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"I'm afraid we have another assignment for you already. Your target is the leader of the National Unity Party, Donovan Desmond. He is a grave threat to the truce between the East and the West. Your mission is to get close to him and probe into any seditious activities. In order to do so... you will marry and have a child."
Twilight's mission briefing

The countries of Westalis and Ostania are locked in a cold war rife with espionage and assassination. After flawlessly completing yet another mission, Westalis's top agent, the master spy known only as Twilight, has been tasked with investigating the activities of Donovan Desmond, leader of Ostania's far-right National Unity Party. The problem is that Desmond is a social hermit and only ever makes public appearances at his sons' school functions. Thus Twilight has been ordered to get close to Desmond... by getting married and having a child. Oh, and he has seven days to find that family.

Assuming the identity of psychiatrist Loid Forger, Twilight recruits Anya, an orphan girl who wants a loving family (and some entertainment), and Yor Briar, an Ostanian civil servant who needs a husband to avoid drawing attention in the heavily suspicious Ostanian society, to play the part of his daughter and wife. Making things more complicated, however, is that Anya and Yor are keeping secrets of their own: Anya escaped from a lab that gave her telepathic powers and Yor is an infamous Professional Killer code named Thorn Princess, who needs a husband to avoid societal scrutiny in socially-conservative Ostania from possibly interfering in her work.

Thus begins Loid, Anya, and Yor's attempts to pretend to be the best family they can, all while hiding their secret identities from the others... and trying to ignore the growing signs that they're not just pretending.

SPY×FAMILY (pronounced simply "Spy Family") is an ongoing, biweekly Spy Fiction manga written and illustrated by Tatsuya Endo, which began serialization in the online magazine Shonen Jump + in March 2019.

The series can be legally read in English online at Manga Plus. As of August 2019, due to Viz Media licensing the title, this is now only true of the first three and most recent three chapters. All chapters are now available on the Shonen Jump app, available in countries such as Canada, Ireland, the UK, and the United States. Viz began releasing the physical volumes in June 2020.

Family Portrait, a Japanese novel written by Aya Yajima with illustrations by Endo, featuring four original stories about the cast, was released in July 2021. An official fanbook, Eyes Only, was released in May 2022. Viz licensed both books for English release in fall 2023. A series of Japanese novelizations by Hitomi Wada, Temporary Family, started in May 2023.

A stage musical was announced in April 2022 for a run in March 2023.

SPY×ANYA: Operation Memories, a video game about Anya creating a photo diary, was announced for the Nintendo Switch in 2024 during a September 2023 Nintendo Direct, and shortly afterwards confirmed for the PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Steam as well.

Also has a split two-cour Animated Adaptation by WIT Studio and CloverWorks. The show began airing on TV Tokyo in Japan, as well as streaming on Crunchyroll in most regions, on April 9th, 2022. An English dub of the anime began streaming on Crunchyroll one week later, on April 16th, 2022. A second single-cour season began airing on October 7th, 2023, and an original film titled SPY×FAMILY CODE: White released on December 22nd, 2023.


SPY×FAMILY provides examples of:

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    Tropes #–C 
  • 12-Episode Anime: The first season of its anime adaptation is actually 25 episodes, but it aired in two sets across 2022, twelve episodes releasing in the Spring season and the other thirteen in the Fall season.
  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: The anime has all the characters drawn in 2D, whilst background elements such as vehicles are rendered in 3D. This is most noticeable in Episode 13 of the anime where "Doggy" carries Anya out of the terrorists' hideout and the POV of them running down the stairs is a 3D animation.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance:
    • George Glooman makes brief background appearances in the anime from Episode 7 (adapting Mission 9) onwards, while in the manga he's not introduced until Mission 28.
    • In Episode 25 (adapting Missions 37-38), during Loid's mental debrief of the situation, Melinda Desmond's silhouette appears behind Donovan; said character isn't introduced until Mission 65 in the manga.
    • In Episode 36 (adapting Mission 59), during the original segment following Fiona, we briefly see Gerald Gorey at the hospital (who isn't introduced till Mission 67).
  • Adaptational Modesty: Season 2 episode 3 adapts several omakes. In one of them Yor was depicted in the manga in a two-piece swimsuit and Loid shirtless while watching Anya at a pool. In the anime, however, Yor is in a (otherwise identical) one piece swimsuit, and Loid has a shirt. The reason for the change is unclear, given background male characters are still shown shirtless at the pool.
  • Adaptation Amalgamation: Most of the anime's episodes consist of multiple chapters of the manga. Though the main events are generally in order, several chapters (many of them side/extra missions) are adapted in places that differ from the volumes' orders:
    • Season 1:
      • Episode 10 has The Teaser be mostly an expansion of Short Mission 4 (Volume 6) while the rest of the episode is an expansion of Mission 15 (Volume 3).
      • Most of Episode 12 is an expansion of Extra Mission 1 (Volume 2), but the cap-off of the episode adapts Short Mission 1 (Volume 4), using Anya getting her stuffed penguin in the former as a link to her playing pretend-spy with the plush in the latter.
      • From Episode 16 through Episode 21, the anime's episodes are divided into segments with different stories and titles:
      • Episode 16 adapts Mission 24 (Volume 5), but follows up with Franky's attempt at dating a woman from Short Mission 2 (Volume 4).
      • Episode 17 adapts Mission 25 (Volume 5), then follows up with Sylvia's meetings with Loid from Short Mission 5 (Volume 7), and the stinger showcases the origin of Yuri's superhuman resilience from Volume 5's omake.
      • Episode 18 adapts Missions 26 and 27 (Volume 5).
      • Episode 19 adapts Mission 28 (Volume 5), then follows with an anime-original segment of Yor believing that Anya forgot her gym clothes, and the resulting hijinks as she tries to bring them to Eden Academy.
      • Episode 20 adapts Mission 29 (Volume 5), while the second half is an anime-original segment where Anya is inspired to create her own unique code, and gives it to various people in the hope that they'll solve it.
      • Episode 21 adapts Mission 30 (Volume 5), with the stinger featuring Bond's bout of jealousy from Short Mission 3 (Volume 5).
    • Season 2:
      • Episode 1 adapts Extra Mission 2 (Volume 3).
      • Episode 2 adapts Mission 39 and Mission 40 (Volume 7), but with their order swapped.
      • Episode 3 adapts Mission 41 (Volume 7), followed by Short Mission 7 (Volume 9), and the post-credits involves various short omakes.
      • Episode 7 adapts Missions 51 to 53 (Volume 8), with Short Mission 6 (Volume 8) being the stinger.
      • Episode 11 adapts Mission 59 (Volume 9), with the latter third being a short original focus on Fiona and her ongoing efforts to get stronger.
      • Episode 12 adapts Mission 58 (Volume 9), expanding it with an original prelude and post-credits epilogue.
  • Adaptation Expansion: Every so often, instead of adapting multiple chapters per episode, or a single extra-length chapter, the anime adapts a single normal-length chapter while filling in the run time - sometimes with stuff that was inferred and/or offscreen, and other times with anime exclusive elements that fits in with the original content.
    • Season 1
      • Episode 3 expands upon the events of Mission 3. Whereas the manga started with Yor already present at the Forger household, the anime showcases her arrival, Anya giving her an extended tour, along with more of the unpacking/settling in efforts. During the family's outing to familiarize themselves with the upper class lifestyle, an original addition is Anya drawing scribbles about her family's occupations (and being worried when they see this, thinking it'll tell them that she knows they're a spy/assassin) while resting from the museum showcase. There's also an added trip to the tailor shop, allowing Yor to procure several outfits that would help her better fit in for the upcoming Eden interviews, along with a photography studio to make the Forger family portrait (which was first seen at the end of Mission 5).
      • Episode 5 extends the events of Mission 6. A scene of the Forgers walking to Eden Academy and coming across multiple ill omens on the way is added, and the castle event that was Anya's present for passing is heavily expanded: a plane ride to the castle is added beforehand, and much more pretend-drama is made of Loid trying to rescue Anya before he gets to the "final battle", including a bit more action with his "fight" against a drunk Yor before ending the game. The castle itself is also mentioned to have specifically been converted into a theme park based exactly on the "Spy Wars" show, with Loid fighting the other WISE agents acting as Franky's grunts.
      • Episode 10 adds to Mission 15. In the manga, Yor's training of Anya for the dodgeball game was only inferred, but here we see Anya learning strength, stamina, and other kinds of physical training from her mother. Similarly, Damian and his friends are shown having trained themselves to take on Bill Watkins, spending several attempts (in vain) to take him out before he takes them out. Additionally, we get a bit more insight into Bill Watkins himself, showcasing a little of how he trains, and that he looks up to his father who is stated to be a command major in the army.
      • Episode 17's "Omelet Rice" segment at the end is a fleshing out of Volume 5's omake, which was only a single page in the volume.
      • Episode 19's first half adapts Mission 28, but the second half is an original addition where Yor realizes Anya left her gym clothes behind, and freaks out about this potentially being bad. As such, she gets to Eden College as quickly as she can - with numerous hijinks along the way, including seeing the farm animals from Mission 4 again plus inadvertently freaking out an Eden student (thinking she's a ghost) - and meets Anya in secret, only to find out that Anya doesn't have gym class that day. When Loid catches up to Yor afterward (having seen her sneak into Eden), he cheers her up by offering to go on a lunch date.
      • Episode 20's first segment adapts Mission 29, with the second segment being an original addition where Anya, playing at being a spy, comes up with a secret code she gives to people she knows, expecting them to figure it out and meet her at the appointed time and place. However, because she doesn't explain what she's doing, they take different implications from it than she intended, particularly Franky - due to Anya getting Yor to write the code for her, and Franky recognizing it as a woman's handwriting, he assumes it's meant as a romantic message and turns up for the meeting in a suit with a bouquet of roses. Unfortunately(?), Anya sleeps in that day and misses the meeting.
    • Season 2
      • Episode 11 mainly adapts Mission 59, while the last third showcases a bit of focus on Fiona, including her training efforts while the Forger family was on the cruise vacation and receiving the last of the family's souvenirs.
      • Episode 12 adapts both parts of Mission 58, with a brief prelude where Loid asks Anya to come on his walk with Bond, who says no because she's trying to make origami Stella stars for fun. After the events of the burning building, we see their return home, where it's revealed Anya also didn't know what happens to Bond when his fur gets wet. When she reads Loid's mind on what really happened, Anya quickly has the idea to award Loid and Bond her makeshift Stellas for "working super hard on your walk!"
  • Affectionate Parody: The "Spy Wars" cartoon is a love letter to Cold War Spy Fiction, including James Bond, as well as old action and adventure anime from the era.
  • All for Nothing:
    • Almost all the students partaking in the dodgeball game in Mission 15 are doing so to earn themselves a Stella Star, a merit needed for students to become prestigious Imperial Scholars at the school. However, it turns out said Stars aren't given out in daily P.E. activities so everyone's efforts ended up being pointless.
    • In one story arc, Twilight and Nightfall team up to win a tennis tournament in order to obtain a painting which leads to the Zacharis Dossier, a secret document believed to be able to "reignite the flames of war" should it go public. Turns out that it's actually a collection of theater starlet photos, which his wife disapproved of. In other words, the "flames of war" it would reignite aren't between the East and West, but in his family.
    • Short Mission 9 features Loid and Franky becoming amateur animators as they make an episode of Bondman, in the hope of using it to help teach Anya things to apply to her school work that the existing episodes do not. The great effort crashes and burns when Anya finds the resulting episode to be the opposite of entertaining.
  • Alliterative Family:
    • Yor and her brother Yuri.
    • Donovan Desmond and his sons Demetrius and Damian.
    • Cavi Campbell and his children Carrol and Kim.
  • Alliterative Name: A common theme for characters:
    • Henry Henderson, one of the Housemasters at the school.
    • Donovan Desmond and his sons Demetrius and Damian.
    • Anya's friend Becky Blackbell.
    • Keith Keplernote 
    • Fiona Frost, WISE agent Nightfall's civilian name.
    • Damian's friends Ewen Egeburg and Emile Elman, as well as their classmate, George Glooman.
    • Cavi Campbell and his children Carrol and Kim.
    • Sylvia Sherwood, Twilight's handler.
    • Matthew McMahon, Yor's manager in Garden.
    • Franky Franklin, the given alias of a friend of Twilight's.
    • Since Bill is short for William, Bill Watkins is William Watkins.
