The Yotsuba Group consists of eight executive members of the Yotsuba Corporation in the Death Note series. The group is formed by Kyosuke Higuchi after he begins acting as the new Kira. They meet weekly to discuss the killing of key individuals from competing companies to maintain dominance in the business industry.
Executives of YotsubaEdit
The eight members of the group that conducts the "Meetings of Death":
Kyosuke Higuchi (火口 卿介, Higuchi Kyōsuke)
- Death Note 13: How to Read describes Higuchi, the head of Technology Development, as a "greedy," "forceful," and "selfish" individual who uses the Death Note to attain a higher status that was out of his reach.
Shingo Mido (三堂 芯吾, Midō Shingo)
- Mido, the Vice President of Corporate Strategy and the Director of Financial Planning, feels reservations regarding the Yotsuba Kira and ponders leaving the other board members. Mido "seems" to have a "sense of appreciation" for Yotsuba.
Reiji Namikawa (奈南川 零司, Namikawa Reiji)
- Namikawa is the Vice President of Sales. He initially encourages the Yotsuba Kira. After receiving a telephone call from Light he ceases participation and observes the scenario. Death Note 13: How to Read describes him as the "most talented" of the board members who has the potential to "make it to the top" without Kira. He has a talent in shogi at the professional 4-dan level. How to Read states that he detests useless subordinates.
Eiichi Takahashi (鷹橋 鋭一, Takahashi Eiichi)
- Takahashi is the Vice President of Yotsuba Material Planning Division and Yotsuba Homes. How to Read states that he "never had what it takes to be a true leader" and that he was selected to attend the meetings to "make Higuchi look good." The book adds that other members view Takahashi as "foolish" because he does not "seem to put much thought into his comments."
Suguru Shimura (紙村 英, Shimura Suguru)
- Shimura is the Head of Personnel. How to Read describes him as "paranoid" and one who always "keeps a close eye" on others. Shimura's ability to pay attention to small details allowed him to join the meetings; he noticed subtle changes in "poker-faced" Namikawa's face. How to Read states that he does not like his predicament.
Masahiko Kida (樹多 正彦, Kida Masahiko)
- The Vice President of Rights and Planning, Kida controls the finances of the committee and contacts "Eraldo Coil." How to Read describes him as "calm and collected." However, he is not able to "deal with surprises," leading him to panic when "Eraldo Coil," Yotsuba's hired private investigator and an alias of L's, asks for more money.
Takeshi Ooi (尾々井 剛, Ooi Takeshi)
- Ooi is the Vice President of VT Enterprises. He is the eldest and "most influential" member and he "appears" to control the conferences. He individually contacts the members of the committee. How to Read states that Ooi is "seemingly" a "tough guy who doesn't sweat the details."
Arayoshi Hatori (葉鳥 新義, Hatori Arayoshi)
- The Vice President of Marketing, Hatori is the illegitimate son of the company president and uses this fact to benefit himself. How to Read states that he "appears to be something of a lightweight" and that he cannot handle the pressures of the meetings. After Hatori makes a "careless outburst" the Yotsuba Kira kills him.
Kyosuke Higuchi, the third "Kira," takes the Death Note given to him by Rem. During L's probe on the group, Higuchi kills Hatori after Hatori produced a "careless outburst." Rem aids in the capture of Higuchi by revealing his identity to Misa Amane. Misa uses her status as the second Kira to get him to admit to being Kira on tape. Higuchi is captured in an elaborate setup concocted by Light and L, and once Light touches the Death Note, thereby regaining his memories of being the real Kira, he uses a Death Note scrap to kill Higuchi. After L's death, Light writes the names of the remaining six members of the Yotsuba Group, killing them by way of heart attacks. Rumors of Kira's responsibility for the deaths causes Yotsuba's stock prices to drop sharply. In the director's cut of Death Note, Mido dies by falling from a tall building, Shimura dies by being run over by a train, and Namikawa dies in a car accident.
Tom S. Pepirium, an editor of IGN website, describes Higuchi in a review of the Death Note episode "Performance" as having "more in common with Cobra Commander than anyone from Death Note, announcing his nefarious plans to no one in particular. Even throwing in a few evil chuckles for good measure."
