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Author Topic: Hyouka  (Read 27139 times)

Offline ImperialX

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Hyouka
« on: April 22, 2012, 07:00:06 PM »
1:

Because it's KyoAni. Simple.

Art is absolutely gorgeous, but that's something we've already come to expect from KyoAni. In addition, you can see KyoAni try new things such as the stylized mystery sequences and the watercolor painting. I already eagerly await the OST, and the occasional use of classical music is more than welcome. I really like the atmosphere of this series too in general, but then again I really liked K-ON and I understand that to some people, this art style is a turn-off.

I don't expect any serious mysteries from this series, but that doesn't mean this is going to be anything as boring as Kami-sama no Memochou, KyoAni today is about the characters, and is a full-fledged high-quality production studio of B-Type series. Coming into this series expecting any form of real mystery will undoubtedly end in disappointment, looking at the resolutions of the mystery elements of this first episode, but that's not what you look for KyoAni to do. I'm glad to see that KyoAni is doing what they're best at in this series, and they're not trying to be a studio they're not. I know the K-ON haters will bash this show as well, citing the same reasons as they did for K-ON, but they just don't really get the appeal of KyoAni's works.

I'm eagerly awaiting the next episode. In fact, much more so than Fate/zero's next episode, if that says anything about how much I enjoyed this series thus far.

Offline leokiko.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2012, 07:27:31 PM »
1:

I'm an K-ON hater, but here the characters aren't boring at all. They aren't moe shit. This was an enjoyable episode, great visuals and interesting start for the characters. I'm not an fan of KyoAni, didn't enjoy most of their shows, but I could follow this. It depends on how much shows I am gonna follow in this season, which so far, has been proven to be amazing.

Anyway, I hope Hyouka does something different for the next episode, because the only fault in this one is that there was no hook. What's this about anyway? The purple-eyed girl seems to have her reasons for joining the club.

Also: HOLY SHIT HER EYES.

Offline Reckoner

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2012, 08:22:24 PM »
1:

Forgettable, boring drivel.

I first have to muse over what the selling point of this show is. As with any opener one has to latch onto something. It could be a character, it could be some exciting plot, but it has got to be something. What does this show have? From what I can tell nothing.

Our main character is some guy who apparently hates to waste energy, and does only what he must as quick as possible. OK cool, what a fascinating person right? No of course not. He's not funny, he's not charismatic, and his characterization is as flat as a pancake. What are we left with? Some dude with no scene presence apparently good at solving mysteries.

What kind of mysteries I dare say? Some boring school mysteries nobody gives two sh*ts about. Oh look a janitor accidentally locked in a girl in the classroom. FREAKING AMAZING!!!  Wait wut. Only the most interesting mysteries will ever entertain us in this show I gather. Dear god, I hope this is not all they have.

Now the main girl shown so far was somehow even more forgettable than our main character. She kinda just ran around with her shiny eyes while getting excited at every little thing. Of course our main character takes a fancy to her, we needed a nice overdone plot like this. Girl somehow entangles a dude into joining a club he didn't want to be a part of. Where have I seen this one before?

The visuals were not that spectacular. Yes they were good, particularly the background movement at times, but what about the high amount of static scenes of 3 people talking in a circle? If you continuously shuffle out nicely animated scenes with very static scenes why should I believe this is a better visual effort than the likes of EO7 Ao, Fate/zero, lupin III, Sakamichi no Apollon? KyoAni is not even that special in the visual department anymore.

Ending conclusion --- Am I seriously supposed to believe that Kadoakawa and KyoAni have passed off further productions of Haruhi and FMP for this piece of turd? What the ****... 3/10

Good god Kyoani, even DEEN is making better anime than you these days.

Offline Sorrows Neptune

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2012, 10:14:05 PM »
1:

Nothing really grabbing apart from the visuals; I pretty much agree with all of Reckoner's points. Although I did find Fukube to be really likable for some reason.

According to the synposis on MAL, there will be an overarcing mystery, so it won't all be highschool hijinks. My guess is they'll just using these mundane mysteries to introduce the characters, and build up to the actual thing. Or rather, that's what I'm hoping is the case.

Offline SQA

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2012, 07:05:05 AM »
1: Well, that's one way to use an animation budget.  It's damn pretty.

We'll see how it goes.  It could be good, it could be bad, but I do hope its interesting.

Offline AC

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2012, 07:49:46 AM »
2:

First things first: the fact that the show looks too much like K-On bugs me. I kinda hate that much, so this show did me the favor of reminding me about it.

But this is KyoAni, and this shit is bananas. I mean, look at how visually stunning that whole hair-vines scene is. No idea what the **** is up with that and all, but it certainly looks fabulous. And that horror water-painting scene. Man KyoAni, you're really blowing you budget on Hyouka. As for the characters, they look like those from K-On but in character, they remind me more of TMoHS. Male lead Oreki is a deadbeat, which isn't far off if you compare him with Kyon (for some reason, him being voiced by the same person who did Clannad's Tomoya didn't surprise me for some reason). Satoshi is a motivator who goes with the flow, just like Itsuki. Chitanda is Mikuru; yes, she isn't as moe as the latter but she plays the demure and feminine role in the group. The only ones missing now are those similar to Nagato and Suzumiya.

The story? I don't know what to make out of it exactly for now. It looks like a mystery/slice of life genre, but to me it's leaning more towards the latter. Heck, not even sure if it's going for a mystery plot. What's so mysterious about getting lock in a room and justifying a horror mystery in the simplest way possible? This isn't exactly Sherlock Holmes material, although there's a supernatural hint going on which I can't quite put my finger on. But one thing's for sure: the show executes every scene well. Although the so-called "mysteries" weren't engrossing per se, the show knows how to visually present them in such a way that they were riveting. For that, I give this show some credit.

I guess I'll stick around. Not because the show's great; I just wanna know what kind of show this really is.

Oh yeah, one question:

Oreki: "The only thing I still don't get is why you didn't hear the sound of the door being locked while you were inside."

Chitanda: "Ah, well that's because... I was looking at that building."

I FAIL TO SEE THE LOGIC.

I'm eagerly awaiting the next episode. In fact, much more so than Fate/zero's next episode, if that says anything about how much I enjoyed this series thus far.

You moe-fag you :U

Offline ImperialX

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2012, 08:26:12 AM »
You moe-fag you :U

I'm pretty proud of that. Adds a lot of variety to this forums, don't you think?

Offline Fumoffu!!

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2012, 12:59:49 PM »
1:

I watched because of the studio, and whilst I wasn't grabbed, I thought it was fairly good, and i think I could end liking this. I winced when I read this:
Ending conclusion --- Am I seriously supposed to believe that Kadoakawa and KyoAni have passed off further productions of Haruhi and FMP for this piece of turd?

Because whilst I didn't hate the episode, putting it like that makes it sound awful...

I'll stick around.

Offline ImperialX

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2012, 05:23:37 AM »
The visuals were not that spectacular. Yes they were good, particularly the background movement at times, but what about the high amount of static scenes of 3 people talking in a circle? If you continuously shuffle out nicely animated scenes with very static scenes why should I believe this is a better visual effort than the likes of EO7 Ao, Fate/zero, lupin III, Sakamichi no Apollon? KyoAni is not even that special in the visual department anymore.

I'm not going to comment too much about this, but just know that there were 25 animators named in the OP. How many shows today even have half that number? There is zero CG here, and just the scene where our protagonist walks into the room and sees her by the window has more frames than the amount of an entire episode of most anime series we see today. If you think Hyouka is nothing special visually...then I feel sorry for you, because I seriously don't know what can please your eyes.

Offline Reckoner

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2012, 12:57:21 PM »
I'm not going to comment too much about this, but just know that there were 25 animators named in the OP. How many shows today even have half that number? There is zero CG here, and just the scene where our protagonist walks into the room and sees her by the window has more frames than the amount of an entire episode of most anime series we see today. If you think Hyouka is nothing special visually...then I feel sorry for you, because I seriously don't know what can please your eyes.

Zero CG? You should look closer at the backgrounds. Almost no modern anime is completely devoid of CG. But that's not the point I was trying to make. In the past KyoAni used to be amazing visually and few studios could construct a visual experience like they could in the modern era, but I was just pointing out this is no longer the case. The show is indeed very fluid, more so than a lot of anime these days, but as a trade off you get over simplified character designs that are rather bland and boring (Save DEM eyes). And throughout the episode there was a constant switch off between these gloriously animated scenes and more static ones, so it wasn't like the experience the whole time was amazingly fluid. Keep in mind the visual experience more than just how fluid it is. People can make really fluid stick figures, do we call that amazing?

It's funny you point out that one scene to me because I felt that was unnecessarily fluid and out of place. It was really drawn out and made me actually sit back a second and think "really?"

Anyways the point wasn't that it was bad visually. No, it was simply that compared to other top line works they're nothing special so for me, because I saw this as really boring, this had absolutely nothing over any of the bigger titles this season.

Offline leokiko.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2012, 06:03:20 PM »
Lupin III's animation gave me a better impression than Hyou-ka's....

Offline Ascaloth

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2012, 12:26:36 AM »
Is it a bad thing that I hear Houtaro monologuing, and I'm thinking "Hey, that's me!" >_>

Maybe that's why I actually quite enjoyed it. 'Course, there's DEM EYES too...

Offline Ascaloth

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2012, 08:02:24 PM »
2:

Wow, is Eru being all pushy and demanding and personal-space-what-personal-space this episode. She certainly has a way of making people uneasy when she gets worked up; it's said that comedy = tragedy + time, and it certainly is amusing seeing Houtarou trying to wriggle out of her grip in vain. DEM EYES appears to be contagious, too.

I dunno, for all of the decidedly mundane pacing and premise, there's just something compelling about Hyouka that makes me want to watch more. DEM EYES, maybe? I'm starting to think there's a reason the good folks at KyoAni decided to choose this particular work for adaptation; all I can say is, I want to see what it is.

Offline leokiko.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #13 on: April 29, 2012, 11:27:24 PM »
I like this and I do not know why.

