Death Note/Tear Jerker

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.


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  • Death Note, of course, had the deaths of L and Watari at the coerced hands of Rem, who, because of the rules of the Shinigami, also died. (If this becomes It Was His Sled before it airs on Adult Swim, I will break you.)
    • And don't forget L died failing to bring down Kira. That is why this editor much prefers the Movie's version of this where L prevents himself from being killed by Rem by writing his own name into the note, but adding that he would die 23 days later. Sadly Watari and Rem don't make it out alive. And you see a few shots of Rem crumbling into dust. Finally, there is the scene at the end where Light's entire family mourn his death, his father only having told them that he was killed by Kira.
      • This editor still prefers the original version, because L surviving makes everything Light does absolutely pointless, cheapening the impact.
      • And then the third movie L: change the world has I'll be waiting as it's end theme. If you've seen it or the second film you will know why this is a tearjearker.
      • Speaking of Change the WorLd (that was not a typo, by the way), the scene where Maki, one the kids L has to protect decides not to kill the villain (who is also her father's murderer) and ends up crying as L holds her and says "You're a good girl. I believed in you." And there's the bit at the end: L takes the other child,a little boy, to Wammy's, and finally give him a name: Near. He then hands him a bag, the newly-named Near looks inside and pulls out the toy robot he had liked in a store. Several moments later, as L leaves, his voice-over reveals that he's not ready to die; he wants to live longer. * sob*
        • Despite never having seen L: Change the WorLd or any of the live-action movies but was spoiled long ago, I teared up just from reading that.
        • As for L's death, the cutscene of L's funeral goes from Tear Jerker with Soichiro promising to him that he'd make his death worth it and Matsuda crying, to rage-inducing with Light making up lies about how he'll avenge L's death by killing Kira himself. It quickly turns to Nightmare Fuel with Light going absolutely berserk with his laugh and screaming at L's grave that he has won.
    • What about the death of Deputy Director Yagami? The saddest part about that was that thanks to Light's relinquishment of the Death Note, the Shinigami-eye-wielding Director saw Light's lifespan, so he died genuinely believing that his son wasn't Kira.
      • And the moment in the hospital just after his non-Kira heart attack, when, in full knowledge that Light is a suspect, he quietly explains to him that it isn't Kira himself who's evil, but the power he's using. Utterly tragic - especially since Light, while briefly affected, is a brick wall, and because that distinction between people and their acts is something Light will never grasp.
      • The shot of Light's mother Sachiko slumped at her table really tugged at my heartstrings. Her son Light has all but disappeared from her life, her daughter Sayu is confined to a wheelchair and catatonic, and her husband Soichirou has just died trying to stop Kira.
        • And Soichiro's ashes are on the table in front of her. That's what that neatly wrapped box she's contemplating is.
          • Really? I always thought that the neatly wrapped box was Soichiro's lunch. A wife crying over a meal her husband will never eat was sadder and more tragic to me.
            • No. I thought so too at first, but it turns out bentos aren't the only things that get wrapped in furoshiki. And when you think about it, Soichiro dies in Los Angeles, why would she have made his lunch in Tokyo?
      • Also the entirety of the finale of The Last Name, from the emotional punch in the gut when Light and the audience realise that the Death Note didn't work on him, and he saw everything, to the scene when he's walking home with Sayu, who's crying because she thinks Kira killed Light. Just... ouch.
    • There's also Misa Amane's (in my opinion) strongest scene. She's in restraints, begging Rem to kill her, and even tries to bite her own tongue off. Of course, she doesn't succeed, but it was a real turning point for her character. Well, it seemed so at the time...
    • I found the moments before Light's death in the anime particularly sad. Specifically when he's running away from the warehouse and we start seeing flashbacks to the first episode showing him walking along the same road just after finding the Death Note, and he looks so young. It was surprisingly heartbreaking, considering he's, y'know, a sociopath.
      • I just found it an egregious case of Draco in Leather Pants.
      • That's the definition of subjective, I guess. I loved the symbolism, especially when The "current" Light and "old" Light pass. Although I was rather upset - I had so been looking forward to Light's death, and then they went and actually made it sad. I thought I would be quite happy at Light's death, but it got less funny after he completely loses it.
