Bug#171901: acknowledged by developer (Re: dselect: If some packages fail to install, others are silently)
> This is just how things work, if dpkg runs into a problem it bails out
> fairly early on (or generaly creates an insane spew of messages as the
> original problem cascades into more problems later on). It's best that
> things give up early.
> You the user are expected to correct the problem and re-run the install
> until it completes without error.
Perhaps a message to this effect should be displayed. I certainly had no
inkling that the failure of one package would affect others, and it's not
exactly intuitive behavior. Especially since (as I recall) it does a few
other packages after the first ones fail, so one might think that all
working packages had been correctly installed.