Offline AC

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2012, 12:07:02 AM »
2:

Three points:

1) Am I right to say that Houtarou is Kyon with a longer fringe? Because that's who he is: he always gets drawn into Eru's wishes (perhaps with the help of Satoshi's whims) relunctantly, is as optimistic as Ray Romano... in fact, I feel like I'm watching The Melancholy of Haruhu Suzumiya sans the alien/deity/time traveler elements. Could you blame me, especially when Chitanda said that the club should be doing club activities (i.e. fun stuff), just like how Suzumiya thinks SOS Brigade should do fun stuff?

2) What's with all this "eye power" thing that Eru and Mayaka have? Are they supernatural and even mean something, or are they just signs that KyoAni is trying to show off visually? Because there's nothing supernatural about the story... maybe there's something more to the story because Eru apparently has motives but so far, it's been about high school students solving mysteries that no one cares about.

3) If I were there to solve the mystery, I would suggest asking one of the borrowers in person. Problem solved... or am I missing the point?

Offline leokiko.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2012, 12:10:32 AM »
About 3) I thought that the entire episode.

I was like wtf?

Offline Fumoffu!!

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #16 on: April 30, 2012, 07:46:43 AM »
1) Am I right to say that Houtarou is Kyon with a longer fringe? Because that's who he is: he always gets drawn into Eru's wishes (perhaps with the help of Satoshi's whims) relunctantly, is as optimistic as Ray Romano... in fact, I feel like I'm watching The Melancholy of Haruhu Suzumiya sans the alien/deity/time traveler elements. Could you blame me, especially when Chitanda said that the club should be doing club activities (i.e. fun stuff), just like how Suzumiya thinks SOS Brigade should do fun stuff?

2) What's with all this "eye power" thing that Eru and Mayaka have? Are they supernatural and even mean something, or are they just signs that KyoAni is trying to show off visually? Because there's nothing supernatural about the story... maybe there's something more to the story because Eru apparently has motives but so far, it's been about high school students solving mysteries that no one cares about.

3) If I were there to solve the mystery, I would suggest asking one of the borrowers in person. Problem solved... or am I missing the point?

Kyon wasn't so adverse to doing stuff, as in he wasn't as obsessive about not doing anything. I do see the resemblance of course, but he is a different (and better) character. The relationship he had with Haruhi made up a large part of his character, and the relationship between Oreki and Chitanda isn't the same apart from the point you mentioned.
The eyes are meant to signify them suddenly getting curious as to the events. It's supposed to be that "It's a mystery, I WANT TO KNOW THE ANSWER!!" moment.
Yes, you are kinda missing the point. It's about how they solve the mystery that interests Chitanda, not necessarily the solution. If you work it out for yourself, it's more satisfactory.

2:

I like Satoshi. He goes outside the usual role of the main characters best male friend, and I like how he has his own relationships to develop. The set up of 2 girls 2 boys feels a bit convenient, but I like it much better than what they had in Clannad, where there was 2 guys, 4 girls, and all the girls like Tomoya, and Sunohara was just a comic relief character who got no love.

I think the show is well worth watching.

Offline The Big Guy

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #17 on: April 30, 2012, 05:40:10 PM »
But then they would have to wait a week, which would be bad because people have short attentio... What was I just talking about again?

2:

The visuals in this show are awesome in so many ways. It's actually quite amusing to see how Orito tries to squirm out of everything, to no avail. And yeah, personal space be damned in this show.

Edit: Expanding on my previous points: Probably the most compelling part of this episode was the use of space. It was amusing just to see how many ways Chitanda could invade Oreki's personal space, and it also played into Oreki's real issue, the fact that he's socially withdrawn (not sure if this is the best term for it, but it is the best I could come up with). Watch the episode again and try to see how many times he is some distance away from the rest of the characters, from being on the opposite side of the table from Chitanda in the clubroom, to how Chitanda, Mayaka, and Satoshi were in close proximity to each other near the library desk while Oreki was a comfortable distance away from them. The most important scene in this episode was not the mystery reveal itself, but Oreki's response when he sees the three laugh together afterward, thinking that "he doesn't belong." This is his real problem, and it is why he clings to this "low energy" idea, because it allows him to maintain a safe distance from others. It makes him a much more relatable character, in my opinion, because I think everyone at some point feels doubt about their friendships and whether or not they truly belong. Much more than an energy hoarder, I would think.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2012, 11:46:34 PM by The Big Guy »
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Offline SQA

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #18 on: May 02, 2012, 03:45:04 AM »
2:

Three points:

1) Am I right to say that Houtarou is Kyon with a longer fringe? Because that's who he is: he always gets drawn into Eru's wishes (perhaps with the help of Satoshi's whims) relunctantly, is as optimistic as Ray Romano... in fact, I feel like I'm watching The Melancholy of Haruhu Suzumiya sans the alien/deity/time traveler elements. Could you blame me, especially when Chitanda said that the club should be doing club activities (i.e. fun stuff), just like how Suzumiya thinks SOS Brigade should do fun stuff?

2) What's with all this "eye power" thing that Eru and Mayaka have? Are they supernatural and even mean something, or are they just signs that KyoAni is trying to show off visually? Because there's nothing supernatural about the story... maybe there's something more to the story because Eru apparently has motives but so far, it's been about high school students solving mysteries that no one cares about.

3) If I were there to solve the mystery, I would suggest asking one of the borrowers in person. Problem solved... or am I missing the point?

For #2, I want to say "production budget", but it's possible it is important.  But I'd still lean towards KyoAni going "we've got a budget, bitches!".

Offline The Big Guy

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #19 on: May 06, 2012, 05:41:33 PM »
3:

Now I'm reading the source material as I watch the show, and I have to say that the anime is much better. The directing in this show has been awesome thus far, and it really has breathed some life into an otherwise lifeless light novel. Considering what I just read was terribly boring, I'm hoping that this trend will continue for the rest of the show.
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Offline AC

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #20 on: May 07, 2012, 08:25:30 PM »
3:

I find Chitanda's discomposure to be damn annoying. Compose yourself, girl.

Now I'm reading the source material as I watch the show, and I have to say that the anime is much better. The directing in this show has been awesome thus far, and it really has breathed some life into an otherwise lifeless light novel. Considering what I just read was terribly boring, I'm hoping that this trend will continue for the rest of the show.

I said before how I find the show's visuals to be somewhat annoying. It's aesthetically amazing of course, but now I've figured out why I felt annoyed by it: it lacks purpose. It's creative with the visual narrative, but when the story is otherwise mundane and thus doesn't really warrant a creative narrative, then it feels a little deceptive. People would say that this show is amazing, but to me it's only amazing at face value. At the end of the day, if I may, I would give credit to KyoAni for the style, but not to the show itself.

As for the episode, I wonder why Oreki couldn't just smell the cigarette smoke odor. Cigarette smoke odor is naturally very stubborn, and even if one smokes in a well-ventilated area, it sticks to clothes and is very stubborn to get rid of. I personally don't think that someone with a keen sense of smell is needed to notice that. Smart (although unneeded) deduction from Oreki, though.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #21 on: May 13, 2012, 07:36:58 PM »
4:

This episode is a lot more interesting than the previous ones; I found myself to be quite engrossed at the deductions and arrival to the overall conclusion of the mystery behind the case that happened 45 years ago. But here's the problem: while the plot picked up, I found myself ignoring the visual brilliance of the show. It's only after I finished watching the episode and rewatched it, that I realized what I missed during the episode while I paid attention to the dialogue.

And thus, this raises an issue that's related to what I've mentioned before: the visuals and plot don't go hand-in-hand that much. The visuals are brilliant, yet I don't think the show would crumble if KyoAni doesn't do what it does. In the end, the visuals don't mean much if the plot is weak; it's just there as a consolation.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2012, 10:02:26 PM »
4:

Having caught up to this one, I can sum up my feelings in three words:  Boring to Not.  The first episode nearly put me to sleep, and maybe it did.  Perhaps I just wasn't in the mood for an anime like this, or perhaps I just wasn't seeing what it was trying to do.  Regardless, while I thought it was pretty to look at, I was hesitant to continue.

After episodes two and three I realized that this was going to be one of those "mystery" anime, something I have not had a lot of love for in the past.  Most mystery anime tend to be poorly done for basically one of two extreme reasons:  they're either really childish and easily solved or not done right so that the audience CAN solve the mystery before the revelation.  To give you the extremes, Detective Conan on the first end, GOSICK on the other.  I tried to enjoy Conan and just couldn't.  It was somehow even worse than Encyclopedia Brown novels, to me.  GOSICK refused to show us the clues necessary to reach Victorique's level of awareness, and thus it came off way too Mary Sueish for me.  Thankfully GOSICK had other shit going for it.

Hyouka seems to be somewhere in the middle, and not necessarily because of the show's fault.  In this case, my understanding of Japanese culturalisms and history has prevented me from seeing what Oreki sees on occasion, but not in all cases.  The mystery of the uptight newspaper dude I had figured out fairly quickly, though I admit I didn't think smoking was involved.  I actually thought drugs.  That's my American cynicism getting in the way.  The fourth episode's mystery is more what I mean.

I am not that aware of the cultural and societal struggles of the Japanese 1960s.  I know there was some shit that went down, and some very interesting things happened, but I'm just not on the level to know everything.  It is interesting how closely Japanese society and American society mirror each other in history.  For two cases in point, the civil war that led to the Meiji Restoration came not long after the American Civil War would lead to reconstruction; and the 1960s were turbulent times for both countries socially, especially amongst students and college campuses rebelling against the establishment.

Anyway, the lack of necessary details prevented me from coming to this conclusion, and so I found the episode both fascinating as a curiosity and as a history lesson.  This is one of the few mystery shows where I've leaned forward intently, betraying my desire to focus on the details of what is being said and shown, and wishing I had a tub of popcorn with me.  This was a good time.

There's still more to be had, too.  They don't really know everything, and in fact I would guess that they don't actually know anything.  At least not anything important to the grand mystery of what Chitanda's uncle actually went through.  I have theories, but without evidence they're just that.  It's funny to me.  The way the show presents information and has multiple persons bring up points of view reminds me heavily of these threads and how, when we get into a show, we toss out our own theories and thoughts while trying to figure out what's going to happen next (often times with dismal failure).