      • Even Ohba said that Light was, in many ways, the Death Note's first victim. Given that the Draco in Leather Pants trope is about fan misinterpretation of canon, is it even possible to present one within canon? This case seems more like Alas, Poor Villain or a Broken Aesop.
      • Light losing it was bad, Matsuda losing it was horrible. He so genuinely seemed to admire Light, and seeing him shoot him repeatedly with tears streaming down his face, then having to be stopped from killing Light by the other officers was some seriously upsetting stuff.
        • I actually felt a cathartic release at that moment; in a story of the combat between potential gods, it was a human that struck the decisive blow. She may or may not have read too much Hellsing to be entirely sane about that kind of scene, though.
        • And this one felt great joy in seeing Matsuda show moral fiber and courage that Light just didn't believe him to have. I actually made a cell phone wallpaper celebrating Matsuda's fateful gunshot at Light, showing how impressive his personal growth was.
      • I disagree with the anime version, cause it made him look like a wuss, but his death in the movie, now THAT was depressing. Dying in his father's arms, still claiming he was justice.
        • The arms of the father he'd tried to murder only minutes before. Oh, Soichiro...
      • For me, the only real sad part of Light's death was when he realized that he there was no one left to help him, and him still not realizing it was largely his fault.
        • This- especially in the anime where he's lying on the ground in the moments after being shot, calling out to Takada and Misa, asking what he should do in a voice like that of a little lost child. Gets this Troper every time.
    • Mikami's horribly depressing backstory made me tear up a little. Especially when the boy he protected thanks him and adult Mikami says 'as long as I heard that word, it made me want to help them every time'. The contrast between what a sweet kid he was and the way he is now is just so stark.
    • Seven words: "Matt... I got you killed... I'm sorry." Not just for Matt, but because it's the one time in the series that we see Mello as something other than a Hot-Blooded, Can't Catch Up Insufferable Genius.
    • worse with Fridge Horror when you relise like L, Mello only had one friend.
    • L calling Light his only friend.
      • This one has been undone by Word of God. How To Read 13 says L has no friends at all and that it was just a lie he told Light, even though he knew he'd hardly believe it.
      • This troper has their own interpretation. The How To Read profiles were listed somewhat like interviews, meaning some of the definitions were altered somewhat to match the characters. So Light being L's only friend was true, and L was lying, to the audience and himself, so that he wouldn't grow attached to his only true friend. This only makes L's death and confirmation that Light was responsible for it all the more heart wrenching.
    • L and Watari looking at one another through the computer monitors and L calling Watari's name, first quietly, and then loudly just before Watari cuts the transmission and erases the datbase due to his death. Particularly sad since that episode implied that Watari was the closest thing L had to a father, and the angle and wide-eyed look he has in the monitor Watari looks at makes him look particularly childlike. Its also the first time L's voice seems to have tender emotion and vulnerability in it.
      • It's even more depressing since most people are so upset by L's death that they completely forget the fact that Watari died too. L's death wasn't as bad (though still was terribly horrible) since he was actively fighting against Kira and in the end one of those two had to die, but Watari's death wasn't necessary at all in my eyes, and that just makes it all the more heartbreaking.
    • How could anyone have forgotten the death of Naomi Misora? She comes so close to bringing Raye's killer to justice, and this is what ends up being the death of her. The small, metaphorical scene with the noose, the music... so sad.
    • Lightly tied to Misora, Beyond Birthday's death at the end of the serial murder cases. Yeah, I know, he killed three people, one of which was just a kid, and attacked Misora in an alleyway, but this B fangirl got very attached to him.
    • I never teared up watching or reading anything, until The Episode where L Died and teared up during almost every episode after it.
    • Nobody else seems to care that Rem bit the bullet, but I found her death paticularly heartbreaking in that NOBODY CARED. Nobody. To Light, she was just an expendable pawn, Ryuk predictably didn't give a crap, Misa, the very person she died to save, displayed minimal, if NO reaction, and as for L, lets just say he had other things to worry about at the time. Rem's death went unmourned, her dissolved corpse swept away by some oblivious cleaning staff. Nobody sheds a tear.
      • Thank you. I was barely affected by L's death and teared up over Watari, but Rem made me break down sobbing.
    • Consider also that this is not the 2nd Kira, Misa in full Cute and Psycho mode that dies. It's an innocent woman who has been jerked around all her life without her knowledge by the power of the Death Note. Rather than the insane, evil Kira persona being the one that died, Misa committed suicide after she'd gotten her life as a normal human back. Even without Light around to use her, she just couldn't win.
