Script approval. John Hurt once said something like: "I don't want the writers coming on the set and act. That's my job. I don't tell them how to write, that's their job, and I should respect them enough to let them do it." Stewart and Spiner, while they have a lot invested in their characters... they sure aren't writers. To be fair, some of Stewart's notes were solid, but as we're saying, the idea was not all it could have been.
Yeah, but poor Piller. He handcuffs himself by *trying* to keep to Roddenberry's vision of no intercrew strife, and Stewart tells him he should forget everything Picard et al have done in the past cause we want to move forward.
I guess it's a damn good thing that Frakes doesn't seem to care that his character is ridiculously underdeveloped compared to Data and Picard...While I was reading Piller's book, it occureded to me that the logical thing would be to make Riker as Kurtz. and then it struck how dumb that would feel and how little emotional resonance it would have because....we don't really care about the frigging second in command.
Hell...THOMAS Riker is more interesting.