Even though I was only 11, I can remember watching news reports (and possibly the actual debate) about that famous Lloyd Bentsen diss in the 1988 Vice-Presidential debate. You know the one: "Senator, I served with Jack Kennedy: I knew Jack Kennedy; Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy." Of course, it was all lost on a child at the time.
As a kid, I didn't note/grasp the Quayle reaction. Now, it's quite interesting to see this back and forth after watching the insanely controlled debates of this year. Sure, McCain looks angry in the debates but he doesn't look as angry/traumatized/insulted/humiliated as Qualye in the following clip.
Bush/Quayle maintained their lead and we all know who won that election. It just goes to show that those who get the zingers in don't necessary win the prize.