Oreki Houtarou is a lazy, easygoing, and a bit anti-social high school student who suddenly finds himself immersed in the activities of the new members of the Classics Club. He was asked by his sister to save the club by enlisting as a member. He agreed thinking that no one else would bother to sign up. However it was through this club that he met the highly curious and energetic Chitanda Eru, the strong and determined Ibara Mayaka, and his long-time friend Fukube Satoshi who tagged along when he discovered that Houtarou joined a club. The group discovers Houtarou's knack for solving mysteries. His skills were put to the ultimate test when they investigated a school event involving Chitanda's uncle 45 years ago.

Oreki Houtarou

(L-R) Chitanda Eru, Ibara Mayaka, and Fukube Satoshi

Although the 22-episode series started off with plenty of mysteries that the characters had to solve, it spiraled into a day-to-day narration of normal high school friends getting through school activities with a few mysteries from time to time. It started off great and reached its climax during the search for the meaning of Hyouka and the mystery of the first Classic Club anthology of the same title. The ending was anti-climactic and the series to explore further Houtarou's talents. When the anthology mystery was solved, it seemed like there was no point in the rest of the series at all; notwithstanding the attempt to examine the friendship between the club members and Houtarou's slow emergence from his detachment to other people and his surroundings.

It was however a refreshing series from the usual books and movies of the mystery genre that are full of tension and action. The pace and the backdrop suits Houtarou's personality. The pace of the story mirrors Houtarou's slow and steady character, while the backdrop of a busy school event and the festival at the end of the series contrasts with Houtarou's  calm reaction to most of the situations he finds himself in. I enjoyed Hyouka for its take on this genre and good animation.

Rating: 7 out of 10.