Death Note is an animated television series adaptation of the 2003 Manga series Death Note. The series is directed by Tetsurō Araki and animated by Madhouse. The story focuses on the titular Death Note, which is a notebook wherein any name written inside of it is fated to die. Some rules must be followed to use the Death Note, such as the name written must be their real, birth name, and more.
Death Note is one of the most popular Manga and anime series of all time, full of seriously smart characters.
Death Note – Main characters and their inner consciousness
Of course, it’s hard to deny the fact that one of the biggest draws of Death Note is also its cast of well-realized characters, all of whom add their flavor to the mix to make for some truly engrossing viewing indeed. These character arcs play a huge role in their development for the series.
Mihael Keehl (a.k.a. Mello) is the second heir to L and hates those who are better than him. Mello is the cocky, ostentatious, and ignorant counterpart to Near and L, having come from the same orphanage program for gifted children.
He decides to hunt Kira with a different approach. Mello takes a criminal path by joining the mafia. By so doing, he meets Sidoh, a Shinigami. He obtains a Death Note, but he doesn’t opt to use it on Light. Mello is a lot like L in that he adores sweets. Except, in Mello’s case, he prefers a certain type, i.e., chocolate bars.
9. Teru Mikami
The most dangerous character in Death Note is the unhinged criminal prosecutor, Teru Mikami. Teru becomes the fourth Kira and worships Light as a god. He follows Light’s path, but he also mercilessly eliminates individuals he considers “lazy,” as well as rehabilitated criminals.
While Teru isn’t nearly as grating as Mello, Teru comes in very late in the show as the owner of the alternative Death Note. He doesn’t get to have as much of a presence as most of the other lead characters.
Teru is dangerous because he has no mercy or empathy yet wields the power of the Death Note. Add this to his unwavering commitment to Light’s cause, and you can see the true dangerous potential here. Teru even steals Misa’s Death Note to become the fourth Kira, which shows that he’d stop at absolutely nothing.
Nate River (a.k.a. Near) is the successor to L. He was raised in Wammy’s House and is the leader of the Special Provision for Kira, the organization that’s hunting down the Kiras. Near eventually discovers that Light is the original Kira.
Near is a dangerous character because his abilities are even more formidable than those of L before him. He was a greater danger to Light, eventually working together with his childhood rival Mello to bring him down.
Near is introverted and relatively plain as a super-genius. Like L, he has his quirks, strange fashion choices, and so on so forth. Both having intense obsessions with certain things. While L has an affinity for sweets, Near has a rather amusing interest in toys, which he uses to come up with strategies.
A Shinigami is one of the Death Note characters who gets caught up in Kira’s revolution. After trying to save her friend, Gelus, from committing a fateful mistake (he broke Shinigami law by intervening to save a human’s life), Rem decides to give the Death Note to Misa, the girl Gelus saves.
Rem has opposing views on humans where Ryuk finds them amusing; Rem finds them to be inferior beings worthy of contempt. The Shinigami is an interesting character with fun twists who ends up leaving the series in a positive light.
Nonetheless, Rem isn’t the deepest character, as they are defined by and obsessed with protecting Misa.
6. Misa Amane
A popular Japanese idol, who is known for her Gothic style of dress, hyperactive personality, and devotion to Light, falling in love with him after he kills her parents’ murderer. She can be over-dramatic, spoiled, and sensitive, though she isn’t without her perks.
Misa, a pop star, has priorities that lie more in her career and relationship with Light, something that she never fully receives despite her persistence. She suffers from the “I’m obsessed with Light and want to be with him forever” syndrome.
Misa can sometimes be annoying but can bounce back from things surprisingly quickly; perhaps it’s because she’s also very easily bored.
5. Touta Matsuda
It’s safe to say that Touta is the loudmouth of all Death Note characters. Touta is sweet and supportive, always showing care and respect towards what he comes across. He’s also a large supporter of Misa and is one of the few characters who doesn’t actively abuse, degrade, harass, or manipulate her.
Poor Touta doesn’t get much of a chance to shine until toward the end of the series. Still, he becomes an integral character, as his consideration, trust, and gullibility wore down by the stress of trying to find Kira.
4. Soichiro Yagami
The hard-working superintendent of Japan’s National Police Agency is also the caring patriarch of the Yagami family. He’s responsible, logical, intelligent, and an overall iconic anime father.
He doesn’t underestimate his children, or anyone, for that matter, and he’s doesn’t hesitate to profile anyone who comes along as a Kira suspect, even ultimately his son.
He’ll do what he needs to for the greater good, and he is willing to sacrifice himself for it. Soichiro starts as the calm and collected detective and eventually becomes a domineering, stoic character under all the heavy stress of the Kira case.
3. Light Yagami
Our favorite evil high school genius Light Yagami has to be one of the most dangerous characters in Death Note. Light starts as a bored high school student – who decides to essentially play God and eradicate crime from the world after obtaining a Death Note.
He manages to evade and deceive L moreover, Near alike, which attests to his potential and abilities.
He can easily manipulate others (most significantly Misa), and when you couple that with his ambition and the fact that he possesses the power of the Death Note, you’ve got a real powerhouse on your hands.
A highly secretive dude. The most fun, likable, and somehow relatable human character in the series. L is a super-genius who came from an orphanage for gifted children. His life, otherwise, is a mystery. His reveal as a team member is surprising to both the other characters and the viewer, while his appearance is bizarre.
He’s constantly barefoot, eating sugar, has dark circles under his eyes, furthermore, has the worst posture of all time. Nonetheless, his charm comes from his general moral ambiguity, confident intellect, and determination.
Our favorite Shinigami Ryuk is one of the series’ most dangerous characters too. Ryuk is the reason why there’s even an anime. He’s the Shinigami who “dropped” his Death Note into the human world because he was bored.
Once Light obtains the Death Note, Ryuk wastes no time and introduces himself to its new owner, providing certain details about the book, so Light would start using it. From there, Ryuk adopts the role of “innocent” bystander, refusing to help, offering limited tidbits of information only when it best serves him.
Oh, and Ryuk loves apples.