The Instigator
Logical-Master
Pro (for)
Tied
7 Points
The Contender
spinnerclotho
Con (against)
Tied
7 Points

From a writers perspective, the ending to death note was poorly handled.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/14/2008 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 5,736 times Debate No: 5400
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (2)

 

Logical-Master

Pro

Before starting, I will clarify that arguing that bad is "opinion." Nevertheless, I have a means of dealing with such an argument, but the true intent of this debate will be long gone if that is what this debate ends up pulling towards.

Also note that this debate will contain massive spoilers for those who haven't read/seen Death Note, so don't read this debate if you don't wish to be spoiled.

Now, let us begin:

Contention #1:The main protagonists (Light Yagami) was out of character during the conclusion to the series:

1) I say this because he made some highly unintelligent mistakes:

a) Having Light attempt to write everyone's name on his spare death note paper out in the open was very much out of character for him. Rather than doing this, he could have found a means of writing the names covertly. He could have asked Near to let him write on the fake death note so that he could ascertain whether or not it was the real deal. At this point, he would have been able to covertly grab a piece of death note paper from his watch and write all the names he wanted to write.

b) Light didn't anticipate that Mikami would try to kill Takada with the Death Note. Light himself KNEW Mikami would do everything he would do as well as the fact that he was fanatical in his love of Kira, so how could he not figure out that Mikami would attempt to kill Takada?

c) Light didn't consider every possibility when it came to his "fake deathnote plan." We know this because he dictates that L could have gotten out of situation simply by checking. Regardless of how sure he knew Near's thought process, he should have developed a back up plan.

2) We must keep in mind that the story was centralized mostly around Light Yagami and his genius level intellect, thus, for their to be a change of pace in his personality without any character development is a negative effect on the story. This is why I claim that him making those 3 unintelligent mistakes negatively impacted the ending. Rather than immediately change Light's character, the author could have either devised a scenario where Light is actually outsmarted even with his intelligence at its peak. The film managed to do this quite well as rather than have Light make some bone head mistakes, it head "L" sacrifice himself in a way where it was impossible for Light to win.

And that's all I shall be providing for my side for now. Some of these points may need elaboration in the next round. Later. :D
spinnerclotho

Con

Hello. Before starting, I'd like to thank my opponent for initiating this debate. Following his guidelines, I will refute his claim that from a writer's perspective, the ending of Death Note was poorly handled.

Contention #1:The main protagonists (Light Yagami) was out of character during the conclusion to the series:

1) I say this because he made some highly unintelligent mistakes. a) Having Light attempt to write everyone's name on his spare death note paper out in the open was very much out of character for him.


There are several issues with this.

1. Light did not attempt to write everyone's name down.
Instead, Light attempted to write down only Near's name (Nate River) and coerce the others into letting him free through manipulation. This accredits Light with being in character as throughout the series he is confident in his manipulation skills .

2. Light understood the gravity of the situation.
Having been caught with undeniable evidence, Light realized that there was no more time for planning and acted accordingly. Throughout the series, Light always responded to a situation with a reaction suitable to the circumstances in which it lay. If something was only a minor annoyance, such as Takada's encounter with Misa Amane, he treated it as such and worked around it in a minor way. When something major occurred, he altered all plans he had at that point in order to deal with it. For example, when he went to the police station to give his father fresh clothes and encountered Naomi Misora, he dropped all previous plans of returning home and immediately dealt with the new problem, continuing until he had effectively neutralized the problem.

In a situation where there was no way to write down Near's name subtly, Light made the best choice available to him at the time, disregarding all further plans and immediately seizing upon a new one that would best suit him. Such is in character for him to do.

Which leads to...

3. Rather than doing this, he could have found a means of writing the names covertly. He could have asked Near to let him write on the fake death note so that he could ascertain whether or not it was the real deal. At this point, he would have been able to covertly grab a piece of death note paper from his watch and write all the names he wanted to write.