    • Gerald Gorey, chief medical officer at Twilight and Nightfall's hospital.
    • Martha Marriott, Becky's personal servant.
    • Winston Wheeler, from Westalis intelligence's communications division.
    • Millie Myers, one of Yor's co-workers at city hall.
    • Porter Partheimer, a ski lodge employee.
  • Alone Among Families: The group picture in episode 6 (an adaptation of Missions 7 and 8) has Damian be standing alone while the other children are with their families.
  • Alternate Character Reading: While referring to the two states as "Ostania" and "Westalis" are official in the Japanese release from the start, those mostly appear as glosses over kanji that means "East-Country"note  and "West-Country"note  respectively.
  • American Kirby Is Hardcore: Anya is a major focus of the series' marketing in Japan, with large amounts of merchandise focusing on her cuteness and Kid-Appeal Character nature. In the West, Anya is still marketed quite heavily, but the overall marketing focus shifts to the family as a whole and gives off more of a "cool" vibe, with more of an equal emphasis on Loid and Yor and the action sequences in which they feature.
  • Anachronism Stew: Most references in the series point to it being equivalent to late 1960s East Germany, but a few references to things that happened earlier or later in the real world have crept in. Endo himself explains in the author's note of Volume 6 the thinking behind that: he mostly draws the series with the idea it's set in the '60s or '70s, but it ends up as a mish-mash of past and present because he often has to ask himself whether something existed in that time period, and if he can't find the answer, he goes with "well, this is a fictional country...":invoked
    • Twilight's newspaper in Mission 1 has a headline with "President Donald Trump", who was 50 years later in our timeline.
    • The Forgers' video recorder is a subversion. While Video Cassette Recorders (VCRs) came to us in the 1970s, by the 1960s there were Video Tape Recorders (VTRs) and the one in the Forger household seems to be based on the MVR-65 - an $11,000 piece of kit in those days. They also were indeed open-reel. The aforementioned price tag of course would mean that one would not expect to find it in a middle class home being treated as something mundane for recording children's cartoons, implying this world's version is substantially cheaper.
    • In Mission 39, Ewen mentions maybe getting to see the new film 20,000 Steps Under the Sea. Our world's equivalent was released in 1954.
    • Franky and Nightfall visit a disco club, with Franky in full disco getup, in Mission 60; disco's heyday was the mid/late '70s.
    • In episode 2 of the anime, the bag Franky wears resembles 5.11 tactical packs, which don't exist until the 2010s.
    • The first ending sequence of the anime features a very modern looking Blue Bird school busnote , which also features a stop arm, something that was only added onto school buses in the 70's.note 
    • In the anime's 10th episode, Bill Watkins learns to calculate the trajectories of how a dodgeball would bounce off his opponents... on what is clearly a Macintosh 128 home computer keyboard-mouse-and-all, which would not be invented till 1983... made all the more hilarious by a brief shot of its rear still operating on the "rolling barrel calculation" matrix of the 1940's prototype computers created by Professor Alan Turing, as seen in The Imitation Game.
    • Mission 11 shows one of the Forgers' comically desperate attempts to appear like a lovey-dovey couple — a double bed in Yor's room with two yes-no pillows adorning the top, with both having the "yes" side facing up. The pillows in question became a meme in Japanese media in 2008, when Shinkon-san, Irasshai!, a talk show revolving around couples, awarded a pair of them as a prize to one of the couples on the show.
    • While wireless listening devices have existed since the 1950s, the ones first seen in Mission 14 are far ahead of their time in size and range, being small enough that Loid can attach one to Yor without her noticing, and listen in on her with perfect clarity from the roof of a building some distance from the one she is in.
  • Animal Stampede: Occurs in Chapter 4 during the entrance interview. Loid thinks it's part of the test, but the examiners are shocked by the unexpected event. Fortunately, Loid, Yor, and Anya use their skills to pacify the stampede.
  • Anti-Climax: Mission 94 deliberately invokes this twice. At first, it sets out the plot of a slasher movie, where an urban legend seemingly comes to life to start gruesomely murdering people trapped in a ski lodge by the weather. Twilight utterly dismantles the threat with his Nerves of Steel, common sense, and wide array of skills, so the first would-be victim gets immediate medical treatment, the cut phone lines aren't an issue, and the fingers pointed at Yor don't lead to anything rash happening. Then, the story tries to Genre Shift into a whodunnit murder mystery, only for Anya's mind-reading powers to instantly identify the culprit, learning how he invented the urban legend to cover for his crime, his lame and unsatisfying motive, and what he plans to do next. She then pokes Twilight in the right direction, who stops the crime and apprehends the criminal in two or three panels. It simultaneously shows how difficult it is to challenge the cast and how easily they can make mincemeat out of stock plots.
  • Armor Is Useless: A flashback averts this by showing how Twilight was once shot in the head and survived thanks to his helmet, though he still got injured and spent some time out of commission afterward. The probably toy helmet he wore as a boy also saved him from a piece of shrapnel during the bombing of his town. Also, while Yor still killed him pretty easily, all things considered, the most hurt she's ever gotten on a job (outside of being Shot in the Ass) is when she injured her wrists fighting a man wearing a huge steel girdle.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: At the very end of Mission 89, Yor goes to visit Yuri in his apartment to apologize for kicking him out the last time he went to her home. When she serves him some food Loid cooked, Yuri thinks that if Loid were Twilight, he could arrest him, but since that's not possible, he could have him arrested for something else, but reconsiders when doing so could make Yor sad, which leads to him asking her if she's happy in her marriage, since she said she was unsatisfied. When she clears up that was a misunderstanding:
    Yuri: So you love him?
    Yor: Huh!? Uh, err... well, I uhh...
  • Arranged Friendship: Since Anya didn't have the propensity to become an Imperial Scholar by the deadline of the school function Donovan attends with other parents of Imperial Scholars, Twilight/Loid decided that the new plan was for her to become Damian's friend as a way to get close to Donovan. Unfortunately, Damian's nasty attitude towards a "commoner" got him a well deserved punch to the face by Anya, and resulted in a setback for Operation Strix. From that moment on, Anya does try to become friends with Damian, who denies having a crush on her, but not because she likes him in any way, but because he's a means to an end; specifically, if Anya helps Twilight/Loid accomplish his mission to "preserve world peace," then Twilight/Loid will see she's a good girl and keep her as his daughter and not send her back to the orphanage he found her in.
  • Arson, Murder, and Admiration: Mission 31 opens with Nightfall grumbling that Twilight's become a Defrosting Ice King thanks to Yor and Anya, impairing his efficacy as a spy... and she adores the new Twilight just as much, if not more, than the old one.
  • Art Shift:
    • The anime's first opening begins with a stylized chase scene evoking action TV/movies of the 60s and 70s, then shifts to a flat, cartoony style showing the Forgers going on normal activities as a family, with the lyrics alluding to their Fake Relationship. The last 30 seconds then switches to the anime's typical style as Loid's and Yor's Secret Identities as a spy and an assassin are revealed and the lyrics focus on how the entire family is increasingly Becoming the Mask in spite of Living a Double Life.
    • Episode 28 begins its 'The Elegent Bondman' section with a shift to a very flat, simple cartoon drawing and coloring style as it shows an actual Bondman episode in motion. The episode's after-credits scenes are a downplayed example, still using the normal art style but with a filter giving them a storybook look.
  • As You Know: In Episode 4, Handler assumes that Twilight does not need a reminder on the particulars of Operation Strix, but he, feeling "off (his) game," asks for one anyway.
  • Ask a Stupid Question...: The Handler asking a student terrorist whether he's been killed before gets an "Obviously not, ya dumb broad!" in response. Of course, since her point was that the student terrorists know nothing about war, she knew they'd say no.
  • Asshole Victim: Quite a few:
    • Since it wouldn't look very good to introduce our protagonist as shamelessly dumping a woman, reasons be damned, said woman is deliberately portrayed as the kind of person Twilight would never really care about- vain, shallow and the daughter of a criminal. For (probably unintentional) bonus points, her name is Karen.
    • To keep Yuri from seeming too villainous despite working for the Secret Police, the first person the SSS is shown interrogating, while not evil, is shown with no redeeming qualities whatsoever and shamelessly admits that he was passing information to Westalis spies solely to bankroll his numerous affairs on his wife.
  • Author Avatar: In Chapter 53.1 the artist draws an overworked Bond in a beret as an apology for no chapter this update as he's busy with setting up the printing of the new volume. Generally, Endo's avatars in the bonus illustrations are either Bond (when drawing about being an artist) or Anya (when drawing about being an idol fan).
  • Awesome, but Impractical: A terrorist group plans to use dogs strapped with bombs to attack a summit. Twilight comments on how one would need a military trained dog to do such a stunt without issue, but since training a dog costs nearly as much as a missile it is very impractical to use them like that.
  • Bad "Bad Acting": While playing the part of the Damsel in Distress Princess who is rescued by "Loidman", Anya attempts to imitate the hammy Saturday Morning Cartoon style of dialogue delivery of "Oh save me, Loidman!" from her favorite show "Spy Wars", ending up hilariously "reading her lines" in a deadpan gradeschool-play tone instead.
  • Bad Future: Bond sees a future where the bombs planted by the terrorists go off, Twilight and a major politician die, and Westalis and Ostania go to a bloody war. Anya, being a mind-reader, gets to see this and attempts to change it.
  • Bait-and-Switch:
    • The opening following the diplomat's death and WISE's decision to call on "Twilight" to investigate follows two men making a deal on blackmail material, implying that one of them is who Twilight looks like. When the buyer suddenly appears behind the dealer asking for the material, the latter realises he's been duped, and it's revealed that Twilight was wearing a mask and unceremoniously rips it off.
    • The opening of Mission 24 makes it look like Yor's been working overtime as an assassin and ended up having something go badly wrong, with Episode 16 of the anime playing it up by using dramatic camera angles and creepy music... only for it to turn out she's actually been taking cooking lessons from Camilla.
    • One page in Mission 68 shows Yuri, frustrated at how Loid seems to be taking much better care of Yor than he ever could, going to the SSS. But just as you think he's about to turn in Loid... he reveals that he's actually just asking his informant where to buy cheap detergent, milk, and dishes (their final competition for Yor's affection was a "shopping duel" where they have to buy the best goods for the best price).
    • When Nightfall challenges Yor to a tennis match (for Twilight's affections) Yor goes to serve with all her strength and takes a mighty swing... only for the ball to fall to the ground. While it initially appears to just be a joke at how she's strong but still clumsy at anything other than killing, a few seconds later the ball collapses into a pile of shredded rubber, revealing that her swing connected, but she hit it so hard her racket diced the ball instead.
    • Mission 94 kicks off an (attempted)-murder mystery that starts off like a chapter-spanning arc...only to abruptly end in the same chapter since Anya and Bond figure out who the culprit is and when they'll strike again using their powers and manipulate Loid into confronting them, resulting in everything getting neatly cleaned up.
  • Barbie Doll Anatomy: There are only very few instances of bare-chested men (none of topless women) such as the swimming instructors in the 11th episode, and none of them were shown with nipples.
  • Batman Gambit: Usually at the hands of Anya thanks to her mindreading ability. The first "Special Mission" chapter has her help Loid take down an enemy spy by clinging onto him as he escapes and claiming to the nearby Yor that she's being kidnapped, knowing full well that she'll ferociously kick the guy's ass and stop him.
  • Becoming the Mask: The series runs on this trope. While one can make a case the three Forgers developed an attachment very early on - in the first three chapters - this trope ultimately powers the Forgers' interactions. As of the end of the cruise arc, Yor already considers Loid and Anya as family (on par if not above Yuri) and Loid has a Freudian Slip about how he "abandoned his family" before catching what he just said.
  • Beneath Suspicion: Part of why the antics around the Forgers don't draw as much suspicion as they probably should is that Ostania is already a country where everyone hides who they are for their own safety. Everyone assumes the Forgers have a more innocent set of secrets and don't pry.
  • Better Partner Assertion: Fiona mentally insists that she is better than Yor as Twilight's wife, due to knowing him better and being able to support him on Operation Strix.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Yuri in Chapter 83 correctly deduces that Twilight could be someone close to him since his costume looked exactly like him, and didn't finish him off despite spies supposed to not operate on such feelings. Even if Yuri was ultimately beaten, in Chapter 86 he notices that Loid's right arm twitched just a little, which reminded him of when he shot Twilight's right arm and immediately checks Loid's for wounds. If Loid wasn't his Crazy-Prepared self and didn't hide the wound with fake skin, he would have been found out then and there. This shows that while Yuri is an amusing goofball who's obsessed with his sister, his intelligence and attention to details is not to be underestimated.
