when we finally see Jasmine, she's practically benevolent (besides that whole eating people thing.) It seems a huge change in character that just doesn't work for me.
I'm not sure "benevolent" is the right term. She made people happy and content, yes, but she did so by removing their free will. That's an old story that's been done many times in Science Fiction-----the Star Trek: New Frontier
novels have also done it, for one-----but this approach to the tale worked reasonably well.
My complaint with season 4 is mainly about early Cordy. Before we learn it's not really her in the pilot's seat, her behavior just seems weird
. As in, completely wrong. And even knowing ahead of time what's up, those episodes are still hard to watch.