So, in short, Hyouka has gone from dull to interesting in four episodes, which is good, and the reason I give all anime at least three episodes to show me what they've got.  Another winner for the 3 ep rule.
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Offline SQA

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #23 on: May 16, 2012, 02:25:06 PM »
On the cultural bit: realize that Student Movements popped up in every advanced economy in the late 60s.  You'll find violent clashes most everywhere.  We just tend to think of the Japanese a bit more uptight than that.

Yet, there is normally about 1 fight per year in their lower Congress (the Diet).  I don't think there's been an actual fist-fight among US Congressmen/Senators since the 50s.  At least, not that I've heard of. 

Another thing I've heard about Hyouka is that the source material is actually quite weak.  So this might end up being the "Best Adaptation" of the season, though not the best series.  It's definitely a change of pace series. 

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #24 on: May 20, 2012, 09:19:10 PM »
5:

Oh that's ****ing brilliant.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2012, 10:28:04 PM »
5:

Yes, that was brilliant.

Houtarou wasn't really wrong with his theory; in fact, the general outline of his theory was all sound. The main difference between his theory and the general truth was more of the nuance, as how both are two sides of the same coin. What was originally thought about Sekitani being a martyr (or sacrifical hero), turned out to be him being a scapegoat (or sacrificial lamb, or "rabbit" to be more appropriate). Same word used differently.

And the kanji character/word play... oh god, do I love them. Not used for fancy reasons, but for substantial ones. But you know what else makes this episode amazing? The KyoAni boastful visuals was kept to a minimum, and the only time it was full-blown was when the mystery behind the cover picture was revealed. And when that happened, it was with purpose. Unlike in previous episodes where the visuals seemed to just embellish mundane story points, this one visualized the meaning behind it. That's what I would call "meaningful visuals".

Right now though, here's something to ponder on: it seems that the height of the show's interest is in the mystery in topic. What about the interactions between the club members? They still look like a realistic carbon copy of TMoHS, and I've never been that interested in any of them. The KyoAni visuals? Only if they mean something or is substantial to the discussion at hand, would I give kudos. Therefore, I think this show should really focus on solving mysteries.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #26 on: May 21, 2012, 01:02:20 AM »
This episode posed problems for the non Japanese speaking individual as the eventual solution to the mystery, well the nuance to it at least, required an understanding of the Japanese written language and well you know, I only speak english so this point flew over my head. This isn't the show's problem of course, but appreciating the mystery is impossible for me here.

Overall I have to say that this anime has been improving little by little since its terrible start. The main character I've warmed up to a bit, but I still don't find him remarkably interesting or entertaining. I'm not really much for either of the girls in this show because one is just a grump while the other is just a spaz. But whatever, the cast is at the very least largely inoffensive, but by far this is not the strongest part of this work.

Of course where this series shines the most is its visuals, but its application of them at times is a bit uneven. A lot of the time they're caught giving unnecessary attention to detail, overloading scenes with pointless animation, but this episode they got it just right. Most of the episode was normal animation and the one scene where we went into the past is where they unleashed the creativity. That's how it's done. More meaningful visual input is appreciated rather than more motion for the sake of it as AC pointed out.

For me these last 3 episodes were either sink or swim really, but for now Hyouka is swimming. I don't think it's anywhere with the other great series this season, but it is at the moment passable. In fact, I would even give this latest episode the thumbs up. Lets see if they can continue to build up after a very rocky and slow start.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #27 on: May 28, 2012, 06:35:47 AM »
6:

I don't get it; specifically, I don't get the point of this episode. It's just like that mysterious book-returning thing: why would anyone be so interested to know a mistake someone made? This world's full of idiots, everyone knows that, so a person like me would just conclude that the teacher's an idiot and move on. No point trying to crack a case that nobody else is begging to know about. But more importantly, the case was solved with a conjecture: why not ascertaining it? Isn't that the point of solving a problem: to get the answer right, just like you solving an equation and then turning to the answer sheet to know if you got it right?

Oreki thinks Chitanda's a mystery. I just think she's an idiot who gets angry for God knows what. I know I got angry at seeing how annoying she is whenever she's curious about something useless, like a noisy kitten that makes noise to the point that it's more annoying than cute. And yes, first it's the sparkling purple eyes, and now it's a band of small red Chitanda babies.

And yes, I'm perplexed on how a lower case (non-typecast) "a" can be confused with lower case "d" when, based on personal experiences, the former is more often confused with lower case "o".

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #28 on: May 29, 2012, 01:05:02 PM »
And yes, I'm perplexed on how a lower case (non-typecast) "a" can be confused with lower case "d" when, based on personal experiences, the former is more often confused with lower case "o".

Ah, but you're thinking like an English-as-first-language person.  To a group of people who don't repeatedly write their letters in a particular language, it can get fuzzy.  I do the same thing with my hiragana and katakana, and if you're not careful, some of those katakana end up looking like various kanji.  Like how "チ" (katakana "chi") can look like "千" ("sen"; 1,000) if you're not careful.

As for the episode itself, I thought it was mostly a cool down episode from last week's big conclusion and another excuse for them to use another unorthodox animation style for a sequence there.  I don't know if Hyouka is really that good of an anime, but the care and love that the creators are putting into it have to be noted regardless.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #29 on: June 01, 2012, 02:00:44 AM »
The internet does it's job once again.

I don't know what's more disturbing about this, that Oreki has this kind of ****ed up imagination (and this is NOT THE FIRST TIME he's had some flipped out ****ing mental image about something) or that they actually animated this.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #30 on: June 04, 2012, 04:44:52 AM »
7:

I loved seeing Oreki getting flustered over Chitanda. It's the obvious romantic development, but the way he reacted to her was quite amusing, especially considering how he is most of the time. The first glimpse was how he reacted after realizing Chitanda expected a mixed bath, and after that it just got funny. It was a good portrayal of someone fantasizing.

The mystery was pretty obvious this time, the culprit was at least. As soon as we learnt it had rained, I guessed someone was drying clothes, and the girl was just suspicious from the start. Let's see where the next episode goes.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #31 on: June 05, 2012, 05:22:07 AM »
7:

Fanservice AND manservice ahoy!

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #32 on: June 05, 2012, 04:25:14 PM »
7:

I honestly laughed heartily at "cover kid".  Maybe I'm just not used to the censorship levels that Japan has gone to these last few years (or more aptly, the inconsistency of it), but when the pants came down the last thing I expected was an out of focus kid to run into the scene and block the goods.

For a guy who proclaims to be a saver of energy, Oreki sure gets worked up quickly.  Don't get me wrong, I've fantasized about some womens before in my life, too, but never to the point where I passed out in a bath.  Or... had to quickly turn over away from a girl, with my knees up, hunched over, in order to hide my "excitement", if you get my drift.

These episodes are well written, no matter if the mysteries turn out to be simplistic, and the visuals continue to be superb.  Throwing together the two main unrelated talking points about how paranormal mysteries turn out to be nothing and the ideal of a sibling was perfectly done.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #33 on: June 05, 2012, 05:35:24 PM »
Heh, then you should watch the onsen episode of FMP: Fumoffu again. 'Cover kid' is small beans compared to the censoring shenanigans KyoAni got up to there, though it was a nice callback to it. ;)

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #34 on: June 06, 2012, 01:16:53 AM »
Oh I have not forgotten how beautiful it was when Kazama got a face full of Sousuke junk.  That scene always makes me laugh, both for the obvious, and because Sousuke is apparently either a eunuch or has nards of steel, because I don't think I could take some dude's face in my sack at hilarious speeds and stay standing upright.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #35 on: June 07, 2012, 01:38:28 AM »
7:

Wait, if you see something that looks an awful lot like a hanged person, shouldn't you like, investigate it immediately? Chitanda and Ibara got a good look at it, so they knew it wasn't just their imagination, and they were obviously scared by it, so I find it hard to believe they would just shrug it off and assume it's no big deal. (Even if it did turn out to be nothing, but that's beside the point.)

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #36 on: June 10, 2012, 09:51:13 PM »
8:

This episode pretty much existed so KyoAni can practice/show off their 2d/3d compositioning work.  I wonder if they had any of it bought from Studio Rika because it looked a whole lot like that.  (I.e. Time of Eve effects) 

I wonder how hard it is for a seiyuu to actually act that woodenly for the amateur movie scenes, haha.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #37 on: June 11, 2012, 12:25:40 AM »
I wonder that as well.  I mean, during some of the stupidest parts of a dub and sub debate, someone will inevitably mention how "bad" the acting of dubs are (even if their claim is ****ing asinine and inaccurate).  The counter argument is generally that the Japanese acting could be pretty piss poor, too, and the only way to tell would be if you were a native speaker.  While this is true, this episode (and other anime with intentionally "bad" or wooden acting during scenes) demonstrates to us that... yeah you can tell.  Bad acting is bad acting.  A universal ham or a generic overactor, if you will.

As for the episode, I feel so sorry for Houtarou sometimes.  He gets railroaded so easily into shit, which is his own fault of course.  Still, Chitanda and her KININARIMASU is pretty hard to resist.  It's when the other two follow suit that things get a bit absurd for our poor slacker hero.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #38 on: June 11, 2012, 07:15:27 AM »
8:

Well, I've already made a tepid guess as to who the murderer could be, though I've assumed there was only one, and that he/she was part of the group.

I guess I should put it in spoilers:
Spoiler for Hiden:
When they went in the room and he looked outside the window, the tall grass had not been trampled, therefore I assume that the person must have got out through the door. The key was inside though, and whilst it could have been chucked in from the outside, I doubt that because of the grass. Therefore, someone probably used the master key. As far as I'm aware, there were two people who knew about the aster key, the silent girl who knew a suspicious amount about everything, or the quiet guy. When they went off to search on their own, they were both left on their own, so either of them could have done it. I'd guess the girl, because she just knew too much, but I think that's a bit too simplistic a case if that's so, so I would choose the quiet boy instead. A problem is that it doesn't explain the arm being detached nor does it have any real evidence going for it.

The thing is, there seems to be a mystery concerning the person who came up with the story in the first place as well... I'm fairly interested to see the next episode.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #39 on: June 11, 2012, 07:24:41 AM »
8:

Shades of the Fumoffu! onsen episode last week, shades of the Asahina Mikuru no Densetsu Episode 00 episode this week. Put that together with the Nichijou SHAFT-like trippiness in general, as well as the signature lush visuals, and Hyouka is starting to look like KyoAni's showcase of everything they have ever done.

