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Anime Review: Death Note

Death Note wallpaper

Death Note is often regarded as one of the best Anime shows ever made, and even 'the' best by many, and even those people who do not generally like Anime have greatly enjoyed Death Note.

It is easy to say it is one of the most hyped Anime shows of all time and even in 2015 it has one of the strongest fanbases and new people are attracted to it everyday.

It is based on the Manga of the same name which grew into a franchise, spawning the Anime series, three live-action movies, video games, as well as other content and merchandise.

The show consists of 37 episodes and only has one season, which means that it starts and ends in this story, there's nothing after it (although the movie expands the story a bit though without the Death Note premise, as it's ending does not follow source material).

Light Yagami Wallpaper Death Note Scene
The protagonist of the series, Light Yagami.

The show is mainly about a high school student who finds the 'Death Note', which is a notebook thrown into the human world by a bored 'Shinigami' (God of death) who wanted to see things escalate. The name of any person written in the notebook will eventually die of a heart attack, and the user can further write causes of death and eventually use different methods to kill the person. There is much more to it and the notebook comes with several rules, but those things are essentially revealed as you watch the show, so I will not state them here.

Eventually the high school student, Light Yagami, gets obsessed with the notebook and starts to believe he has become a God, making his purpose of life to 'cleanse' the world of all evil by killing every person even with the slightest crime done in his/her life.

His start is very smooth, but it is soon turned into a constant battle of wits when the police, the FBI and further organizations are involved as the 'punishment' he lays on criminals by ending their lives is worldwide, not limited to just Japan. However, they prove to be of no real challenge to him, until the world's best detective, 'L' comes into the picture.

L, Lawliet, Ryuzaki Death Note Wallpaper
Fan favourite main character of the series, 'L'.

With the same level(or a very close one) of intellect, L only takes a very short time to conclude that Light has no problem killing people in his way even if they are not evil and that he lives in Japan, and soon becomes the biggest problem and challenge of Light's life. More than half the show is Light vs L, then the show goes into the 'successor' arc, which I wont explain to avoid spoilers.

Light Yagami also gets a huge fan following who appreciate that he is cleansing the world to be a better place by killing criminals and as the show progresses it is revealed that his actions stopped wars and caused crime to be dropped down to a great rate. The fans dub him 'Kira', the name he officially accepts and is known throughout the whole show as, by people who do not know his true identity, and it is also kind of his alter ego.

The show does not fall into Anime stereotypes and is mostly serious and 'realistic' in terms of how the world works, minus all the fantasy content of course. The quality of the show is without a doubt one of the best out there and it is definitely one of the best Anime to watch. The show progresses fast at first, but has it's moments when it is rather slow and some episodes have little to add to the show, and could have simply been a part of another episode.

The show is absolutely great up to 26 episodes and maintains a great amount of suspense as to who would win the fight, and there is also a good deal of character development, as well new twists and turns throughout the whole show that keep you engaged into watching the show further.

Ryuk Shinigami wallpaper
Ryuk, the Shinigami.

After the first 26 episodes are over, the show basically enters into a 'new' arc, which I personally call the 'successors arc'. Unlike the first arc of the show, the second arc is not as interesting or well done, and the new characters introduced are not all that interesting, and one character is basically a clone of L with a habit of playing with 'toys' instead of eating sweets all the time, and it really makes you wonder "did we really need another L when we already have one?". The show kind of becomes slower from there and does not do that good of a job at keeping you engaged, but eventually it does pick up the pace near the end and while it could have been better, it is still a good watch and the ending is kind of satisfying eventually.

Overall, the show is a very good watch, but may feel a bit filler in certain episodes and make you think several things could have gone better, but regardless of all that, it is without a doubt, one of the best Anime out there.

Light Yagami's Father Death Note Wallpaper

Story: 7.5
Starts off on a high note and maintains it well throughout, charged with very interesting characters, keeping you intrigued with suspense, twists and turns until the very end, and it is without a doubt well written, although some aspects could have been better. But I am definitely not complaining given how satisfying an experience this was and I definitely enjoyed almost all of it very well. There are some things that felt unnecessary, and could have been better, but those aspects were easy to overlook and to continue enjoying the show.

Character Development: 6.5

While the character development of the show is decent and more than many other shows, it is still lacking and could've been much better, and the fact every character instantly become who they are instead of slowly taking time to turn that way is indeed a wasted opportunity. However, some characters have a fair backstory so it's okay, and some characters do develop over time, which is why it is considered existent in the show to begin with.

Generally, however, the show's characters are really interesting and fun to watch.

Art: 7.5

The art of the show can be considered a bit 'outdated' by some, but it suits the theme of the show perfectly and does not feel misdone even once. The characters are generally well drawn and have distinct looks and behavior, so there is no problem in the art department at all, and there are neat effects overall the show that look nice, and the show overall has a 'grim' look to it, which suits the theme of the show well.

Voice Acting and Music: 7.5

The voice acting of the show is decent. It is definitely not 'the best', but it's good, and I also found the English dub better than several other shows I have watched. There is a decent amount of emotion to the voice acting, and unlike some other shows, I did not feel it dropped at any point. There is one thing though, one of the Shinigamis, Rem, have a female voice in Japanese, yet the English dub gave the character a male voice, other than that there is not much of a difference between the two besides some dialogue, which eventually means the same thing in different words anyways.

The music of the show is decent, I liked both the opening themes of the show and the ending themes were decent as well. Though Metal is not everyone's cup of tea, I personally enjoy it so it was a plus for me. The general background music of the show is nothing 'special', but is decent enough that it adds a slight addition to the enjoyment factor of the show.

Death Note Wallpaper L Ryuzaki Light Yagami Kira

Overall Verdict: 7.8 - A Good Watch, Recommended For Anime Fans


Muhammad Junaid

Muhammad Junaid is the writer of Entertainment Ghost. He writes articles, reviews, previews and entertainment news about gaming, technology, the media and so on. You can follow him on Twitter @Mr_MJunaid and Facebook MJunaid

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Published On Entertainment Ghost At Thursday, September 17, 2015