Follow TV Tropes


Self Demonstrating / L

Go To
Played by: Mostly Japanese actors, surprisingly.

(This page is best read in either Kappei Yamaguchi's or Alessandro Juliani's voice.)

Hello, everyone at I am L, otherwise known as the main hero of the series Death Note, and am widely renowned as the world's greatest detective. I specialize in solving cases with seemingly unexplainable causes, usually resulting in homicide. Justice is my ultimate priority, and my main goal is to put an end to these miscreants' evil deeds.

As one would suspect, being the greatest detective in the world can lead to some quite pleasant privilages, my caretaker always gives me first word when he learns of a case I may be interested in; and so, working on the Kira investigation was an inevitability, it was simply too big of an atrocity to overlook, and so became my main priority. L, as one could tell, is an alias, but it is but only one of many that I go by. No one knows my real name, outside of a select few including myself, not that that information would be of any use to you. That seems adequate for an introduction, I wouldn't want to leak any classified information. Just know that I am true justice, the perception of my intelligence is only measured by the audience's stupidity, and that I will prevail no matter what.


  • 20% More Awesome: I only use statistics, say, about ten percent of the time. Hm... no, it's closer to five percent.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: Some say Kenichi Matsuyama, is more attractive than I. It's really no insult to me, rarely my face is seen by anyone other than Watari, in any case. I hear I have many fan-girls, though... likely as many as Kira.
    • Besides, I'll let you know that I am very attractive, in my own way. I was even kissed by the suspect's girlfriend recently. Kissed on the cheek, 100% more than the majority of you can say.
  • Adaptational Badass: In the films based on the investigation, Kira was not as lucky as he was in real life, being that he died before I did.
  • Adaptational Dye Job: In the anime based on the investigation, my hair is black, where in the cover art for the manga based on the investigation, my hair is depicted being brown. I'll let you decide which is true.
  • Adaptational Heroism: I'm not so sure about the truth in this, I have always been rather heroic, the manga misrepresented me. What can one expect when following the perspective of a mass murderer? It doesn't bother me either way.
  • Advertisement:
  • Adaptational Villainy: Every depiction of myself ever put on screen or print, justice is all I care for.
  • Admiring the Abomination: I only take on cases in which I have a personal interest in. Those of course are mostly cases which the FBI or any international equivalents would not be able to solve without my assistance.
  • Adorkable: Thank you. I'm glad you think so.
  • Allergic to Routine: I have very little to do locked up in a small room twenty-four-seven, but that is the only way I can expect to fully concentrate on the matters at hand.
  • Alliterative Name: L, my alias, is just one name, so, by that logic one can argue that the first letters of the first name and last name are alliterative, simply because they are both one name.
  • Alternate Continuity: In the movies based on the investigation, I outlive Light, but in the manga, and anime I am not quite as lucky.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: There is nothing wrong with me, I just spend a lot of time alone. Social norms are pathetic and pointless constructs, and I'd much rather be comfortable than have everyone around me be.
  • Ambiguously Bi: I don't really care for relationships, be they romantic or sexual. I am fine with friendships, however.
  • Antagonist in Mourning: In L: change the WorLd I am portrayed as missing my adversary for some strange reason. I suppose it can be boiled down to artistic license... it's practically official fan-fiction, anyway.
  • Anti-Hero: My methods may be considered a bit harsh to some, that is true. Though justice must be served no matter what the cost, I simply do what is necessary.
  • Awesome Mc Coolname: Well, not so much when my Japanese peers try to pronounce it, and considering I'm around them a majority of the time... it was best to think of a more accessible name as soon as I could.
  • Awesomeness by Analysis: At the risk of sounding a bit humble, I'll admit, my neurological capabilities far surpass that of any average person.
  • Back for the Finale: Turns out, you do come back after you die, in my case, as a ghost. Or possibly as a Dying Dream; it's open to interpretation.
  • Badass Boast: I am... Justice!
  • Badass Bookworm: I'm a genius, and a prodigy. I am also skilled in Capoeira. This is because, well... when I'm not solving important cases, I dabble in break dancing to pass the time.
  • Batman Gambit: One of my signatures, it's the oldest trick in the book, and yet... they fall for it like moths to the flame.
