Mark Watches ‘Death Note’: Episode 14 – Friend

In the fourteenth episode of Death Note, Light tries to control Mira, while L makes a surprising admission. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Death Note. 

It really sucks when someone leads you on. I know that’s a simplistic way of looking at the events in “Friend,” but I think that in exploring this dynamic, we can understand how terrible of a person Light is. It’s not that Death Note is pretending otherwise. Light occupies a space between a protagonist and an antagonist, but he’s clearly terrible. However, he treats Misa so deplorably that I feel compelled to address it.

Now, this isn’t the first time I’ve noticed that he sees practically all other humans as pawns in his game of “justice.” Far from it! But when Misa throws herself at the mercy of Light, Light calculates. He plans. He considers her an irritating obstacle and nothing else. During the first half of this episode, Light appears to negotiate the conditions of his “relationship” with Misa, but he’s quietly trying to find a way out. He’s plotting the whole time! If you want a perfect demonstration of how he feels towards Misa, watch what happens when he makes a list of demands, only to reject the sole demand that Misa makes. Yes, there’s a problem with the way that Misa idolizes Light, and I think we should talk about that, too. But there’s an escalation in the early part of this episode that I found telling. Misa gives Light a hard no: she refuses to put up with Light dating other women. His response is to demand that she accept his need to see other women in order to keep suspicion off of him, and then, when she disagrees…

Well, he threatens to kill her.

Yes, Rem comes to Misa’s defense. Yes, it’s totally weird for someone to demand to be your boyfriend when they don’t reciprocate any of the feelings you have for them. But Light’s answer is the same one he’s had this entire time: kill them. Wipe them out. Shove them out of his way because they’re nothing more than an obstacle. If Rem hadn’t been there, I don’t doubt that Light would have gotten his way! Why? Because even if Misa’s Death Note powers are technically stronger, Light still has most of the power in this “relationship” anyway. He towers over Misa for most of the episode, establishing his dominance. When he realizes that Rem has Misa’s back, he creepily begins to figure out a way to take Misa out of the equation. Then there’s his flirting with Takada at school, and then there’s his DISGUSTING way of getting Rem to kill L. He promises that it’s about happiness, that Misa will love Light more if L is dead, and “the two of [them] will be happy together.”

He’s manipulating her. I suspect Rem knows that on some level, but we’ll have to see. Regardless, Light has no plans of ever making Misa happy, and he states it outright. He’ll get L killed, and then he’ll find a way to kill Misa. The end. He knows that he can rely on Misa’s obsessive infatuation in the meantime. Like I said, there should be some criticism reserved for Misa’s behavior, but I feel worse about the way that Light exploits it. He truly doesn’t care about anyone but himself.

And I think you can say the same of the burgeoning “friendship” between him and L. Like most of the recent episodes, there’s a delicate cat-and-mouse game playing out between them as they speak of the Kira case. Once more, L continues to stay in step with Light’s machinations, figuring out that Misa’s recent message is a sign that both Kiras have joined forces and the first Kira is desperate to hide this fact. And you know, it doesn’t help that Light starts talking “hypothetically” about being Kira and what he would and wouldn’t do. I wonder if that was L’s intention the whole time. Plus, given that Mogi is following Light (apparently without Light knowing???), won’t L know soon about Light spending time with Misa?

Anyway, the point I’m getting to is that Light’s rapport with L leads L to believe that Light is actually his friend. Despite the awkwardness and the suspicion, L still finds something of value in this man, and I worry that Light will do the same thing to him that he’s doing to Misa. Will he use the tennis match offer to get L out of the hotel room and into public so that Misa can see his real name? I believe that Light will exploit any avenue he can to get ahead, and this show doesn’t give a shit about me. It’s only a matter of time, right? At the very least, I don’t think Misa will last much longer because she’s too much of a risk to Light. IT’S GONNA HAPPEN, I’M CALLING IT.

The video for “Friend” can be downloaded here for $0.99.

Mark Links Stuff

– I will be at numerous conventions in 2016! Check the full list of events on my Tour Dates / Appearances page.
– My Master Schedule is updated for the near and distant future for most projects, so please check it often. My next Double Features for Mark Watches will be Death Note and Neon Genesis Evangelion. On Mark Reads, Diane Duane’s Young Wizards series will replace the Emelan books.
- Mark Does Stuff is on Facebook! I’ve got a community page up that I’m running. Guaranteed shenanigans!

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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