I guess we're all different. When I used to talk about "Skins" (series 1 and 2) to one of my online friends, she HATED it with a passion, and was like "It's so unrealistic". But later, in Series 3, she became totally hooked and wouldn't let me talk about it in case I mentioned something she hadn't seen!
Dave, your memory must be failing. Effie had issues throughout Series 3 and was gradually falling apart. She was in a state of notable craziness from about three quarters of the way through the series. Series 4 picked up exactly where I expected it to.