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View Poll Results: Hyouka - Episode 17 Rating
Perfect 10 36 42.35%
9 out of 10 : Excellent 35 41.18%
8 out of 10 : Very Good 9 10.59%
7 out of 10 : Good 2 2.35%
6 out of 10 : Average 2 2.35%
5 out of 10 : Below Average 0 0%
4 out of 10 : Poor 1 1.18%
3 out of 10 : Bad 0 0%
2 out of 10 : Very Bad 0 0%
1 out of 10 : Painful 0 0%
Voters: 85. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 2012-08-14, 10:19   Link #81
Pocari_Sweat
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And we are done with the Culture Festival Arc. Although it did feel draggy, overall it was excellently done and this episode was a strong finisher to the arc. Houtarou basically went "Un-go" mode in unraveling the mysteries and I lold at the way he managed to sneak in blackmailing the student council president into buying a large chunk of the Hyouka copies. I also particularly liked the bit of commentary where the student council president was upset how the writer of the A Corpse by Evening was similar to Oreki in nature. Extremely skilled in an area, but doesn't give a damn, in others a prodigy in a certain area. For Oreki it's his detective and analytical skills, and for the writer, his ability to write what is apparently an amazing story whilst not even trying. I'm taking the purpose for this is to encourage Oreki to not let his talent remain untapped.

I do think a few things prevent this episode from being a perfect 10/10 though. First is that the fact that the best mysteries always give a "show don't tell" approach. Unfortunately, the revelations of the mysteries here was pretty much like the case in Un-Go where it was told, step by step tracing back to the clues, rather than letting the audience figure out by being "shown" the solution. It feels like giving the solutions out to a complicated test paper rather than shown how to solve the said test paper questions. Nonetheless, the way it was told was excellent so I'm not gonna be too hard on it.

Another criticism I'll make is the character of Chitanda. She has... done very little this arc and is the character that has developed the least throughout the series. At this point, I'm starting to get a little bit sick of her antics and I'm seeing little else but a "moeblob" character whose a romantic interest to Oreki whilst providing comic relief.

The male characters in Hyouka are definitely stronger than the female characters... but this probably a good trade considering how many slice of life animes these days (even popular, highly recepted ones) put females on the forefront whilst making fun of or ignoring its male counterpart - See Kokoro Connect and to a lesser extent Tari Tari for example.

Anyways, what a fantastic arc that was. I'll even say that was better than the teacher/student getting expelled arc (sorry forgot the guy's name), and DEFINITELY better than the Eba arc. This puts Hyouka around the 8/10 for me now up from 7/10 after the subpar Eba arc.
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Old 2012-08-14, 12:02   Link #82
Julio C
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GMT View Post
The girl she was talking to was one of the cosplayers (and one of her seniors) at the start of the arc, Ayako Kouchi. The one with the Vocaloid cosplayer hangers-on. Mayaka gets into a debate with Kouchi about whether or not "masterpieces" exist, and if it's possible for a work to be born a "masterpiece." She mentions a one-off work called A Corpse By Evening and says she'll bring it the next day, so that the other girl can see what she's talking about.

As it turns out, Mayaka can't find A Corpse By Evening, but does find another one called Body Talk, which she thinks is good as well, and still many levels above hers.

When she tells Kouchi that she couldn't find A Corpse By Evening, Kouchi's friends suggest that Mayaka was just doing an ass-pull to get them off her back. Kouchi tells her friends that if they hadn't heard of the work, then they should kindly STFU.

At the end of the arc, Mayaka ends up borrowing Oreki's copy of A Corpse By Evening, and she brings it to Kouchi. As it turns out, she already had a copy of the work, and she kindof agrees with Mayaka about the nature of masterpieces . . . so much so that she stopped reading A Corpse By Evening halfway through and buried it at the back of her closet so she'd never have to see it again, and so she could be in denial about the nature of masterpieces.