  • In a sad version of Fridge Horror, the survivors of the Yagami family. And if thinking about it wasn't bad enough, then some really good fanfic writers got ahold of it... Not. Fair. That's what really gets me. Light ruined the lives of the people he should have loved most in the world and they did nothing wrong. And the bastard STILL didn't realize what he was doing!
    • ...and the manga:
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Light (on the phone): Sorry mom, I can't come home again this year. Tell Sayu that I promise I'll find time to come back home next year so we can spend some real family time together.

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  • It's not exactly a tearjerker, but I thought one of the most tense, heartbreaking moments in the series was the closeup on Light's eye when he first gets the death note back after the Yotsuba arc. After again seeing the innocent idealist that he was, it was heartbreaking to watch that be erased. It was the ultimate betrayal.
    • YES. He had so much potential in that Arc, and he was just so goddamn decent, that the knowledge that it was all gone for good broke this editor's heart.
      • This troper has JUST gotten to this part, and can't watch anymore tonight. It's the fucking scream that does it for me. That's what made me tear up: it isn't just Light getting his memories back. It's the innocent, cheerful boy he's become over the last few episodes, watching and reacting in horror as he realizes that he's Kira - the very person he swore to hunt down -, knowing that he's going to 'die' and that the monster he truly is, is going to reassert himself, and it will be as if the idealist - the Light he could have been if he hadn't found that fucking book or if he'd gotten over his boredom - never existed.
  • There is one part, and one part alone, that I got teary-eyed about, and it's at the very end. Near is surrounded by a bunch of toys, doing what he does best... and eating a bar of chocolate.
  • The birthday cake in The Last Name. Just... gah.
  • Would it be fair to argue the whole SERIES is nothing but a Tear Jerker? Seriously, it's been ages since I've seen the Anime, and my allegiances to the characters probably changed with every episode, but reading any of these moments makes my eye water--even if I HATED the character CONSISTENTLY.
  • What got me was the moment when Misa made the deal for the Shinigami eyes for the second time.
  • ... Is this troper really the only one who sadfaces when Light sees the notebook fall, right at the start?
    • Watching the entire series, and then watching the first episode again. Light has no idea what he's getting into. Just imagining what his life would have been like had he not been staring out the window gets me.
      • That's one of the saddest things about Death Note for me. Light was so smart and could have done anything he wanted, but when he found the Death Note it basically ruined his life. He was never a bad person when he didn't have the Death Note, and I think it really screwed with his morals.
  • Matt's death (the saddest one for sure), Mello's death - followed by Takada's death. I know Mello was a bastard but I can't help myself, he is one of my darlings.
  • No mention of Gelus yet? He's just so sad-looking and his death was pretty heartwrenching. Especially for poor Rem who was couldn't do anything but watch.
  • I'm probably the only one, but Namikawa's death in the anime. Face Heel Door Slam, anyone?
    • I've only read the manga version, but I'd agree with you.
    • Seconded; even with all things considered.
  • The final music that plays in the anime version during Light Yagami starting to slowly die and when he sees an image of L looking over him gets this troper every time.
  • For me, Light's last conversation with Misa in the manga is just ... heartbreaking. Misa is cheerful and glad that she's gotten a chance to talk to Light, telling him happily about the hotel room. And Light is completely "Yeah, good, she's not something I need to worry about at the moment." And he hangs up -- if he even bothered to say goodbye to her, the reader doesn't see it. And that's their last. Conversation. Ever. After Misa gave her life and soul to Light, suffered L's torture for him, begged Rem to kill her when she couldn't take it any longer, and let his control dominate her life completely -- that was their last conversation. They were engaged to be married, for the love of God; yes, it was only a pretense on Light's part, but they had been together for years, and Misa finally had the family that she had lost when her parents died. And she kills herself after Light dies. AND THAT WAS THEIR LAST CONVERSATION.
  • Maybe it's just me, but the really simple scene added in episode 25 of the anime where You see Watari bring a child L into Wammy's House for the first time really got to me. Not just the way the scene was shot, and the haunting music playing, but the fact that it shows that L was just as human as anyone and how Watari was probably the only person who really cared about him.