Spy X Family is a really popular manga and now anime series made by Tatsuya Endo. It captured the audiences overnight soon after the first episode had aired. Those who followed the manga of managed to hype it up to an absurd degree even before the anime aired. Needless to say, Spy X Family broke through every expectation and managed to become one of the most memorable shows of 2022.
Some might say that Spy X Family is overhyped, but we’d say that it deserves every bit of that hype. Spy X Family has everything that it needs in order to be a masterpiece, excellent writing, a unique premise, solid visuals and audio, and, most importantly, memorable characters.
We have a Loid, a protagonist that everyone wants to be. Yor, a waifu that everyone loves and would simp for. And Anya, a daughter so cute that her cuteness alone might be enough to solve Japan’s population decline, convincing everyone to have a child.
If you are still wondering whether you should invest time into watching Spy X Family even after all the buzz it created during its season, then this Spy X Family review might help you decide.
Spy X Family occurs in a world where countries are constantly at war. The anime opens with a scene of soon-to-be “Loid Forger,” also known as “Twilight,” one of our three main-character having dinner with the daughter of one of his targets.
Loid later ditches the daughter after acquiring photos of her father wearing a wig in order to blackmail him and keep peace intact between his country of Westalis and Ostanai, both of which have just recently entered a period of peace.
Twilight is later contacted by his organization and is informed about his next mission, which is to investigate the plans of a person named Donovan Desmond, a high-ranking official of Ostania who plans to threaten the newly established peace between the countries of Westalis and Ostania.
This operation is dubbed “Operation Strix,” with the first step instructing Loid to get married and have a child, with the deadline being seven days. Donovan Desmond acts as a hermit who rarely makes a public appearance. The few times he was spotted were during get-togethers at his son’s prestigious school, which also acts as social gatherings for the elites of politics and other industries.
After regaining his cool and acquiring a base of operations, AKA a house, along with a new identity of “Loid Forger,” he goes in search of a child in an orphanage. This is where we are introduced to our second protagonist Anya, an esper who acquired her powers through experiments. Anya gets chosen by Loid after solving a difficult crossword puzzle using her esper abilities.
Later Loid and Anya reach their home and start preparing for the entrance exam of the Eden Academy, the academy that Loid needs Anya to get into in order to get closer to Desmond.
After a few scuffles with a villainous politician, Anya and Loid bond, and later on, Anya successfully passes the entrance exam of Eden Academy. But they still have to go through the interview, where both the parents a child are needed to be present. Thus, the search for the mother begins.
Anya and Loid, along with Franky, an informant who works with Loid, scour through the city hall records in order to find single women who Loid might be able to marry to meet the criteria for attending the Eden Academy interview.
Later on, they go to a tailor shop to get Anya better clothes for her interview. This is where they meet Yor, who manages to sneak up on Loid, much to his surprise.
After a brief conversation, both Lord and Yor strike a deal where both of them will enter a fake marriage in order to take care of both of their problems. Thus starts this family’s day-to-day life towards being a happy family while keeping each of their identities a secret.
Spy X Family Review:
Spy X Family is an anime that’s for everyone, be it fans of action, slice-of-life, or drama. It has something for everyone. Spy X Family doesn’t have expansive world-building like One Piece, but the setting highly resembles Cold War Germany, which is funny as it is not clearly stated, but we do see a glimpse of Loid in a station, funnily named Berlint.
Spy X Family boasts a relatively small but diverse cast, each with their own identities and motivations and unique backstories. The first cour of the anime focuses on Loid, Anya, and Yor getting to know each and undergoing different fiascos to keep each of their identities hidden.
On the surface, the plot of Spy X Family seems very straightforward, well, because it is. But the plot is not the main driving factor of Spy X Family in the first place. Spy X Family is driven by its characters. Twilight is given an espionage mission for which he needs to get a wife and a kid. The wife he ends up with is an assassin, and the kid is an esper.
And the peace between the countries of Westalis and Ostania depends on this quirky but barely functioning family. The whole story of the Spy X Family is driven by this quirky family and their struggles to function as a normal family while keeping their totally-not normal background secret.
The animation of Spy X Family is done by Studio Wit and Cloverworks, two really popular anime studios working in collaboration while taking turns in animating each episode. And it shows, the art is beautiful, the animation is seamless, and it stays true to the source material while adding original scenes that just elevate the flow of the story.
