–> Buy SPY×FAMILY Volume 05 from Amazon.com!
I have some time off, so it was time to return to the wonder, parody world of 1960s East/West Germany. And man, there’s some lovely stuff here.
The Story, in Brief
Yor gets the reluctant Camila to give her cooking classes. Yuri is invited to help sample her cooking. He scarfs it while simultaneously barfing. However, Yor manages to learn to cook a decent meal that looks bad. Next, Becky sees a photo of Twilight, Anya’s adoptive father, and develops a crush on him. Anya has to work with Damian on an art project. Despite the ugliness of their creation, they win first prize.
Anya plans to use her telepathy to cheat and improve her test scores. However, she discovers the moon will be a new moon, meaning her powers will temporarily be gone. Yor has Yuri come over to tutor Anya. However, he focuses on foreign language rather than the subjects Anya needs. Twilight discovers this and decides to break into the school to prevent Anya from failing. He runs into another, bumbling agent, who’s trying to ruin Damian’s scores. Twilight sees Anya barely passed all subjects. She’s proud of this result, though Twilight wants her to study more.
Anya’s classmate, George, thinks he’s going to be kicked from Eden since his father’s business was bought by Damian’s father. The class feel pity for him, but to George’s embarrassment, he misunderstood his family situation. Meanwhile, Anya has to do a report on one of her parent’s jobs. She chooses Twilight after scanning Yor’s mind. However, after spending a day at Twilight’s psychiatry office, Anya’s report mixes the spy with the doctor.
Finally, fellow Wise agent Fiona Frost (Nightfall) gets a mission to work with Twilight. She has a major crush on Twilight and wants Yor to be removed so that she can be Twilight’s pretend wife. Anya detects this and does what she can to show affection for Yor around Fiona.
Adventures in Learning
One of the elements of this series has been Anya’s reluctance to study, preferring to cheat her way through school. SPY×FAMILY Volume 05 introduces a limitation on Ayna’s telepathy, that being the time of the new moon. After four volumes, it does feel rather plot convenient, but if this weakness comes into play in future stories, then I’ll be cool with it.
That aside, I do like seeing how Anya is starting to take her studies a bit more seriously. Although her natural instinct is to cheat, she also remembers how her inability to read a clock nearly cost the life of Twilight. That is something I can easily believe would motivate a child to do better. And to her credit, she did pass all her exams, even if just barely.
Learning is also where Yuri and Anya start to bond, thanks to Yuri tutoring Anya. Of course it would be on a non-test subject. Still, I’d like to see more of Yuri working with Anya.
The real fun came from Anya observing Twilight’s official job as a psychiatrist. Naturally, she’s more interested in Twilight’s thoughts on being a spy and figuring out his spy stuff, such as the secret escape route. Her final report to the class was pretty humorous, considering it was a mix of spy and psychiatry elements.
The main omake chapter in SPY×FAMILY Volume 05 has the dog Bond become jealous of Anya sleeping with her giant penguin. As such, he rips it apart. Twilight has to fix the stuffed animal, since Anya doesn’t want a new one. Anya is angry with Bond and says she hates him. But when Twilight fixes the penguin, he helps Anya to see that Bond is sorry and thus the two make up.
This was a lovely little chapter. Everything about it felt real, from Bond’s jealousy to Anya’s anger and upset feelings. Anya saved Bond, but then when she wanted some comfort, she turned to her giant stuffed animal. Why? ‘Cause Twilight had gotten it for her. Yet Bond felt abandoned and did a very dog thing in ripping apart the penguin.
I liked how Twilight handled the situation. He not only repaired the stuffed animal, but gave Anya a reason to accept the sewn areas as scars, indicating a badge of courage. Further, he used Anya’s love of the cartoon spy series to open her up to ultimately forgive Bond.
My only problem is that they made Yor the butt of a joke by having her fail at sewing the penguin back together.
The other omake elements in this volume include a manga page on how Yuri became so tough. There’s also a page dedicated to showing how Yuri’s character design came about.
Final Thoughts and Conclusion
I’m so far behind due to slacking, so let me wrap up my review with some final thoughts.
- Becky’s crush on Twilight seemed out of place to me. Do 6 year old girls get crushes on adults? I don’t know. Doesn’t seem right to me, but then I’ve never had kids. 😅
- I’m glad Endo-sensei allowed Yor to make one good food dish. I’m not a fan of the, “This person is so bad at cooking, and they never get better ’cause ‘comedy’” trope. As smart as Yor is on things, her working to improve her cooking should result in improvements. But we’ll see if gags trump character advancement.
- The introduction of Fiona makes things more interesting. On the surface, she betrays no emotion. Inside, she’s madly in love with Twilight. And when Anya realizes Fiona wants to replace Yor, Anya’s reactions were pretty amusing. Looks like the next volume will see Twilight and Fiona doing a mission together.
In the end, SPY×FAMILY Volume 05 is a very enjoyable outing. I have no real issues with the volume at all. However, I do hope in future that Yor improves in cooking, and Anya improves in schooling to allow characters to grow.
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