Hmmm. I wonder how they're going to slot the Lambda Driver effect into this series.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #40 on: June 13, 2012, 06:28:00 AM »
7:



I snickered at this split-second scene. This is meme material.

Quite an interesting "case of the week" there; although the conclusion to the mysterious hanged shadow seemed too simplistic, I liked the arrival to that conclusion. The clues that are planted in the episode along the way were subtle enough for me to not notice from the onset.

8:

DAT INDIE FILM. God, it's so bad that it's good. The flat dialogue, the wooden acting, the amateurish camera panning... OH EPIC. As for the mystery itself, I guess it would end up being similar to episode 7, in the sense that it would be a simplistic problem with a simplistic answer. The important thing is the deduction to that answer; in fact, that has always been the case in Hyouka.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2012, 07:01:56 AM by AC »

Offline AC

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #41 on: June 18, 2012, 05:19:17 AM »
9:

Didn't it occur to Chitanda (or anyone) that those chocolates contained whiskey? Really? Speaking of Chitanda, what did she contribute to the team anyway, other than saying that Theory A or Theory B don't feel right? Everyone there was trying to deduce the logic behind the theories, and Chitanda did anything but that.

Let's see how the mystery is solved in the next episode, and see what detail did everyone apparently missed.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #42 on: June 19, 2012, 09:00:26 AM »
9:

Didn't it occur to Chitanda (or anyone) that those chocolates contained whiskey? Really? Speaking of Chitanda, what did she contribute to the team anyway, other than saying that Theory A or Theory B don't feel right? Everyone there was trying to deduce the logic behind the theories, and Chitanda did anything but that.

Let's see how the mystery is solved in the next episode, and see what detail did everyone apparently missed.

Well, that's why Chitanda is "curious" for Oreki. She doesn't behave normally like the uptight princess type. (Good grade, rich family, pretty, etc.)

But come on AC, you of all people should have figured out the hierarchy by now. Chitanda doesn't do any interpretation. The only time she ever did it was during the main story line of Hyouka. And even that, it was more of an introduction than actually a theory. Chitanda fulfilled her role. She is the club president and the person who introduces the mystery. That's all she's there for. She is the initiator. Anything else and she'll be out of character.

Mayaka and her attitude is the investigator of the group. Ask the important questions, compile the introduction.
Satoshi is the database. Collects the data and orders them.
Oreki is the resolution. He puts everything together and solve it.

This is how the series going to be laid out from beginning to finish.

Now as for this arc's mystery itself. Who here has an explanation? I think they are "testing" Oreki. At least that's how I felt with all three stories focused on Oreki at some point. I don't know.

But the last story is somewhat plausible. However, not by an outside source. I think there are two possibilities:

A) It was an accident. The victim got his arm chopped off unexpectedly and fainted. Or else, wouldn't there be some sort of scream? Wouldn't the other have heard him? I don't see any sign of struggle in the room either. I kind think we should look up. Maybe the victim fell from the floor above or something. I mean why would he lock himself in the room? The door was locked, right?

B) The three left behind killed him. I am aware that they didn't have the key but this might have been planned by the three of them. If this indeed was a crime, then there had to be more than one suspect to subdue the victim without any sound made.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #43 on: June 20, 2012, 12:26:07 AM »
Quote
I think they are "testing" Oreki.

That should be obvious.  I'm also convinced that the short, mauve haired girl who claimed to be Hongo's friend and has been doing all the escorting of people to the interview room IS Hongo.  Too many things she knwos that are probably a bit hard for anybody else to know.  She also acquired that script awfully quickly and seemed intent at watching the gang read it.  Perhaps she's stuck and actually needs some help figuring out what would be a good mystery.  I don't doubt that she's an amateur and not familiar with mysteries, so if she can get a mystery worked out from a master mystery solver, she could write it into their film and have a truly epic work.

Quote
The victim got his arm chopped off unexpectedly and fainted. Or else, wouldn't there be some sort of scream?

I don't think the arm-chopping off part was in the script.  Remember, Hongo didn't want a lot of blood, so it doesn't make sense to have a dismembered hand there in addition to whatever killed the boy.  Of course, the hand could have been chopped off AFTER the boy was killed.

Quote
The door was locked, right?

Actually, this is the most important point of the mystery, but not from the direction the characters are thinking at the moment.  Why was the door locked?  If the murder victim went in there, he just unlocked the room, right?  So why would he lock the room again?  The truth is, this "closed room" is a fabrication.  The killer closed and locked the room behind him.  Before that?  It was unlocked and wide open.

Going back to the hand, maybe it was chopped off because that was the only way to get the key away from the victim in order to lock the door behind the killer.  But I still think that's an improv action by the director and prop master.
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Offline The Big Guy

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #44 on: June 20, 2012, 10:51:40 PM »
The key is in the severed hand. It's mentioned in the light novel. That's what made it a closed room in the first place. Actually, we don't know which key is in the severed hand, so it could be his key, the master key, or it could be the killer's key, which the killer hoped that no one would bother to look at the key since it was in a severed hand. That's probably a stretch though.

My other theory is that there are two killers instead of just one, as a compromise to another part of the novel/class minutes in which the class voted for two people to be killed instead of just one. In that case, the most likely suspects would the two people who ran back to get the master key, as they wanted to cover up the fact they had it. It was also explicitly mentioned in the light novel that two people went to get the key rather than just one, which could be another hint. That's my take though.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #45 on: June 24, 2012, 08:23:49 PM »
10:

Wow. So that's the deal. Although Houtarou's the one who solved the mystery, I think Mayaka's the one who hit the nail on the head on what's wrong with the video: it's too boring and the audience therefore wouldn't really pay attention to details such as the camerawork. It didn't really strike me how odd it was to see the camera rolling continously, suggesting that the one who was using the camera was indeed part of the storyline.

But now that the mystery has been solved, I'm interested in that last-minute twist at the end. Props master Haba was instructed to get a rope by Hougou, suggesting that it would be used in the show. If it wasn't mentioned at all for the final screening, it only means one thing:

Spoiler for Hiden:
Houtarou didn't really solve Hougou's unfinished story (i.e. mystery); rather, the story was changed to fit Houtarou's deduction and hence the rope was omitted. Perhaps Houtarou didn't really solve the mystery in the end; instead, he inadvertently convinced the club to change it.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #46 on: July 01, 2012, 10:57:33 PM »
11:

Oh that's ****ing brilliant!
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Offline leokiko.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #47 on: July 02, 2012, 12:17:27 AM »
11:

Why was Oreki angry there? Was it because Irisu manipulated him?

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #48 on: July 02, 2012, 12:29:18 AM »
So, Houtarou's sister is the series antagonist! :)

And, yeah, the "angry Oreki" was a little weird, but she was using him.  She was using him to find a way out of a problem so "everyone is happy".  Oreki doesn't like being used, even if Chitanda has him by the hand most of the time.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #49 on: July 02, 2012, 12:45:41 AM »
Was that so hard to understand?

Oreki was angry about a couple of things.  Being used, the truth about how easily he's manipulated by chicks, and for getting his confidence up and feeling smug because of Irisu-senpai's praise.  Not everybody likes to be told that they're special and awesome and take it to heart, actually feeling good about themselves, only to find out the whole thing was a big fat lie.  It was a double whammy because Satoshi has already been teasing him about how easy it is for him to be controlled by the opposite sex (both directly, and indirectly [by calling him "Strength", which he learns the double meaning of later]).

In short, the brilliant detective was so easily hoodwinked.  Not only was his pride hurt, but the person who gave him that pride tore it right out of him.
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Offline Ascaloth

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #50 on: July 02, 2012, 07:57:22 AM »
11:

Oh, yes, brilliant indeed.

I want to bring up another point; this episode underscores just how Oreki is in no way the one-man show he's been portrayed to be so far. He was so easily misled precisely because a chain of events deprived him of the people he didn't know he relied on to reach the appropriate conclusion.

If Watson-ka did not have to go for library duty, she would have been there to pick up on the fact that he had inadvertently missed out on the rope, and made Oreki realise he was missing a part of the puzzle.

If Wiki-shi hadn't been dragged away, he would have been there to provide the general data that would provide a bigger picture of the situation, preventing Oreki from taking a narrow-minded approach to the problem.

And if KININARIMASU hadn't been sleeping off her hangover, she would have been there to highlight the motivations of the people behind the mystery, forcing Oreki to take the human context into account.

Brilliant indeed. The Kotenbu does not revolve around Oreki after all. What a great lesson for the guy.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #51 on: July 08, 2012, 08:55:59 PM »
12:

"Why did we spend so much time on Chitanda's character design?  Because we'll spend half the series in close ups on her face." :)

This has to be easily the best animated cultural festival I've seen in anime.  And a special shout out to Satoshi's Saturn cosplay.

Special mention also for the new ED.  Having Oreki as Professor Moriarty is a nice touch. :)

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #52 on: July 08, 2012, 08:59:59 PM »
Oh, foreshadowing. Ok, whatever episode most of the time. Next please.

(awesome ED).

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #53 on: July 09, 2012, 12:07:07 AM »
11.5:

In a bit of a change up from Chitanda's eyes being the overwhelming force that compels our young detective to solve her mysteries, this time it's Chitanda's... other ample talents... as the overwhelming force that compels our young detective to solve her mysteries.  Heck, this time I can understand it.  Men have done a lot of silly things for the sake of a lovely pair of breasts.  Or, as Serleena put it in Men in Black 2, "silly little planet. Anyone could take over the place with the right set of mammary glands."

On a completely unrelated note, that was one odd family.  Blonde, tanned, beach punk looking dude; standard character hot MILF; one fat toddler.  The MILF and the toddler work, I guess, it's the beach punk that doesn't fit.  All shapes and sizes, I suppose, but I have this weird image in my head that this family is the result of an NTR game's "bad end".  Maybe I just have NTR on the brain too much.

*EDIT*

BTW, if you didn't watch this, you missed Oreki's sister coming home, which is why she's suddenly there in episode 12.

