Turn the crazy up to 11

Yeah, pretty much what they said:

I've seen a few episodes of Death Note. My sister loves this anime, for some bizarre reason. I, personally, find it disturbing in the extreme. The entire show basically revolves around the idea of an extremely intelligent teenager finding a book that allows him to kill anyone, anywhere, as long as he knows the name and face of his victim.

As you can imagine, that leads to some seriously effed-up behaviour, as the, er, "protagonist", Light Yagami, fancies himself to be the "god of the new world" and sets about moudling a world in his very twisted image.

Maybe it's because I used to be an atheist, or maybe it's because I know a little something about irrational teenagers- having essentially watched one growing up before my eyes. But it's probably fair to say that putting that kind of power into the hands of a clinical psychopath isn't exactly a brilliant idea.


  1. Death Note is an awesome Manga- if you ignore the ending.
    basically Light is a sociopath genius who decides to be Judge, Jury and Executioner.
    The main story of the novel is the cat and mouse game between Light and L as they match wits.
    the story is awesome and i absolutely consider light one of the best characters in any fiction- or did.
    the ending betrays the entire story as Light suddenly does a 180 and makes stupid mistakes and turns into a crazy villain. Its like the mangaka decided the good guys should win so after making a brilliant villain he uses convenient plotfoils and dumbs the character down and essentially makes fans wonder why they invested time on such a panty waist story.
    Like the nonsensical turn of Stannis in GOT in s5 or the obligatory good guys won stupid ending of Breaking Bad DN tries to wrap everything in a convenient end where the forces of justice prevail except it seems so ham fisted like the writer was too scared to let Light prevail which for all intents and purposes he should have.

    DN could have been a masterpiece now it just excites people who stumble upon it or are recommended it until they get to the Meh ending and dismiss it as drivel or a semi-great story.

    1. I actually think the premise for Death Note is quite brilliant. It is also deeply disturbing at that. The execution, at least within the anime, is what bothers me. I'm about 9 episodes in- after watching the series on and off for something like 3 years- and the more I see, the less I like it.

      The idea behind it is brilliant, I don't argue with that. What really bothers me is the fact that, in the anime, Light often kills for the pleasure of killing, or to suit his own selfish ends, yet styles himself as a "god of the new world". That is messed up.

  2. I got turned off at the first episode, tried two more, and couldn't stomach it.

    But then, I'm not a fan of GOT at all, and Breaking bad was tolerable as a shakesperean tragedy.

    Under more serious anime I've enjoyed (and actually, under "not serious" Gurren Lagann handles some very serious stuff hidden in its gonzo and over-the top story) are the Ghost In the Shell "Stand Alone Complex", Cowboy bebop, the first season of Darker Than Black (the second season sucks as they betrayed the character established in the first season to make him an abusive alcoholic), and Psycho-Pass, which delves heavily into questions of free will and freedom, and has a very interesting bad guy - basically a psychotic who can't be detected by a pre-crime style monitoring system - though can be pretty damn disturbing.

    1. Since you liked Cowboy Bebop, did you ever watch Samurai Champloo? I believe the creative guys behind them are the same. I've gotten through about two-thirds of the episodes of the latter and I find it to be really quite good period-piece anime.

      Darker Than Black was quite good for the first season, as I recall. I agree, it got stupid in the second one- I think I pretty much stopped watching it a few episodes into S2.

      The best anime I've seen recently is probably Arpeggio of Blue Steel. Good fun, that- and some interesting questions posed within it as well. Plus the graphics are wicked cool.

  3. That's the whole point of the anime. At first you look at the power of the book and think "Cool, imagine how I could change the world with that book!" And the main character is a stand in for you. But then you see him gradually start to abuse it and push the edges out further and further and eventually he turns from a well meaning person to morally ambiguous and then you realize he is just plain evil. I don't think anyone who watches the show thinks him a role model.

    Spoiler Alert

    The demon who gave him the book kills him at the end when he is bored with him

    Spoiler End

    To me the entire story is a cautionary tale, and most people who watch it sympathize more with the character L, who is the detective trying to catch the killer.

    1. At first you look at the power of the book and think "Cool, imagine how I could change the world with that book!" And the main character is a stand in for you.

      That didn't happen in my case, actually. The moment it was revealed that the Death Note could kill anyone in any way that the owner could imagine, was when I basically said, "Okay, that's messed up". Subsequent events in various episodes have only confirmed that impression.

      Spoiler Alert

      Well, no need to watch the rest of it, then =)

  4. Well, there are *some* uses I can think of. Like so: http://9gag.com/gag/agNdjW6


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