Reviewby Michelle Yu, Jul 29th 2008
Death Note V2
The net begins to tighten around Light when the enigmatic detective L brings in FBI agents to assist on the case. Light becomes rattled when he meets a woman who may have information that could lead to his arrest. But Light holds the ultimate trump card: the Death Note itself. Light needs to uncover her true identity and eliminate her before she goes to the task force. Then L raises the stakes by putting the Yagami household under surveillance. With L closing in on him, will Light crack under the pressure?
Following the cliffhanger ending in the first volume, Death Note Volume 2 contains the answers awaited by fans.
After the very public elimination of a criminal on live television, the presence of “Kira” has split the Japanese population into “for” and “against” the work of Kira. A seemingly large majority support Kira's ideals and even commend his extreme sense of justice, while the other half of the population deem it morally incorrect and even criminal.
This part of the series contains some much anticipated character developments on the main character Light and also the enigmatic L, Light's nemesis. The lines become more and more blurred as L has enlisted the help of the FBI in finding Kira. A number of agents were assigned to the Kira case and as Light's survival mechanism has been awakened by the end of Episode 4, Light protects himself and his alter ego in the only way he knows. Assuming you (the reader) have watched the first volume, the end to Light's situation is obvious. However, this is where much of his character development begins as he spirals into what he had set out to destroy.
It is difficult to think whether a viewer should be cheering for or against Light after this volume of the series. After a potentially costly mistake, Light's alter ego is almost revealed. It finally appears as though Kira is not infallible, and not as great a person as his supporters was lead to believe. Also, the healthy amount of character development thrown on L in this volume further twists the case of whether the viewer should be cheering Light, or L on. Neither is without his personality defects, yet both offer so much to the series as a whole.
The series is beginning to show a very evident push-and-pull kind of scenario that is constantly moving as the episodes roll on. Although an age-old structure, it is still entertaining to watch with the suspense and twists. This is a classic example of the Japanese business approach “take something already in existence, but do it better.” With the ever-spreading popularity of the series, Death Note is beginning to have an effect on viewers on a scale that has not been seen since 1938 when H.G. Wells' War of the Worlds was aired on the radio. Albeit a good effect, for the most part.
It should be said that after the very pro-Light Volume 1, Volume 2 evens the playing field. The controlling, but quirky L is revealed to be a fairly likable character. Peculiar as he may be, he feels like a breath of fresh air after much conspiring and killing. Also on a lighter note, a bit of humour is finally introduced to the series after Light's house is given the “Big Brother” treatment. The role of Kira becomes an increasingly expensive practice and would make the misers of the world cringe. But Light was never made to be the comedian, just the pretty boy criminal genius.
Overall : B+
Overall (dub) : B
Overall (sub) : B+
Story : B+
Animation : A
Art : B+
Music : B+
+ Good continuation and pace.
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