Parasyte: The Maxim Character Analysis: Migi
By: Prince Lammy
Migi is the main supporting character in both the anime and manga versions of the Parasyte: The Maxim anime series. Migi is a parasite that inhabits Shinichi Izumi's body and assumes the shape of his right hand. Migi is a highly clever and adaptable creature that can rapidly learn and develop to live in the hazardous human environment.
Migi is also the parasite that helped keep the cannibalistic activities of other parasites in check, helped saved its host, Shinichi Izumi, from certain death and also often defends him from imminent harm.
- Name: Migi
- Origin: Unknown
- Height: Unspecified (can morph into any length)
- Species: Parasite
- Status: Dormant
- Anime Debut: Episode 1
It’s only sad to know that even at the end of the Parasyte series, both in the manga and anime, nothing was revealed as to the origin and inception of the parasites. But one unarguable fact that Migi’s, as well as that of other parasites was solely to serve as a means to reduce overpopulation on the earth.
While that may be so, one could just surmise to say that Migi, Tamiya Ryoko, Gotou and other parasites all came from a lab somewhere, all stemming from one single person’s thoughts, then research and actions (with reference to the opening narration in the which reads “Someone on Earth had a sudden thought.”)
Sometimes thinking about Migi brings to mind, Reed Richards from Fantastic Four, but unlike him, Migi only takes up a single entity of its host’s body. In the day to day, Migi assumes the shape and figure of Shinichi’s right hand to avoid any suspicions.
But like other parasites, Migi can morph into anything, stretch into any length it wants, harden any part of it body, create smaller units out of itself, and even detach itself from his host, though that’s only for a few minutes.
In terms of hardening parts of itself, seeing as it’s often engaged in combat against other parasites who intend on harming its host, or itself, it can morph multiple muscle-like extensions of itself, with arched blades at the tip, which it uses in defense and assault.
At other times, it often also makes an eye that’s rather big, a mouth which it uses to converse with Shinichi and also small limbs, to sometimes walk on surfaces whenever it extends or detaches from Shinichi.
At the beginning of the series, shortly after Migi started relating and getting along with Shinichi, he showed traits of being nonchalant about others, and its host. One could say that Migi's concern and care for Shinichi is simply borne out of selfish reasons as it cannot survive without Shinichi.
And to aid it in its critical thinking processes, Migi often does a lot of research, especially into human nature, languages, philosophy, and history, mostly to understand more about humans. It even managed to learn Japanese, which is just one of the few attributes that set it apart from most of the other parasites.
Migi's utter lack of feelings and empathy, a trait shared by all the parasitic aliens, is one of his distinguishing features. Migi's activities are motivated by an obsessive desire to continue living, and he is ready to murder others and manipulate Shinichi to attain this goal. This emotionlessness makes Migi a dangerous and unpredictable opponent, but it hinders Shinichi's ability to trust and comprehend him as a companion.
Migi is not entirely devoid of sympathy and commitment to people he cares about, despite his icy and calculating attitude. He forms a great bond with Shinichi and ultimately becomes his defender, putting his own life in risk to rescue Shinichi's. Migi is also prepared to engage in dialogue and collaborate with members of other intelligent species, even extraterrestrial parasites.
Migi is a clever and multidimensional individual who challenges the moral and ethical boundaries of mankind. Despite being a powerful adversary, he has a deep and convoluted inner existence.
Migi has been known to have a few abilities, most of which are generic to all parasites in the anime, but also one major ability which makes it stand out from the larger majority of parasites. Some of these abilities include:
Shape shifting: Just like other parasites, Migi can extend parts of itself to lengths and assume different objects and shapes like blades, spears and even shields
Controlling its host’s body: Whenever Migi’s host, Shinichi is unconscious, Migi can take over all functions of its host’s body, move and fight in order to do whatever is necessary.
Telepathy: Just like other parasites, Migi can detect the presence of others like itself, and even deduce what kind of intent other parasites have, especially towards itself, and what they intend to do.
Regeneration: Migi can quickly heal and regenerate body parts, which is often an advantage to it in fights.
Super strength and speed: Migi has very quick reflexes, can move at great speeds and also exert force and strength that exceeds normal human capabilities.
Analytic skills: Unlike most of the other parasites, Migi can quickly get a grasp of situations faster than even humans, consider different responses, and even respond in due time. It’s ability to learn from past experiences, adapt and also analyze surpass average human capabilities.
It was also able to beat the hair-plucking method of parasite identification by the policemen, as it wasn’t located in Shinichi’s head. Hence, it was only detectable by other parasites.
Migi’s personality and thought process often helps the viewer see and question some actions of human beings. It questions some doctrines, history, and even norms which humans engage in, sometimes to the distaste of viewers, often leading one to ask the question: “why have we always done this?”