In Tokyo, an intelligent yet disaffected high-school student named Light Yagami finds the "Death Note", a mysterious black notebook which can kill anyone as long as the user knows both the target's name and face. After verifying that the notebook works and initially being terrified of its god-like abilities, Light begins to consider the possibilities of the Death Note's abilities and sets out to create a utopian world without crime, killing numerous high-profile Japanese criminals, before eventually targeting international criminals and felons around the world. Five days after discovering the notebook, Light is visited by Ryuk, a "Shinigami", beings inspired by the Japanese god of death and the Death Note's previous owner. Ryuk, who is invisible to anyone who has not touched the Death Note, reveals that he dropped the notebook into the human world out of boredom and is amused by Light's actions.
As numerous criminals and convicts around the world begin to die of inexplicable freak accidents and heart attacks, the global media begin to believe that a single mastermind is responsible for the mysterious murders and name him "Kira" (the Japanese transliteration of the word: "killer"), who is both feared and beloved by the public and law enforcement agencies. Hoping to apprehend Kira, Interpol requests the assistance of an enigmatic and highly esteemed international consulting detective, known as L, who has cracked numerous crime cases around the world, to assist them in the investigation. After deducing that Kira is based in Japan, L stages a TV broadcast in which he tricks Light into revealing that he is in the Kanto region of Japan by manipulating him to kill a decoy. Furious, Light vows to kill L, whom he views as obstructing his plans. L quickly deduces that Kira has inside knowledge of the Japanese police's investigation, which is led by Light's father, Soichiro Yagami. Under the suspicion that "Kira" could have familial connections with the members of the "Kira" investigation, L assigns a team of FBI agents to monitor the families of those connected with the investigation, but Light outmaneuvers and kills them all. Nonetheless, L picks up enough hints to designate Light as the prime suspect. Around this time, Light graduates from high school to college. L recruits Light into the Kira Task Force, with both trying to get the other to reveal crucial information.
The Death Note manga series was first serialized in the Japanese manga magazine Weekly Shnen Jump published by Shueisha on December 1, 2003.The series has since ended in Japan with a total of 108 chapters. Later, the individual chapters were collected into twelve separate tankbon. In April 2005, Death Note was licensed for publication in North America by Viz Media, and the first English language volume was released on October 10, 2005. In February 2008, a one-shot special was released. Set two years after the manga's epilogue, it sees the introduction of a new Kira and the reactions of the main characters in response to the copycat's appearance. Several Death Note yonkoma (four-panel comics) appeared in Akamaru Jump. The yonkoma were written to be humorous. The Akamaru Jump issues that printed the comics include 2004 Spring, 2004 Summer, 2005 Winter, and 2005 Spring. In addition Weekly Shnen Jump Gag Special 2005 included some Death Note yonkoma in a Jump Heroes Super 4-Panel Competition.
About the show:
Death note is a Japanese manga series written by Tsugumi Ohba and illustrated by Takeshi Obata. The story follows Light Yagami, a teen genius who stumbles across a mysterious otherworldly notebook: the "Death Note", which belonged to the Shinigami Ryuk and grants the user the supernatural ability to kill anyone whose name is written in its pages. The series centers around Light's subsequent attempts to use the Death Note to carry out a worldwide massacre of individuals whom he deems morally unworthy of life to change the world into a utopian society without crime, using the alias of a god-like vigilante named "Kira" and the subsequent efforts of an elite task-force of law enforcement officers, consisting of members of the Japanese police force, led by L, an enigmatic international detective whose past is shrouded in mystery, to apprehend him and end his reign of terror.