And so the mystery of toilet bowl-chan unfolds…
|Hello everybaddy! Recently I’ve been in higher spirits as I’m finally left with one last exam (which also happens to be Japanese) and then I’ll be free! I am still running on a super high and I am literally bouncing in anticipation for Hyouka yaaaaay.|
On Houtarou’s subtle prompting, Eru decides to involve Mayaka and Satoshi to help her solve the mystery centered around her uncle. The Classics Club has their first official meeting outside of school, and at where else would it be other than their club president’s glorious house mansion?
This is like Farmville all over again
Their meeting goes surprisingly smoothly and efficiently (despite several breaks in between to switch locations to admire the wonderful pond and fill their hollow stomachs) and information reels in from all four members of the club. Condensing their long discussion, what they basically established from the research was that the incident happened 45 years ago in June, and subsequently caused Sekitani Jun, Eru’s uncle, to be expelled in October. The incident happened at Kamiyama High, and was mainly instigated by the Classics Club president, Sekitani Jun, although the entire student population was involved.
And here we observe the members of the Classics Club in their natural state
The question now is why and how did the incident happen? With the theories of Eru, Mayaka and Satoshi shot down, they all look to Houtarou with high expectations. His genius brain then somehow links the entire dump of information they had uncovered, and comes up with a spectacular conclusion – the students were standing up against the teachers and principal, who had originally wanted to shorten the cultural festival to less than five days. No violence was involved, but they could’ve planned a boycott, which left the school management with no choice but to negotiate with the students and restore the cultural festival to its original length – at the cost of the expulsion of Sekitani Jun.
With the mystery “solved”, the Classics Club parts for the day, but Eru still has a lingering thought in her mind – if what Houtarou said was true, then why did she cry so hard?
“Watashi wa kininarimasu!” Oh no Eru, not again
Houtarou is brilliant!!! I think I might consider marrying a fictional character. I find myself enjoying most episodes nowadays because of the amazing ways in which Houtarou’s brain works. Although the solution to the mystery wasn’t of the breathtaking, mind-blowing kind, in a way it’s still awesome that he could come up with a conclusion and link all the evidence together on such a short notice. Although Eru’s thoughts at the end of the episode and the title of the next episode “The Truth of the Classics Club and Its History” kind of suggests that his deductions may not be entirely right, I still think he’s pretty close. The pacing of this episode was slow, but that’s Hyouka for you, and I feel the beautiful animation, the interesting characters and the easygoing vibe of the anime more than make up for it.
I’d also like to point out the intricate uses of different themes in this anime. During the first part of episode 4, Houtarou and Satoshi had a little lover’s quarrel friendly debate about colors in relation to their personalities. The scene felt out of place, maybe unnecessary really, but that’s what makes it worth thinking more about. Of course, Satoshi describes himself as a rose-colored person, but Houtarou disagrees and says that he’s shocking pink. The selection of such a neon color is pretty obvious as Satoshi portrays your typical obnoxiously loud, outgoing character who likes to stand out, but perhaps there’s more to this – “My default status is shocking pink, nobody can change it, I can’t be dyed.” Many people have commented that Satoshi has the least character depth out of all the Classics Club members, but this might be hinting that there’s something more to him. He’s usually easygoing and lucky, and it felt weird for him to say something so… rebellious? His cheerfulness may just as well be a façade, and it seems as if he’s hiding something important that could possibly change our entire opinion of him. I don’t mean he’s like inherently evil or anything like that, but maybe he has a dirty little secret that makes him different from others. Don’t even get my fujoshi mind started on this, but it’s worth looking into, and I hope that they’ll expand on this.
On the other hand, Houtarou is grey – again, pretty obvious why. Grey is associated with being a background color and the words “calm”, “composed”, and “conservative” may come to mind. Houtarou is exactly just that, but another thing about grey is that it doesn’t really have its own unique, prominent characteristics – to put it in other words, grey may be easily dyed. And I think that’s exactly what’s been happening. Ever since meeting Eru and becoming part of the Classics Club, he’s been changing. Whereas he couldn’t be bothered to do anything unless it was absolutely necessary, Eru and her strange mysteries have been inexplicably influencing him to work his brain, to do more than he usually does. Her own colorful personality is rubbing off on him, and he’s slowly being dyed. I could go on all day about colors and personalities (I see Eru as violet and Mayaka as green) but in short, I really do appreciate these little thought-provoking scenes that Hyouka presents, and they are interesting to analyze. I’d also like to hear your thoughts on this – do you think that that scene had more to it beneath the surface?