Unfortunately for my opponent, this would not have come even remotely close to being successful.

The fake death note at this point was already proven to not be "the real deal," as when Mikami Teru wrote in it mere minutes prior, everyone whose name he wrote in the death note failed to die after 40 seconds. Light would have no basis on which to make such a request and legitimately expect it to be granted.

In addition, the only way to determine if the fake death note was real would be to write someone's name in it and see if they died. Near would never have allowed such a thing. As stated in the manga, Near refused to test the notebooks. He would have refused to let Light do so as well.

Finally, at this point, Light had already admitted to being Kira. At this point, any requests he made would be refused on largely on principle, as they would be seen as a desperate attempt to escape his situation, which they would, in fact, be.

b) Light didn't anticipate that Mikami would try to kill Takada with the Death Note. Light himself KNEW Mikami would do everything he would do as well as the fact that he was fanatical in his love of Kira, so how could he not figure out that Mikami would attempt to kill Takada?

Light knew that Mikami was fanatical in his love of Kira, true, but there were two aspects to this devotion that Light even mentions. Mikami's loyalty lay in also trusting his God, Kira, as well as trying to act in Kira's interests. Up until Takada's kidnapping, Mikami never deviated from following Kira's instructions, showing that his loyalty was first to obey Kira's commands, and second, to do as he felt was right to promote Kira's world.

For example, in chapter 90, Mikami asks himself, "God, what are you...?" portraying that he is unsure. However, he immediately counters himself with "No... there is no need for me to question. God is absolute. My job is to do as God wishes." Clearly, Mikami obeys Kira first without hesitation. There are other examples of this as well, such as when Mikami first asks Kira for permission to choose a new spokesperson after the death of Demigawa on Kira's Kingdom, and when he first contacts Kira, saying "From now on, it'll be as you wish." With such unflinching dedication to obeying his God's commands, Light had no reason to believe that Mikami would second-guess his God and disobey his instructions.

c) Light didn't consider every possibility when it came to his "fake deathnote plan." We know this because he dictates that L could have gotten out of situation simply by checking. Regardless of how sure he knew Near's thought process, he should have developed a back up plan.

Agreed. However, it is not in character for Light to develop back-up plans, which is the current contention. When enacting his huge plan to kill L, Light did not have a back-up plan. Rem could have deviated from Light's perceived thought process for her and tried to kill him as well as L, and Light would not have had a back-up plan. When Light initiated an attack on Mello's hideout and Shidou ambushed the opposing forces, Light did not have a back-up plan. Light does not make back-up plans, and thus, it is in character for him to not make one regarding his fake death note plan.

2) We must keep in mind that the story was centralized mostly around Light Yagami and his genius level intellect, thus, for their to be a change of pace in his personality without any character development is a negative effect on the story. This is why I claim that him making those 3 unintelligent mistakes negatively impacted the ending. Rather than immediately change Light's character, the author could have either devised a scenario where Light is actually outsmarted even with his intelligence at its peak. The film managed to do this quite well as rather than have Light make some bone head mistakes, it head "L" sacrifice himself in a way where it was impossible for Light to win.

As previously asserted and proven, Light did not, in fact, change his personality. There was only a change of situation and circumstances, to which Light responded as was typical of him. Therefore, this is inconsequential, as Light was outsmarted with his intelligence at his peak by Near.

In conclusion, I have shown that despite the opposition assertions, Light Yagami was, in fact, in character throughout the duration of the series, thereby negating his contention that the ending of Death Note is an example of poor writing. For this reason, you should vote CON. Should he provide additional contentions in the next round, I shall be happy to refute them as well. :D

Thank you for your time.
Debate Round No. 1
Logical-Master

Pro

RE: "1. Instead, Light attempted to write down only Near's name (Nate River) and coerce the others into letting him free through manipulation. This accredits Light with being in character as throughout the series he is confident in his manipulation skills"

Typing error. However, my point is that the idea of him doing anything which was so openly obvious is out of character. Not to mention that he himself had pointed out that no one in the room was willing to listen to reason: http://www.onemanga.com...

