Kazuki and Futami for the win here. Since those two were the focus of most of the episode, and the most important parts they're who I'll be focusing on mostly here...
Anyways, he's poked enough holes into her shell that she realizes what she's feeling. Frankly, I've always liked her character. She's the smart-girl archetype and that's coupled with a somewhat unique world view as seen through her taste in foods. Yet while her tastes are the most overt symptom, the more important one is how she walls off her emotions, not wanting to feel anything.
It is those walls which she erected which keep her from making friends and interacting with her classmates--and while some may think she's snobbish, it's not so much that as she just doesn't know how to interact with others. That was the point of the experiments; she wanted to know and learn, so that she could then go and do.
Of course once she was confronted by Sakino about her actions, it was driven in hard and fast just how different she is from the others. So, those walls went right back up.
Now, please note that I'm not saying that Futami doesn't recognize and understand what other people are feeling. What she's lacking is the knowledge of how those feelings are generated, why they change and how she herself should respond to them. Compare this to Kazuki who has trouble seeing past the walls which Futami has placed around herself and her reactions, and is completely blind to what Sakino is feeling, yet he has no problem reacting to things.
And while you do kind of have to feel bad that Sakino is going to continued getting ignored by Kazuki (my prediction) I can't help but think that Futami needed him more. Also, Kai continues to be mature, despite my somewhat snarking episode summary where he's concerned. I snark because I doubt... well I know, I couldn't be as magnanimous as he's been throughout this series where Mao is concerned.
Now, I do have a question; one that has to do with the opening. Mainly, there's a character that is displayed in the opening twice (both times with the rich girl) and I do not believe that she's been introduced in the anime yet. Am I wrong in that or did I just miss it?
If anyone knows, please, please tell me.
The episode picks up in the park where Mao had been crying. Kai comes around with some drinks and they have a chat, where he tells her how strong and cool he is. It's now time for a quick peek at Hoshino as she's pondering the fact that the girl who lives with her boyfriend loves him. Then it's shifted over to the boy in question as Mao finally gets home, and Kouichi has an angst moment as he decides if he should greet her or not. As Mao is laying in her bed, she's having a flashback to the stuff Kai said.
Then it's off to Kazuki as he ponders Futami.
The next morning, Mao tries to act as if nothing is wrong. Even going so far as to blame her actions in the previous episode as that she's empathizing to much with the heroine from their movie. Of course, in true Mao fashion she blows that thought away by confessing the fact that it's a lie. All-in-all her actions leave Kouichi stunned.
Now it's time to look at Kazuki as he tries to approach Futami at the shoe lockers. She again shoots him down and brushes past him. In the classroom, a group of girls are looking at some fashion magazine and Sakino takes an interest in it--generating some less than subtle teasing of her by the other girls.
Later in the day we find out that Hoshino is not paying attention to the teacher. At lunch the director-boy (why can't I ever remember his name??) asks Kouichi what that's all about and he says something unimportant, as the real action is Kazuki once again approaching Futami. Futami had been at a table, eating all by herself, and to the shock and awe of everyone in the lunchroom, Kazuki drops himself into the spot across from her. He then tells her that she hasn't answered his feelings properly. When she says she had answered him, he tells her he's stupid so she needs to tell it to him clearer. In response she bolts. As she's walking off, he does the right thing and stands up. Unfortunately, he's not thought things through, so he just stands there quietly.
Afterwards, Kouichi and Hoshino are walking home, and she asks about Mao. He gives her the same empathizing line, and she begins to ask him about how he feels.
Then we check in on Nana as she's making plans for an Udon Association sleepover. As she's returning to her room, she overhears Kazuki practicing what he plans on telling Futami. She tells him about the sleep over and then tells him how cool he is. At this point, we take a peek at Futami who's sulking in her bedroom.
The next day, Kazuki goes to Futami's classroom to discover that she called in sick. He makes a frowny face and we flip over to Futami. Who is sitting on the couch watching Tom and Jerry and moping. She turns off the cartoons and then goes out onto the balcony to watch the sunset for a bit. Glancing down she sees Kazuki walking towards her apartment with a bundle of flowers and she kind of freaks.
Then she waits for twenty minutes, constantly looking over at the intercom. Finally, she gets up and turns on the video camera thing, and hears what he's been practicing. After watching him, and getting emotional, she goes and scares him. When he screws up what he's going to say, she giggles, and then denies it. He makes another speech about feelings, and she begins to cry.
Quickly, we go look at Sakino to discover that she's now picking up the girly magazine. After that, we look at Mao, and then discover that she's getting out of Dodge.