Speaking of 12:

Chitanda is so adorkable.  Oreki gets his "best job ever".  New ending was cute.  Not much else to say at the moment.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2012, 12:50:00 AM by TypicalIdiotFan »
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #54 on: July 09, 2012, 06:44:45 AM »
11:

Wow, that was brilliant and TIF has basically explained why.

Why would Oreki missed out on a conspicuous clue such as a prop meant to be used during the filming? Oreki has always been quite the meticulous guy so naturally, he shouldn't miss that point. It's only because he was on a high after getting an effective pep talk from Irisu, and then became the scriptwriter while forgetting that he's just supposed to be the mystery solver. I actually think that Irisu is a (manipulative) genius... good job, gurl.

And it surprised that Chitanda made quite a sensible and even intelligent perspective of taking the writer's feelings into account. Seriously Chitanda, why don't you make more of such assessment instead of just blurting KININARIMASU...?

edit:

12:

Just as I mentioned before, the show's kinda boring if it's not solving stuff. It's light-hearted stuff and all in this episode, but still.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2012, 08:15:31 PM by AC »

Offline Yggberry

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #55 on: July 09, 2012, 08:43:05 PM »
Am I the only one who is wondering about the pen? They didn't really subbed it right.

Offline HirakuNoShadow

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #56 on: July 10, 2012, 12:03:40 AM »
11.5:

What kind of cruel joke is this, did Oreki's sis got faceblocked for the entire episode? She looked like a fine-looking lady too - why are you doing this shit to me KyoAni

Other than that, I am keen to rewatch this in HQ. I'm still in favour of the notion that Chitanda looks infinitely better in ponytails.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #57 on: July 10, 2012, 02:08:19 AM »
Am I the only one who is wondering about the pen? They didn't really subbed it right.

I didn't notice anything unusual about the subtitling for it, but I think it'd be foolish if we didn't think the pen was important.

So far, anything that Oreki's sister is involved in has been important:  the classics club, Hyouka, Irisu-senpai, getting Oreki a job at the pool, etc.  Since that's her pen, it's going to be of central importance to whatever new mystery pops up.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #58 on: July 19, 2012, 02:47:26 AM »
13:

Oh God.... Chitanda's pictures.
Oh God.... Oreki's reaction to said pictures.
Oh God.... The mystery is taking a while to show up Scoob.  ZOINKS!
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #59 on: July 19, 2012, 10:17:37 PM »
I'd be happy with them just animated in the KanyaFest for the next 5 episodes.  This is one of the few series that I'd rather have less actual plot in, haha.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #60 on: July 22, 2012, 08:21:05 PM »
14:

Fear Chitanda in a kitchen.  And those eyes.  :)

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #61 on: July 22, 2012, 08:22:39 PM »
14:

Tee hee hee.  Everything about Hyouka makes me smile.  The intelligent writing, the easily flowing transitions from scene to scene, the characters, the sparkling animation... everything.  I always feel like I've been given a neat new toy when a new episode comes out.  It's almost Potterish when it comes to the little seemingly unimportant things that come back to be huge, isn't it?  A broken pen saves the day...
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #62 on: July 22, 2012, 09:39:41 PM »
14:

Actually, Irisu scares me more than Chitanda's eyes. Because she's fully aware of her own persuasiveness.

Just curious, but one of Team Fata Morgana's contestants (the son of a chef) doesn't even seem to be a student. Is that supposed to be permitted?

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #63 on: July 24, 2012, 11:02:48 PM »
14:

Hot damn, this show is a lot more enjoyable now that it's putting more focus on the slice-of-life elements. I disliked the dull mystery plots of the first seven episodes (save for the episode 5), and the indie-film arc was okay, but now we've some quality stuff here. I was on the edge of my seat for that cooking contest.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #64 on: August 02, 2012, 01:47:02 PM »
15:

Oreki is growing more and more genre savvy.  He knows it's coming, and before she can get the "-MASU" out, he's stopped her in her tracks.  But, like Sisyphus, Oreki can't stop that boulder from rolling back down the hill, so he just goes with it.  That's his excuse anyway, not that Mayaka can't see right through it.  He also keeps up the 'Straw Millionaire" chain, which I'm guessing by now is as much staged as anything else, though how I can't say.  Since his sister gave him the broken pen, seemingly out of nowhere, I'm guessing she has something to do with it.  Though I do not know, at this point, whether Oreki surrendering the flour was part of the game.  This would imply that Mayaka is somehow involved, as she gives up her hand mirror, but it could also just be a coincidence.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #65 on: August 05, 2012, 06:44:41 PM »
16:

...and right on cue, there's Oreki's sister to continue the Straw Millionaire chain.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #66 on: August 05, 2012, 08:13:20 PM »
16:

I wonder why they haven't shown Oreki's sister's face yet.  Though I like the way they've framed her face out of the images.  That was well done.

Oreki isn't even hiding the fact Chitanda has control over him, haha.  That was great.  Plus, Chitanda face planting the pop filter + mic, I so should have seen that coming but didn't. 

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #67 on: August 05, 2012, 09:30:01 PM »
I just want to add one thing... Chitanda's uniform skirt is a miracle of the universe.  Not only does it somehow constantly catch the curves of her backside every time she slightly bends over, but now it's catching her vagina bones from the front while she's walking.

Damn that thing is pornographic.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #68 on: August 05, 2012, 10:00:23 PM »
I did note that Tomoe (Oreki's sister) had some insanely well animated hip lines when Chitanda saw her walking away.  I guess the animation director for this episode wanted to take it up a notch?

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #69 on: August 08, 2012, 08:02:04 PM »
16:

Houtarou's sister's face... NOW. She's the show's Ms. Bellum or something.

It's extremely ironic to see Houtarou being able to point out how everyone got it wrong with the way 十文字 was read, yet he got it entirely wrong not only with reading the student council president's name but also the doujin creator's pen name. And that even had Roman letters written for reading purpose. Wow, you surprised me Houtarou. And another thing about him: he is becoming more savvy. He actually knows how to counter Chitanda's sparkling eyes.

Here's what's interesting about Satoshi: he really looks up to Houtarou to solve the mystery. He tried solving it but failed and now thinks that the only one who can do it is him. If even he can't solve it, then the only person Satoshi looks up as an detective idol will be gone.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #70 on: August 12, 2012, 08:50:17 PM »
17:

Brilliant. This entire arc was by far the best thing I've seen this year. The show started to delve into its characters, and then seamlessly integrated that development into the main mystery with some intelligent writing and the recurring motif of jealousy and how it affects people. Incredibly well done, and I can't wait to see what the next arc will bring.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #71 on: August 13, 2012, 02:35:52 AM »
17:

That was so much better an ending to this arc than I could have conceived.  Once again, bravo Hyouka.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #72 on: August 13, 2012, 02:22:25 PM »
17:

Wow, I'm just surprised the ending to the arc was so good, I loved how it all tied into the same thing, it was elegantly done. Also, I started noticing some of the tracks, and I thought that some of them were pretty good, I still find it slightly annoying that I just don't hear them usually.

You know, this is actually a decent season isn't it?

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #73 on: August 13, 2012, 02:26:15 PM »
17:

This was a very disappointing conclusion to the arc.

They really wanted to push out this idea about the genius who us common people always have to look up to and feel inadequate to in comparison, and that sometimes this genius may not even like using their talents that much for a specific task.

The arc came down to this same realization on three different fronts: Oreki with the student council President who wanted his friend to keep working on the manga, Mayaka's senpai who could never make as good as manga as her friend, and of course Satoshi with the fact that he feels he could never match Oreki.

Sorry but really? We waited all these episodes for this? On a narrative level I just find this a tad underwhelming.

I appreciated the development of Satoshi in this arc very much, it was lovely seeing his outer exterior crack a little bit in the face of his jealousy. However, having the entire arc be about the same thing to me was just a bit too redundant for my own liking.

I also have a sense of being led around by the nose by Mayaka's character arc. She gets treated like crap, and then it ends like that? I don't really see any meaningful growth on her front when initially I thought it might be going somewhere more interesting. Just not a terribly interesting turn of events.

Not going to even get started on how stupid the conclusion to Chitanda's little character arc was either.

Yeah mark Kanya festival as the second worst arc after EBA.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #74 on: August 13, 2012, 03:20:21 PM »
Chitanda's arc was bad, but the others were great. Hyouka develop really slowly, and you should know that by now.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #75 on: August 13, 2012, 03:56:29 PM »
It wasn't dealing with "genius", it was "Skill" vs "Natural Talent".  No amount of work & love of a skill set can really overcome someone is a massively greater natural talent for it.   What most of them needed to come to grips with is that there's nothing wrong with that reality, even if it can hurt.

Oh, and Mayaka's arc was a little confusing until the resolution.  Mayaka had been, accidentally, knifing her senpai in the back on the topic of manga masterpieces.  She responded in much the way most high school girls actually do.  It might seem weaker from a story telling stand point, but that's a very realistic take on how girls that age operate.  They're pretty petty about things.

In the end, this was a pretty awesome arc.  Never actually felt like I'd attended a cultural festival in an anime before.  The entire setting was fully realized and you felt like you were there. The "mysteries" in Hyouka aren't really all that "deep" or "serious".  This just fit in with that theme.  There's no murder mysteries in the offering here.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #76 on: August 13, 2012, 05:52:47 PM »
Chitanda's arc was bad, but the others were great. Hyouka develop really slowly, and you should know that by now.

Has nothing to do with being slow. I don't see Hyouka as a slow show.

It wasn't dealing with "genius", it was "Skill" vs "Natural Talent".  No amount of work & love of a skill set can really overcome someone is a massively greater natural talent for it.   What most of them needed to come to grips with is that there's nothing wrong with that reality, even if it can hurt.

Oh, and Mayaka's arc was a little confusing until the resolution.  Mayaka had been, accidentally, knifing her senpai in the back on the topic of manga masterpieces.  She responded in much the way most high school girls actually do.  It might seem weaker from a story telling stand point, but that's a very realistic take on how girls that age operate.  They're pretty petty about things.

In the end, this was a pretty awesome arc.  Never actually felt like I'd attended a cultural festival in an anime before.  The entire setting was fully realized and you felt like you were there. The "mysteries" in Hyouka aren't really all that "deep" or "serious".  This just fit in with that theme.  There's no murder mysteries in the offering here.

