Saviours of the world or not, a magical girl still needs to study, and thus Akane and friends' slipping grades are the subject of debate as this week's Vividred Operation begins.
Given their need to improve at school, there's only one thing for it - a study session at Akane's place. Being who she is, Akane is determined that Rei should be part of their group, and thus the entire team do their bit to try and invite their would-be friend along - needless to say, this falls on death ears, or at least it does until Rei realises Akane's relationship to the Manifestor Engine and its creator, and sensing a way to end her own personal predicament she eventually decides to tag along.
Although her hunt for information has some unexpected but ultimately fruitless twists, the whole thing is eventually disturbed by the appearance of another Alone - an alien equipped with some powerful EMP technology which disables all electronics in its path. As it looks set to cut a swathe through Japan before reaching Blue Island, it's up to the girls to put a stop to its rampage as soon as possible, while for Rei this serves as another opportunity to fulfil her contract with the mysterious puppet master who is pulling her strings.
For the most part, this seemed all set to be another formulaic episode of Vividred Operation, as it went through its fun and frivolous first half before introducing its "monster of the week" and setting it up for a well-animated if predictable defeat. However, we've been left with a tantalising sting in the tail which brings us a juicy cliffhanger - although I doubt this will ultimately make any huge changes to the direction of the show, it is both needed and appreciated in terms of spicing things up a little just as the show felt as though it might get stuck in a rut. Whether it can pick up this currently small twist and run with it remains to be seen, but it's a step in the right direction to avoid things getting too dull, that's for sure.