And why was it many of the chief engineers were so unlikable?
OK, Singh was fairly likable, but then they immediately killed him. Usually whenever you see a character who is totally nice, you know they're gonna GET IT.
Lynch (sorry, Leland T. Lynch) and Logan were insufferable. I guess the only way early TNG could have conflict between the crew would be to have nobodies come in and cause the conflict (see also Kosinski). MacDougal wasn't much of a character either. She spent most of the time being annoyed.
I guess Argyle came off the best, since he got to be in it twice, but then the actor cheated to try and get the role full-time.