Not seeing the difference between natural talent and genius, but OK. Semantics.

I know perfectly well what the arc was communicating, but having every single portion of the arc (Perhaps besides Chitanda) converging on that very same point felt overly redundant and uninteresting.

Whether Mayaka's arc was realistic or not wasn't the point, but more so that it didn't bring her character anywhere interesting for me and the conclusion to it didn't do anything for me.

Yes the strength of this arc was how immersed you could feel in the cultural festival, but for a pretty character driven show I'm mostly going to evaluate it on how I felt the character development was. On that front, only Satoshi really hit home for me. I liked most of the episodes except the conclusion, which is what I stated having issues with.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #77 on: August 13, 2012, 07:09:13 PM »
Just an observation (and probably pretty obvious), but I got the distinct impression that Kouchi and Anjou didn't part on good terms, and something about Dead at Dusk was probably the issue.  Maybe because Kouchi wasn't invited to be on the team, but she was wrong about something and finishing that manga will only confirm it to her (from what she said, I'm pretty sure Kouchi didn't think Anjou could write a good story without her).  And it seems it blew up to a point where just calling her up and apologising wont fix things.  So Mayaka banging on about Dead at Dusk really hurt because she lost a friend over that.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #78 on: August 13, 2012, 07:52:53 PM »
17:

Chitanda's arc was probably the weakest. It didn't really do anything for the story, and kinda got overshadowed by the other arcs. Mayaka's arc, well, to be honest I didn't really understand why she was feeling very anxious right from the start of the arc. Right now, it looks like Mayaka is this junior student who is constantly looking up to her seniors and want to defend them (or more specifically, their work) when some injustice is observed. As for Satoshi, I got it wrong. I said before that he was hoping that Houtarou would solve the problem, but it's supposed to be the other way round. He does look up to him, but at the same time he may not want to be doing this all the time. Perhaps he recognizes just how talented Houtarou really is, more than Houtarou realizes.

I think the arc's overall theme of recognising talent and the differences between people is well-executed. Started out as something straight out of a detective novel, while at the same time weaves the idea of exploring talent right from the onset. And best of all, KyoAni didn't try to visually show off this time (did anyone notice this?).

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #79 on: August 13, 2012, 08:52:29 PM »
All of the KyoAni flare went into Satoshi's spinning Saturen-Head.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #80 on: August 13, 2012, 09:26:52 PM »
Quote
Chitanda's arc was probably the weakest. It didn't really do anything for the story, and kinda got overshadowed by the other arcs.

I agree with you on this, but I also think it was necessary because she needs some form of development. For the first two arcs she was a walking plot device who gets the story going and otherwise plays no significant role. At least now she is more of an actual character who deals with her own problems even if it is still tangential to the overall plot line. Also, there is no guarantee that this arc (and Mayaka's arc, which I agree doesn't show any meaningful growth) doesn't come back up later on in the show. For example, Satoshi's budding jealousy of Oreki was hinted at significantly in the EBA arc, but was only fully explored and resolved here. In which case it probably would be wise to hold off on judgments on character development until the very end, especially there are two books remaining to adapt.

Quote
And best of all, KyoAni didn't try to visually show off this time (did anyone notice this?).

I did actually, and it makes sense considering the series is now at full steam. Something needed to keep the viewer's interest during the boring setup episodes, and now the characters are starting to take the spotlight over the mysteries themselves so the flashing visuals are less important. It's certainly a good thing.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #81 on: August 13, 2012, 11:27:52 PM »
Only thing I want to say about the Chitanda arc is that while she seems to be going along with the other character's arcs similar theme (not being as good as someone else), in the end she actually isn't.  The other characters are actually bothered by the fact that they can't be as good as the people they look up to, but Chitanda doesn't have that problem.  I don't think that it required Irisu to tell her that she wasn't good at manipulating people Irisu's way as Chitanda seemed to be aware of it.  Going along with that, this doesn't BOTHER Chitanda as it does the others.  She's not disappointed that she can't do what Irisu does.  In this way, she is a bit of a contrast, though I wonder why her discussion was placed FIRST amongst the resolutions.

I think, though, that by the end, none of the four really ended up as negative as they started.  Even Tanabe Jiro, who when he was talking to Oreki, seemed completely disappointed that the target of his Juumonji code didn't "get it", ends up realizing that the target DID get the message.  Maybe the point was actually to contrast those who were able to move past their problems with those who weren't.  This would explain why we see Chitanda, Tanabe, and Satoshi all end up being "okay" with things, but Kouchi not.  Of the four, Kouchi is the only one who can't, or refuses to move forward.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #82 on: August 16, 2012, 12:45:54 AM »
17:

I must say, this arc has improved on virtually every aspect of the series that I had a problem with. The mystery was actually interesting, the characters were a lot less shallow, and it was even exciting as a slice-of-life drama-comedy.

It's ironic how a few episodes, I was praising the arc for focusing more on the characterization and slice-of-life elements, when later on it ended up being the mystery plot that defined it.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #83 on: August 20, 2012, 07:58:16 PM »
18:

Houtarou is KININARIMASU!? OMGrageface.jpg

It's interesting to see that Houtarou has somewhat developed because of Chitanda. He recognizes how he owes her one for wanting to tag along and help out his personal curiosity, but I'm not sure if he realizes that he has changed a little because of her influence in solving a case through understanding people's emotions. Not about him being more proactive than before per se, but how his perspective has widened.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #84 on: August 29, 2012, 02:17:36 AM »
18:

I have to say, the chemistry between the cast is growing at a exponential pace, and the show is knocking my socks off more and more with each episode. This was probably the best stand alone episode so far, mostly because we get to see how the relationship of Chitanda and Oreki has progressed from the beginning of the show by leaps and bounds.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #85 on: August 29, 2012, 08:09:06 AM »
19:

An episode entirely about two people getting at each other over a detective game of deductions... impressive.

The only problem was the ol' Kyoto Animation trying to visually show off again. Kinda thought that things would've been less jarring if the visual representation had been less fancy so that more concentration can be on the deductive dialogue. Other than that, it's interesting to see how this detective game is different because the game's direction and restrictions are determined by likelihood, while previous ones are determined by the respective situations themselves.

Not bad, Hyouka. Good one on you.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #86 on: September 05, 2012, 02:10:34 AM »
20:

They spent far more time on explaining why it is they just couldn't do the most obvious thing to get out of the shed than actually doing what was necessary to get out of the shed.  When you have to write half the episode just to placate the overzealous retards who will ask endless numbers of questions regarding plot holes... y'know overzealous retards like ME... then maybe... just maybe... us overzealous retards are just ruining things.

Nah.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #87 on: September 05, 2012, 08:42:06 AM »
Apparently the episode is cannon and fairly accurate to the story in the novel.  But, at the same time, when there's a blatantly obvious solution to a problem that you don't want to use for narrative reasons, you need at least some hand-wavable excuse.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #88 on: September 05, 2012, 02:22:10 PM »
No no, that's just it.  It wasn't a hand-waving excuse at all because they put so much damned time into explaining why it would be a problem for Chitanda.  They made the excuse believable enough by covering all the bases.  They also made sure that, despite the problems it would cause, that they would use that way to get out if they had no other choice.  I'm fine with that.  I just found it hilarious.  It felt more like the author had been reading the Muv-Luv threads and made ****ing sure there were no holes to poke in this plot.

Took so much time on it that the episode was mostly over by the time they got to exploring other options.  Just made me laugh, despite myself.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #89 on: September 05, 2012, 10:58:02 PM »
Ah, okay.  Well, it's a logical, real-world set, small mysteries series.  Houtarou is supposed to be Holmes.  So, the author wouldn't be able to get away with anything cheap like missing the blatantly obvious solutions.

Though they did miss one.  They could have called out and had one of them hide, then come back 5 minutes later.  Though there would have been a risk of being seen... given Chitanda and "hiding" don't really mix well.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #90 on: September 08, 2012, 07:49:45 PM »
20:

It's blatantly obvious that, since this is a Holmes series, the simplest solutions are perhaps just too simple to be turned to. Hence, by imposing rules and restrictions to themselves, Houtarou and Chitanda basically froze themselves by several minutes. They just had to rely on the most difficult and risky solutions just so that they can solve their problem the most intricate way ever.

Simply put, if I were Houtarou, I'd simply break the door (heck, maybe just bang the door loud enough).

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #91 on: September 10, 2012, 01:59:35 PM »
21: There needs to be arcs again. I enjoy these 1 episode mini mysteries, but there's something about giving you time to think about the mystery over a few weeks, then blowing you away with the conclusion (one that isn't blatantly obvious) at the end.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #92 on: September 10, 2012, 02:39:38 PM »
21:

Normally I'd agree, but I think this was more a development episode for Satoshi than anything else.  The thing is, I think I know when it is he got over his "obsessing over one thing" mantra, and it was about the time he realized he couldn't beat Hotaru at detective work.  Up until that point, Satoshi was still highly competitive and wanted to be the best at it.  When he resigned himself to fate, he had his epiphany.

However, when it comes to Mayaka, I think he'd already had this idea for a while.  He was okay with obsessing over concepts, ideas, and things, but when it came to a person I don't think he could make that leap.  So we get an idea of what goes through his mind, to help us understand the boy a bit better.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #93 on: September 10, 2012, 03:13:38 PM »
Normally I'd agree, but I think this was more a development episode for Satoshi than anything else.  The thing is, I think I know when it is he got over his "obsessing over one thing" mantra, and it was about the time he realized he couldn't beat Hotaru at detective work.  Up until that point, Satoshi was still highly competitive and wanted to be the best at it.  When he resigned himself to fate, he had his epiphany.

Hm. I'm inclined to think that his problem stems from way before the Kanya Festival or even Houtarou himself, but I do agree that the previous arc served to further reinforce his way of thinking. Even during the earlier episodes, he's already had a habit for self-deprecation, especially in the way he kept labeling himself as a database. I think the fairly carefree demeanor we've seen so far is a defense mechanism he created to protect his own self-esteem. If anything, the sudden change in character he had during the Kanya Festival probably represents him much better than a lot of what we've seen from him so far.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #94 on: September 10, 2012, 04:10:37 PM »
21:

Now all those remarks from the bowl-cut guy make sense--the one who kept challenging Satoshi at the Kanya festival.

