After a couple of really pretty shaky episodes of Yakushiji Ryoko No Kaiki Jikenbo recently, I'd steeled myself for more of the same with episode nine... But turned out to be pleasantly surprised.
Sure, this latest instalment of the series is no magnum opus, but it goes places that are far more interesting to watch than giant lizards or killer trees. In short, we learn that despite the forces that Ryoko can exert in her position of power, there's always somebody higher up the tree - In this case, that somebody is an organisation known as Shiba (don't they make cat food? Oops, sorry, wrong Sheba), the 'Queen' of whom has taken more than a passing interest in Ryoko's activities.
Thus, a campaign starts to both strip Ryoko of her power while simultaneously discrediting her. It seems to be working, but Ryoko isn't one to lay down and give up and thus takes her revenge straight to its source....
Most importantly of all, we finally seem to be getting on to the important facts regarding the 'origins' of Ryoko - It's been made clear from the very start that there is more to her than meets the eye, and this episode begins to ever-so-slightly unravel those mysteries. This makes for a massively more watchable experience than those damned killer trees, so I for one welcome it, and actually find myself more that a little intrigued to see what revelations are laid out in episode ten.