Initial comment on Facebook by a friend:
"Ugh ugh ugh...I hated Dr. Pulaski on Star Trek!"
Comment 1 :Yeah. She did suck.
Comment 2: She worked some nerves.
Comment 3: She wasn't that bad.
You have to remember it in context. Gates McFadden was actually really flat as an actress the first season. Really they all were and trying to find their way. I remember Picard gave Beverly the prime directive speech in the turbo lift and it was like Beverly (or even Gates McFadden) was like "Ok, I'm outta here"
So they bring in Dr. Pulaski who I remember actually had some character. First thing she did was clash with Data. They did a lot of things to make Next Gen work in second season: bring back the Romulans (because the Ferringi weren't cutting it), give Riker a beard to make him less of a Re-Kirk, get rid of Yar, bring in Guinan, and trade off the flat acting red head with someone with a bit more character. Oh, and make Wesley more respectable (and eventually get him off the show).
I liked how Pulaski called Data an "It". Let's just be honest for a moment, the argument of an actual life form, and Data being one of them, was an argument throughout the whole series. As a Doctor of organic beings I could honestly see her view of Data as an "it". As an appliance since a human made him. And it made for a good story arc much akin to the Spock/McCoy debates, which I'm sure it is what they were going for. As it stood, it helped add some less perfect and more humanizing elements to the characters and she helped pull Next Gen out of the first season quagmire.
Oh, and how she worked Picard's nerves to the point he would rather be on a shuttle craft for hours with Wesley than have Pulaski operate on him was classic!
I love me some Dr. Pulaski and missed her when she was gone.