Light Yagami is a bored high school age genius who resents all things evil. His life undergoes a drastic change when he discovers the “Death Note”, a notebook that kills anyone whose name is written in it. After experimenting with the notebook, Light confirms its authenticity and is joined by an unexpected house guest – the notebook’s previous owner, a shinigami called Ryuk. Light tells Ryuk of his plan to exterminate all the people he considers immoral and unjust from the world, until only people whom he has deemed kind and honest remain. Once he finishes creating this utopia, he means to rule over it as the self proclaimed “God of the new world”.
Soon, the inexplicable deaths of criminals catch the attention of Interpol and the world-famous detective, “L“. L stages a fake public appearance and quickly deduces that the serial killer, publicly known as “Kira” (キラ?, derived from the Japanese pronunciation of the word “killer“), is located in the Kantō region and can kill people without direct contact. Light realizes that L will be his greatest hindrance, and begins a cat and mouse game with him, in the attempts of learning his identity and ending his life.
Light attempts to create an alibi by helping L and his task force track down Kira. His plan is impeded by a lovestruck second Kira, famous model Misa Amane, and her shinigami Rem. Misa identifies Light as the first Kira and tracks him to his home, where he agrees to be her boyfriend in exchange for her obedience and compliance. However, Misa’s infatuation with Light soon drives her to make several strategic errors and L starts to find the two increasingly more suspicious by the minute. Misa is soon arrested and interrogated and Light turns himself in voluntarily soon after. They both then relinquish ownership of their Death Notes, erasing their memories of everything they did involved with the book.