1. Let's discuss the "copy" (as you've put it) of the original. Let's not go into the "copies" of the "copy".
2. "Imitate" and "Understanding" are inter-related. Making a watch which looks like a real Rolex is one thing but making a watch which looks, functions and almost as precised as the real Rolex is another matter.
In order to know which is the "best" copy, you'd need to compare that copy to others. Even then, "best" is relative. Keeping within the more absolute facts of the matter, the first copy of the original isn't necessarily the "best" precisely because of your second point (in conjunction with my comment on humans being fallible, the opposite is also true, a gifted copier could reproduce the original better than the original).