Like "Time's Arrow", this two-parter is largely fluff. There's nothing deep here, just a convoluted adventure, and that's perfectly fine. Certainly, it tops "Birthright" and "Descent". It also manages to avoid "excessive set-up disease" - the setup's here, but it is plenty exciting. It's the kind of story we didn't see often on the show, with the Enterprise playing an at-most secondary role in the action. The combination of Picard and Riker is a potent one - particularly playing different roles. Baran provides an intriguing villain, very different from most of the other enemies we saw from time to time.