Really enjoyed the direction in the first few minutes, especially the use of crows to underline the desolation. Good thing that this episode didn't dwell too long on (the still very important point of) how boring Mahiro's life would be without his mini-harem of Lovecraftian beasts/magical girls, and brought us to the climatic battle for - you guessed it - adult games.
Kind of funny how previously, Nyaruko & Co. had to fight a villain out to destroy adult games "for the sake of the children", only to now fight a villain who wanted to horde
as many adult games as possible, and in fact decided to crush Mahiro when he said that adult games "weren't for kids." What are we to take away from this? Well, I think the creators were basically saying that wanting to grossly censor all media for the sake of the children and being obsessive about playing adult games were both bad - that you need to exercise moderation, one way or the other, in order to enjoy these things. The references helped pepper the message a bit:
Here, of course, is the sword that cleaves evil ...
You know, this bit of cream cheese towards the end of the episode didn't bother me. It was kind of touching, actually. Mahiro finally lightens up a bit once he's given a taste of how weepingly dull his bland suburban life was before he met Nyaruko. Sometimes people in your life annoy you intensely, but things just feel boring without them around, and anyway, they're decent people who do care about you. Accepting your true friends for who they are is a part of growing up, but I also think the show did a good job with its anti-censorship message - that being against censorship doesn't mean you necessarily have a mountain of adult games you want to play that you think are totally OK for little kids to play, too. That there can be a more nuanced discussion about the ratings system, which appears to be lacking in Japan (among other countries, I might add ...)
This was definitely my favorite series of this season, and will be sorely missed. I could see a second series working, too - we didn't see all that much of Nyaruko's world, after all, so there's room for more exploration there. Some more cast members could be introduced, too. If a second season is announced I know I'll welcome it. But for now, this show will remain the bright spot of Spring 2012's anime season.