Friday, December 30, 2011

Book Review: Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata, Death Note (2003-2006)

Tsugumi Ohba, author of the Death Note story, admits that he is no good at keeping plots going. Therefore, every time he has an idea for a new plot point, he immediately sticks it in. The upside to this strategy is that it gives Death Note a real sense of unpredictability; the raggedly constructed narrative arc will frequently surprise you. The downside is that the plot eventually feels arbitrary, sort of like a season of 24. Heroes and villains come and go, and sometimes it does feel that the author has no purpose other than to keep the damn thing afloat till the end of his projected 108 chapters. Fortunately, most of the time the upside outweighs the downside. Favorite thing about the art: the hilarious reaction shots of the Japanese police force. Grade: B+

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