Death Note

Death Note
Voice Director: Karl Willems

US Premiere: Oct 21, 2007
US Conclusion: 2008
US Home Media: Nov 20, 2007
Japan Premiere: Oct 03, 2006
Japan Conclusion: Jun 26, 2007

Seasons: 1
Episodes: 37

Animation Studio: Madhouse

Popularity: 30th All Time, 122nd This Week

Franchise: Death Note
Characters on BTVA: 50
Death Note Death Note Cast
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Main Cast

Recurring Roles

Guest Stars


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8000 Saiyans
said at 2:10 PM on Mon Dec 4 2017
 3 Shout Outs!
Such a great show. Both the English and Japanese casts were terrific.
said at 8:46 PM on Mon Oct 30 2017
 4 Shout Outs!
10 years ago is when this brilliant show and it dub premiered and it still holds up and it just as good this will forever be a classic
said at 8:47 PM on Fri Oct 27 2017
 1 Shout Out!
Top tier show with top tier acting for both English and Japanese. There's nothing more to say.
said at 1:46 PM on Sun Aug 27 2017
 7 Shout Outs!
Oh man, it has been almost 11 years since this classic anime first premiered, whilst close to 14 ever since the original manga said show was adapted from began. Recently I finally managed to sit down and watch Death Note in its entirety several years after seeing bits and pieces of the dub when Adult Swim was airing it. Of course, back then a whole lot of the context behind what was transpiring was kinda tough to comprehend.

Now that I've finished seeing the anime front to back, is the show still worth the hype it's racked up? Ummmmmm... More or less, yeah. Directed by Tetsuro Araki over at Madhouse, DN is certainly an enjoyable beast; a highly cynical one at that, yet still engrossing. The show's harsh (albeit real) subject matter is handled very well, vocal performances in both English and Japanese are solid, and my god the soundtrack composed by Hideki Taniuchi/Yoshihisa Hirano - the latter of whom would later go on to score the Hunter x Hunter remake - is phenomenal. Also, what good would talking about the OST be without mentioning the two opening and ending themes? Nightmare's "The World" and "Alumina" need no introduction, although Maximum the Hormone's "What's Up People?!" and "Zetsubou Billy" are great tracks also.

On top of that, the characterization is on point... erm, mostly. For somebody who was designed intentionally to be unattractive, L is not only not half-bad on the eyes, he's a genuinely lovable personage who has an equally likable dynamic with Light Yagami. Teru Mikami's robust sense of justice and his backstory altogether were pretty nice. However, notice that I said a lot of characters are basically on point and not *everyone*. I've got mixed feelings towards Misa to say the least, plus Near and Mello almost ruined the second season for me. At the risk of spoilers, I'm not going in depth as to why I don't care for these two (more so 'N').

Generally speaking, if you haven't seen all 37 episodes of Death Note, go check the series out. The pessimistic edge might make things difficult for some coupled with the second season's relatively tedious writing, but personally DN's positives overwhelm any issues I have with it. Feeling a strong 8 to a light 9.

said at 11:32 AM on Sun Aug 27 2017
 2 Shout Outs!
So I see the page has become popular again due to the (horrible) Netflix adaption. But regardless, the original was fantastic. It's a classic tale of power and corruption and the dub was perfect (BTW does anyone now how the voice cast feels about the Netflix version? Because I'm super curious).
said at 12:06 PM on Sun Aug 27 2017
@Soul-dragon IIRC Brian Drummond did like the casting of William Dafoe as Ryuk, but I'm not sure how he felt about the eventual adaptation however (haven't seen it yet myself)
said at 12:07 PM on Sun Aug 27 2017
@HylianBelmont They Americanized it. And made Light an underdog. Also they cut out the potato chip scene.
said at 1:28 PM on Sun Aug 27 2017
@Soul-dragon no not the chip scene
Shaun Ince
said at 1:32 PM on Sun Aug 27 2017
@Soul-dragon Personally, I'm waiting for a possible voice compare that can be made for Ryuk.
said at 1:51 PM on Sun Aug 27 2017
@Abdullab Yes. They had one job, and they messed it up! Also Misa is smart and actually betrays Light.
said at 1:52 PM on Sun Aug 27 2017
@Shaun Ince Yeah, it should be interesting. I don't mind recording some of the lines said by either Movie Ryuk or Anime Ryuk. Oddly enough, however Ryuk was pretty well animated.
said at 9:56 AM on Wed Aug 30 2017
@Soul-dragon "They made Light an underdog" wasn't he technically one in the original show to begin with?

"Also cut out the potato chip scene" Eh, that line was only a meme because of overacting in the English version anyway. It's one of the reasons why I've started to care less about Brad Swalie's Light over the years in general, really.
Shaun Ince
said at 10:10 AM on Wed Aug 30 2017
@HylianBelmont Yeah, he hammed it up way too much especially in some of the later episodes. Mamoru Miyano actually did a much better job as Light & his downward spiral into insanity comes off more natural. With Brad Swaile, the insanity comes across as forced. Plus Miyano managed to nail the more subtle & lighter moments better.

