What Did We Learn from Death Note?

I just finished Death Note.  I don’t know how I felt about the ending; I think I may have been rooting for the bad guy this whole time.  But as I was watching it, I wondered, “What can we learn from Death Note?  Not to kill people using notebooks?  No, that’s not it…”

To me, the anime was all about the power of delusion.  And since I’ve been exposed to some pretty delusional real-life characters this week, it seemed a timely lesson.

We know from the very beginning that Light is delusional by thinking that he’s saving the world by killing off criminals.  As the story progresses, we get to see just how crazy this delusion makes him.  But to me, one of the most interesting characters was Misa.  I saw Misa and all the things she did for Light and how, despite the fact that he’s pretty lukewarm/cool toward her throughout the series, she continues to believe that he’s madly in love with her and his primary concern is her happiness.

Now, I have a friend who ended up breaking off things with his fiancee.  I know for a fact that he repeatedly tried to gently explain things to her but she was so delusional in the belief that they were meant to be together that nothing he said sunk in.  He eventually quit talking to her and now, months later, she’s threatening to sue him.  How much more delusional can you be?  Her level of delusion at this point is really bordering on psychotic.  We saw Light go crazy, laughing maniacally as he’s losing his mind in the warehouse and that is the mental picture I get of this jilted woman, thinking of suing a guy for dumping her.

In all fairness, I’ve indulged in a bit o’ delusion myself.  I’ve thought people were friends when they weren’t.  That people cared when they didn’t.  But I didn’t try to sue them over it.

Nor did I try to write their names on a scrap of the Death Note.

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2 thoughts on “What Did We Learn from Death Note?

  1. I told you the end wasn’t great! They didn’t even address the fact that once everyone realized Kira was gone the world would probably descend into chaos (or at least Japan).

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