The STORY of Death Note, although perhaps not entirely originally, is nearly flawlessly portrayed. We follow Light Yagami, who has found a notebook that will kill whoever's name is written there and he must battle in his mind between right and wrong. It was so fascinating to watch his internal battle and to see him debate what exactly is right and wrong. I found a lot of Death Note to be very philosophical and I believe that this is the reason it held so many people's interests.
The ANIMATION, in my opinion, was completely flawless. I thought it was the perfect way to enhance artwork with CG. They were obviously anime characters, but at the same time there was just enough realism to them to make them seem more tangible, but still keep that border up between reality and fantasy.
I remember always being in awe of the SOUND in this anime. THE OP and Ending themes were absolutely fantastic songs that, to me, perfectly reflected what Light must be feeling in his mind. Also, I do not tend to like voice actors - I almost always watch anime subbed. But I watched Death Note dubbed and loved it. L and Light sounded exactly as I had imagined them to in my head and there was not a single character whose voice I was disappointed with. Excellent casting.
I think there are more "Who's better - Light or L?" discussions in anime than any other two characters. (Maybe not, but there's a lot). Obviously the CHARACTERS left quite the impression. The reason that this is the lowest rated part of my review is because the characters of Near and Mello. While Near did become a bit more interesting with his hand puppets (especially seeing how he viewed everyone), he resembled L far too much and Mello got on my nerves consistently. The original three - Misa, Light and L - made up for any failures, though.
Overall, Death Note is an anime that I would recommend to anyone. The reason I could not give it a higher rating is because of the second half of the anime. Had Mello and Near never entered the picture (or maybe entered in different ways), then this would have truly been a flawless anime. That being said, it was still fantastic and a shoe-in classic that I recommend greatly.