Now, it should be said, that I have two criteria for naming something a "Top Crusher Episode." First, of course, is an episode that kicks butt on its own terms, and showcases her character to great effect. But also, there is the episode that is average or even below average, but falls into the category of "fan service" - an episode with moments to satisfy the perviest of Bev pervs.
OK, so without further ado...
Cause and Effect
Good old Aunt Adele... How many babes has she bagged me?
This is a superb episode. Beverly isn't the main character per se, but she is a main focal point in terms of discovering the repeating time loop. Gates McFadden gives some really nice solo performances that show us silently her thought processes.
Beverly's about to say yes to an uncomfortable request.
The Dancing Doctor. What more is there to say? Had this episode featured Beverly in a ball gown, it might have made the top 5. But it's still fun.
The fact that it finally took an Irumodic Syndrome diagnosis to get a full-on kiss is eternally to Picard's shame.
Although this is a Picard spotlight, we get two versions of Dr. Beverly here. If they had only given us the early pre-highlight Bev, this might have made the list, too. But she rocks the old-lady look, and proves you can still keep a trim figure into your sixties.
OK. Now, let's get serious.
5. The Big Goodbye
I believe the phrase you're looking for is "hep looking broad." Yes, that's good.
Not only is this a pretty good episode, but it also features a bunch of Bev-fan service! She hikes her skirt up, trips on her heels, chews gum, gets offered Tommy Dorsey tickets, and wears stockings with the line up the calf. Her icy reaction to the cock-blocking that Whelan and Data perpetrate against her is also classic.
4. Sub Rosa
Beverly gets ready for a night of Ronin-rockin'...
OK, look. I know this is not a great episode. It is tonally weird, kind of slow-paced, and definitely a real departure from the TNG norm. I'm not sure how I'll rate it when we get to it. But for a Bev-perv? I call your attention to the two attached screen-grabs, and the copious amounts of orgasmic acting present. Is it weird to share a spectral-sex-romp with your deceased grandmother? Sure. But that doesn't change that Beverly is hot.
And all of the perviness aside, it is certainly a spotlight on her character, in which we learn lots about her. You know, besides what her "O" face looks like.
3. The Naked Now
Look, again, this is not the greatest episode. But it's certainly a great moment for Crusher/Picard "shippers." Their scene, pictured above, in which Crusher finds him very... very... is a truly classic bit of chemistry between both the characters and the actors. Not now, Doctor!
A penny just won't do for the thoughts I'm having...
I had to get to this one some time. This is the culmination of things for the Crusher/Picard crowd. Crusher and Picard, attached at the mind by alien technology, finally discover each other's innermost feelings about their relationship. So why don't they consummate things at the end? Jeez, I don't know. But hey, it's better than "Menage A Troi," amirite?
1. Remember Me
All byyy myyy-seeeeelfffff....
This is the ultimate Beverly show. For one thing, she appears in about 40 of its 45 minutes. So there's that. But she also deduces the nature of the universe, runs the entire ship on her own, throws herself around the set in some killer stunt work, and has some terrific acting moments. This episode really builds her character and makes her concretely admirable. Top it off with the fact that this is a superb show in its own right, and you have the easy number 1 on this list.
What are your favorite Bev shows? Let us know in the comments!