So then why would he think that they would be willing to listen to any word he said after seeing him kill Near with a spare death note page? He is in no position to be making threats as upon seeing Near die, the rest would quickly confiscate Light's watch and take him into custody. Thus at that point, he'd have no power.

RE: "Having been caught with undeniable evidence, Light realized that there was no more time for planning and acted accordingly. "

You mean he thought there was no time for EXTENSIVE planning. He could have still concocted quick strategies. In fact, that was what he did as he didn't just give up and accept defeat. So rather than come up with the foolish extremely low success rate strategy which he had used in the series, why not come up with a strategy that would involve him subtly writing down names on the Death note. After all, no one but him knew he had a spare page?

Clearly, Light did not understand the gravity of the situation or else he would have pursued a course of action that had little chance of actually working. Which leads me to CON's rebuttal to the third section of my argument . . .

"RE: The fake death note at this point was already proven to not be "the real deal,"

Not necessarily proof given that the names having no effect could have been caused by the effect of their names having previously been written in a notebook.

"RE: In addition, the only way to determine if the fake death note was real would be to write someone's name in it and see if they died. Near would never have allowed such a thing."

My opponent is missing the point. The fact that Near knew that it was a fake death note is exactly what Light would be counting on as Near would have nothing to worry about defeats the purpose of my opponent claiming that Near would not allow anyone to "test the notebook." In addition, when taking the following page (not the bottom left panel) into account: http://www.onemanga.com...

We know that Near wanted a flawless victory; he wanted 100% proof. So clearly, Near would've allowed Light to "test out" the fake notebook, knowing full well that this would further establish 100% that Light was Kira. In addition, allowing him to "test out" the book would further show that he (Near) was NOT Kira and that this whole ordeal was simply set up by him (as Light had desperately insinuated earlier).

Finally, given how Near had simply allowed Light to escape the facility in the end (keep in mind, it was agreed that using the anime as evidence was allowed), under the idea that "he was no threat", it's safe to say that he would have allowed Light this opportunity under the idea that "he was no threat" (and it's clear that Near was by no means aware that Light had a spare death note page, given his complete shock and lack of preparation for such a possibility). Thus, this should suffice in answering my opponent on her objection that Light would not be allowed the request in the first place. In addition, the fact that Light wasn't just immediately apprehended even upon admitting to being Kira further serves as evidence of this.

"RE:Light knew that Mikami . . . his loyalty was first to obey Kira's commands, and second, to do as he felt was right to promote Kira's world."

http://www.onemanga.com...

Light knew that Mikami understood his thought process and that he understood how Light would act under most conditions. In addition, it is revealed by Mikami that he suspects that Kira HAS NO MEANS of "judging" anyone hence why he would give the position of judging to him: http://www.onemanga.com...

Thus, given this information and given that Light was well aware that he had NOT informed Mikami that he still had a means of "carrying out judgment" even while having given him the Deathnote, it is beyond absurdity that Light would not have been able to figure out that Mikami would act accordingly to Light's way of carrying out justice and eliminate Takada as she would have been to the end to Kira immediately.

While it's true that Mikami was one to follow Kira's commands before making his own judgments, the Takada situation was a grave exception as this was a situation which would've only ended in there being conclusive evidence against Light/Kira.

Allow me to provide an analogy: Lets say a boy respects his parents a great deal and has always shown himself to follow their orders. In particular, the boy's parents tell him not to ever use a gun. Let us say that this same boy is one day accompanying his parents on a nature hike and his parents just happen to be caught off guard by a moutain lion. The mountain lion, looking as if it's about to kill the boy's parents begins to go in for the kill. However, the boy notices the gun his parents had brought with them, lying on the ground and within his reach. The boy knows that the only way out of this situation with his parent's still being alive is to use the gun against the mountain lion. Now, is there honestly anything strange about how the boy would wish to use the gun (even in spite of their past warnings) in order to save his parents whom he loves and respects so much? Of course not.

