I must say, this could have been one of the best episodes ever, if not for the fact that the writers couldn’t decide if they were writing a classic detective story or another of the ‘Wesley to the rescue!’ ones.
The first half of the episode is simply marvelous and brilliantly plotted. You can actually feel the tension rising, first slowly, then faster and then, in the bridge scene with Picard and Crusher you just feel your pulse accelerating and you must ask aloud ‘what the hell is going on here!’… and unfortunately you get the answer. It doesn’t matter that the events after that are even more ’exciting’, how can they be? You already know all the answers! It’s like hearing ‘the butler did it’ in the middle of Agata Christie’s novel! It’s just not the same…
What were they afraid of? That the audience was going to have a simultaneous heart attack from the overload of the excitement? Well, we won’t find out, won’t we?
IF they didn’t reveal everything in the middle, IF they showed everything from doctor Crusher’s POV like at the beginning, IF they gave us one answer at the time, not shove all of them down our throats when at least expected, finally, IF they didn’t make such a gigantic (an unnecessary) shift in the category of the episode, I could have given it 10 points. It’s gets as much as it gets because still, it was fun to watch, although only first 20 minutes.