parasites.

Who is Shinichi?

The very end of Parasyte: The Grey is an intriguing tease for more to come in a potential Season 2, connecting the Netflix series with the universe of the original manga and its live-action and anime adaptations by introducing Shinichi Izumi.

Shinichi introduces himself to Jun-kyung as an expert in parasites. Shinichi is the protagonist of the original story, but he’s 17 at the time it takes place. Here, he’s much older, implying that the story of this series takes place after his, but in the same universe. This is a pretty significant revelation since it means that this version of Parasyte was not a reinterpretation after all, but a different story occurring in the same universe.

If you’re interested in my thoughts on the series overall, you can check out my Parasyte: The Grey review for the details.

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