  • Big Fancy Castle: Loid rents such a castle to celebrate Anya's acceptance to the Eden. It's referred to in dialogue as "Newston Castle" near "Münk", making it a fictional counterpart of the real-life Neuschwanstein Castle.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Mole Hunt arc ends on this note. WISE successfully captures Winston Wheeler and prevents Operation STRIX from being compromised, among other top secret info, but The Mole they had planted in the SSS got caught and is implied to have been killed, meaning both sides lost a valuable source of intel.
  • Black Comedy Pet Death: Bond doesn't actually die, but his visions of his own death are often Played for Laughs. In Mission 40, when Loid is slated to arrive late from work, since he was assigned to steal a formula from a lab with no prior intel, Yor says she'll get dinner started, which is when Bond has a vision that he dies from eating her cooking. When he concludes that he'll simply refuse to eat until Loid gets back, he imagines Anya warning him against denying Yor's cooking, and imagines Yor killing him for not eating the food she made. Bond then runs out of the apartment determined to find Loid and help him come home early so that he can make dinner. When Bond tracks him down, Loid orders him to go home and that they'll play later, which causes Bond to imagine Yor scolding him for running away, not eating her food, and ultimately killing him for being a disobedient dog. Bond decides it's in his best interest to help Loid accomplish his mission and go home as soon as possible.
  • Bland-Name Product:
    • Loid and Anya shop at a Dlid grocery store in episode 2 of the anime.
    • In the manga, during the "Inusan Crisis" arc, Anya finds a ketchup bottle next to a few discarded fast food bags marked with a 'W', a pastiche of McDonald's.
    • A restaurant called Wimpson's serves roast beef, a stereotypically English food. Simpson's-in-the-Strand, also known as just Simpson's, is a famous restaurant in London that sells traditional English food and known for its roast meat in particular.
    • The Forgers are often seen shopping in a place called "Central," which is inconsistently called a mall or a department store, even in the same chapter (such as Mission 44). The biggest department store chain in East Germany (which is Ostania's major inspiration) is called Centrum.
  • Blatant Lies:
    • When Loid and Yor are attacked by survivors from one of Loid's missions, his excuse is that they're his clients, and his knocking them senseless is him using the latest innovation, concussive therapy. Yor buys it.
    • Both Loid and Yor do lie to Anya quite often, primarily to cover for their second lives, but Anya sees right through them thanks to her mind-reading.
    • Yor used pressure points to take down a raging cow. She claims she learned how to do that in yoga class.
    • When Loid loses his temper at Housemaster Swan's unprofessional behavior during the student admission interview, he smashes the desk to avoid punching Swan, then explains the action by claiming he was swatting a mosquito. Housemaster Henderson, who shares Loid's opinion of Swan but is held back from saying so by internal politics, borrows the excuse to claim that the reason he's giving the Forgers a high score on the interview is that mosquitoes can be very dangerous and he was impressed that Loid prevented Swan from being harmed (by the mosquito, obviously).
    • After Anya punched Damian, she stated she was merely stretching and he ran into her hand.
  • Blood-Splattered Innocents: Played for Laughs in Mission 29 where Yor's Imagine Spot has her bathing Anya in the blood of her target.
  • Bookcase Passage: Loid's hospital office has an emergency escape route hidden under a bookcase with a hidden switch.
  • Bowdlerise:
    • The series is a comedy at heart but around the humor there's a fair share of drama and violence, considering the setting is about war, spies and assassins; the manga does show a little of said bloody action, not in gruesome detail but quite strong enough for the anime to dial some of it down. It usually does so by using some camera angle tricks so goons being shot in the head, or just killed in general, are often out of frame, and bodies laying around are obscured by lack of ambient lighting. Other times, it reduces the number of victims altogether, as with Yor's Imagine Spot about killing Zachary Feiss; the manga has her slice her way through a crowd at a party to get to him, while the anime has her corner him alone.
    • In episode 11, during Yor's imagine spots of dogs attacking Anya, what was blood spurts in the manga is just pink flashes in the anime. In episode 20, all the blood in Yor's imagine spot of showing Anya her job is pink, and some of it is pixelated.
    • The anime also tiptoes around the manga's mentions of nuclear weapons. The nuclear bomb Twilight stops in a flashback is changed to being just a missile, and instead of claiming he would protect Yor from spears and nukes, he says spears and meteors. Anya's brief sleepy question after Yor accidentally slapped Yuri was turned from wondering if it's a nuke to wondering if it's the end of the world. Curiously, the English dub undoes some of this, with Twilight mentioning the missile was a nuclear missile, and Anya's sleepy question adding on "Like a bomb?" to the end (which though not mentioning nuclear outright, is heavily implied).
    • The English-language dub (and the official translation of the comic) also omit how one of Damian’s goons (i.e. Ewen or Emilie) hoped for Damian to insult Anya's mother by saying something beginning with "Your momma's so fat..."
  • Break the Cutie: To vent his own petty jealousy over the Forgers' happiness, Housemaster Swan ruthlessly forces Anya to compare her love for her stepmother Yor to her original mother (whom she likely has never even known), driving the little girl to tears. It's also the first time in the manga where her crying isn't Played for Laughs... not to mention the first time we witness the normally calm professional murderers Yor and Loid truly enraged onscreen
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Volume 10's bonus comic sees Franky breaking the wall to throw a party celebrating the manga's tenth volume. Loid complains about maintaining the story's integrity, before he realizes this means Anya's only got one Stella in ten volumes, so at this rate it'll take eighty volumes for her to become an Imperial Scholar, and there's no way the manga will last that long. He reassures himself that in terms of the story's in-universe time only three months have passed since the start of the series, but still can't help thinking eighty volumes isn't possible. Then he proceeds to get himself into an existential crisis wondering what a volume is and which him is the real one, while Franky and Anya comment about how he's being too serious.
  • Breather Episode:
    • The "Extra" and "Short" missions usually have a lot less stakes to them than most regular chapters:
      • Extra Mission 1 lampshades this to hell and back as the premise is Loid deciding to take a much-needed break from spy work via a trip to the aquarium with his family. Unfortunately, his very next mission happens to be in that aquarium.
      • Extra Mission 2 has Loid taking Yor out on a date, only to have her be targeted by a survivor from her last assignment.
      • Short Mission 1 has Anya playing out her toys being spies.
      • Short Mission 2 sees Franky get Loid's help when he wants to ask someone out.
      • Short Mission 3 is about Anya's penguin plushie getting torn up.
      • Short Mission 4 is a look at Henry's morning routine.
      • Short Mission 5 is a mild aversion to the usual lower stakes, showing how Sylvia dodges her surveillance to meet Twilight.
      • Short Mission 6 has Yuri falling sick and remembering how Yor took care of him when he got ill as a child.
      • Short Mission 7 is an episode of Spy Wars about Bondman acquiring a harem.
      • Short Mission 8, which comes immediately after Twilight's dark and traumatic Origins Episode, sees Bond get a crush.
      • Short Mission 9 is about Loid trying to improve Anya's education by making his own episode of Spy Wars.
    • While every main chapter has some link to the Myth Arc, or at least drives the plot in some way, not all of them are dramatic or serious about it.
      • Mission 6 is the Forger family (with the help of funding and resources from W.I.S.E) staging a hilarious and heartwarming fantastic-adventure to help create happy childhood memories for Anya, after her being bullied to tears by the Sadistic Teacher Murdoch Swan during her emotionally-traumatic entrance interview into Eden Academy in Mission 5.
      • Mission 10 is just the Forger family at home, trying to get Anya to study. Even then that's not the main focus of the chapter.
      • Mission 39 sees Damian learning to unwind a little during a school holiday.
      • Mission 56 has the Forgers enjoy themselves on an island following the more serious, action-focused Cruise Arc.
      • Mission 64 has Anya spending some time with Henry as she waits for the next bus.
      • Mission 87 winds down from the intense Wheeler arc, checking in on Fiona and Twilight's recovery, and following up on Anya going to the zoo in the meantime.
    • The anime has Episode 12 cap off the first half of the first season by adapting Extra Mission 1 and Short Mission 1. Given how serious the second half started, with the "Inusan Crisis Arc", this was definitely a breather.
  • Brick Joke:
    • Yor mentions having accidentally broken her brother Yuri's ribs when they were younger from hugging him too much. In a later chapter where Yuri is excited about seeing his sister again, his reminiscing of their childhood causes him to recall the injuries and double over from remembering the accidental trauma.
    • In Mission 11, Loid pulls out a fake shared bed for Yuri's first visit... only it's basically screaming "we're doing it every night", much to Loid and Yor's embarrassment. Come the end of Mission 13, after Yuri's left and Loid and Yor are getting ready to go to bed, they realize they forgot to put the bed back.
    • Loid mentioning to Yor that 'concussive therapy' is the latest of his techniques as a psychiatrist comes back in Mission 29 and makes it into Anya's report, which shocks Mr. Henderson. Loid would later be called to the school, and the narration explains that he talked his way out using "incredible equivocation skills". Damian's friends later identify Loid as "the doctor who hits his patients".
  • Buddy Snaps First: When the Forgers go to Eden College for Anya's admission interview, Yor gets ready to pounce on Housemaster Swan when he makes Anya cry when he asked her if she loves her new step mother, Yor, more than her late mother and when he calls her a crybaby. However, Loid snaps first and takes a swing at Swan, but smashes a coffee table in front of the interviewers instead. After Loid apologizes for the outburst just for killing a mosquito, he ends the interview, and tells the admissions panel they won't send their daughter to a school run by a toxic administration. After the Forgers leave, Housemaster Henderson questions Swan if he may have gone overboard with the interview, and Swan threatens him into silence by saying his father is the former headmaster of Eden College and his family still holds sway in the school. However, Henderson realizes that as an educator he should be more concerned with the learning and well being of his students, not kissing up to the financial and political elite, and punches out Swan for being an inelegant ass.
  • Busman's Holiday:
    • In Extra Mission 1, Loid wants to take the day off to take his family to the aquarium. He then is given a mission that happens to take place at the same aquarium.
    • Chapter 44 starts with Loid taking time off from work to take Anya on a cruise she won tickets to. At the same time Yor is on a bodyguard mission on the same cruise.
  • Butt-Dialing Mordor: In the first chapter/episode, Anya looks through Loid's spy equipment and finds a radio signal sender, with which she decides to playfully send out a message telling any of Loid's enemies to come and get him if they can. Unfortunately for her, Edgar and his criminal gang happen to be listening in on the frequency, which results in her getting kidnapped and needing to be rescued by Loid.
  • Call-Back:
    • In Mission-2, when Twilight is looking for a wife for Loid Forger, Franky asks why they don't just ask a female agent to step in for the role, and Twilight answers that recent spy hunts have depleted the number of WISE operatives in Ostania, and what remains are off performing their own missions. In Mission-29, Nightfall, aka. Fiona Frost, goes to the Forgers' home with the intent of making Loid get a divorce from Yor so that she can become Mrs. Fiona Forger, and eventually marry Twilight for real. In Mission-81, the reason for the decimation of WISE's manpower in Ostania is revealed to be the work of Winston Wheeler, an Ostanian mole who, after being discovered, got away with a load of stolen top secret information, which includes the names and locations of the remaining WISE agents in Ostania, as well as the plans for Operation Strix.
    • In Mission-24, when Anya learns that Yuri is coming over, she's excited to meet him, since she'll get to see the epic confrontation between her spy father and Secret Police uncle, but is left disappointed when the meeting is anti-climactic, as once they share a brief, yet tense, greeting and goodbye, Loid leaves the apartment so that Yuri can tutor Anya for the upcoming exams. In Mission-82, after the mission to capture Wheeler and the stolen intelligence goes wrong, due to their cover being blown after the WISE mole fed Twilight, Nightfall, and the Chief the wrong intelligence, Twilight makes a break for it, and Yuri chases him down to the sewers where they point guns at each other. In Mission-83, as Twilight and Yuri fight in the sewers, Twilight manages to knock down Yuri with several well placed blows, only for Yuri to keep getting back up and repeatedly attacking Twilight. Yuri's dedication to keep going makes Twilight wonder if being raised by Yor is what made him so tough, and in the end, Twilight has to resort to bashing Yuri's head with a metal pipe he snatched from him to finally knock him unconscious long enough to get away.
