Yeah, I know. I’m late to the party and all the cool anime/manga super fans beat me to it. Do I care? Not really. Initially, I was hesitant because the first half of the series has a sorta cheesy j-pop rock style opening theme song (which I would find out is later replaced by a cool thrash/death metal song by Japanese shredders Maximum the Hormone). I’m so glad I made it past the first opening and actually watched the show!
For everybody else out there who let this gem slip under their radar, here’s the premise:
Overachieving honor student, Light Yagami, finds a notebook in the school yard, only to discover that if he writes a person’s name in it, they will die. This causes him to question his moral integrity. After all, if you were a jaded, overachieving, well-to-do suburban kid suddenly granted power over the life and death of everyone around you, how would YOU use it? Would you use it?
A twisted, 37-episode supernatural noir story of how power can corrupt, Death Note hits heavy from the beginning and never lets up. Part Dexter, part detective story, and all bad ass, this dark tale kept me hungry for the next fix like a crackhead with a pocket full of twenty dollar bills.
I could go on for hours on the plot twists and clever subtext, but I’ll spare you. Just check out Death Note…
I should add that there’s also a series of live-action Japanese movies that give you the short version of the story. The general consensus is that the first two are good, but the third one sucked, and was a poor attempt at making a sequel. And word on the street is that Hollywood is working on an American live-action movie, so you might want to get in on this before the crappy U.S. remake of the remake comes out, and it’s not “cool and underground” anymore.