But every story, no matter how good the premise, need characters that are lovable or deep, or a combination of both. And that’s where Spy X Family’s strength lies. The main cast of Spy X Family is one of the biggest things that contributed to the creation of its enormous fandom and universal praise.
For starters, we have Loid Forger. He is the serious, meticulous, and stoic but staggeringly charismatic character that every anime has and needs. Loid plans everything with utmost detail and tries to execute his plans carefully. A perfect spy character for a spy thriller anime.
Your works as a clerk during the day, but during the night she’s an assassin and a pretty good one at that. Yor is so proficient at assassination that it has gained her the alias of “Thorn Princess.”
Yor is mostly an airheaded and naive character, which is ironic considering her job as an assassin. Most of the time, she acts aloof, but we get to see her caring and nurturing side after she becomes a “mother” in her new family.
Anya is easily the main attraction of the show. Her expression, mannerisms and expressions all make her the most lovable character in the anime. But her smiles hide a whole life of trauma due to being an experiment. She knows the secrets that both her parents are hiding, but all she wants is a happy family.
The family dynamic is funny and unpredictable. The comedy in Spy X Family never gets old. The anime is, most of the time, a comedy anime built upon a dark topics like political radicalism, war propaganda, political assassinations, and secrecy. The anime doesn’t focus too much on these topics.
Most of the time, these topics are briefly mentioned as character dialogue or exposition. Even Yor’s assassinations aren’t mentioned as a gag. One of the downsides of the anime is its lack of thrill and serious scenes, which is pretty normal considering that it is mainly a comedy anime. But Spy X Family has a really good set which would be wasted if it continues to treat everything as comedy.
Spy X Family Review: English Sub or Dub?
Should you watch the sub or the dub? This has been a question among anime fans since time immemorial, and most of the time. It has boiled down to personal preference, but with either the sub or dub being better.
Most of the time, it is the subbed version of the anime as the anime itself has a Japan-like setting. But Spy X Family takes care of that by having a western setting. Due to having a Europe-like setting, the dubbed version of the anime sounds really good and almost on par with the subbed version.
Almost nothing is lost in translation as there are very few Japanese-wordplay jokes in the source material, to begin with. The Japanese voices are done by talented VAs like Eguchi Takuya (as Loid Forger), one of his big roles would be that of Hikigaya Hachiman from My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU.
Hayami Sayori is Yor Briar. She’s also famous due to her roles as Shinobu Kocho from Demon Slayer as well as Yumeko Jabami from Kakegurui. Anya is voiced by Tanezaki Atsumi, who has also voiced characters like Vivy (Vivy: Fluorite Eye’s Song), Emporio Alnino (JJBA: Stone Ocean), and Inui Sajuna from the recently popular My Dress-up Darling series.
The English voices are also done by very talented VAs such as Alex Organ (as Loid Forger), Natalie Van Sistine (as Yor Briar), and Megan Shipman (as Anya Forger). One of the downsides of the English dub is that of Anya’s voice. Anya’s true charm and cuteness come out much more in the English sub when compared to the dubbed version. But in the end, it all depends on the viewer’s preference.
The animation in Spy X Family is amazing. There is almost no use of bad CGI. Everything is animated smoothly and with utmost care. The anime itself is made as a collaboration project between Studio WIT and Cloverworks.
While Studio WIT is mostly known for its amazing work in seasons 1,2 and 3 of Attack On Titan, Cloverworks is known for its amazing work in mostly romance animes like Horimiya, Bunny Girl Senpai, and the recently popular My Dress-up Darling.
Both studios have done a phenomenal job at animating Spy X Family. Luckily, season 2 of Spy X Family has already been confirmed and is set to release in late 2023. Hopefully, Studio WIT and Cloverworks will continue to deliver us a quality adaptation of Spy X Family.
Our Verdict On Spy X Family:
Spy X Family is a must-watch for all anime fans, especially fans of the slice-of-life genre and anime fans that just want to watch something that’s funny and relaxing. Spy X Family is just a comedy anime with a serious underlying motive.
But its bubbly and lighthearted nature, along with well-executed comedy, will make for a great watch after a stressful day. It is also one of the few anime that you can watch along with your family. Overall our rating for Spy X Family would be 4.5/5.
Our Rating: 4.5/5.
Also read: 20 Best Slice of Life Anime Series to Watch: From BL(s) to Classics