The Shocking Death of L

30-DAY ANIME CHALLENGE
< Day 23 | Day 25 >
Day 24:  Moment That Shocked You The Most in An Anime

I love twists and turns in plots.  I like it when I guess them correctly, but I especially LOVE it when the plot develops in a completely unexpected way, especially if it’s way better than my own prediction.  Perhaps the moment that shocked me the most in an anime is L’s death from one of my favourite series Death Note by mangaka duo Ōba Tsugumi-sensei (大場 つぐみ) and Obata Takeshi-sensei (小畑 健).

l-death note

L is my #1 favourite character in Death Note.  I think that he’s the hero of justice in the series, albeit a shady one at that with more than a bucketful of eccentricity.  Nonetheless, nobody could deny that he’s a genius with principles in the right place.

So imagine my shock (I know I’m not the only one) when he actually DIES.

This moment. . . . (tears all my hair off)
This moment. . . .
Oh no!

I was speechless when I first watched this scene.  Then I laughed nervously.  Surely, the series creators won’t just kill him off.  Surely, L planned this from the very beginning and he’d emerge again–alive and well–triumphant in the end.  I hung onto this sliver of hope.  As you may already know, I was wrong. (sniff, dabs eyes)

No! Don't close your eyes!!!
No! Don’t close your eyes!!!

I’ve never hated Light so much until this moment.  Even if he was a completely twisted evil lunatic, I couldn’t help but admire his superb intellect and almost unbeatable maneuvers.  There are many times that I even wanted his evil plans to succeed, just to see how L’s team responds.  Both L and Light are chess masters in this deadly battle.  I couldn’t help admiring both of them.  Then Light succeeds in killing L.

Although Light didn’t murder L directly, he’s still the mastermind as he used shinigami Rem’s weakness to make her do all the dirty work for him.  Rem cares deeply for Misa, and Light made Rem believe that L poses a threat to Misa’s life.  Rem falls for it, and ended up sacrificing her existence as a shinigami to kill L, believing that she’s saving Misa’s life.  What a nasty piece of work you are, Light! (grudgingly:  Although I admit that you’re a genius. . .but still. . .)

EVIL~
Pure EVIL~ Kono yarou!

Just look at his freaking evil face, as he holds the dying L in his arms.  But at least, L finally knows for certain that Light is indeed Kira.  L finally discovers the real Light before he dies.

But still I hung onto the hope that L’s not really dead.  Then his two successors, Near and Mello, take over the mission of capturing Kira.  My hopes are cruelly shattered.  I finally began to accept that L is REALLY dead.  It’s a really shocking moment that left me torn.  On one hand, I think that it’s a genius turn of events because it’s completely unexpected, emotional and dramatic.  On the other hand, I think that L’s death is equivalent to killing the hero of the story (although he’s not really the “hero”, if you know what I mean).

Nevertheless, I still think that Death Note is one of the most gripping stories out there.  It just shatters the boundaries between what you think is good and evil.  Now you know that L’s death is the moment that shocked me the most in an anime.  What’s yours?


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28 thoughts on “The Shocking Death of L”

  1. I was hoping that L might find out a way to protect himself . i mean something for which even if his name is written in the note he won’t die. But my whole interest in Death note just died after watching two more episodes after L’s death. I was so much shocked at his death. 😞😞
    For me L is the main character for Death note.
    Btw, Shinigami loves apple.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know, right? I didn’t see his death coming at all. I was totally caught unawares. I hoped that it was just a big joke that he died, so I was waiting for the series to reveal that he’s actually alive but unfortunately that wasn’t the case. After his death, my interest in the entire series decreased but I still love it. Indeed. Shinigami loves apples. 😉
      Anyway, thanks for dropping by. Cheers!

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    1. You’re right, of course. It’s not only Near and Mello that L has great influence on, but also Light himself. He became kind of paranoid in the end, making him more careless and ultimately leading to his own demise.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Wait…L dies?????

    I was shocked when that happened too, to the point that I couldn’t bring myself to like Mello & Near because they couldn’t hold a candle to the greatness that is L. Even though he died, which was tragic, he did trigger the end of Light’s rein as Kira. Light started off as someone who was a genius and constantly thinking five steps ahead, but once his greatest adversary died he had no real enemy and thus had no reason to watch himself. Which is why he got overly cocky and died like that. The old Light wouldn’t have fallen for such a simple trick, but the post-L Light could and did.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I… was actually spoiled of this event even before I watched the series, so it wasn’t as shocking to me as it was to you.

      And yes, I agree with mochirochi. After L died, I also couldn’t get myself to be interested in Near or Mello. And it wasn’t fun anymore (though it was still brilliant).

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      1. I’m not sure if you’re lucky or not for being spoiled about L’s death. I watched the series just after it was aired, so I didn’t really have anyone to spoil it for me. And I didn’t read the manga before I watched the series. I only read it after I completed the anime. So imagine my shock the first time I watched it. I didn’t really believe that he died, but alas, he did.

        Very true. I adored Near because he was so like L, but in the end, I don’t think anyone could compare to him.

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      2. Ahahha. Yeah, I don’t know if I was lucky or not. Hmmm, but I guess, it reduced the damage from extreme shock? (For this, I think I’m quite thankful–I would’ve been devastated otherwise) I was quite into L, actually. I really like his character design. 🙂

        Oh yeah, even though I liked L first, I also liked Light. I mean, he was just too smart (in a scary manner, though). But for his morals, I do think he had problems. Maybe being too smart for a person with polarized principles is not entirely good.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Hahaha! If being spoiled about his dead reduced the shock for you, then we can say that I received the full brunt of his death. Ah, I still remember the pain of that day.

        Me, too! I really liked Light, especially at the start. Even when he was being evil, I couldn’t help but admire his intellect. He was so smart. I agree. Well, knowledge is power, like they say.

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    2. Very true. But I think that’s one of the things the creators are trying to achieve–to make Light more careless, so that the series can have a “satisfying” conclusion. And to make this more believable and dramatic, they had to kill L. Even if I’m not very happy with his death, I still admit that it was a good move by the creators.

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    1. What a naughty sister you have! Hahaha. Very true. I got attached to L, too. But unlike you, I watched this show right after the airing date, so nobody could really spoil me about his death. And I haven’t read the manga yet during that time. I only read it after I watched the anime. So imagine my shock.

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  3. I hated it too, but narratively it had to happen. L wasn’t replaced by Mello & Near; he was removed to make way for them. While they didn’t exactly work together, they filled each others’ intellectual gaps, a luxury that L didn’t have (and was too bigheaded to reach out for). I think one of the underlying themes in this series is that you can’t achieve anything on your own, so their power duo better serves the narrative than L more or less battling Light on his own.

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    1. That’s true. That’s why I mentioned in my post that I was torn about L’s death. On one hand, I think it’s genius because it’s totally unexpected and dramatic; but on the other hand, it decreased the excitement level for me as a viewer of the show. And I know that many share the same opinion.

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      1. Oooh, yes. I know what you mean. It really does hurt. (sigh)
        But Death Note is still one of the best anime series I’ve ever encountered. Even if my favourite character in it died, I’ll still highly recommend it without hard feelings.

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