Spy x Family brings family joys into the world of espionage

A scene from Spy x Family

Taking the internet by storm, Spy x Family has emerged as the most popular anime of spring 2022. However, its acclaim is not unwarranted as it had ample fanfare even before its release. With such soaring anticipation, expectations for the adaptation were high to say the least, and the anime certainly meets them, giving us a worthy adaptation of the source material.

Written and illustrated by Tatsuya Endo, the manga was released online through the Shonen Jump Plus website in 2019 and became an instant hit. Despite not having a spot on the prestigious Shonen Jump magazine, the manga sold over 15 million copies, easily becoming his best work yet.

Spy x Family is not a conventional anime by any means. It has a rather unique and quirky plot. 

The story starts off when the spy Twilight, taking on the identity of a psychiatrist named Loid Forger, adopts the orphan child Anya, and arranges a fake marriage with Yor, a city hall employee, in order to start on his newest mission: Operation Strix. Little does he know, his new wife is secretly an assassin – the Thorn Princess – and his child is a mind-reading esper who is aware of both of her parents' true identities.

The story follows these three protagonists, how they try to function as a family while Loid and Yor conduct their classified missions without revealing their original backgrounds to one another. However, Anya does not dare disclose any of this as she fears of being deported back to the orphanage. On the contrary, she relishes these circumstances because of her love for anything involving secrets and missions.

The anime primarily comes off as an action-comedy with more emphasis on the comedic aspect of it, which is a rather astounding feat when the setting of the plot is taken into account. The show may be built on a much darker premise involving espionage, assanitaion, murder and politics, but manages to alliveate the burden by balancing out the heavy tones with humour.

The characters are pivotal in binding the story with the various themes of the show. All three characters have dimensions to their personalities and adequate screen time to display them. The dynamic among them brings out their positives and oddities simultaneously, as we witness how Loid and Yor have to get out of their comfort zones to act as proper parents to Anya, making them feel more relatable.

The portrayal of attempting to form a loving family regardless of their idiosyncratic reasons gives the show the charm of a wholesome slice-of-life anime amidst everything going on in the background.

As the manga is still ongoing, it is reasonable to expect further adaptation of Spy x Family in future. The show acts as a good breather that can cut through the monotone of binging through other action and mature themed anime. 

Mynul likes peanuts, but he also likes carrots. Send him Spy x Family memes at [email protected]