I suppose I really should have gotten used to Code Geass finishing episodes with "What the Hell?!" moments by now, but for some reason I can never quite get comfortable with that expectation.
Anyhow, episode eleven of Code Geass R2 reveals exactly how Lelouch gets to be in two places at one, via some kind of Mission Impossible-esque disguise and perhaps the world's coolest nanny, who appears quite happy to snog Shirley for the sake of her charge (and also leaves me wondering why I didn't get the phone call to play Lelouch's stand-in, I can gesticulate in a wildly camp manner too you know!).
Beyond new worries at Ashford Academy for Lelouch, this episode once again turns the deus ex machina into an art form, turning what appears to be an unassailable advantage for both the Chinese Federation and Britannia into a complete defeat for the Eunuchs which forces Britannia's withdrawal for that conflict, albeit with Kallen still hostage and under their careful watch. Deus ex machine of the week was, perhaps predictably, another new Knightmare, complete with some arbitrarily kick-ass weaponary.
As always with Code Geass R2, it's oddly compelling stuff even when you get the impression they're making it up as they go along. No matter how implausible, there's still a real thrill in watching Zero pull an astounding victory out of nowhere, and this episode also managed to remind us all that it doesn't always take itself entirely seriously with a scene where Lelouch basically calls up Shirley to ask her what to do, a decision that could impact an entire (and massive) country.
If there's one thing I've learned about this show (and R2 in particular), it's that if you don't take it too seriously then it's easily the most enjoyable anime on the air right now. The action is pretty break-neck, making for plenty of over-powered mecha action, the plots are crazy but cheering on Zero is so much fun these days it's hard to care, and indeed the overall plot of one man against the world so beloved of video games equally oozes coolness in its own way. It seems that my ability to criticise turns to mush in the wake of this series, almost to the point where I wonder if I've been Geass'ed myself...