Welcome, one and all, to day nine of the thirty day anime challenge! Today’s topic is … your favourite anime villain.
Ooh, now this is an interesting one. I have no issue with straight up bad guys. In fact, certain types of shows really need a clean-cut villain to go up against the hero. In general though, I tend to prefer villains that are a little bit more complex. I’m going to talk about two such characters now.
First up is Light Yagami from Death Note. What I loved about Light was the journey that we took with him. Right at the start of the series, Light is acting with good intentions. He wants to end suffering in the world, to create a utopian society where crime is no long an issue (of course, that would have put his Father out of work, but there you go). The problem was, the longer his battle with L went on, the further down the spiral he went. Part of me wonders if the stress of battling the world’s greatest detective was what drove him to behaving the way he did, or whether he was always doomed to head this way. Certainly, his complaints that Mikami was acting against certain types of people too soon would indicate that he always had this in mind, but this was after he’d already passed the point of no return. In the end, he ceased being a misguided guy with good intentions and became nothing more than one of the criminals that he wanted to eliminate. He had to die, there was no other way around it. Watching him fall like that was just such a beautifully constructed tale.
Next up is Durarara!!! stalwart Izaya Orihara. The information broker with a love of the human race is a marvellous creation. In many ways, he is a true mastermind, manipulating people and situations to his heart’s content. But, both his love of humans and his hatred of Shizuo Heiwajima leave him prone to pushing people further than he probably should. Yes, Izaya is enjoying himself, but he’s also running the risk of wrecking the lives of those that he professes to hold in such high regard. Not that it matters to him. I think that he sort of viewed Ikebukuro like a child views wooden blocks: something to build up and then knock down, over and over. With the way he describes things, I actually spent a great deal of time thinking that Izaya was in fact an otherworldly being like Celty rather than a human himself. Even knowing this nto to be the case, I do wonder if he looks at himself as a trickster God of sorts.