Kouchi reveals that she knew the writer of A Corpse By Evening, and felt a substantial inferiority complex toward the writer . . . since the writer was not a big fan of manga . . . and yet, the writer came up with a masterpiece manga as her very first (and as far as she knew only) entry in the field. While doing this, she sketches some graffiti on the rail.

Kouchi, obviously distraught, tells Mayaka that she refuses to read A Corpse By Evening, because then she'd be overwhelmed by how OMG AWESOME it is, and she'd be eagerly awaiting more work from the writer . . . which isn't going to ever happen.

After Kouchi leaves, Mayaka looks at the doodle on the rail, and realizes that it's the logo from the back of Body Talk. The same manga that she'd previously asserted that, while not the masterpiece that A Corpse By Evening was, it was still "a hundred levels" above her work.

It then hits her that she'd been debating about masterpieces with a girl whose own work was significantly better than her's . . . a girl so crushed by a non-fan manga genius that she's retreated to the safety of denial. In other words, she'd fought with a girl who'd already fought the same battle over masterpieces, talents, innate talents, and expectations that those of lesser talent hold of those of greater talent, lost miserably, and was still light-years ahead of where Mayaka was. It's a realization that does bad things to her feelings of self-worth.
Wow, thanks for that explanation. Now I feel Mayaka's pain.
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Old 2012-08-14, 13:05   Link #83
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Originally Posted by MartianMage View Post
@Reckoner

While I would agree with you that the ending was actually pretty meh(you have to admit the whole Juumonji thing was silly and it's no wonder it failed making the entire thing pointless) I won't say that this arc was outright bad. The middle parts were fun to watch IMO but yeah the end wasn't that good.
Just to be clear here, I haven't hated any arc in this series. I was just saying that I don't think this was Hyouka's strongest by nay means. The conclusion wasn't as neat as the others.
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Old 2012-08-14, 13:32   Link #84
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You know it's funny: Last episode I was willing to think Fukube was being really harsh on himself. After all Oreki hadn't really figured out anything amazing yet. He was just lucky enough to have received the manga and drew conclusions from the blurb that anyone with half a brain could've been able to do. But then this episode happens and he just completely blew me away. Would not like to be in Fukube's shoes.

It's a bit hard to believe there was no motive behind Oreki's sister giving him the broken pen and manga, though. If so, the coincidence of it all would've been Gosick level. But I suppose in this case it was intentional.
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Old 2012-08-14, 13:40   Link #85
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The comic, maybe.

The broken pen is another story.
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Old 2012-08-14, 14:56   Link #86
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Originally Posted by alarmadadna hadi View Post
I prefer the approach they've been using so far, adding petty post hoc rationalizations and "You may fail at x...BUT [insert moralism]", "it's okay", "love yourself" crap would take away the whole meaning.
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Originally Posted by Qilin View Post
The solution here is that there is no solution. The only thing they can possibly do is to just suck it up and accept the reality.
Let me clarify a bit here. By solution I do not mean a good end for Satoshi or anything. The show could say "Yep, life is unfair. Learn to live with it" and I'll be totally ok with that. What I tried to say is, to me, the show didn't even say "suck it up" yet. I feel the author still left it open to explore more about it. Considering that the relationship between Houtarou and his sister is unexplored, I think my impression is not totally baseless.
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Old 2012-08-14, 16:48   Link #87
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Originally Posted by Hyper View Post

Short answers: Anjou is the one who wrote the script for that doujin. She is a friend of both the Manga society president and Kouchi Ayako, the sempai that argued with Mayaka. She transferred out last year in the story.

Mayaka story is that she think a masterpiece is something that born that way. Ayako said she disagree. To prove her point, Mayaka want Ayako to read "A Corpse by Evening" (Mazui translation). Along the way she found "Body Talk" which she think is also good, but still a level below A Corse by Even. She also commented that her own work is way below both. So when Ayako explained that she cannot bring herself to finish A Corpse by Evening, Mayaka understand her frustration. It is also similar to Satoshi's situation as well

That wasn't so short, was it? :P
lol thanks for the clarification. I figured it was something like that. The whole arc seems to showcase a sense of inferiority complex, well except Hotarou it seems.

