In This New Death Note Clip, Ryuk the Death God Begins Making a Murderer

Photo: Netflix
Photo: Netflix

Whether it’s the manga, the anime, or this new, American-made live-action movie, Death Note has always been about a young man with a god complex who goes uses a magic book to go on a murder spree with global ramifications. But in this newest clip for Netflix’s upcoming adaptation, we’re taken to the very beginning—the fateful moment where the death god Ryuk (Willem Dafoe) first meets Light (Nat Wolff) and explains to him how he can use the Death Note to punish the wicked.

While Light goes on to become Death Note’s truest villain, Ryuk is fascinating here. Beyond Dafoe’s well-known talent for playing incredibly creepy, fantastic villains, you can see that, at least on some level, Ryuk isn’t simply acting as the impartial arbiter of mortality that he’s supposed to be—he wants Light to use the Death Note. His reasons as to why aren’t readily apparent, but it’s clear that Ryuk gets more than a little bit of a kick out of seeing humans enacting their revenge on one another in general—and corrupting Light on particular.


Death Note premieres August 25 on Netflix.

io9 Culture Critic and Staff Writer. Cyclops was right.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter



They should’ve st least given Light and L different names and simply set it in the world of DN. Also have a different Shinigami, cause these characters are the opposite of what they should be.

This is the same generic “loser/loner” tries to get back at the world BS. The the trailer has Mia suggest to Light they should change the world, and L has a press conference in a public place...... -_-