So Hyouka has 24 episodes? MAL had me thinking we'd only get 21, which would have sucked since it was only a few episodes ago (at the conclusion of the Kanya festival arc) that the characters were starting to really interest me.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2012, 04:28:40 PM by Sorrows Neptune »

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #95 on: September 10, 2012, 07:41:23 PM »
The original run was listed as 21, but I keep hearing it's 24 now.  Apparently the last story from the 3rd or 4th novel (whichever they're in) should cover 3 episodes.  So, 1 more arc?

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #96 on: September 11, 2012, 07:38:06 AM »
21:

Well, Satoshi's more interesting than he looks. In fact, the previous arcs kinda fall into place after this episode since it sums up basically everything about him. He used to be more competitive before, but just not anymore. Perhaps not "competitive" per se; more like "passionate". Why doesn't he want to be as competitive or passionate as before is something only he would understand. Perhaps he just doesn't want to be that person who's never happy about anything except winning in one way or another.

Not sure if it's for the better or for the worse. He is who he is, I guess.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #97 on: September 11, 2012, 01:08:38 PM »
21:

I assume most realized Satoshi did it pretty much immediately like I did, and what I liked was watching him as he played along, seeing on his face the fact he realized that he was't going to get away with it. Satoshi is more complex than 90% of the characters I see in anime, and I really like him too, even if I feel he's being stupid over his dilemma with Mayaka.

I am really enjoying this show now, and it only reinforces how I feel about Kyoto Animation as a studio.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #98 on: September 16, 2012, 06:20:11 PM »
22: This is the last episode? REALLY? i'm not a fan of this ending. hopefully they're working on a second season as we speak, i really love Hyouka.

As far as the entire anime goes, i enjoyed every bit of it. i'm so surprised how they made such mundane mysteries such as "why did i get angry today?" so damn interesting. its a very unique concept that i felt was executed to absolute perfection. however, its very much a love it or hate it ordeal. i can imagine viewers screaming "THIS IS SO BORING! wheres the murders, crimes, etc.??" That wasn't the premise of this series, there are plenty of Mystery animes out there with such dark themes (a dime a dozen, if you ask me). My only complaints are that chitanda and oreki's relationship felt extremely static, and the ending was lame in my opinion. they should really rectify this by making a SECOND SEASON :)

9/10 i enjoyed every moment.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #99 on: September 17, 2012, 12:59:34 PM »
Yep, that's the last episode.  Just like the three before it, they were just short side stories from the light novels.  BTW, Hyouka is selling well, so we'll probably get more at some point.  Arguably it isn't selling as well as it SHOULD, and probably isn't getting the recognition it deserves as an overall high quality anime.  I can't think of a single flaw to the series, whether it be writing, characters, music, animation, or even less tangible things like creativity.  There's a lot here to like.

I don't give 10s, but a 9 is an absolute for Hyouka.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #100 on: September 17, 2012, 02:54:23 PM »
Definite 9.  Just an amazing show.  I always had to watch it quickly.  It's one of the few anime where it 1) felt like the real world and 2) felt like a world you wanted to live in.   Oh, and it also gave us the most awesome cultural festival ever put in an anime.

Can't really say enough about the writing and the direction on this series.  The pre-hype going into this series is that the source material was actually pretty weak.  So the staff, along with KyoAni's flare, really brought their A game to this one.  I've never enjoyed a show so much where very little actually happens.  And I'm going to miss my weekly dose of Chitanda's eyes.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #101 on: September 17, 2012, 07:50:22 PM »
I'm gonna miss this too. Gave it a 9. Had to get used to not getting dark/complicated mysteries and such, but once I got over that, I loved it.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #102 on: September 17, 2012, 08:55:39 PM »
Final:

That was a beautiful episode. Literally, it's a visual spectacle that only Kyoto Animation can and would do. As for the whole mystery thing, I'm glad that it's not a zealous one (like back in the shed) and that it thematically complements the episode. At least the series knows for once how not to overdo things.

--

My thoughts on Hyouka:

I didn't get good vibes when I first watched the series. The first impression I got was basically how Kyoto Animation was trying to visually boasts for a series with a mundane and boring story about a group of students who want to play Sherlock Holmes. And, it didn't help me liking the show one bit when the characters kinda mirrored those from TMoHS in terms of their roles i.e. Houtarou = Kyon, Eru = Suzumiya, and Satoshi = Koizumi (okay, perhaps Mayaka doesn't really fit Nagato or Mikuru).

But then, I was proven wrong gradually and eventually. Indeed, for most parts Kyoto Animation continued to excessively show off its production budget and aesthetic abilities right to the end but the story got interesting whenever the group has a mystery to solve. It's especially when they tried to deduce and make sense of the mystery, does the show really become riveting. Plus, along the way, each character's idiosyncrasies get explored and from there I got to relate to them much better. The show does overdo with its mystery theme, sometimes to the point that they're doing it just because and become impractical as a result, and the group does get over-zealous sometimes but the show really knew how to narrate a great detective mystery.

It's a toss between a strong 7 and a weak 8 (can't really make up my mind). In the end, I will point out one thing: Kyoto Animation really did this title a favor. Can't imagine how things would turn out had it not been the production studio.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #103 on: September 17, 2012, 10:07:49 PM »
22:

Holy cow, the last three minutes of this show was incredible. It seamlessly integrated all of the character development up to this point, from Chitanda's attempts to persuade people at the Student Festival (which a lot of people argued was the weakest part of that arc), to Satoshi's struggles with obsession and Oreki's development, and delivered a powerful ending to a masterful series.

Easily a candidate for the best show this year: I give it a 9.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #104 on: September 17, 2012, 10:57:29 PM »
22:

To be honest, I probably didn't get as much out of Hyouka as I could have. For a good half of the series, I kept getting disappointed at how mundane the plot was, but that was mainly due to unfair expectations of what this show would actually be like; I came in expecting another dark and complex type of mystery, and it took me a while to accept that that just wasn't what Hyouka was going for.

I give it a 7...maybe an 8. There are quire a few moments where the series tries too hard at something, such trying too hard to make plot engaging, or making the visuals appealing. But for the most part there isn't much to dislike.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2012, 11:08:35 PM by Sorrows Neptune »

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #105 on: September 24, 2012, 01:51:21 PM »
I am giving Hyouka an 8, it's strength doesn't lie in it's mysteries (although they are good too), but in the characters, their growth and interactions. It was really a joy to watch at points, it's a weak 8, but an 8 nonetheless.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #106 on: September 25, 2012, 09:57:56 PM »
1-22:

I started this thread with extremely high hopes of KyoAni, and they did indeed deliver.

Hyouka is once again a brilliant demonstration of why KyoAni is so good at making Slice of Life anime work. As Akira once said, a successful Slice of Life anime is when you yourself become so engaged with the setting, that you feel you're amongst the characters because the way they are presented is so detailed and lifelike, you can't help but feel that way. That's precisely what Hyouka was. However, that does not mean it doesn't have its downsides.

For one, this show took far too long to get started. Don't get me wrong - it takes time to build up character for a good slice of life, and KyoAni did it in a very reasonable amount of time - about 10ish episodes. However for many people, that is far too long and they are likely to have dropped it by then. This is also one of the biggest reasons I couldn't give Steins;Gate a high score. It just took far too long to get started! This is an unreasonable request, maybe, but if I think back to similar character-driven series such as K-ON or Lucky Star, I don't ever recall myself being 'bored' even thoughout the first episodes.

Hyouka's school festival arc and the ending are amongst the best I have ever seen in anime, so I won't talk about that much. I think the "open-ending" is perfect. Nothing I can complain about. If I rewatch Hyouka, I'm sure I'd enjoy it more than the first run because by now I'm in love with the characters so much, just watching them talk would bring me joy instead of brining me sleepiness like the first time I saw it. However, that doesn't change the fact I was bored for almost half the series on my first watch.

7/10, though this is a very strong one. I will almost certainly change this to an 8 if I rewatch it. The above average score is due to the very strong second half after we have been introduced to the characters. As of now, it joins Nichijou, Full Metal Panic! The Second Raid and Clannad: Kyou Chapter as the lowest rated KyoAni anime in my list. Yes, I know I'm a fanboy.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2012, 10:04:16 PM by ImperialX »

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #107 on: September 25, 2012, 11:54:41 PM »
Quote
This is an unreasonable request, maybe, but if I think back to similar character-driven series such as K-ON... I don't ever recall myself being 'bored' even thoughout the first episodes.

*Spit*

What?
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Offline leokiko.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #108 on: September 26, 2012, 12:44:21 AM »
I don't really recall being bored in K-ON! either. 'Cuz I fell asleep while watching it.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #109 on: September 26, 2012, 12:46:45 AM »
K-On! was okay, but I was bored to tears by K-On!!.  Just saying.

I actually was in on the characters by the trip to Mayaka's extended family's hotel.  I loved the details on the way the two cousins interacted.  It showed where the series was going very well.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #110 on: September 26, 2012, 12:52:17 AM »
*Spit*

What?

K-ON!! is a solid 9/10, my dear TIF. I was on the verge of tears when it ended.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #111 on: September 26, 2012, 01:05:17 AM »
ImperialX, I would certainly be interested in reading your thoughts on K-ON. You seem to hold it in high regards, but it's hard for me to think of a good thing about it, with the little time I spent watching it; up until episode 4 or so.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #112 on: September 26, 2012, 01:16:32 AM »
ImperialX, I would certainly be interested in reading your thoughts on K-ON. You seem to hold it in high regards, but it's hard for me to think of a good thing about it, with the little time I spent watching it; up until episode 4 or so.

I'll be copying a few things from my blog here and here in my response. I get asked this question a lot, and it's understandable for you to think poorly of K-ON. Before we get started, I would like to point out that the only two 10/10 I have given out in my career are to Lucky Star and ARIA the Origination. Both are SoLs. Again, as Akira said, if you don't like the characters, you can't enjoy the Slice of Life. If you don't like K-ON's characters, it's already over. When I judge a SoL, I judge it completely differently to other genres. Everything with regards to plot, animation, music, pace, voice acting, cinematography...they're all thrown out the window. I judge an SoL based on how immersed I feel in its World. That is naturally defined by how attached I am to the characters.