What this Mikami situation comes down to is what Mikami values the most: Kira's orders and Kira's life? Given the obvious answer to that, it is simply a slap in the face to the fans for the author to think that Mikami would not have acted any differently.

"Agreed. However, it is not in character for Light to develop back-up plans, which is the current contention. "

Straw man fallacy. The current contention is that Light didn't create a plan that was prepared for the possibility that Near created an additional fake deathnote book. We must keep in mind that Light knew L would do this and that he also had sufficient information on Mikami to conclude that he would attempt to "save" Light. That said, if my opponent wishes to argument that Light never deviates from his plans or rather doesn't make changes to his plans, that's clearly false as plan Light had for victory against L/Near at the beginning was far different than the plan he had for victory at the end of his battles.

"When enacting his huge plan to kill L, Light did not have a back-up plan."

That is because there was no possible evidence to demonstrate that he'd need to make a change in his plan. The scenario with Rem is far different than the one with Mikami as there is no possible evidence that Rem would do such a thing. The same applies for Shidou as there is no way Light could have known about an extra Shinigami. That being said, Light had EVERY SINGLE MEANS of knowing that Mikami would deviate from the plan, however, the author got lazy and decided to just finish the story not caring how low quality it would be to make Light into a complete fool.

EXTRA: Light announcing "I win Near" simply because he had no time to gloat previously (anime I believe), yet this is false. It's not that he didn't have any time to gloat but rather that he was surrounded by everyone else on the investigation team. In this case, they would have been dead. With that being established, why didn't he just wait to take note of the other individuals in the room having heart attacks? They would have still heard him while having heart attacks. Heck, L watched Light grin when he died, so it's not like the others having heart attacks would stop Light
spinnerclotho

Con

The more I think about this, the more I am convinced that Ohba just got lazy and was sick of the entire thing as well. Although traditionally one continues to debate regardless of personal feelings to the contrary, I cannot continue to make a case for something my heart is only half invested in from stubbornness.

Meh. Boo Ohba. I concede defeat.
Debate Round No. 2
Logical-Master

Pro

Yes, indeed. Boo Ohba. Had he tried, we could have had a good ending to what had the potential to be a great series. Nonetheless though, he makes the most foolish mistake in ending the series. Light becomes a complete imbecile and loses against a wannabe version of "L." There is no way the L from the first half of the series would have ever lost to this Light. In addition, Ohba had onced commented that the only character with a true sense of justice was Light's father. As we are shown throughout the series, Light, L, Mello and Near all haved use unjust methods to reach their goals Thus, at the very least, neither side should have won in the end.

At any rate, you heard CON. She concedes to my case, thus, you vote PRO.

I hope I get the chance to have another anime debate with her in the future. Till then, thanks for the debate. Later. :D
spinnerclotho

Con

The movie ending was much better, I agree. That ending kind of works with neither side winning.

I still love Death Note, though. Crap ending aside :P
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by CiRrO 8 years ago
CiRrO
I hated the ending. I so wanted Light to win. =(
Posted by Rezzealaux 8 years ago
Rezzealaux
I shall read this one.
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
whoops. Some of that got cut off at the end for who knows why.

I meant to say: "Heck, L watched Light grin when he died, so it's not like the others having heart attacks would stop Light from gloating to his satisfaction." Yet again another instance of being out of character. Yet another instance of poorly handling the ending.

That'll do it for now.
Posted by s0m31john 8 years ago
s0m31john
lol HTML
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Vote Placed by spinnerclotho 8 years ago
spinnerclotho
Logical-MasterspinnerclothoTied
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Vote Placed by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
Logical-MasterspinnerclothoTied
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