I think that part of what is going on has to do with the storytelling conventions of shorter seasons than "legacy" Trek fans are used to when we remember that the shows that brought us into the franchise had 22 or 26 eps a season. This is a pretty new paradigm in TV, and we've started to see patterns emerge in how seasons work. They have an almost ternary, ABA form. The first few episodes (the first A) are meant to set the premise, draw viewers in, and often have a fair amount of spectacle. The middle, the B section, slows down and will often complicate the story/premise and offer experimental or contrasting formats. The last A section reprises the beginning in terms of conventionality, spectacle, and stakes. This seems to be the general form of a 10 episode season of streaming TV. Of course there are variations, but this is what I've loosely observed. PIC S2 had a really good first A section! Fans were excited. So the reactions tended to be hyperbolic. There were improvements over S1, especially in terms of characterization, in the first few episodes, and this added to it. The B section is more of a mixed bag because of the contrast in feel to the A section. the story elements it complicated/introduced were a little bit odd and for me, impossible to judge until we see the ending. But fans reacted to it just as hyperbolically. I would wager that the last two episodes will engender a similar intensity of reaction. We'll see! Disclaimer: this is half-baked because I haven't had the time or inclination to flesh it out fully.