08 March 2008

Shinigami Have Feelings Too

Death Note Volume 1
Tsugumi Ohba

This is the first time I've really read Death Note, after hearing about it for ages and ages. For the most part, I have to say, I'm impressed. It's an interesting story, the art is pretty, and it contains characters who, even if I don't like them, are still fascinating. I'll probably talk about a few of said characters, but the first I'd like to look at is Ryuk, the shinigami.

First off, I think he's really quite cool. I don't know if I trust him, but he's at least interesting. His character design is creepy and original, and I like people who are amused by everything.

Anyway, I'm curious about why he keeps talking to Light. I know he has to hang around until Light dies, and that he's amused by the things Light does. But besides the entertainment value, Light's not a particularly enjoyable guy to be around, especially not acting how he does in private. He's arrogant and manipulative and generally unpleased. Does Ryuk enjoy this sort of thing, or what?

Also, Light has, on at least one occasion, used Ryuk to further his own ends--there may be more, but I've only read volume one. Remember the drug addict on the bus? Light's instructions for the death included the man seeing a "horrifying phantom," which with Light's help ended up being Ryuk. I know Ryuk has a totally different perspective on life than any human, but I'm still curious as to whether that bothered him. He does spend a great deal of time musing on Light's cleverness.

I'd like to read more of this manga. It's weird and interesting, and I want to see how the characters develop, particularly Ryuk.

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