The fallout from the recent matches has left Rio pretty much shattered at this point.
What They Say:
Episode 9 - Joker
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
After the previous episode with how things played out against Cartia and the loss of the Howard Resorts, life has taken an unusual turn for those that live and work there. Rio has holed herself up and taking all the blame for things and has essentially gotten very withdrawn from the world. Howard himself is working up all the legal angles he can, at least in the background, since he's spending his time fishing with a few others outside and looking rather longingly at his old resort. The girls in general are a bit somber about things but they're doing the best to carry on while being concerned for Rio. Rio for her part is trying to come out of things with a little help from the kids who are trying to cheer her up and get her back on track.
While things have changed hands in the larger picture, the resorts basically carry on as they always have as there are many people coming through to gamble, see shows and have fun. And enjoy the ladies who work there. But there's a different air about it for some of them as they feel like something is missing even as they do keep winning and working through the tables. The lack of Rio in their lives, her Goddess of Victory nature that elevated it all to a new level, is something that a lot of people won't notice in the end, but the really key players will and their presence or lack thereof can really change the flow and feel of a place like this.
Because of all that has happened, Rio's simply lost her touch at this point, though all the girls and some of the players try to help her along again. What makes it hard for her is that she's lots her confidence in general and building that up through dealing can be a cagey issue since the players want to win, but they want her back as well. It gets kind of comical along the way with how some of the guys are with it, but there's a serious turn it takes with Rosa being possessed that adds a little more menace to it. It's hard to see it too much that way when you have several bunny girls standing around her looking all cute and adorable as well. It's all given a more straightforward goal from what she says, but it's just another element to getting Rio back to the kind of bouncy, fun and outgoing girl she was at the start of the series.
After the way things have gone for the last couple of episodes, the ninth episode of Rio has a rather unusual feeling to it. It's not exactly quiet, but it is, as it deals with the fallout from Howard losing his resort and Rio losing her confidence. It leaves the show feeling a little lost and listless, though there are various things afoot in order to try and regain the place for Howard and to get Rio's confidence back. The cast as a whole tries some basic approaches and it has its moments, but it never comes together in a way that really engages or excites you to be truly vested in it. I continue to find Rio a show that does not need a serious plot in the slightest to be good and that introducing one has reduced its overall effectiveness.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.