That mystery could have obviously been solved beforehand.
Hyouka’s typically not the type of series to associate drama with. It’s been primary a mystery/slice of life anime, so when “actual drama” is brought in on the occasion, there’s always the curiosity as to whether it’s going to be “good” drama, or melodrama. Surprisingly, Hyouka pulled off the drama well. It didn’t seem sporadic, unnatural, or rushed; everything flowed, that’s a rarity nowadays [some series find the need to put drama into everything, regardless of the genre; example: Tasogare Otome X Amnesia].
Fukube’s been getting a lot of character development; I really expected it to end melodramatically. His “inferiority complex” so to speak has resulted in an abnormal “depression” of sorts for him; he’s usually the jocular jack of all trades, it’s bizarre to see him like that. However, we saw his character “adapt”, or rather “accept” the current conditions [or at least the ending insinuated it; he could still be depressed, but he didn’t lash out in ridiculous ways].
We also saw the use of numerous plot devices. Although the mystery itself was fantastic, it wasn’t exactly practical to solve; Oreki’s essentially superhuman. The integral plot devices to this mystery, and to prior others were Irusu, and Oreki’s Sister. His sister served in delivering the book on a serendipitous occasion, and Irusu often foreshadows and characterizes the characters [In a prior episode, she noted Oreki’s nonchalance with his ability; in this episode, he noted Chitanda as being very dependent; I’m not saying that the next arc will be centered around Chitanda, but there’s a chance that it will be [there’s also a chance that she won’t, since there was already a prior arc about her; it’s more practical to have an arc revolving around Mayaka]. The grand scheme, with numerous players having an “inferiority complex” or a “nonchalance to talent” was also stressed.
Hyouka’s getting progressively more intriguing. It began as a slice of life mystery, with occasional character development [but the mysteries were the integral parts of the show; the character development was just an added treat]. But with this arc, it took a stride from the norm; it focused more on the characters themselves, then it did the mystery [the mystery was logical and planned, but it wasn’t quite as “oh, I see” as it could have been. Perhaps the mystery could have been possible if one spoke or read Japanese.
Oh right, that “epiphany track” that played was awesome.