Yes, in the elitist anime blogosphere and /a/, there is much shame to be had in admitting you enjoy watching K-On!, because who in their right mind would enjoy a plotless moeblob slice-of-life show over sayÖ the testosterone filled battle epic TTGL? Certainly no one would admit to such an atrocious act to their friends face to face. Hence it becomes extremely hard to be objective when posed with the question, ĎWhy do you like K-ON?". This is one of the reasons I enjoy Reddit and /r/anime. Those guys are not as knowledgable as us, but they have no 'shame' in admitting they like watching high school girls chatting and eating cake.

In recent times I feel that too much anime are being categorized based on if they have any moe elements in them. While thereís nothing wrong with giving labeling an anime as containing moe, it unfairly depicts certain anime as catering towards the niche otaku audience and suggests itís lack of depth and unoriginality, which in many cases simply isnít true. Take Lucky Star for example. Everyone says it's a moeblob. But it's also one of the two favourite anime of all time for me. As I said, everything about judging a Slice of Life is different to other genres. For one, every episode should end with you feeling relaxed and contented with a smile on your face. Does K-On!! achieve this? Yes, absolutely 100% yes.

K-On!! follows a relatively frugal format in terms of storyline. You wouldnít go into each episode expecting anything dramatic or exhilarating, and for some this may be what they like to call boring. But then again, you wouldnít open a bag of chips expecting M&Ms and chocolate fudge, so why you go into K-On!! expecting anything even resembling a continuous plot? K-On!!ís style single episodic scenarios work greatly in itís favor, viewers are never startled with annoying cliffhangers or feel an obligation to keep up with it in fear of missing out on some important plot element. If watching K-On!! becomes a chore (Iím looking at you Bleach manga), then itís missed the point completely, and in this regard, I give K-On!!ís Ďplotí two thumbs up.

Despite this though, K-On!! deals with some surprisingly deep themes that would go right over the heads of most casual viewers. One definite improvement from itís first season is the branching out of the limited focus of club practice (eating cake) to wider array of activities. Granted, most of them are still obvious and predictable, the sort of been-there done-that stories weíve all seen before, but the shift allowed K-On!! to focus on many different aspects and resort less to what I like to call Ďmoe-momentsí in order to fill up the 24 minutes. Lets face it, how many different ways can you eat, drink and procrastinate before it starts getting old? Instead though, from the summer trips to school plays to the air conditioning campaigns, K-On!! moves away from the same-ness of cake/tea/practice/more cake in the first season and closer to true slice-of-life.

K-On!!ís real brilliance shines in the final 6-7 episodes or so, as the girls neared the finale of their school life, the realization that their after school tea times canít last forever hits them quietly and their are faced with the challenges of change and the future. Though not exactly compelling and dramatic, it nevertheless teaches us that our beloved peaceful times cannot always last forever, which only makes them more precious, not unlike Aria the Origination, but on a smaller scale. K-On!ís main idea was a carefree life of daily cake, tea and music with not a worry in the world, but K-On!!ís step away from that ultimately paid off and turned what would have been just a mediocre moeblob into a great slice-of-life.

I supposed Iíd better tackle the moe problem, as it seems to be the main issue dragging K-On!! down. Yes, there is a lot of it. Yes, it is overused. Would K-On!! be better without it? This is extremely questionable. but then it wouldnít be K-On!! anymore. As much as we all hate to admit it, moe has become an integral part of the characterization of the K-On!! girls. Yui simply wouldnít believe the same if she didnít drool over Azu-nyan or cake, Azu-nyan wouldnít be the same if she didnít get embarrassed over every little thing and Mugi simply canít exist without her air-headed-ness and cheerfulness. Sure, they could do without it, but then theyíd be different characters completely.

And to be fair, a lot of the moe-hate stem from people who watch 3-4 episodes, drop it, and then go complain about it on forums. As I followed K-On!! throughout itís season, I was quietly surprised as the moe-moments gradually thinned out little by little. It was as if as the girls grew older, the show slowly matured along with them. Donít believe me? Well, donít my word for it, see for yourself. Right now. Open up say episode 2 or 3, count how many moe-moments there are, and then compare them to a later episode, say, 21 or something. Donít worry, Iím not going anywhere so take your timeÖ OkÖ done? See? Good. Anyway as I was saying, the gradual fade of moe was was subtle and barely noticeable, but for those paying attention it was a nice touch, and went along well with the tone of bittersweetness of the end of their high school lives.

I could probably very easily write a long rant about the negatives of vanilla ice cream. I could talk about how bad it is for your health, how expensive and nutrition lacking ice-cream is, or how it is an overrated flavor and too many people eat just because they donít have the guts to try new and better flavors, or how the ice-cream companies continue to make vanilla ice-cream to cater for those idiotic people, cashing in instead of nobly taking the first step in revolutionizing ice cream flavors. But at the end of the day, it doesnít change the fact that I like vanilla ice-cream, and that I enjoy having it every Friday night after dinner as I tune in to watch the weekly action flick on television. I personally think it's more skilful to be able to state in the current blogosphere that I LIKE K-ON, and then defend my views. Not to mention it's my genuine opinion - not just deliberately playing the devil's advocate.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #113 on: September 26, 2012, 05:01:16 AM »
Well, for one thing welcome back ImperialX, next is that I read through that and it made sense.

Honestly I don't know anymore how I feel about K-ON!, I watched it all a long time ago before I even knew what moe was. If I watched it now, I have a sneaking suspicion I may even like it, I don't even hate moe, I just don't like it when it's got nothing else to it other than moe. For example you're recommendation Sora no Woto was something I loved, and I liked the moe parts too, but it had something else to it as well, which made the show as a whole more interesting, but also allowed me to get more involved in the characters. Nichijou had humour as well as moe, and it worked well together in my mid.

With regards to you saying that if you don't like the characters to a Slice of Life it's over, I find this to be so very true, in fact if I don't like the characters in any genre I will end up not liking the show. I don't know, for me being invested in the characters is one of the most important things (unless it's a comedy, although it helps), it allows you to feel the drama through the characters themselves, rather than being an objective bystander.

On topic, the reason I enjoyed Hyouka so much towards the end was because of the characters and how they interacted. Houtarou who I initially thought was plain turned out to be a decent character, and Chitanda was also a character that grew on me. I actually hope for a second season, which is regrettable since I am also hoping for another season to Full Metal Panic from Kyoto Animation.

Maybe I should rewatch K-ON!

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #114 on: September 26, 2012, 05:44:19 AM »
With regards to you saying that if you don't like the characters to a Slice of Life it's over, I find this to be so very true, in fact if I don't like the characters in any genre I will end up not liking the show. I don't know, for me being invested in the characters is one of the most important things (unless it's a comedy, although it helps), it allows you to feel the drama through the characters themselves, rather than being an objective bystander.

Liking the characters and resonating with the characters are two different things. Sorry, but I should have made that more clear.

Let's take Zetsubou Sensei for a moment here. There's no way you can resonate with any character in Zetsubou Sensei, because they have been twisted to such extent, they are no longer 'realistic' by any means. This doesn't mean you don't like them, but you cannot put yourself in their shoes, nor become immersed in their World. However, you don't need to do that to enjoy Zetsubou Sensei! It isn't a Slice of Life, so it will rely on cinematography, scriptwriting, or some other form of technique-based appeal. In SZS's case, it's the witty satirical humour. a.k.a. Script.

With Slice of Life series such as K-ON! and Sora no Woto, it as of absolute importance that you can resonate with the characters. Immerse yourself in their World. That is the only way to appreciate Slice of Life, and it's putting yourself into the entire setting and landscape which allows Slice of Life to have limitless potential. It's also why I believe only Slice of Life anime can get 10/10 from me. If a third 10/10 anime ever comes along, I'm almost certain it will be a Slice of Life.

On topic, the reason I enjoyed Hyouka so much towards the end was because of the characters and how they interacted. Houtarou who I initially thought was plain turned out to be a decent character, and Chitanda was also a character that grew on me.

I bet if you rewatch Hyouka, you'll be amazed at how good the first ten episodes were. What you thought was 'boring' before may turn out wonderful. That's what great Slice of Life series do to you.

I am also hoping for another season to Full Metal Panic from Kyoto Animation.

Not happening. Learn Japanese. Or if you want, I can spoil everything for you since I've read all the light novels to the conclusion.

Maybe I should rewatch K-ON!

Again, it's all about the characters. If you think Yui is annoying as many people do - you guessed it - it's already over.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #115 on: September 26, 2012, 05:20:42 PM »
K-ON!! is a solid 9/10, my dear TIF. I was on the verge of tears when it ended.

Were those tears of pain... like how you feel when someone pulls your teeth out with a pair of pliers?

If so, then I agree with you.  A 9/10 on the trainwreck scale and I was crying like a little bitch.
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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #116 on: September 26, 2012, 07:03:34 PM »
Slice of Life also seem to work better in Week over Week viewing format, compared to just mainlining through the entire series.  I tried to mainline S1 and S2 together.  That's why I got lost in S2 pretty badly.

I find it humorous we're talking about Full Metal Panic! in the Hyouka thread.  FMP!'s writer did the series comp on Hyouka.  So, it's not completely insane to think we won't ever see another FMP series, but it's pretty unlikely (at this point in time).  Though we might see spiritual successors if Gatoh keeps working with KyoAni.

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Re: Hyouka
« Reply #117 on: January 15, 2013, 07:50:06 PM »
11.5:

Oh jeez, can't we even get like just one glimpse of Houtarou's sister's face already...

Basically, this episode summed up what Hyouka was all about in a nutshell: deriving to a conclusion of a "mystery" by logical means. But the pet problem have always been the same: Oreki and Co. are always "obliged" to solve mysteries and they override practicality, showing just how over-zealous they can be at solving something. To be honest, they wouldn't have to go through the trouble of looking something that never existed if they had only ask the lady. Oreki had a point when he said there's nothing wrong about asking her an innocent question, Mayaka simply shot back and brushed aside his point. Simply put, I seriously don't see why they would go through the trouble of searching the entire pool rather than just asking a simple question. For all we know, Mayaka could've asked since Chitanda's too shy.

But never mind; it was a good episode, nonetheless.
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