I do love red the most. Hair, clothes, lipstick, I love them to be red.
~ Grell Sutcliff
Red is the color of fiery passion and I'm flaming !
~ Grell Sutcliff
With all these handsome men in front of me I’m not gonna just leave like Cinderella!
~ Grell Sutcliff

Grell Sutcliff is a character in the anime and manga Black Butler/Kuroshitsuji. He is the main antagonist in the Jack the Ripper Arc. Later in the anime, Grell becomes a deuteragonist and a minor comic relief character.


Jack the Ripper

During the Jack the Ripper Arc, Grell is first seen as the clumsy and shy Butler of Madam Red, who is also known as Angelina Durless. Despite his nervous appearence, it is later revealed that he is a fully trained Grim Reaper, also known as a Shinigami or Death God. Throughout the anime and during the Arc, Grell is shown to be ineffective at his Butler job, ruining and messing up the most simple of tasks and continuously attempting to commit suicide. Sebastian Michaelis, the Demon Butler of Ciel Phantomhive, stops Grell from killing himself, which allows Grell's affections for the Butler to increase. Grell later stops the acts when the servants of the Phantomhive Household in the anime hesitant from trying to stop him from killing himself, and usually tries to attract attention to be noticed by Sebastian. When Madam Red begins the Jack the Ripper murders, Grell follows her around and reveals herself after one of the murders, claiming he understood her feelings because he could not have children of his own (being okama = gay). He agrees to help her in the killing of prostitutes.

As the episodes progress, Ciel and Sebastian find out that Angelina and Grell are Jack the Ripper. During a brief confrontation, Grell flirts with and attacks Sebastian with his Death Scythe and nearly slices the demon's arm off. When Angelina hesitates to kill Ciel, Grell insists she do it; when she still refuses, Grell angrily slashes at her and kills her with his scythe. Ciel then commands Sebastian to finish the job, and Sebastian agrees, attacking Grell to the point where the Reaper is faceplanted into the ground, weak and beaten, after Sebastian uses his tailcoat to jam Grell's scythe. Sebastian kicks Grell and unjams the scythe by removing the tailcoat, and raises it in preperation for a killing blow, as Grell pleads to be spared. Sebastian immediately declines, and brings down the scythe; only for the whirring scythe to be stopped short by another.

William T. Spears, another Grim Reaper, arrives and states to be there to collect Grell, who is overjoyed by William's appearance. WIlliam leaps down onto Grell, smashing his face into the pacement. In the anime, he announces all the rules Grell had broken (killing those not on the To-Die list, modifying her scythe without authorization, and attempting to reveal classified information about the murderers of Ciel's parents) as he begs for Sebastian to save his life. William, much to his disgust, then thanks Sebastian and drags Grell away by his hair. Later on, Grell is seen throughout the anime as a deuteragonist and comic relief character.


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Grell as a butler.

As a Butler, he has long waist length brown hair tied back, green eyes, and wears a butler suit and red ribbon around her neck, along with large glasses. As a Grim Reaper, he has long red hair, green eyes, false eyelashes, sharp teeth, red-framed glasses, which are accessorized with a neck chain adorned with skulls. He wears a suit like other Grim Reapers with gloves and a tie, high-heeled ankle boots, and a red coat that he took from Angelina's corpse, which he slings off his shoulders and wears around his elbows.


Grell is shy and clumsy as a Butler in his human form, although in his Grim Reaper form, he is hyper and flamboyant, and finds guys generally attractive, although it is been noted that he had feelings for Madam Red.

Grell is also extremely vivacious, effervescent, straightforward, over-the-top, outspoken, and cheerful, as he tells Sebastian Michaelis that he wishes to do some "vigorous exercise" with him, despite the latter's repulsion. He possesses a strong predilection for the color red, and believes that substances which reflect that color, such as fresh blood, can be used to achieve beauty.

He can also be a very ruthless, dangerous, and bloodthirsty individual who is willing to kill his own comrades once he loses interest in them. He often puts things in terms of theater, referring to Angelina's death as the "falling of curtains," and comparing his conflicting Grim Reaper and demon relationship with Sebastian to the famous play, Romeo and Juliet. Grell uses feminine nouns and pronouns in his speech because of onee-kotoba, which is commonly used by Japanese drag queens and very effeminate gays.


  • Death Scythe: Grell's Death Scythe had been illegally modified by Grell himself, in order to reap souls and view Cinematic Records as any scythe would, although the scythe is a chainsaw and can cut through anything. The scythe is confiscated at the end of the Jack the Ripper Arc, but later given back to his in the final episode of the first season.
  • Scissors: In replacement for his scythe, Grell was given a pair of useless kids' scissors, although they are later shown to be nearly as sharp as her scythe.




  • In the Durarara!! manga, a series that frequently references other anime and manga, some characters go to a manga store and Grell's image is on the elevator in one panel.
  • Grell's name bears relative resemblance to Peter Sutcliffe, who was a British serial killer responsible for the death of 13 women and is dubbed "The Yorkshire Ripper".
  • Grell was confirmed by Yana Toboso as okama and she refers to her character with male pronouns.