I enjoyed this arc overall, mainly due to the focus on everyone else. The mystery wasn't as engaging for me, but the themes were more relatable.
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Old 2012-08-14, 17:12   Link #88
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Craxuan View Post
Note: Houtarou's 'blackmail' this time was more of a fair trade than a blackmail. Supposed that the chairman man up and let Houtarou announce the truth of the Jumonji Incident then his entire scheme would be rendered meaningless. Houtarou knows that and was actually on the toe for quite some time and actually gave some good conditions to the chairman. This was totally unlike the first blackmail where it was a complete one-sided threat and Houtarou completely uncaring for the smoker's feelings.

You could say that it is a sign that Houtarou grew up to consider people's feelings as he exerts his presence over the others.

And about the whole 'difference in talent' thing, I really never bothered about it quite much. It wasn't really something one should mull over too deeply. I'm good at writing, he's good at doing maths, she can draw, he can drive, she's good at fighting - once you really think about it, what is the point comparing your weakness against the another person's strength? Perhaps it's because the characters portrayed are very young, but it may have been slightly exaggerated in my opinion. We are unique the way we are. Even if I'm supposedly 'talentless' compared to him in let's say, deduction, there WILL be something along the same path that I can do better than the genius.

This is especially true when it comes to creation. 'A masterpiece is a masterpiece from the beginning', and adding behind this sentence, 'It does not matter from whom it is born from'. The most important thing is to recognize your own masterpiece and to be proud with it.

To put it in a sappy way, won't your talent feel sad that their own owner wouldn't recognize and acknowledge their biggest strength?
Yeah I have to say Houtarou's blackmail in this episode was closer to a deal. Maybe it does show how that Irisu incident did leave a mark on him. Could have done this another way, but here he arranges it so they all pretty much get what they want. Tanabe gets to conclude his goal and even gets an easier time doing it thanks to Houtarou and Satoshi cooperating. Houtarou gets those copies sold so they get out of a tough spot.
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Old 2012-08-14, 17:20   Link #89
Anh_Minh
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Well, what other deal was he going to offer?
- Even if he did rat Tanabe out... so what? It's just a little prank. Annoying, to be sure, but he wouldn't have gotten into the kind of trouble the other guy would have due to his family's position.
- The whole point (from Houtarou's point of view) was a publicity stunt.
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Old 2012-08-14, 20:02   Link #90
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I was expecting Satoshi to confront Houtarou on his jealousy sooner or later but it never happened.

Wonder if they're still going to do something with that.
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Old 2012-08-14, 23:31   Link #91
Qilin
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Originally Posted by Hyper View Post
Let me clarify a bit here. By solution I do not mean a good end for Satoshi or anything. The show could say "Yep, life is unfair. Learn to live with it" and I'll be totally ok with that. What I tried to say is, to me, the show didn't even say "suck it up" yet. I feel the author still left it open to explore more about it. Considering that the relationship between Houtarou and his sister is unexplored, I think my impression is not totally baseless.
Well, I'm not calling your impression baseless or anything. I'm just providing an alternative interpretation that I believe may fit better.

Back on topic, I figured that the show didn't need to say it. It's an open problem that has no solution. I think the fact that the episode ended on a happy note, with the Classics Club celebrating the end of the festival, was an indication that despite the issue of unequal talents, we should just take it in stride and enjoy life as it goes. While the problem won't go away, good company will make it a lot more tolerable.

