I recently rewatched TDA and I realized I was giving less credit than it deserves. This was the first time I watched it in a while and I could easily see it was a lot different then the two most recent seasons. I couldn't figure it out a first but then I realized. It was the cast bonding and the developed story plots, two things we don't normally see in TDRI and TDAS. The story plots are a lot more interesting and in depth in the first three seasons than in the last two. For example, in TDI Heather's alliance lasts many episodes, while in TDAS Mal and Al's lasts not even an episode. Gwen and Trent also got to bond and actually fall in love, while Mike and Zoey happened rather quickly. The main antagonists plans were also well thought out and you could understand them, while Mal and Scott got critisism for there's not being clearly stated. The second thing is the bonding. In the first three seasons, you are always watching the cast in their cabins, or trailers, or on the plane, talking to eachother and making friendships or forming enemies. In TDRI especially, you don't see that as much. I will say that TDAS did a better job of that IMO, but still, not as much as the first three. The reasons for these are because of the 13 ep format. The writers have to make sure they fit everything in and things get crammed and are hard to understand. This is just my opinion, and I'm interested to hear what you guys think about this.