I think that the problem doesn't just lie with the removal of Jon Anderson( he's been gone before and Drama is a great album), but also the removal of Wakeman's son was a dumb decision. Geoff Downes had some mediocre talent back in 1980, but now he doesn't play well at all. Also, the main issue I find is that the material itself is just too weak and undeveloped. However, Howe's solo piece is perhaps the best piece on the album.
What do you call an alligator in a vest? An investigator.