What makes Spy x Family so popular? – 71Bait

Spy X family has become the most popular anime of the spring 2022 season. Moreover, at the time of writing this article Spy X family is the 10th highest rated anime of all time on MyAnimeList, a website that allows users to log anime they’ve watched and rate them on a scale of one to ten. With over 750,000 members adding the anime to their own lists before the conclusion of Season 1, the sudden fanfare over the series was overwhelming, to say the least.

Spy X family is a slice-of-life spy comedy anime adapted from a manga by Tatsuya Endo and is currently being published in Shounen Jump. It follows the daily adventures of a spy, alias Loid Forger, who has to pretend to have a family in order to fit in with an important mission. He accomplishes this by adopting a young girl named Anya, who is secretly an Esper, and by quickly marrying Yor Briar, a town hall clerk who is a professional assassin by night. All identities are hidden from each other except from Anya who can read minds and therefore knows everyone’s true thoughts. In a world dominated by shounen and isekai anime, how could a humble anime like e.g Spy X family push into the mainstream? The manga was well received, but how Spy X family Ballon above the rankings of all but one season of attack on Titanand other popular series such as Cowboy Bebopthe original Gintamaand Code Geassamong other?

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First, there seems to be a turnaround in anime in the spring 2022 anime season. By browsing MyAnimeList user ranking and popularity, which is measured by how many users have added the anime to their own personal list, Spy X family is the best rated and most popular. However, to see the turnaround, we also need to look at the rest of the anime’s ranking and popularity this season.

Out of the top ten animes in terms of popularity, six out of the ten are in the comedy genre. Of the six most popular, only one is not in the comedy genre, The Rising of the Shield Hero Season 2. Despite being the second most popular anime this season, it is ranked the lowest of the six by MyAnimeList users at 6.79. Comedy anime is clearly dominating this season.


When filtering by the “Comedy” tag, out of a total of 184 currently airing anime shows and movies, 53 are comedy. For a genre, it’s pretty telling that more than a quarter of anime currently airing is at 28.8%. In the past winter season 2022 it was much more varied, with big titles like e.g Attack on Titan: Final Season Part 2 and the Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Entertainment District Arc instead dominating the charts.

It stands out among slice-of-life animes

When slice-of-life is mentioned, it usually refers to anime where the protagonist works in a coffee shop, attends a school club, or examines the protagonist’s ordinary daily life. Of course, there is nothing wrong with anime like this, but Spy X family really stands out from these and is not only a slice of life anime but also an action spy thriller.


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We haven’t seen the combination of these two unique genres again and again. Tropics-filled anime have their place, though Spy X family is not one of them. The series balances the everyday life of a newly married couple and an adopted child with muggings and bad guys. The popular slice-of-life tropes that Spy X Family has, like found family, are reimagined to weave in the schemes of the secret agents and deadly assassins that carry the series through the counterfeiter’s daily life.

Unique and interesting characters

One of the most important aspects of any medium is the characters. Spy X family takes advantage of this and makes their characters as unique and interesting as their premise. None of the characters appear to be a repeat in every other part of life, and the online adoration of the characters shows that people are taking notice.


Loid Forger is a secret agent codenamed “Twilight”. He presents himself as cold and unemotional to fit the job, but became a spy to protect children from events similar to those he went through as a child. He genuinely cares about his new family even though he tries to remain unattached as he is only pretending to have this family because of a mission.

Anya Forger is a light-haired, psychic child of unknown age who was adopted by Loid Forger from a seedy orphanage. Despite being a young child, being able to read minds makes her the only character in the entire series who knows everyone’s true intentions and secrets. However, as a child, she thinks her new parents are cool and won’t spoil her hidden identity to teach others.


Yor Forger, the final character of our main trio, poses as a wife to rescue her family and friends from her single existence while being a deadly assassin by night known as the “Princess of Thorns”. She has no social skills and is known to be shy. She is secretly an assassin and, especially in the manga, often has incredibly dark thoughts about solving all her problems by murdering everyone around her. However, she suppresses them and otherwise tries to lead a normal life.

MORE: Spy X Family: The Loid and Yor Forger’s Secret Organizations

Spy X family is currently broadcasting simultaneously on Crunchyroll.

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