Some of the mediocre episodes have taken on a special significance on the umpteenth watch. Like Jonathan Frake's hammy performance in A Matter of Perspective. "You're a dead man, Apgar!". One of the best unintentionally funny moments in the series.
Unintentionally funny? The opposite I thought. It's supposed to draw attention to how unreliable and ridiculous Apgar's version of events is. We know Riker is highly unlikely to act like that (and get beaten up by a middle aged physicist). Frakes hams it up in that scene because the script begs for it! He's pretty good throughout in my opinion, I think it's a nice episode.
I have always really liked Evolution too. Stubbs is a great character, it's a clever little story, and does some nice things with Wesley and the return of Beverly. The special effects are gorgeous, Ron Jones's music is great, and it's nicely directed. It's a little too heavy on the nanites and the tech at the expense of the characters, but it's a nice opener I think.