This was Maho’s episode of awesomeness. In spite of staying in bed and telling Nittori she’s not going to school because she’s too embarrassed of him, she is actually really worried about him and even tells Anna to go cheer him up. Her ambush hug of Seya (whose support of Nittori is equally admirable) was great too. It’s rare that we get a show with so many characters of such depth. The only other show I can think of which has so many well-developed characters is Simoun – but there they had over twice as much time to do it in, and tended to focus on only a few characters at a time. In Hourou Musuko each episode is divided more evenly between all of the characters, so it needs to pace things tightly. It never wastes time – every moment is well spent in showing something new about the characters.
Chi was also awesome in this episode. I would have expected Takatsuki or Sasa to come cheer up Nittori, but having Chi go together with Momo was an excellent choice. Her optimism and Momo’s embarrassment at being seen as a “freak” make for an interesting combination. Chi’s response to Momo that she already was a freak was nicely done as well, especially with Makoto’s comment.
And Shuu is beginning to stand up for himself, even telling Doi that he hates him. Still, I don’t think Doi was really trying to be mean – he is just insensitive.
Apparently this episode was a combination of episode 10 and 11, which will be separated and longer on the blue ray release (not clear as to why). It was patched together quite well and I could hardly tell that anything was missing. I assume they will spend some more time on Shuu’s breakup in the full episode though, since this was only seen as a flashback. The setup of multiple short segments does lend itself well to adding and removing bits and pieces.