    • In Mission 92, Sigmund says that in order to teach Anya how to use Classical Language better, in order for her to get a passing grade in that subject so she won't get another Tonitrus Bolt for failing all her classes, they should translate the dialogue in a "Spy Wars" comic book. Loid doubts the practicality of that method, remembering how his self made cartoon (from Special Mission 9) failed to teach Anya anything, and Anya mentally states "that cartoon sucked."
  • Call-Forward:
    • The flashback chapter Mission 62 has a child Twilight doing the exact same "turn around and you're dead" *Click* Hello that his older self does in Mission 1. Only this time, it's with a toy gun.
    • At the begining of the tennis tournament, Nightfall says that they have to retrieve a painting, lest the secret information it is rumored to contain within leaks out, which includes the names of Westalis intelligence operatives and secret government programs, as well as evidence of war crimes perpetrated by Westalis soldiers during the war, including the summary execution of surrendered Ostanian prisoners (though it is also rumored to have similarly damning information on Ostanian human experiments). At the end of the tournament, they acquire the painting and discover that the secrets contained within it are the stash of valuable starlet photos collected by a high ranking Ostanian military officer, not government secrets. In Mission 62, it's revealed that Twilight, years after he was orphaned during the opening stages of the war, joined the Westalis Army when he looked old enough to pass for eighteen, and by his account he wanted to achive closure for the death of his parents and friends by killing as many Ostanian soldiers as possible. By his own account, Twilight racked up a sizable kill count, which, if his interaction with Franky who had just deserted from the Ostanian army is anything to go by, may have included POWs.
  • Calling Your Attacks:
    • In Mission 15/Episode 10, when faced with Bill Watkins during the dodgeball game, Anya resorts to using her special technique "Star Catch Arrow" in order to beat him. Calling it out surprises Bill... until she comically tosses too close to the ground, which only allowed Bill to toss it back at her.
    • In Mission 54, Anya throws Yor's lost dagger back to her with a cry of "O lightning bolt, deliver my aid! Rising Hope!" Unfortunately, it lands quite far away from the fighting.
    • Rising Hope returns in Mission 70, when Anya throws a candy tin containing Becky's school ID and a message out of their hijacked bus. This time, she succeeds. The tin bursts open and reveals the contents to some passersby.
  • Can't Get Away with Nuthin': In Mission 94, the lodge owner Rodger Hostman attempts to kill the lodging students because they make too much noise during their visits and pin it on a mythical Serial Killer. However, he decides to do it in the presence of the Forger Family who only stayed at his lodge due to a snowstorm. Loid not only uses his knowledge to save the life of the backstabbed student and repair the cut phone lines to call for help, Anya and Bond figure out Hostman did it using their powers and learn when he's going to strike next, so they manipulate Loid into catching the culprit for them before he could harm anyone else, leading to his arrest the next morning.
  • Carnival of Killers: Yor is assigned to protect Olka Gretcher and her infant son from dozens of assassins sent to kill them as they escape Ostania on a cruise ship.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: Even in crowd shots, there are no two characters who look alike.
  • Censor Box: Played for Laughs in Mission 40. Twlight recalls receiving a mission from a person with a censor bar over their eyes... but the bar is so small that any reader can recognize the mission-giver is "The Handler" Sylvia.
  • Central Theme: Secrets and false personas. Nearly every important character in the series presents themselves in a way which masks their true nature, be it in their real profession (the Forgers presenting themselves as a normal family unit despite really being a spy, assassin, esper and genetically enhanced pet) or personality (Damian acting like an arrogant jerk to his peers who lords his family's status over them while really being a Lonely Rich Kid desperate for his father to acknowledge him). This is summed up by the first lines of the series:
    Everyone has a secret self they don't show to other people. Not to friends...not to lovers...not even to family. They hide who they are and what they want behind lies and painted smiles. And thus the world...maintains its thin veneer of peace.
  • Cerebus Retcon: Anya intimidating a Red Circus terrorist by reciting the names of his loved ones in Extra Mission 2 is Played for Laughs at the time. After the revelation that the Red Circus began as a peaceful student protest before the Ostanian government violently repressed the movement leading the group turning to extremism, it's yet another sign of how the Ostanian government has pushed formerly innocent people into ruthless acts.
  • Character in the Logo: The Japanese version of the logo averts this, but the English version of the logo has silhouettes of Yor, Anya and Loid in the 'M' of SPY×FAMILY from the online Mission 20 onwards, as well as in the manga volumes from the start.
  • Cheeky Mouth: The characters' mouths animate at the side of their faces when they're viewed at sideways.
  • Chekhov's Army: The terrorists known as the Red Circus first appeared in Extra Mission 2 with Yor wiping nearly everyone out at a Northern District building and getting shot in the butt. A new faction of them returns in Chapter 69 revealing that their leader returned to Berlint, Ostania from hiding outside the country and the group hijacks two Eden Academy buses filled with children, one of them includes Anya.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In Mission 69, Becky pulls out a metal tin of Churchill confectionery candies that she had brought on the school trip. She puts her school ID and a coded message in the tin, and Anya throws the tin out of the window of their hijacked bus, in Mission 70.
  • Child Care and Babysitting Stories: The plot focuses on the spy Twilight being assigned the task of having a pretend family to carry out his Operation Strix mission perfectly under the guise of Loid Forger. He adopts Anya from an orphanage and recruits a lady called Yor into becoming his wife, unaware that Anya is a telepath and Yor works as a killer. He must assume the role of a good father and husband without raising suspicions for the sake of the mission.
  • Children as Pawns: Agent Twilight's mission 'Operation Strix' requires him to adopt Anya in order to enroll her in Eden Academy. Definitely a sympathetic example, as Twilight quickly grows to care for Anya and goes out of his way to keep her safe and happy. That, and Anya is aware of everything and doesn't mind.
  • Code Name: Being a story all about secrecy, whether it's spies or assassins, a decent amount of the major cast are Only Known by Their Nickname, with plenty of them also going by fake names for cover identities, such as Yor (real name) being known as <Thorn Princess> and Loid (false name) going by <Twilight>. Loid actually takes this further, because in his dedication to the efforts of his organization, he deliberately invoked Name Amnesia on himself, abandoning his original identity to completely become <Twilight>.
  • Colorization: Shueisha began releasing fully colored digital versions of the Japanese manga volumes in 2021.
  • Commie Nazis:
    • The Ostania government as a whole. Ostania's National Unity party take direct inspiration from Nazi and Fascist parties with a name inspired by East Germany's ruling party, Socialist Unity Party, whilst the country's propaganda about how awful Westalis is resembles Communist propaganda about how awful the capitalist West was. This is shown best when a kid who thought he was going to move to Westalis believed he was going to be sold into slavery. In addition, the SSS borrows elements from Nazi Germany's SS (with the most obvious example being the name), but mostly Soviet Russia's KGB and the Stasi (whose full English name was the Ministry for State Security, in contrast with the SSS's full name, the State Security Service). Considering that the National Unity party isn't even in power and yet the country's citizens already has the SSS observing their every move, the Ostanian people have no good choices for leaders.
    • Crunchyroll's German subtitles translated SSS into Staatsbehörde für Sicherheit (literally, State Agency for Security), which can be shortened to both SS and Stasi.
  • Commonality Connection:
    • After saving Anya and dealing with Edgar, Loid is surprised to find Anya still waiting for him despite him (in disguise) telling her to leave. After playing along, he's further surprised that she still wants to go home with him, then remembers that she's been returned from adoption four times already... and each time she changed her last name while trying to find a place to belong, not wanting to be alone, drawing parallels to both his spy work and his own past.
    • Though Loid and Yor don't know about each other's double lives, they have a mutual mindset to do whatever it takes for the greater good, even if that means getting their hands dirty. In particular, Loid tells Yor that being able to endure such self-sacrifices to provide for her brother isn't something that just anyone can do, and moreover is something to be admired. It's this speech, among other things, that leads Yor to privately note that of all the men she'll ever meet, he's the only one who might actually accept her as herself, and leads her to suggest that their agreement extend into a Marriage of Convenience.
  • Conditioned to Accept Horror: The fact that Yuri seems to be a Cloudcuckoolander's Minder, and has little to no reaction to being sent flying by Yor slapping him (twice) has Loid wondering if this is a normal occurrence for the Briars.
  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: Prevalant when two of the main leads are a master spy and a deadly assassin.
    • In Episode 2, Loid and Franky have to go on an extra mission against a gang of smugglers, which results in Loid single-handedly fighting off 38 armed men, but has to run when reinforcements arrive. This happens again later when the same faction ambushes him and Yor, but both put up a fight together and Loid finishes off the rest with a grenade.
    • The Cruise Ship arc has a Carnival of Killers vs. Yor and her Director, all of the former are extremely talented assassins who range from being easily dispatched discreetly to the final wave being the closest to killing Yor, who barely manages to survive with only a jammed finger and a minor chest wound.
  • Conspicuous Consumption: Anya's "Loidman" game as a reward for her Eden College acceptance ends up slapping WISE with a huge bill for renting a castle, filling it with royal furniture and employing every spy they had in Ostania as background extras, which becomes hilariously ludicrous when all that happened was that Anya knocked over a table and Loid had to walk over and "rescue" her. The anime still has the same giant expenses, but the Forgers get much more mileage out of this where the castle is a theme park and Anya gets to see "Loidman" rescue her from a sprawling gauntlet.
  • Contrived Coincidence:
    • The reason why Twilight needs to find a woman to be a fake wife and not just have a fellow agent pose as one? WISE is short staffed and anyone who would match is busy. Downplayed in that being short staffed is a direct consequence of the escalating tensions between the countries (and thus increased efforts to capture spies) that led to Twilight getting the mission in the first place.
    • Of all the people in the country he could have gotten for his fake family, he manages to unknowingly select both an ESPer (who happens to be a fan of spy cartoons no less) and a highly skilled assassin (who just so happened to also need a fake partner). Complicating things further is that his brother in-law is a member of the SSS who made it his personal mission to arrest Twilight, although the latter realises who Yuri is.
    • A college isolationist group attempting to use bomb dogs for an assassination attempt happen to be based right by the animal shelter Yor and Anya were at looking for a dog to adopt... unaware that they have a dog which appears to see visions of the future.
    • In order to protect his fake family's image after the neighbors suspect he's been cheating on Yor, Loid announces a family outing and picks the aquarium based on Anya's drawing. The day of the trip however has him summoned to pick up another mission, which happens to take place at said aquarium.
    • Yor gets a protection job on a luxury cruise. At the same time Anya is able to win two tickets to the same cruise ship so they are all able to go.
    • Anya requests Yor buy some cake while out shopping. While at the Department store, Yor saves a woman from falling down a flight of stairs and gets invited to her community gathering as a show of thanks. Said woman turns out to be Melinda Desmond, the wife of Donovan Desmond, Twilight's very target.
  • Conveniently Interrupted Document: Twilight's WISE profile is blacked out in nearly every area aside from the subject titles and trivial information such as the colour of his underwear.
  • Crapsaccharine World: It's made clear that Ostania is not the most free or nice place to live. While it seems like a peaceful, well-maintained country on the surface, it's quite dangerous to be an Ostanian citizen. Even aside from the tensions with and prejudice against Westalis, it's shown that pretty much the entire country and its people are under constant surveillance from the government, there are official Secret Police who are virtually untouchable, giving them free rein to arrest, torture and execute anyone they even suspect of being a criminal, and the common folk are conditioned to live in such a state of paranoia that simply being an unmarried woman past her 30's is considered suspicious, because they're convinced that only someone who has something to hide wouldn't want to start a family.
  • Creator's Culture Carryover: The manga is normally pretty good at avoiding Japanese cultural traits where they would differ in what appears to be central Europe, though there are exceptions.
    • One of Anya's favorite dishes is omurice, an omelet with fried rice inside. While a variation of a more western dish, you would be hard pressed to find the rice version commonly served outside of Japan.
    • The beginning of Chapter 26 shows test papers look exactly like Japanese ones, only in English, with a series of pre-printed multiple-choice and fill-in-the-blank questions with a score out of 100 written on a space on the upper-right corner. In particular, Anya gets a score of 13 on a history test with the reader expected to understand this is a failing grade; tests done in western schools are not necessarily out of 100, and a score of 13 may be a passing grade (such as if it's out of 15). In addition, wrong answers are marked with a check; teachers in western schools instead most often use an "X" for a wrong answer while a check mark, if used at all, is for correct answers.
    • Episode 35 features a couple of anime exclusive scenes of Yor performing omiyage at her office and to her brother. While most westerners purchase souvenirs for oneself and sometimes close family members, omiyage is a Japanese custom of bringing small souvenirs from a trip (usually treats) to show appreciation to people one has left for a while (and not doing so at work can be frowned upon).
  • Cruise Episode: There's an extended arc where Yor is given a mission to protect the widow and infant son of a murdered underworld boss on their voyage to find asylum in a foreign country. This is complicated by Loid and Anya winning tickets on the same cruise. Not only does Yor have to fend off dozens of hitmen, she also has to keep her husband and daughter from finding out she's an assassin.
  • Curb Stomp Cushion: After a long build-up to them finally clashing, Loid vs. Yuri turns out this way as Yuri is hopelessly outmatched against Loid in a pure hand-to-hand brawl. The only reason he lasts as long as he does is a combination of his own insane durability, Loid not expecting as much, and Loid's own hesitance to attack Yor's brother with lethal intent.

    Tropes D–K 
  • A Day in the Limelight:
    • Short Mission 4 follows a typical morning in Henry's life.
    • Mission 39 spotlights Damian and his minions, with none of the main cast appearing.
    • Mission 40 sees Bond dealing with his latest vision of the future.
    • Short Mission 5 deals with how Sylvia arranges to meet Twilight while under surveillance.
    • Mission 41 sees Yuri investigating an anti-Ostanian writer.
    • Mission 60 has Nightfall trying to meet a counterfeiter through Franky.
  • Diesel Punk: By the time of the Spy X Family: Code White motion picture, the Atomic-Era Weird Science of this setting has advanced to the creation of indestructible cyborgs, half-metal half-flesh, who can transform their arms into gatling guns.
  • Diplomatic Cover Spy:
    • WISE (the Westalian intelligence agency) operates out of their country's embassy in Ostania, and Twilight's Handler is officially an attaché at the embassy.
    • Yuri is officially a civil servant in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs but is actually an SSS officer. Loid even comments that Yuri's position already had him on high alert because diplomacy is often seen as an entryway to intelligence. Inverted, however, since Yuri's actual job is mainly about domestic counter-espionage and doesn't need the perks of a diplomat; he even has to fabricate trips overseas for this.
  • Disproportionate Retribution:
    • It is mentioned in chapter 2 that you can be arrested for treason for simply being unmarried at too old an age. Cruelly, Yor's work colleagues discuss pulling this on her just for arriving late at a party, unaccompanied by Loid (due to circumstances beyond either's control). At least one colleague has the sense to put a kibosh on the notion. Ironically, this worked: the crackdown on unmarried women resulted in a large amount of WISE's female agents in Ostania being captured, which is part of why Twilight has to find a local woman to act as his wife.
    • Gerald Gorey calls the SSS on Loid and states he is a spy solely because he is jealous of how well-liked he is.
    • In Mission 94, Rodger Hostman tried to kill all members of the college ski club due to them always making a racket and leaving their rooms a mess when leaving.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?:
    • The story takes place in Berlint, the capital of a Ruritania called Ostania, which is the long-time rival of Westalis.
    • The incident that caused the Red Circus to transform from a protestor group to domestic terrorists was a peaceful protest that was violently suppressed by the Ostanian government. Afterwards, the State attempted to cover up the massacre by silencing the members' families and erasing all evidence that the Red Circus ever existed. Sound familiar?
  • Dog Walks You: The reason Loid denies Anya when she wants to walk Bond is because he's so massive compared to her that he'll most likely drag her flailing around.
  • Don't Touch It, You Idiot!: Anya, with the help of Bond — who she was still referring to as "Doggy" at the time — finds out that the terrorist rigged a bomb to blow up anyone who investigates his hideout. Anya and "Doggy" reach the door where she is close to opening the door, only for the dog to bark at her to remind her not to open it.
  • Don't Try This at Home:
    • In Episode 2 of the anime (carried over from the manga), after Loid claims as one of his Blatant Lies to Yor that applying concussions to people is a form of psychiatric therapy, "This is fiction" pops up on the screen in large letters/kana to clarify about not testing this in real life.
    • Parodied by a terrorist's failed attempt to kill Yor by feeding her an entire glass of blowfish poison, which acted as nothing more than a very strong panadol for the pain in her injured backside. The narrative box immediately reminds the reader: "Blowfish venom is actually a lethal toxin; do not attempt to utilize it for medicinal purposes".
      • The above is parodied further with said terrorist's "Plan B" of making a jerry-rigged suicide bomb, his thoughts racing through the ingredients necessary while he ran to the janitor's closet, with the actual contents redacted and censored by black bars and only the colors of the chemicals kept, in a tongue in cheek gesture to stop impressionable kids from making similar devices. In fact, Anya - though granted, already smarter than most kids her age - was able to immediately improvise a non-lethal variant of said explosive within moments of reading the ingredients from the terrorist's mind, and successfully incapacitated him with said non-lethal bomb no less.
    • Episode 4(S2) has Anya and Becky dashing down the hallway to reach the Cafeteria. This is followed by a caption saying not to run in the halls.
  • Dramatic Irony:
    • Franky points out the sheer improbability of Twilight finding a woman who fits his criteria for a wife - okay with a single father who's raising a child, elegant enough to seem upper-class, and willing to legally marry him in the next 48 hours. The audience knows, however, he's somehow going to manage just that with Yor, from either the opening pages of Mission 1 (manga) or the OP (anime).
    • Much of the humor in the character dynamics comes from the audience knowing that the Forgers are comprised of a spy (Twilight/Loid), an assassin (Yor), and a telepath (Anya), while Loid and Yor don't know the other's real jobs, nor do they know that Anya is a telepath who does. On the other hand, Yor's brother Yuri knows of Twilight and considers him a villain who needs to be taken down, but fails to realize that Twilight is his brother-in-law Loid, despite Yuri's determination to find something wrong with him.
    • Yor and Yuri both took up shady jobs to support the other and give them a normal life (being an assassin for Yor, and a Secret Police member for Yuri), while both being unaware of what their sibling truly works as.
    • As Loid notes in Mission 14/Episode 9, Yor never needed to enter a Marriage of Convenience to avoid getting suspected by the Secret Police because Yuri being a member would have lead to any charges against her being dropped. But because of Yuri hiding his occupation, Yor is completely unaware of this fact.
    • Played for Laughs in Mission 29.
      Loid: [in his public persona as a psychiatrist to Anya] Even doctors aren't wizards. We can't ever really see what's inside someone's mind.
      Anya: Heh!
      Loid: Why are you smirking...?
    • Anya's telepathy in general makes her pretty subject to this, as she's able to read the thoughts of characters around her in much the same way as the reader themselves is able to view characters' inner monologues and Imagine Spots. This leaves her in the unique position of being the only one in the family who's fully aware of the Secret Identities of the others, and often stumbling into the plots of the various criminals Loid and Anya deal with because she happened to overhear their thoughts, but cannot actually tell anybody about why she knows what she does because of her need to keep her powers secret, thus having to improvise excuses to subtly direct others to save the day, unaware of the extent of her actions.
    • Mission 58 reveals that the scientists who experimented on Bond in hopes of creating hyper-intelligent animals considered him a failure. As Anya (and the audience) knows, Bond was exactly what they were aiming for (and more).
    • Fiona's inner thoughts are that if she were Twilight's wife, she'd not only be able to support him better than Yor, she'd be able to whip Anya into becoming a Stella Star machine no problem. However, considering her overall character, even if she had become Twilight's wife, she would've more likely been a full-blown detriment to Operation Strix. Also, considering Twilight's soft spot for children, Fiona's proposed parenting methods likely wouldn't have done her any favors in winning Twilight's affections either.
    • Yor's Epiphany Comeback in Mission 53 is a powerful moment in itself, as she figures out the true reason she became, and remains, an assassin - to protect her family from needless tragedies - but it takes on further layers for readers when considering her family's secret lives and the motives behind them.
  • Dystopia Is Hard: Ostania's society is falling apart at the seams. Big Brother Is Watching, citizens regularly inform on each other (with all the distrust and witch-hunting that implies), bloodshed on the streets is not uncommon, and practically everybody is a spy or criminal or state enforcer, or has been victimized by someone who is. The only reason Operation Strix succeeds is because all Ostanians need a cover story - whether they're innocent or not.
  • Edutainment Show: In Short Mission 9, Loid creates his own episode of Spy Wars filled with Non Sequiturs to have Anya improve her grades. Anya, however, finds this version of Spy Wars hard to follow.
    Anya: This cartoon sucks.
  • Elaborate Underground Base: Safehouse E for WISE is a base of operations for Twilight and Handler for the events of Strix. It's accessed by a photobooth in an alley which is a secret elevator that's activated by customers who put a coin in and face the camera, where the interior lowers down if the customer is a recognised spy.
  • Enforced Cold War: The Westalis-Ostania War ended years before the story takes place, and the ensuing peace seems to be incredibly unstable, as Loid/Twilight and the undercover division of WISE operating in Ostania, as well Yor/Thorn Princess and The Garden have made it a point to eliminate any nationalistic fringe groups, politicians, and industrialists who are too fully aware of the fact that just one bad diplomatic incident will cause the war to start again. Twilight himself was assigned the role of family man Loid Forger as a way to get close to Donovan Desmond, a powerful political figure in Ostania, to confirm or deny the possibility that he may want to renew the conflict.
  • Engineered Heroics: Twilight considers this in order for Anya to obtain Stella Stars, but realizes it may be unrealistic for how risky it is for her age. After Anya earns a Stella Star for rescuing a drowning boy, Handler brings it up with Twilight after he informs her of the event, only to abandon the idea since doing it often would draw scrutiny and they do not have enough agents available to help. Later events prove how right they are: even after legitimately earning a Stella, the other kids are jealous that she got it and tried to spread rumors that she cheated to get it, only for Damian to defend her.
  • Epic Fail: Anya throwing the dodgeball in Mission 15, where it somehow manages to land right in front of her feet despite putting as much strength in it as she could muster.
  • Escort Mission: In Mission 44, Yor is assigned to protect the widow and infant son of a murdered underworld boss on their voyage to find asylum in a foreign country. This is complicated by Loid and Anya winning tickets on the same cruise. Not only does Yor have to fend off dozens of hitmen, she also has to keep her husband and daughter from finding out she's an assassin.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: The isolationist terrorists who discover Anya eavesdropping are noticeably uncomfortable with the thought of killing her and have to be strong-armed into doing so by their leader Keith.
  • Everyone Has Standards:
    • Eden Academy frequently stages fake scenarios to test the families applying to the school, such as one student pretending to be trapped in a sewer drain. Nevertheless, Henry Henderson, who is very exacting in his standards for elegance and very demanding on the families, is horrified when a stampede of farm animals terrorizes the school grounds and demands to know whose idea it was. Turns out, no one's, it was an entirely legitimate threat caused by the animals breaking free of their pens. Even a comically strict school for the elite isn't going to actually risk the lives of their applicants.
    • Murdoch Swan is infamous for being a bitter, spiteful man who takes his frustrations over his awful home life on any families that seem happier or more stable. He gets away with it because because his name carries significant weight in the school, making it difficult to punish him. Henderson, who viewed the Forgers as very promising applicants, is furious with Swan for his misconduct and punches him so hard in the face it knocks him flat on his back. Henderson realizes that he'll get in serious trouble for this however, since assaulting your coworkers is a serious offense, but he nevertheless believes that it was Worth It, believing that those who back down in the face of the powerful have no right to call themselves educators.
      • Swan's connections only take him so far however, since Henderson is only demoted from his position rather than being fired. Henderson is also a well-respected figure in Eden College and Swan's reputation is implied to be well known amongst the faculty. His threats against Henderson ultimately amount to very little in the long run.
  • Exact Words: George Glooman's father sadly remarks that his company "Glooman Pharmaceuticals" won't exist anymore thanks to Donovan Desmond and he'll be out of a job as CEO. Turns out he's right on all counts since the company got bought out and the brand itself won't exist, so he won't be the CEO but will retain a sizeable job instead under the Desmond flag.
  • Exotic Weapon Supremacy: Oddly for a Cold War story set in the age of firearms, the most dangerous combatants in Spy X Family are not sharpshooting spies and marksmen, but rather assassins who master the use of close ranged medieval weaponary, which coupled with superhumanly honed strength and speed make them combatants more fitting in a work of the Martial Arts genre rather than a Spy Thriller. Point in fact, the deadliest foe that Yor has faced thus far (up to Volume 9) is explicitly a Kenjutsu (Japanese swordsmanship) practitioner, Shirazaya (White-Wood-Scabbard) katana and all, who came the closest to killing her in single combat.
    • Of course, Yor herself exemplifies this best of all. Despite working with an organization that happily uses whatever is on hand to kill enemies of the state and corrupt officials, Yor herself focuses entirely on boxing, kicking with her heeled boots, and, fitting with the trope, her specialized stabbing knives. This is partially justified by the fact that Yor largely doesn't need a gun, since her sheer speed and inhuman endurance allows her to close the distance on her foes and paint the town red before any bullets have a shot at actually harming her. As an assassin, she's also ostensibly expected to stealthily sneak up on and eliminate her targets, though she only rarely resorts to doing a job quietly, and a silenced gun would likely work just as well.
  • Explosive Leash: At the end of Mission 70, Billy Squire of Red Circus attaches an explosive collar to Anya after she and Becky get a note out to call for help. He threatens the other students that he'll blow her up if they do anything else. The following chapter reveals that it was a fake order to trick the kids into behaving to Anya's relief when she read Billy Squire's mind. Damian, wanting to save Anya, tells Squire to take it off her and put it on him instead, but Squire just puts another one on Damian.
  • Expository Theme Tune: The anime's first opening, "Mixed Nuts", whose lyrics discuss how the protagonists are faking being just another happy family, like a bunch of peanuts mixed in a bag of tree nuts, how their home and lives are filled with secrets and could disappear at any moment, but even so they can't swallow down their real feelings for each other, and just the fact they are together as a family gives them butterflies all the same.
  • Face Fault: When Yor suggests to Loid that they actually get married, he Face Plants in shock. They were both running at the time, though, and he quickly recovers.
  • Face of an Angel, Mind of a Demon:
  • False Flag Operation:
    • Discussed during the flashback to Twilight's time as a soldier. The war between Westalis and Ostania began when a Westalis town called Luwen got massacred. According to Westalis, the bombing was done by Ostania. According to Ostania, it was a false flag operation, but there are also even rumors Westalis secretly worked with a third country to incite Ostania into doing the bombing. How much of the official stories are propaganda and who was the real mastermind? Franky agrees with Twilight that these stories from Ostania are probably all propaganda to save face, but that soldiers like them would have no way of knowing one way or another and it remains possible that everyone who died because of the war was just an Unwitting Pawn.
    • One of the hitmen trying to assassinate a fallen mob boss's wife uses the type of bomb western terrorists use to try to sink the ship she is escaping on. If his plan works, it will not only have the benefit of killing the target, but make Ostania think Westalis bombed a civilian ship filled with VIPs, triggering a war and giving his boss a market for his business as an Arms Dealer. Twilight disarms the bombs, and Ostania assumes that some third country was trying to provoke trouble.
  • Fantasy Conflict Counterpart: The conflict between Westalis and Ostania is quite reminiscent to the Post-WWII Cold War, particularly East and West Germany (right down to the city where most of the action takes place being named "Berlint"), though unlike East and West Germany, Westalis and Ostania were seperate countries even before the war.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture:
    • Ostania is a mixture of various impressions of 20th century Germany. While the country has some East German influences (the pervasive paranoia, the State Secnote , the anti-Western nationalism, etc.), it doesn't fit the image of a socialist country (it looks like a theme park version of Germany, isn't completely authoritarian, is a monarchy, has elite schools for upper class children, powerful corporations, and the relevant political party is far-right, not far-left).
    • The coins for the sub-units of the Ostanian currency seem to be modeled after the Western German pfennig coins (compare the Ostanian coin, the Western German ten-pfennig coin and the Eastern German ten-pfennig coin), even though Ostania is supposed to be an expy of Eastern Germany. On the other hand, Ostanian paper money (such as these from Nightfall's fantasy of her life with Twilight) is clearly modelled upon the East German 100 mark notes of the 1970s rather than its West German counterpart.
    • Despite being based on Germany, the official language of Ostania and Westalis appears to be English. The majority of Ostanian characters have names that are very obviously English like Becky Blackwell, Bill Watkins, and Henry Henderson. All in-universe signs are either in English or romaji, and if the English anime dubnote  is anything to go by, the characters are speaking American English.
    • Ostanian musical theater fans like to collect photos of young actresses, which is very similar to East Asian Idol Singer fandoms. It's the true nature of the Zacharis documents, which Loid and Fiona are tasked with recovering in a mission.
    • A minor example exists in Mission 12. Loid and Yuri have some small talk over a country called "Hugaria," where Yuri went recently for work. The country's capital is Obda, and makes a kind of wine called "Tokar" which is markedly expensive (the "normal" price is 200 dalcs, or 6,400 yen; raised by half if the harvest is bad). This is a clearly a reference to Hungary, with its capital Budapest—combined from Buda, Obuda, and Pest—and being known for its Tokay wine.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Map: The map of Westalis and Ostania, from what we see of it, is an exact copy of the Cold War-era West and East Germany.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Basically, if you could imagine it in pulpier spy stories, Hard Boiled Detective serials, or the not-blatantly-supernatural side of the Supernatural Martial Arts spectrum, you can find it here. This is an alternate Cold War era Earth where atomic Weird Science has begun to unlock the mysteries of Psychic Powers in humans and animals, and where mutated people of unusual stature and deformities straight out of a Dick Tracy Comic Strip (dwarves like the Authen neighbours, the Frankenstein-head-shaped Glooman family, and literal giants such as Billy Watkins or mob-enforcer "Steel-Gut" Gullickson) are a noticed but casually accepted part of everyday life. Supernatural Martial Arts involving Pressure Points and Ki Manipulation have not been rendered obsolete by automatic weaponry, and warriors who master said esoteric arts are in fact powerful enough to be more than a match for a hundred gunmen. The industry of Diesel Punk science have not only created gadgets that fit comfortably in a Roger Moore era James Bond film agent's briefcase, but also found their way into black-market underground sports such as high stakes tennis, in the form of rocket-powered tennis rackets, booby-trap-laden transforming arenas, and Super Serum steroids that render the user a towering-musclebound Super-Soldier literally resembling The Red Hulk. As of Spy X Family: Code White, the Weird Science of Ostania has advanced to being capable of creating actual cyborgs with indestructible metallic skeletons, who can transform their limbs into gatling-guns that spray an endless rain of bullets generated from within their own torsos.
  • Fashion-Shop Fashion Show: Becky takes Anya on a shopping trip in Mission 36, and naturally a short dress-up montage occurs.
  • Fictional Counterpart: In Mission 39, one of Damian's minions mentions a movie called 20,000 Steps Under the Sea.
  • Fictional Currency: Ostania's currency is Dalcs.
  • Fictional Flag: An official illustration from the author features various fictional flags, some of which look like alternate versions of real flags. As the series takes place in an alternate world with fictional nations, these flags likely represent many of these countries.
  • Finding the Bug: Due to Twilight's line of work, he has searched for bugs in his residence several times, but both come out negative.
    • In Chapter 1, as he is finding an apartment in Berlint, he checks whether the prospective apartment is bugged.
    • In Chapter 12, he checked the living room for bugs after confirming Yuri (who just left) is a Secret Police.
  • Fist of Rage: In an early scene, Yor is stuck in a humiliating social event and has to talk herself down from breaking out her assassin skills and killing everybody in the room; the moment is punctuated with a close-up of her hand beginning to clench into a fist. The same close-up appears on several subsequent occasions when she's suffering through stressful social interactions with people who are blissfully unaware of how much their lives depend on her self-control. It's a bit of a variation as well, in that rather than showing a fist the imagery is more focused on the way the joints of her fingers snap and crack as she flexes them.
  • Flirting Under Fire: Loid proposes to Yor while they're running away from some goons he forgot to finish off from another mission, using a grenade pin as their wedding ring and saying his vows as it explodes.
  • Foil: Hayward and Franklin Perkin, two subversives Yuri arrests. Hayward is a womanizer who sells intelligence for money, while Perkin cares about his elderly father and seems to genuinely believe in his cause of undermining the Ostanian government. Yuri despises Hayward, but has just enough sympathy for the Perkin family that he arrests Perkin where his father can't see and arranges for the elder Perkin to be taken care of.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Anya would often say "Oui" (French for "Yes") rather than "Yes". Later in the story, it is revealed that the only class she does well in is Classical Language.
    • In Volume 1, Twilight's profile has a line redacted out for "military career". Mission 62 goes into his time in the army.
    • In Mission 3, Loid quietly watches a group of four boys talking; Mission 62 strongly implies they reminded him of his childhood friends he used to hang out with before their town became one of the first to be bombed by the East.
    • In Mission 7, the boutique owner warns the Forgers that Eden Academy students are often kidnapped due to belonging to wealthy families. Mission 69 has the "Red Circus" extremist group hijack two Eden Academy buses, one of them in which Anya and her classmates are on, in order to kidnap them.
    • In Mission 10, Anya mutters in her sleep while pleading Yor to not kill Loid. By Mission 79, Yor will have similar thoughts herself...
    • In Mission 47, the assassins after the Gretchers swiftly kill one of their numbers when he suggests killing every mother with a baby on board, with the leader insisting that wanton slaughter is not the assassins' way. However, Snoops is an info broker not an assassin, meaning he has no such standards.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus:
    • During the first opening there's a scene of Loid on the ground looking up that switches to Yor on a balcony looking down. During the transition there's a brief moment where they're both on screen and appear to be gazing at one another.
    • In the anime, the Eden Academy's entrance exam paper is shown for a brief time frame, and the questions can be properly read out. One is a simple time question, but another is a triangle question that requires Pythagoras' or Heron's theorem to solve, which is way too advanced for a 6-year old (in the Manga, it's a far easier total perimeter question). The question is also fundamentally incorrect, as it asks to find both the area and volume of a flat triangle with no depth.
    • The end of Short Mission 2 in the anime has Anya run to greet Franky from the other side of a road. Before she does so, she quickly looks on both sides of the road to make sure there's no traffic so she can cross safely.
  • Funny Background Event: In the third episode of the Anime, Loid and Yor talk about Loid's cookie baking skills with a plate of cookies on the table in front of them. While they're doing so, Anya periodically peeks in from the left to grab a cookie before moving back out.
  • Fun with Acronyms: One of the devices Franky uses to find a lost cat is the CAT Nearness Inducement Prototype system. It actually does use catnip. It works a bit differently in the original, where the device is referred to as the M.T.T.B., in reference to the silver vine, or "Matatabi" in Japanese, which elicits similar responses in cats.
  • Genre Roulette: A Dirty Martini Spy Thriller with Hong Kong Martial Arts Action and Cold-War-Era Weird Science, which is also a Heartwarming Domestic Comedy starring a Heroic but Book Dumb Psychic Little Girl who strives to beome an Academic Genius in an Academy of Adventure. Try saying that three times in a row.
  • Genre Shift: The Cruise Ship arc, with its emphasis on Yor battling an army of warriors specializing in Medieval Weaponary and Martial Arts, shifts from a straight Dirty Martini Spy-Thriller to a Hong Kong Style Wuxia meeets Heroic Bloodshed action-adventure.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Loid entered Anya into Eden Academy in the hopes that she'd befriend Damian Desmond, so Loid in turn could get close to the boy's father. Fortunately for Loid, Damian didn't befriend Anya — he developed a crush on her. Unfortunately, Damian acts like any six year old boy would around a girl he likes: Immediately denies his feelings and insists he would never like her.
  • Good Angel, Bad Angel: Anya gets a pair in Mission 44, the angel saying that maybe they shouldn't go on the cruise and get in Yor's way, the devil not giving a crap and wanting to go anyway. The angel's quick to rationalize themselves into it, with all three of them shouting they want to go on the boat.
  • Good News, Bad News: Chapter 93 concerning Anya and the grade postings. Good news? She did good enough in Classical Language to earn a Stella Star. Bad news? She also did horrible in Math, so another Tonitrus Bolt for her.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Since the story revolves around an undercover spy and an assassin possing as husband and wife, death and mayhem are frequently featured, but what the audiences sees are blood splatters, corpses that are just out frame or out of focus, and the flame and smoke of explosions, with Gorn being heavily implied, but not directly shown. Played for Laughs in Mission 29, when Anya has to participate in a "bring your child to work day-like" activity. When Anya asks Yor, whose cover is working as a City Hall clerk, about her job, Yor has an Imagine Spot about how to best explain what it's like to work as an assassin to a young child, and while reading her mind, a blood soaked and traumatized looking Anya witnesses Yor, offscreen, explaining the best ways to eliminate a target while slaughtering a man (calmly explaining her method is messy but quick/merciful). Anya snaps out of it and decides to ask Loid about his job as a psychiatrist instead. The anime tends to be more discreet with the gore: putting bodies in deeper shadow, making blood more abstract in appearance, etc.
  • Gossip Evolution: What ended up creating the legend of the "Zacharis Dossier". After a feud with his wife over his hobby of collecting theatre girl merchandise (which in this world is essentially the equivalent of Idol Singer merch), he took some diplomats from Westalis to a theatre show in secret and made them swear to never tell anyone. Since he worked in Ostanian Intelligence, rumors spread that his "secret" depicted in the "Zacharis Dossier" was something related to both countries that could "reignite the flames of war" between them if brought to light, which actually meant that his wife would've gotten furious if she found out her husband hid his collection rather than destroy it.
  • Gratuitous English:
    • When the substitute teacher for arts and crafts placed Anya and Damian in the same group, Damian yelled "God damn it!".
    • When drunkenly accusing Loid of having an affair with Fiona, Yor caps it off by yelling "GOD DAMN!"
    • The title of the TV series Becky likes to watch is officially translated to "Berlint in Love." In Japanese, it's "Berinto Rabu," or "Berlint Love" expressed in katakana.
  • Gratuitous French:
    • Henderson switches to this anytime he refers to something that is "élégant". In the original Japanese version however, he actually switches to Gratuitous English.
      Henderson (in English): Quelle élégance!
      Henderson (in Japanese): ベリーエレガント! (Very elegant!)
    • Anya will often say "Oui" rather than "Yes".
  • Gratuitous Japanese: A lot of the "English" that appears in Ostanian or Westalis signs are actually romanized Japanese.
    • The peanut bag Anya coaxed Loid into buying reads "super oishii", which is Japanese (written in romaji, i.e. transliterated Japanese writing) for "super-tasty".
    • The peanuts Loid bought to placate Anya in episode 12 also had text in romaji on the wrapping.
    • A pet shop (actually a front for WISE) is called "Kemono Park".
    • In Episode 18, when Daybreak enters an incorrect code to unlock the school vaults, the display says "CHIGAU" - Japanese for "WRONG" - in English letters.
    • In Mission 62, "Advisor" and his friends often buy croquettes from a stall called "Croquette Yasan." "Croquette-ya-san" means, in context, "croquette stall".
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Inverted and downplayed. While Loid is quite competent in hand-to-hand combat, his spycraft generally uses pistols and grenades. Yor assassinates people with knives. When they fight each other unarmed for Anya's acceptance party, Yor nearly kills Loid due to being too drunk to hold back; fortunately, she breaks a heel and passes out first.
  • Gray Rain of Depression: At the end of Mission 30, Nightfall leaves the Forgers' home while it's raining outside. The rain masks her crying face.
  • Greater-Scope Paragon: The commanding chief of <WISE> is the one masterminding all the currently active agents to ensure peace between Westalis and Ostania, particularly the branch <Handler> manages and Loid works in, but he never gets directly involved with the main cast, limiting his role to things like explaining to Loid in the past that they're spies to ensure the peace and happiness of the populace and giving occasional comments about Loid's progress.
  • Grey-and-Gray Morality: Played with. Given that the main cast consists of spies, assassins, and secret police on both sides of the Westalis-Ostania conflict, all of them have a pretty murky sense of morality. Ultimately however, it is shown that regardless of personal morality, methods, or motivations it is those fighting to maintain the thin veneer of peace on both sides that have the moral high ground over those trying to restart a war that would be ruinous for both sides.
  • Harmful to Minors: In Mission 69, a bus full of Eden students, including Anya and her Cecile classmates, gets hijacked on their way to a normal museum trip. Their teacher is tasered when he tries to stop the kidnappers, who are members of the Red Circus, from boarding the bus.
  • Heartfelt Apology: Anya reads Loid's mind on how her forming a friendship with Damian is crucial to averting an all out (potentially nuclear) World War, so she puts everything she's got into her apology to him. Thanks to listening to insults Damian's friends are thinking about her, she starts sobbing with big globby tears while she says it. It's enough to completely take the boy off guard, make him second guess his hostility towards her and cause him to begin to crush on her.
  • Heel–Face Turn: In Mission 17.5, Yor, as the Thorn Princess, takes out the Red Circus terrorists, however one gunman woke up after passing out from massive blood loss and managed to shoot her in the butt when she was cleaning herself up, though she killed him right after. When Yor gets home, Loid confuses her pained expression with her being upset and takes her out on a date to a restaurant the following night, and has Franky babysit Anya again. When Anya convinces Franky to tail them, Anya reads the mind of the waiter serving them, who was the lone member of the Red Circus to escape the slaughter, and he makes it a point to avenge the mebers of the cell. He tries killing her with blowfish poison, but being a trained assassin, Yor has a high tolerance for poisons, and it acts as a pain killer instead (the narration says that although the difference between poison and medicine is sometimes thin, it's best to consult an expert on the subject). When he decides to make a bomb with readily available products in the restaurant kitchen, his mission is sabotaged by Anya who spilled olive oil on the floor causing him to slip. Reading his mind, she made her own peanut bomb and when it went off on his face Anya warns him not to bother Thorn Princess again, and to go back to his girlfriend. The waiter takes this as a sign that he's not cut out to be a militant-insurectionist and decides to live a normal life instead.
  • Hilarity Ensues: Hitch a master spy and a master hitwoman together, who don't know the other's true nature. Add an in-law who's a master interrogator, who also doesn't know their true natures. Key to the comedy is this little psychic girl who does know their true natures. Then watch said family adopt a future-seeing dog. Now sit back and watch nature take its course.
  • Honesty Aesop: Parodied in Mission 57. In most series, "lying is bad" is a conventional, even banal, moral. In this one, the people giving the moral are all liars themselves who do it every day, including Anya herself regarding her telepathic powers. Anya, who sees their hypocrisy yet keeps quiet about it, can only outwardly admit that yeah, maybe it's not worth it to lie all the time.
  • Idiosyncratic Cover Art:
    • Each manga volume cover has at least one member of the cast sitting in an era-appropriate chair. Each chair also symbolically represents the character sitting on it in various ways. Volume 10 is a slight break from the norm, for understandable reasons, as it features child Twilight sitting on rubble.
    • Each of the Japanese DVD/Blu-ray covers for Season 1 has at least one member of the cast facing front, in the same order as the manga volumes.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Chapters and episodes are called 'Missions'.
  • If Only You Knew: In Mission 5 during the Eden Academy interview, the Forger family is asked about Anya's strengths and weaknesses. This answer is extremely attention-grabbing to many readers since Anya can break the Mutual Masquerade within her family at any given time (but deliberately chooses not to do).
    Loid: Sometimes, it even shocks me how astute she is. It's almost like she's reading my mind!
    Anya: [cue visibly sweating Oh, Crap! face and loud heartbeat because that's exactly what she's doing]
  • I Have a Family: When Yor hears that Anya's on the waiting list to get into Eden and even just one student dropping out would let her in, she has an Imagine Spot of assassinating a man who begs her to spare his life because he has a little boy who's just about to start school, only for Yor to say that's exactly why she's killing him.
  • The Illegible: Anya's handwriting is awful. In Mission 70, Becky initially mistakes her penmanship for a code, and wound up having to rewrite Anya's notes to Damian for them to actually be legible. This has worked in her favor multiple times when people see stuff she writes or draws that, were it not for the fact that nobody can make heads or tails of any of it, would instantly out her as a telepath who knows things she cannot possibly know.
  • Imagine Spot: Yor is prone to these:
    • When the Forgers are informed that Anya has made the top of the waiting list for Eden Academy, and will be admitted if one of the students who won immediate acceptance drops out, Yor has a two-page imagination sequence of securing Anya a place by tracking down and assassinating the father of one of the students, before scolding herself that she can't kill an innocent person.
    • When Anya mentions she's doing a job investigation, Yor imagines taking her along on one of her assassination missions.
    • While eating and drinking with her coworkers, Yor has a several-page fantasy about trying to kill Loid in order to look normal (having drunkenly concluded from her coworkers' griping about their partners that dating and marriage turn people into assassins and she needs to do her best to fit in).
  • Immoral Journalist: Downplayed with Franklin Perkin, an impoverished post office worker who writes sensationalist articles that exaggerate how awful Ostania is to sell to Westalis as glorified propaganda, complete with out-of-context photographs and actual libel. However, he used to be a regular reporter who was sacked due to sincerely believing and expressing that his country has severe societal issues, and he's only writing such puff pieces because they sell well and he needs the money to support his family.
  • Inconsistent Spelling:
    • In the original Japanese version and Manga Plus' first translation, codenames were often surrounded with guillemets (<Twilight>, <Strix>, <Thorn Princess>, <WISE>), however, it was inconsistent and the manga went back and forth between using them or not, sometimes both in a single chapter. When Viz re-translated the manga, they got rid of the guillemets, and Manga Plus now uses the same translation.
    • Loid and Yor's names were initially interpreted and translated as the more realistic "Lloyd Folger" and "Yoru" despite being spelled differently in the Japanese version. These were eventually changed back to their original spelling seemingly by author's request with Mission 10 onwards and the previous chapters were retroactively altered to maintain consistency.
    • Anya's name (アニャ) went back and forth: Manga Plus's original translator initially wrote it as "Anya" (both the Hepburn transliteration as well as the spelling for an actual Eastern European name), then switched it to "Ania" (while not conforming to any major transliteration systems it's phonologically the closest to the original in English orthography) based on their reading of her bedroom nameplate. When Viz's translator took over with Mission 13, they switched it back to "Anya", which has become the official spelling for Japanese sources. Strangely, a much later short chapter acknowledges the nameplate difference; Loid assumed she misspelled it and Anya lets it change. However, her reaction suggests her birth name was "Ania", the orphanage wrote it down wrong, and she's accepting the name "Anya" as a sign of her new family.
  • I Never Said It Was Poison: In Mission 82, it's revealed that the SSS arranged for Winston Wheeler to wear a necktie pin with a gemstone as a signal, but deliberately gave different colours of the gemstone to several branches in the comms department in case a WISE agent in disguise followed any leaked information to the letter, which catches Twilight as Wheeler in a lie when he refers to the gemstone as yellow rather than anything non-specific.
  • Indignant Slap: In Mission-89, after Yuri rushes into the hideout of suspected militants and takes them out single-handedly, he then gets ambushed by a knife wielding suspect, that is taken out by Chloe, his partner in this assignment. When Chloe calls him out for being so careless that he could've been stabbed in the back, he brushes it off as being stabbed is no big deal for him, to which Chloe responds by slapping him. When the both of them are surprised that it hurt him, Chloe slaps him again and bluntly tells him: "You will die. People die. Even you, Yuri."
  • Insane Troll Logic: While drunk, Yor gets it in her head that because her fake marriage with Loid seems too perfect, she has to kill him to preserve the sham.
    Yor: Ash a normal pershon, I need to murder you sho that nobody dishcovers I'm really a killer.
  • Insistent Terminology: Anya's favourite cartoon Spy Wars is often called an "anime", even in translations. While the Japanese term refers to animation in general, whether it's made in the universe's equivalent of Japan is yet to be known.
  • Internal Homage: Young Twilight, with his face in shadow, saying "Turn around and you're dead" in Mission 62.1 is near-identical to adult Twilight doing the same thing in Mission 1.
  • Ironic Name: When the Forgers go on a walk before their school interview, they come across the rally of the "Nationalist Party" with a speaker arguing for reconciliation between Ostania and Westalis, despite its name, whereas the "National Unity Party", lead by Donovan Desmond, the man Twilight was sent to spy on, seems to be ultranationalist and (supposedly) working on turning the cold war between the countries hot.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Pretty much every major male character save for Franky, but especially Loid, Yuri and Damian.
