O hay, development.
There’s some character development in this episode. It appears that Fukube may be coerced into a metamorphosis akin to the one that Oreki went through [Chitanda acted as the catalyst for Oreki’s transformation, Oreki may be acting as the catalyst for Fukube’s, albeit a lot less aggressively]. Fukube referred to himself as an “encyclopedia” in an earlier episode; it’s quite the opposite of Oreki, who needs details in order for his brain to ultimately deduce precisely.
This is plain speculation, but Fukube doesn’t seem to have an inferiority complex. Oreki does solve all of his cases, and as Irusu pointed out, he takes it for granted [she also gave him the speech on not acting so nonchalantly whilst doing so — it’s discouraging to others who are not gifted]. But Oreki doesn’t commit his actions with malice in mind, he’s naturally like that [lethargy reigns triumphant over everything else]. Chitanda coerced Oreki to change by forcing him out of his lethargic shell of sorts, Fukube may be coerced to change by Oreki, albeit by a more subtle manner [Fukube’s not an idiot, and his friends do not treat him like one; but, a jocular personality may attenuate taking someone seriously].
On-going Thoughts: Concluding Thoughts
Anyways, aside from the speculations, it’s an enjoyable episode. Hyouka’s a bit difficult to categorize outside the mystery and slice of life genre; it appears to have subtleties. In every mystery anime, the mysteries ultimately serve to complete a purpose; in Gosick, it was to ultimately construct a broad picture, a grand scheme; in Hyouka, the mysteries serve to irritate, and to force the characters to change. Oreki from a lethargic, underutilized mind into one more privy to try, and Oreki from a jocular clown into something greater.