Granted, I might be overreaching myself here. But still, interpreting it in that matter makes the entire episode so much more meaningful for me.
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Old 2012-08-14, 23:32   Link #92
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The whole arc seems to showcase a sense of inferiority complex, well except Hotarou it seems.
Oreki is just like the girl that wrote Body Talk. He already suffered his inferiority complex phase (i.e. all his childhood with his sister) and got over it. Satoshi is more like Mayaka: the failure (at that particular area of knowledge, be it drawing manga or "solving mysteries").
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Old 2012-08-15, 00:03   Link #93
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Granted, I might be overreaching myself here. But still, interpreting it in that matter makes the entire episode so much more meaningful for me.
I don't think you are. I actually like your interpretation, it's just seem to me that the author doesn't want us to make that conclusion yet.

In fact, this episode already had an effect on how I felt about the typical take on this issue in anime/manga/light novel. I just read from a rather popular light novel that went on about how talent is not an issue and how believing in oneself is the greatest strength and whatnot. And I was like "That's rather...childish." Hopefully this mindset of mine won't last too long (concerning enjoying a story, not real life) because otherwise I will probably have a problem with almost all shonen story out there.
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Old 2012-08-15, 04:20   Link #94
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Actually that's the kind of mindset you should adopt when you're feeling down about the difference in performance, isn't it?
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Old 2012-08-15, 04:58   Link #95
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I'm not sure if I haven't made it clear. The "mindset" I talked about is my own impression that "believe in yourselves" idea is childish. If I keep thinking that way I won't be able to enjoy most of the manga/anime/novel out there. Hyouka's take on the issue of differences in talent is a rather rare case.

For real life, I already accepted that life is unfair and some people are just better than me. Actually, a best friend of mine is exactly this case. Thankfully there are so many things to work on in this world that I (probably) can find something for myself to do.
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Old 2012-08-15, 05:09   Link #96
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I'm reminded of the opening like of Grappler Baki. It was something like "everyone who was born a male, once dreams of being the strongest". I guess it leaves out the part where thinking about if for a split second, most of us go "yeah, right".
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Old 2012-08-15, 05:12   Link #97
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Originally Posted by Hyper View Post
In fact, this episode already had an effect on how I felt about the typical take on this issue in anime/manga/light novel. I just read from a rather popular light novel that went on about how talent is not an issue and how believing in oneself is the greatest strength and whatnot. And I was like "That's rather...childish." Hopefully this mindset of mine won't last too long (concerning enjoying a story, not real life) because otherwise I will probably have a problem with almost all shonen story out there.
To be fair, it really is a naive idea to hold literally. I mean, it definitely plays a role in achieving success, but it's totally unrealistic if a story plays it out as the answer to all the conflicts that the characters face. That's what I like about Hyouka's take on it. While belief and friendship do nothing to actually resolve the problem at hand, they make life more bearable in spite of the problem. It struck me as a surprisingly mature way of handling the issue.
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Old 2012-08-18, 01:07   Link #98
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It's just occurred to me that while we can take it as a bittersweet ending, one can look at another angle and realized that this can be viewed as the opposite as well. Namely, Houtarou is someone who had seen the difference in talent for so long that he had given up on achieving anything in his life. In the course of the series he has been slowly coming out of that shell and finally accomplished quite a task in this arc.

Last edited by Hyper; 2012-08-18 at 15:16. Reason: why->while
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Old 2012-08-18, 09:53   Link #99
Qilin
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It's just occurred to me that why we can take it as a bittersweet ending, one can look at another angle and realized that this can be viewed as the opposite as well. Namely, Houtarou is someone who had seen the difference in talent for so long that he had given up on achieving anything in his life. In the course of the series he has been slowly coming out of that shell and finally accomplished quite a task in this arc.
Oh yes. This interpretation could work to capture the series as a whole, but that would necessitate some back story behind Houtarou's fixation on "energy conservation" philosophy.

The Houtarou we saw at the beginning suffered from low self esteem, to the point that he had to resort to self-handicapping to make himself feel better. He would have gone as far as avoiding to exert effort into his endeavors for the sake of protecting his own fragile self esteem from failure. It was clear that he had some sort of inferiority complex going back then, but if so, it would raise the question as to what caused him to turn out that way.

Whatever the case, it's still up in the air whether the show decides to address this point of curiosity or not.
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