12 January 2008

Face Off! :: Death Note vs. Code Geass


Here is the "Death Note vs. Code Geass" entry I promised a month ago. This is mostly a comparison of the similarities between these ground-breaking manga/anime. To avoid spoiler spilling or keeping you from the joys of discovering these on your own, I've kept the descriptions as simple as possible.

Seriously, it's worthwhile to look into them if you haven't already. I've found that both guys and girls *devour* these series. Discussing/watching them would be a fabulous plan for an anime/manga club meeting, ne!

Death Note

Power holder and power giver::
Light Yagami (random human) and Ryuk (god, or kami)
Name of power::
Death Note. It is a mystical journal that kills the people whose names are written in it. The writer can even specify how exactly the victims die. The journal belongs to the kami Ryuk, who hangs around Light for the fun of it. And for the apples. He has a serious thing for apples...
Light wants a world free of crime and corruption. He takes it upon himself to get rid of evil-doers by murdering them through his Death Note.
Light's flamboyant, media-friendly persona::
Kira ("killer" in Japanese trying to be English). He is someone to be feared by criminals because they are his target. He is also being tracked down by the Japanese authorities.
Hyper talented arch-nemesis::
A brilliant and mysterious gargoyle of a man who goes by several names, including L. He does not approve of Kira's methodology but thinks enough like him to be frequently hot on his heels. Glorious!
More nail-biting action::
With all the characters for or against Kira, the story gets quite complex. For those of you familiar with the story, doesn't this girl look just the way you imagine Misa?
Further notes::
This is a true phenomenon! I enjoy seeing people get so immersed in this series. The chances for cosplay are titillating and exciting! Honestly, I'm much more a fan of the manga than I am of the anime. The former is beautifully spare, the latter is a bit flashier than necessary. I have not seen the live action or the movies. If you have, let me know what you think!

Code Geass

Power holder and power giver:
Lelouch Lamperouge (royal human) and C.C. ('supa' hot alien girl)
Name of power:
Geass. It allows Lelouch to make others do as he wishes, simply by making focused eye contact. A person can only be controlled by Geass once. This is key!
Like Light in Death Note, Lelouch also wants a more peaceful world. However, Lelouch's Japan is completely different. There are two forces at play: Area 11 (a defeated country formerly known as Japan) and the Britannian Empire (consisting of suspiciously European-looking people). Lelouch is a rebellious Britannian prince who wishes to make a safer environment for his blind-and-wheelchair-bound sister Nunnally.
Lelouch's flamboyant, media-friendly persona:
Zero. He is someone to be idolized by the "elevens" since he appears to be fighting for their rights.
Hyper talented arch-nemesis:
*GASP!* His close childhood friend Suzaku Kururugi, son of the former Prime Minister of Japan, is an "eleven" soldier who does not agree with Zero's implementation of justice. Hidden inside his big robot Knightmares, he fights the masked Zero, making both unaware that they are each other's enemies! And this while they're all in the same high school classes!
More nail-biting action:
As if the battling Knightmares weren't enough, there's also the secret identities of some of the eleven rebels and the Britannians. The characterization here goes beyond most action anime. Even though the character sketches were done by Clamp, they've been gloriously developed to satisfaction.
Further notes::
This is one of the latest superstars in the anime world. It just sucks you in and doesn't let you go. Needless to say, a series as popular as this is bound to have its own parodies, like this one of Code Geass with the trailer soundtrack of 300. Yes, Code Geass can be very violent. If you can get past the first few episodes, though, you'll be done in no time. The second season starts soon, and I can't wait!

What makes these series so special (and so similar) is the fact that both Light and Lelouch are dark heroes you wonder about. They have a generally good idea, or so it seems, but that is not enough to make them good people. In fact, there is a bit of evil in both, as they both set out to righteously change the world for the better through some pretty questionable means. Also, unlike many anime, there are only hints of romance. Nothing frilly, nothing concrete. The excitement comes through lots of action, suspense, and totally hot plot twists.

So if this is a face-off, which of the two wins? I've heard some people complain about where Death Note ends up. Also, when you start reading/watching Code Geass, prepare to re-read/re-watch because it can be quite confusing. Still, since Death Note came to me first and blew my mind so totally, I have to admit that I'm a Death Note girl all the way. The character L sits in my mind the way none of the Code Geass characters do. I know people who would disagree with me, and with reason, but I guess they can get their own website. Ha.

On a final note, I've made a couple of improvements to this blog. I'm going to start to use smaller pictures so that they don't take so long to load. Also, I've enabled comments to be anonymous, so feel free to post your opinions!