If you’ve caught the new Netflix release, Death Note, you know that there is an ultra-secretive, hyper-active, and freshly vindictive detective in the process of hunting down the person he believes to be Kira; the godlike figure that has been mass murdering criminals around the globe. This sleuth goes by a simple name: L. And as played by Lakeith Stanfield, he is one of the clear highlights of the movie.
In the film, no one knows what Stanfield’s “L” stands for or how he became “the world’s greatest detective.” But we get more than a few hints as Kira continues to elude L, and the detective has evermore time on his hands. Time he doesn’t know what to do with. This, along with the restless behavior he exhibits after consuming an abnormal amount of sugary confections, might cause a few unexpected personality tics when he is talking with others.
It’s a fantastic and bizarre performance, one that anyone might expect from Lakeith Stanfield, a breakout star on FX’s Atlanta who also appeared earlier this year in the zeitgeist-obliterating Get Out. Little did we know that when we chatted with Stanfield, it’d be more “L” than “Lakeith,” we’d be interviewing.
Indeed, we got the change to sit down with the legendary sleuth himself to find out what he really knows about Kira, his main suspect—Light Turner—and the strange object known as the Death Note.