  • Becoming the Mask: About that... when I said Light was my first ever friend, that may or may not have been a lie. After all, even if he was my friend, I still had Watari first, and he is a great asset to me.
  • Big Brother Instinct: I think that saying that I am a good mentor wouldn't be far from the truth.
  • Big Eater: I am quite fond of cake and other sweets. Sugar keeps me alert with the little sleep I do get. I've found that despite my large calorie intake, I won't gain much weight due to my thought-powered high metabolism.
  • Big Good: It goes without saying.
  • Bishōnen: Some say so.
  • Big Sleep: When I died in the anime.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: Solving the toughest cases the world has ever known is enough reason to excuse my need for an occasional break in investigation.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Something that must be done when my suspect has unexplained, possibly paranormal abilities. If I had any solid evidence, that would be preferable, but I must do what I can.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Cake is all I need to sustain consciousness for several days, and nights working a tough case.
  • But Not Too Foreign: I'm mostly European in heritage, and slightly Asian. My birthplace, however, is classified. I did study in the UK for a while, and reside in Japan, but am a citizen of many countries, and that's all that needs to be revealed.
  • Catchphrase: Well... I certainly am justice.
  • The Chains of Commanding: I must never leave my house, nor reveal my name, nor show my face, unless I am making a special exception.
  • The Chessmaster: I could play chess very well if I had a friend to play it with...
  • Cloud Cuckoolander: Not at all. Hm... mmh. This cake is wonderful.
  • Collector of the Strange: It's not necessarily a collection persé, more of a set of allies, all of criminals that in exchange for their prison sentence, work for me instead.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: I am often depicted behind a blue filter.
  • Confirmed Bachelor: I am in a quite fullfilling relationship with justice.
  • Consummate Liar: I may stretch the truth from time to time, all in the name of the law.
  • Cool Car: Watari escorts me around in a quite comfortable limo.
  • Covert Pervert: I'm a... pervert? Certainly not! Sexual harassment is a serious offense, and I will take no admittance to these ridiculous allegations.
  • Crazy-Prepared: It pays to prepare.
  • Creepy Good: Creepy...?
  • Creepy Monotone: Again with that word. I find my voice to be quite soothing.
  • Creepy Shadowed Undereyes: It's a result of insomnia, and malnutrition, not genetics.
  • Dance Battler: As I previously mentioned, I know some break-dance baced martial-arts.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: That information is classified.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Oh, yes, it takes a keen mind to think up the number of brilliant puns that I do.
  • Dead Person Impersonation: Let's just say that many of those famed detectives that you may think now work in the shadows, are really just deceased, and heightened by me.
  • Defective Detective: I think most would agree that I am quite the opposite.
  • Deliberate Injury Gambit: I can take quite the beating, and a measly punch to the jaw is a small price to pay to open up an opportunity for a critical hit.
  • Determinator: I absolutely HATE to lose...
  • Deuteragonist: See Hero.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: When I first communicated with Kira over the television, humiliating him worldwide.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: Tragically in the manga and animated television series, this is how I go out.
  • Dies Wide Open: Again, my death in the manga and anime.
  • Ditzy Genius: Ditzy? On the contrary, I am very refined.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: I have back-up plans and replacements in order if ever my plans were to lead to my demise or conversion by the enemy.
  • Do Not Adjust Your Set: Luckily, Kira happened to have his television on at the time.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: They're really not the most comfortable, I only wear them when I have to walk on the hot ground. I dislike socks more.
  • Donut Mess with a Cop: I, love, donuts nearly as much as I love cake, and justice.
  • Enemy Eats Your Lunch: I never let cake go to waste, unless of course, it was misprepared by Watari, or I die before I can finish eating it.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: In the manga and anime, my suspicions of Light are confirmed as I die.
  • Everyone Has Standards: I won't take just any case that I hear about on the television, what do you take me for, FBI?
  • Evil Twin: Beyond Birthday looks suspiciously like me, although it really doesn't make the slightest bit of sense...