Conception and development of the Yotsuba GroupEdit
Ohba created the characters as "stock villains intended to make the main characters look good." Ohba said that he had always planned for Light to regain his status as Kira, so the specifics of a certain member of the Yotsuba group being Kira would not matter to the plot; Ohba wanted the readers to guess which of the characters was Kira. After seeing Obata's designs, Ohba selected Higuchi as Kira. Ohba said that he wanted for Mido to appear to be "the most suspicious" of the Yotsuba group. Ohba added that he created the profiles of the characters while eating dinner with the editor. He believes that he did not "put much thought" into the character profiles. He said that he included a lot of information to serve as red herrings.
Obata said that he felt excited when he learned that he had to draw eight Kira characters. Obata said that he created the characters "in the mold of The Seven Samurai" by giving each Yotsuba board member his own individual appearance. Obata said that he remembers making Mido and Namikawa look attractive to make the readers believe that they may be Kira.
Ohba selected Higuchi to be Kira for several reasons. He used Mido as a "red herring" character and therefore he could not establish Mido as Kira. Takahashi, labeled "even more foolish than Higuchi" by other characters, is also a red herring. Once Namikawa received Light's telephone call he could not be Kira. Ohba said that Shimura "doesn't have the right personality." He explained that one would have to "be foolish" to use the Death Note and therefore the Yotsuba Kira would have to be "foolish" and "in Yotsuba's case, a very greedy person." Ohba stated that he used the process of elimination to select Higuchi to be Kira.
In other mediaEdit
In the 2015 television drama, the Yotsuba group is formally called the Yotsuba Japan Group (ヨツバジャパングループ) and they are very similar to canon. They are introduced in episode 6. The group has a meeting two or three times each week.
Instead of Light, it's Near who figures out that Kira is associated with Yotsuba. They send an email to the Task Force from L's email so the Task Force begins to investigate, while L is still holding Light and Misa in confinement.
In the first meeting shown, the group decides to kill Tategawa Kenji who is Yotsuba Japan Group's executive director of board of directors. Kenji's death is suggested by Oi, and the others agree. Kyosuke asks the manner of death. Hatori suggests his death be an accident, and Renji agrees.
While looking into ways to investigate Yotsuba, L brings up a webpage where Yotsuba is holding an audition for a corporate campaign girl, and he already plans to use Misa's audition to infiltrate the company. Misa goes in for an audition with Matsuda posing as her manager and Light posing as her hair and makeup specialist. During the audition, Light sneaks off in disguise of a janitor to bug Yotsuba's boardroom.
To deal with L, the Yotsuba group has hired the detective known as Babel, who is actually Near. During Misa's audition, Babel asks Misa some interview questions through a computer.
During the first bugged meeting, the group discusses what Misa told them during the audition and whether or not to kill her. They decide to leave it up to Kira, since she might be the second Kira. They then suggest killing Brady K Frederick, the president of MGY Inc which is a competing company moving into the Japanese marketplace. Babel then suggests delaying the death for a month because the police are watching them. After the meeting, L informs the Task Force that Babel is Near.
L comes up with another plan to lure out Kira. Similar to canon, they set up a live television interview about someone revealing the identity of Kira. Matsuda plays the part, and a screen falls during the broadcast. Higuchi exposes himself as Kira while trying to find Matsuda's name to kill him. Following Babel's instruction, Namikawa calls Oi and suggests that they have Kira kill him. Oi begins alerting the others, starting with Higuchi. Higuchi calls Misa trying to get Matsuda's real name, confirming for the Task Force that Higuchi is Kira. Higuchi then drives to Brilliant Entertainment's headquarters to get the Matsuda's real name from their records. When he writes down the name in the records and it doesn't work, Higuchi trades for the shinigami eyes and drives to the station. When he is pulled over by a police officer, he kills him, confirming his ability to kill for L and also that he has the power of the second Kira.
When Higuchi gets to the station, he's caught by police who have their faces covered. He's apprehended and, just as in canon, Light kills him while holding the notebook.
As in the original, the other seven members of the Yotsuba group are not pursued after Higuchi's death.