I like the dub for this show, and I feel Brian Drummond is much better as Ryuk compared to his Japanese voice actor. But in the case of Light, not so much. I prefer Mamoru Miyano.
NCZ (Admin)
said at 12:54 PM on Wed Aug 30 2017

Well in the original he was a pretty top-class student and popular among his peers. The whole point was that he had it all and that still wasn't enough for him.
said at 1:29 PM on Wed Aug 30 2017
@Shaun Ince Yep, though on the other hand. I think his voice for Rock's character is perfect however.
said at 1:34 PM on Wed Aug 30 2017
@NCZ Ah, now I get it. I was thinking about the whole "having arguably the greatest detective in the world against him" thing. But yeah I did notice that aspect of his character in the original as well though.
NCZ (Admin)
said at 4:38 PM on Wed Aug 30 2017

Ooh right. See I interpreted that as kind of a battle-of-wits type thing between two people at the top of their game.
said at 11:12 AM on Thu Aug 31 2017
@NCZ Same. Yet they made Light is an idiot, and L a crybaby which ruined it a bit (and by a bit a mean a lot). I just hope that the live action Cowboy Bepop won't be like it (Wendee Lee did say they she didn't know what to think about the idea of it). The only reason I'm not terrified for the live action One Piece TV show is because the creator is on board.
Shaun Ince
said at 1:44 PM on Fri Sep 1 2017
@Soul-dragon Well I'll give it this. If lots of people are unsatisfied by the live action movie on Netflix, there is always the original to check out.
said at 6:09 AM on Sun Mar 26 2017
 6 Shout Outs!
I'll take a potato chip... AND EAT IT!
said at 5:26 PM on Sun Oct 2 2016
 8 Shout Outs!
Happy 10 year anniversary Death Note ^^
said at 4:29 PM on Tue Sep 20 2016
 3 Shout Outs!
Y' great as I imagine the Japanese version of the show is...I can't help but be annoyed at "dubs reuse VA's", when Hideo Ishikawa did *two* notable characters here (as opposed to "random civillian")

You'd think that, if they got these A-listers, they'd have the budget for all individual actors per character.
said at 2:52 PM on Fri Jul 29 2016
 4 Shout Outs!
This is one of my favorite Anime of all time great story, Intriguing Characters, and great Dub cast by Director Karl Willems
said at 9:51 AM on Mon Apr 4 2016
 4 Shout Outs!
How would have thought that two of the voice actresses (Wesluck and St.Germain) would have gone on to do roles in MLP.
said at 1:39 PM on Mon Apr 4 2016
@argentlupus Not that unusual; actors in Vancouver's talent pool happen to do a lot of shows together since they're pretty tightly-knit.
Clare Gundersen
said at 5:43 PM on Tue May 16 2017
@argentlupus Don't forget Shannon Chan-Kent! (Misa Amane & Silver Spoon)
said at 1:05 PM on Sat Jul 4 2015
 19 Shout Outs!
Without a doubt the best dub Ocean has ever done.

I can't think of one off sounding performance, everyone played their parts perfectly. Kudos Karl Willems, You Voice Directing Genius!
Shaun Ince
said at 7:48 PM on Sat Mar 25 2017
@Autovolt This & Black Lagoon are Ocean's best dubs, period.
said at 8:04 PM on Tue Mar 17 2015
 3 Shout Outs!
Armonia Justin Beyondormason
(two spaces later)

I love anime.
said at 11:44 PM on Mon Aug 18 2014
 4 Shout Outs!
Incredible series. I don't know why I put off watching it for so long. I'm glad I finally got around to it. Extremely smart and a lot of unexpected twists.
Heartfilia Mage 721
said at 7:55 PM on Tue Nov 12 2013
 8 Shout Outs!
I was interested in this show but when I watched the video I'LL TAKE A POTATO CHIP AND EAT IT! It summed up the series for me. (Still would like to watch this)
said at 1:44 AM on Wed Jul 25 2012
 10 Shout Outs!
This had such a strong and twisted plot. At first, you think it's going to be some sick horror anime, but then it pulls the rug from underneath you and turns out to be more like a detective show than a horror one. I remember I couldn't wait for Saturday to come so I could watch the next all-new episode, watching L get one step closer to catching Light as Kira
said at 1:33 AM on Thu Jun 28 2012
 7 Shout Outs!
I think I have been on this page for about three hours, playing the theme song over and over again...
Faved by 337 BTVA Members
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Fave Character
Who's your favorite character?
L / Ryuzaki / L Lawliet
57.3% (94 votes)
Light Yagami / Kira
18.3% (30 votes)
6.7% (11 votes)
Mello / Mihael Keehl
3.7% (6 votes)
Near / N / Nate River
3.7% (6 votes)
Matt / Mail Jeevas
3.0% (5 votes)
Touta Matsuda
1.8% (3 votes)
Misa Amane / Misa-Misa
1.8% (3 votes)
Stephen Gevanni / Stephen Loud
1.2% (2 votes)
Sayu Yagami (Younger)
0.6% (1 vote)
Soichiro Yagami
0.6% (1 vote)
Teru Mikami
0.6% (1 vote)
0.6% (1 vote)
164 Total Votes

Listen to all the actors who have voiced the following Death Note characters.