  • Exhausted Eye Bags: Not really bags, yet, but I do have dark circles.
  • The Exotic Detective: As I said, I'm mostly European.
  • Expecting Someone Taller: Apparently, I do not look like a conventional detective.
  • Expy: I'm quite similar to Sherlock Holmes, minus the drug addiction.
  • Extreme Doormat: I wouldn't say so, in fact I can go to some pretty... extreme measures.
  • Extremity Extremist: Ah, see?
  • Friendless Background: I'm not the best at making friends, I'm afraid...
  • Friend to All Children: Oh, now I'm just flat out contradicting myself, I do apologize, that is a bad habit of mine.
  • The Gadfly: Reactions are indeed a very good look into the psyche of a suspect.
  • Genius Sweet Tooth: That is 100% true.
  • Good Counterpart: I would probably be considered the good half if I were ever compared to someone as their counterpart.
  • Good Is Not Nice: When intellectually and morally superior to most everyone around you, one can't help but judge others on their questionable actions. I've also found that torture and restraint can be very effective at getting a confession out of stubborn suspects.
  • Great Detective: That goes without saying.
  • Guile Hero: I rely on my keen intellect.
  • Gut Feeling: It's not instinctual, there are clear traits that the guilty and the lying possess, making it easy for me to zero in on who I ultimately suspect.
  • Hates Being Touched: When I am anxious, I may get startled when unexpectedly touched.
  • The Hedonist: I really only need to do what I want to. I have more than enough money to spare, so crime fighting is more of a hobby than anything.
  • Hero Antagonist: In the manga and anime I am.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: I'm seen as untrustworthy because I don't reveal my identity to the public. It's all the same as long as justice prevails in the end.
  • Hikikomori: If you want to call it that.
  • His Name Really Is "Barkeep": It is true... my name is L, specifically L Lawliet. Ordinarily I would never reveal my real name, but since this has already been done in Death Note: How to Read, it's pointless to keep the secret any longer.
  • Honor Before Reason: It isn't honor before reason, it's reason before regret. I must be one hundred percent certain a suspect is guilty before he is put on death row.
  • Hurricane Kick: Kicking is my prefered method of attack. I'd rather not use my hands.
  • Hurting Hero: No. I am perfectly fine with any and all decisions I make.
  • Hypocrite: Not at all.
    • When I said that I can't take advice from a suspect, or deprive them of human rights, I wasn't being hypocritical when I did, I just changed my mind.
  • I Am a Monster: Some report that I have stated that I am afraid of monsters, particularly those of the lying variety, and that I infact am that monster... I can assure you, I have never said that before. Trust me.
  • I Am the Noun: Yes, yes, I am Justice... yadda yadda.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: I did what I had to do in order to succeed in achieving what I wanted to do, yes.
  • I Have Many Names: Hmm...? Oh, yes.
  • The Insomniac: I rarely sleep as much as most of my peers, this is possible due to my high sugar intake.
  • Insufferable Genius: I don't know about insufferable... but whatever people think of me, it really doesn't matter.
  • Intelligence Equals Isolation: That is coincidental. The fact that investigation equals isolation would be incidental.
  • Interpol Special Agent: Interpol agreed to allow me to work the Kira case, not that I required any permission.
  • It Amused Me: Justice does amuse me. It's a perk of being an investigator.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: If one is good at heart and doesn't commit any atrocities, they don't need to be kind.
  • Limited Wardrobe: I always wear the same clothes. My peers often wonder if I have multiple sets of the same clothes or just rewash the same wardrobe repeatedly.
  • Loners Are Freaks: I'm just not like everyone else, that's all.
  • Looks Like Cesare: It isn't intentional, but if you saw me in real life you'd likely agree.
  • Man in White: In the TV drama I wear all white.
  • Manipulative Bastard: It comes with the territory, I can't help if it displeases anyone.
  • Married to the Job: I do not want, nor need a relationship with any woman, man, or what have you. Although my admirers sometimes like to imagine me pairing with criminals... I doubt they even understand me.
  • Meaningful Name: It signifies how not Japanese I am, making it more interesting for the audience.
  • Messianic Archetype: I noticed all the undeniable Judeo-Christian imagery I was being surrounded with, and decided to play along, washing Light's feet (improperly) causing him temporary pain.
  • Sweet Tooth: Rrf... mph... hmm? I'm sorry, I was eating. Didn't we go over this?

Thank you, and farewell.


Example of: