The anime Spy x Family in the spring of 2022 has become extremely popular. But is it all passing praise? Pic credit: Wit Studio and Cloverworks

Only two episodes into its release and SPY x FAMILY is a fan favorite of the Spring 2022 season. The anime sits among the top spots of MyAnimeList’s Top Airing Anime. On TOHO Animation’s YouTube channel, the Spy x Family OP intro video to the series has over 2 million views. And Gen Hoshino’s ED track is taking over the Japanese charts. The manga has just announced that it has 16 million copies in circulation. But is the hype for Spy x Family justified?

Everyone’s tastes are different, but those who like comedy, close character bonds and suspense and action will find plenty to enjoy in Spy x Family. After a master spy must pose as a husband and father for his last job, Loid Forger’s serious nature is soon softened after adopting Anya, a young girl trapped in an orphanage.

Like Loid, Anya has her own secrets. With the ability to read the minds of those around her, she soon learns that her adoptive father is a spy. But even with telepathic powers, Anya is prone to misunderstand the thoughts of others, leading to hilarious antics for her and her new family. Now that episode two has introduced Yor, the mother of the family and a hit man, the show is really shaking!

『SPY×FAMILY』オープニング主題歌アニメ映像/“SPY×FAMILY” Opening theme song animation

Given the wide range of possibilities of the concept and the likeable nature of the characters, it’s no wonder that Spy x Family has become so popular. But other than being a well-crafted animation based on Tatsuya Endou’s hit manga, much of the series’ success can be attributed to social media praise.

Why is Spy x Family so popular?

Some fans have shown their enthusiasm by producing fan art for the series. Anyone who gets anime content on their social media feeds has probably seen fans producing art from the series, similar to how past works like My Hero Academia and Demon Slayer have garnered a die-hard following in the past.

Others have started making memes. Art and comedy translate well where language is a barrier, so the fanbase has helped the series spread far and wide. And since Anya’s expressions make for comedic reaction images, it’s not uncommon to see memes from the show outside of anime circles.

Panel from the Spy x Family manga featuring Anya Forger with a smug face saying: "Hey."
The smug Anya ‘heh’ meme has been a popular reaction image and is already making its way onto Spy x Family series t-shirts and merchandise. Photo credit: manga artist Tatsuya Endou.

Fortunately, Spy x Family is an easily accessible show, so anyone interested in watching the series after watching one or two memes can enjoy it for a long time. free with ads on Crunchyroll† And soon, those who hate reading subtitles will be able to watch the series in their native language.

Crunchyroll has an English, French, and German dub available now, and a Spanish and Portuguese dub coming on April 23, 2022. The show is available with subtitles in English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Arabic, Italian, German, and Russian.

Another reason for the huge success of the series is probably due to its availability in many regions. Muse Asia picked up the anime and is now streaming it simultaneously to regions such as India, Singapore, Philippines, Indonesia, Pakistan and more! In addition to Crunchyroll, fans can watch the series on other streaming services such as MeWATCH and CATCHPLAY+.

However, nothing is immune to criticism. And while many have loved Spy x Family this season, there are a few who have expressed a very different attitude towards the series.

Spy x Family Top Anime
The anime briefly reached the MyAnimeList Top 5 shortly after the release of Spy x Family Episode 1. Pic credit: MyAnimeList

Has Spy x Family been cancelled?

On TikTok, a user criticized the series for the dynamics between Anya and her adoptive father Loid. The criticism (which has already garnered more attention than warranted) was quickly dismissed by fans for being unfounded – the show’s content portrays Loid as a quintessential caring father. But people will always have their own interpretations and prejudices.

The original poster pointed to the pink “blush” on Anya’s cheeks when she is with her adoptive father. Unfortunately, this can be a case where the user misinterprets the meaning of blush in anime. While it’s true that characters will often blush in romantic contexts, blushing can encompass a range of emotions – not too different from real life – from shame to happiness.

The response to the TikTik comments has caused more of a stir than the initial claim itself. There is no fear that Spy x Family will be “cancelled” any time soon. If anything, the show is still on track to become one of the most popular anime of this year.


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