  • Juxtaposed Reflection Poster: To outsiders, the Forgers are a typical civilian family. One of the anime posters diagonally reflected the Forger family on the sidewalk they're walking on, showing in said reflections that Loid is secretly a spy, Yor is secretly an assassin, and Anya is secretly aware of both her parents' identities.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Fittingly, the single toughest foe (as of Volume 9) that Yor has battled thus far is a Kenjutsu (Japanese Swordsmanship) practitioner among the Carnival of Killers in the Cruise Ship Arc. Armed with a Shirazaya (White-Wood-Scabbard Katana) usually wielded by Yakuza bosses as a sign of his mastery, he is not only Yor's equal as a warrior, but has come the closest of any foe to slaying her in single combat.
  • Kid Amid the Chaos: In the first chapter, Twilight has a flashback to his own childhood as a war orphan crying in the middle of a destroyed city, surrounded by tanks, rubble, and dead bodies.
  • Killing Intent: Whenever Anya reads the minds of the cruise ship assassins in the manga, their thought bubbles appear to be ominously dark, shadowy blots instead of the usual radiant-looking ellipses, and immediately alerts Anya into knowing that those are actual bad guys.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: In Short Mission 2, the waiter serving Loid and Yor on their date is the lone survivor of the Red Circus massacre who snuck out without being seen and tries to avenge his comrades by killing the Thorn Princess. After he fails to kill Yor with a cocktail laced with blowfish poison, since as a trained assassin she has gained immunity to many toxins it acted as a painkiller instead (she was Shot in the Ass by the last gunman she killed, and the pain kept lingering). When the waiter decides to make a bomb from items available in the restaurant's kitchen and supply closet, his attempt is foiled by Anya, who spilled olive oil on the floor and read his mind to create her own, non-lethal, peanut bomb. After it went off on his face, she warns him to stay from the Thorn Princess and go back to his own girlfriend, and after she departs, the waiter assumes that the Thorn Princess has a squadron of young assassins aiding her from the shadows, and decides to stop trying to be a wannabe revolutionary and live a normal life with his girlfriend.

    Tropes L–R 
  • Last Request: Loid's excuse for getting Anya into Eden Academy is that it was his late wife's dying wish.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall:
    • The Volume 1 omake opens with Anya declaring she likes omake; turns out she's actually referring to the little toys that come inside boxes of candy.
    • Mission 6 closes out with "Twilight Mission Report #006", having Twilight's mission reports match the number of chapters (and implying the mission reports have been him reporting on the events of each chapter).
    • When Anya ropes Loid, Yor, and Franky into a game of spy-adventure make-believe in Mission 6, Franky ad-libs that Yor is a deadly witch, and Loid complains that he's not sticking to the genre. This echoes the fact that Loid thinks he's living in a spy adventure and is unaware that it also includes supernatural powers (Anya, not Yor — though Yor herself is also a genre refugee, since her brand of close-combat martial arts also isn't usual for the Cold War spy genre).
    • At the end of the Wheeler arc in Mission 86, which saw Twilight put through the wringer, he reflects it must have been a really long day, because it feels like he's returning home for the first time in ages. The arc proper began in Mission 80, released just under three months before.
  • Letting the Air out of the Band: In contrast to the anime's usual jazzy James Bond-esque song for action-packed moments, a much goofier and slightly off-key version of it played with a slide whistle is used for more comedic scenes, which is usually associated with Anya.
  • A Lighter Shade of Grey: Substantial effort is made to show that the government of Westalis is heavily flawed just as the government of Ostania is, in particular due to their greed and materialism, but still overall they are shown in a more positive light than the pro-war elements in Ostania who are driven by paranoia and hatred. Their government is also apparently substantially less strict and repressive toward government criticism than Ostania.
  • Lost in Character: Happens momentarily to Yor during the make-believe game the family plays to celebrate Anya's acceptance into Eden College. Cast as the person guarding Anya, Yor (who at this point has already celebrated enough to be slurring her words) forgets that it's a game and starts defending against the "attacking" Loid as if he's a real threat, coming close to genuinely injuring him before the heel of her shoe fortuitously breaks and takes her out of the fight.
  • Lost in Translation:
    • Manga Plus's translation apparently omitted a couple of things Viz's more literal translation restored: Mission 1's narration reveals the experiments that gave Anya her powers did so by accident, and Mission 2 is the first to identify Yor's boss as the Shopkeeper.
    • There's also a key difference in the opening narration to Mission 12: the Manga Plus translation says this is a decade before the Iron Curtain comes down, while the Viz translation says it's more than a decade after it went up.
  • Lucky Charms Title: The "×" is silent. It's pronounced "Spy Family".
  • Lunacy: Anya's power is apparently tied to the moon phase. She loses her mind-reading power during a new moon, forcing her to actually put effort into studying for a test when her original plan was to skim the answers off via reading thoughts.
  • Mad Libs Catchphrase: Anya's "[X]'s a liar."
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Yuri is more concerned with Loid treating his sister right than the fact that he is profusely bleeding from the head after Yor slapped him into oblivion. Twice. It's later mentioned that due to years of eating Yor's toxic food and getting slapped full force by her on accident he now has "an invincible body" after his co-worker's concern about him simply getting dizzy from staying up four nights in a row and getting run over by a truck.
  • Manipulative Editing: Franklin Perkin in Chapter 41 would post slanderous articles of Ostania to claim it is a Devil Republic and got him in the crosshairs of the SSS. We see him set up a situation where he throws a kid's toy gun in the garbage, and when the kids go looking for it in the dumpster he takes a picture and sets up a story of kids being so poor that they are looking for food in it.
  • Market-Based Title: The video game tie-in is merely called SPY×Family: Operation Diary in Japan, where Anya is basically synonymous with the series. In the West, while Anya is still very popular, the show's audience skews older and gives Loid and Yor more attention in addition to Anya; hence, the game's title is changed to SPY×ANYA: Operation Memories to make it clear that it's an entry centered around her.
  • Master Swordsman: The Kenjutsu (Japanese Swordsmanship) practitioner among the Carnival of Killers on the cruise ship arc, armed with a Shirazaya (White-Wood-Scabbard Katana) Katana usually wielded by Yakuza bosses as a mark of his skill. He not only gave Yor the single toughest fight of her life (as of Volume 9 of the Manga), but is the first warrior who has come the closest to actually killing her. Notably, the Swordsmaster is the most honorable Assassins aside from the band's nameless leader, offering Yor multiple chances to surrender when knocked down and helpless, and formally challenging her to a final Single-Stroke Battle out of respect for her courage and skill, not unlike the Samurai that he emulates and clearly admires.
  • Meaningful Echo: The series' opening narration is reiterated at the end of Mission 11 as Yuri arrives at the Forger home, signifying a new addition to the web of secrets around the family:
    Everyone has a part of themselves they don't show to anyone else. Not to friends, not to lovers, not even to family. With fake smiles and bluffs, they hide their true thoughts, their true self. This is how the world glosses things over for a fragile peace.
  • Meaningful Name: During the underground tennis tournament, Twilight and Nightfall go undercover as Mr. and Mrs. Phony.
  • Meditating Under a Waterfall: In Episode 10, as part of her dodgeball training, Anya meditates under a waterfall... until the scene shifts to show that she was envisioning this while in the shower.
  • Miniature Senior Citizens: At the end of Mission 90, Yor and Anya find out that they have new neighbors that moved into the apartment next to theirs, Sigmund and Barbara Authen, the former whom Anya and Yor spent most the chapter helping him find his way home, and the latter whom was being helped by Loid move their stuff into their new place, and both who are just a little taller than six-year-old, one-metre-tall Anya.
  • Mistaken for Profound: Damian and Anya's joint art project yields two hideous clumps of paper and tape. However, the teachers grading it think it's an allegory for the country's post-wartime morale, and give the kids top marks.
  • The Mole: At the end of Mission-80, Nightfall informs Twilight that an Ostanian double agent was discovered working in within the Westalis government, but the mole escaped with a treasure trove of sensitive information, including the blueprints for Operation Strix, so Twilight is instructed to get ahold of the mole, and more importantly the intelligence, anyway he can. Meanwhile, in SSS-HQ, Yuri and his unit are being briefed by their commanding officer on their new mission: ensure that their agent doesn't get captured by WISE, and secure the intelligence he's carrying by any means necessary.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • Mission 69 starts out nice and hilarious, with some shenanigans between Anya and Damian, and even a hilarious Gonk Anyaface. Then, their bus veers off from the convoy and gets boarded by extremists bent on kidnapping "the nation's elite".
    • Mission 80 starts humorously enough with Yor trying to pick a fight with Loid because she's still a little drunk from the previous night and because her friends from the office told her it was normal for couples to fight. When Yuri bagrges into the Forgers' home he tries, in vain, to convince Yor to divorce Loid. After Loid gets a call from the hospital for an emergency, Yuri convinces Yor that Loid is having an affair and they tail him, but Yuri then gets called off to work, and Yor goes home when she sobers up and realizes the whole thing is dumb. The chapter ends with Nightfall briefing Twilight that an Ostanian mole was discovered in the higher levels of the Westalis government, but escaped with a load of sensitive information, from the names and locations of WISE agents as well as the plans for Operations Strix, and Twilight is assigned to capture the mole and, more importantly, recover the stolen intelligence. Meanwhile, at S.S.S. H.Q., Yuri and his unit are being briefed on their new mission: keep their agent from being captured by WISE and secure the stolen intelligence by any means necessary.
  • Mugging the Monster: Happens quite often when Yor is involved:
    • At the party in Mission 2, Yor's coworker Camilla, jealous of her looks, jumps at the chance to humiliate her by telling Yuri she came alone and does not in fact have a boyfriend... Completely oblivious to the fact Yor is now considering killing everyone to prevent just that.
    • A group of street punks try to snatch Anya for money, assuming Yor's the hired help. They're soon proven very wrong.
  • Mundane Made Awesome:
    • As reward for getting admitted into Eden, Anya wants a play session where she's the damsel to be rescued by Loid from the Big Bad's castle, just like in her cartoons. They rent an actual castle to play in, but it's empty and lacks the atmosphere... So they call every available agent for an "emergency mission pertaining to Operation Strix". Just so they can play as extras in Anya's play session.
    • Mission 15/Episode 10 features a dodgeball game between six-year-olds that's treated like a fight from Dragon Ball Z. One kid even reveals he used computers to run calculations while he was training so he could figure out how best to throw the ball.
  • Mystery Episode: Mission 94 is a classic Ten Little Murder Victims plot in a ski lodge isolated by a blizzard... but with the Forgers involved, it's quickly wrapped up after the attempted murder of the first victim, courtesy of Anya's telepathy, Bond's precognition, and Loid's sheer competence.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • The family photo Anya brings to school in Mission 25 (which Becky then takes) is based on the cover picture for Mission 2, with Yor in the wife's position and the addition of Bond. (Starting with Volume 5, this photo is also used to reintroduce the characters at the start of each volume.) Episode 3 of the anime shows the three Forgers taking an earlier version of this family photo without Bond as part of their outing. Said family photo is also the portrait that falls down after the interview, at the end of episode 4.
    • The ending sequence of the anime's first cour features a couple of the chairs from the manga covers — Anya sits on the chair from Volume 2, and obscured Loid in the painting sits on the chair from Volume 1.
    • At the 1:07 mark in the first anime opening sequence, there is a very brief and colorful sequence of Yor in many outfits. Three of those outfits (the ones in pink, green and orange) come directly from the "Yor's 1 Week Coordinate" bonus page from Volume 3 - Days 2, 3 and 4 specifically.
    • Some of Yor's official concept art features her in her Day 1 outfit.
    • Twilight's file in Episode 5 is his profile from Volume 1's bonus pages.
    • The peanuts snack Anya is holding at the end of Episode 12 is named "Mazekoze Nuts", which if one translates the romaji half into English gives the name of the first opening theme song, "Mixed Nuts". The mascot character even makes a reference to the band singing it.
  • Needle in a Stack of Needles: Subverted in the first "Special Mission" chapter; the Forgers visit an aquarium with over 200 penguins, and Loid has to figure out which one is being used to pass chemical weapons plans to terrorists. Anya's telepathy picks it out almost immediately.
  • Never Gets Drunk: When the family and Franky are celebrating Anya's acceptance into Eden College, Loid is the only one of the adults who doesn't get tipsy. In the manga, he explains to Franky that his spy training included the ability to drink without getting intoxicated.
  • Never Mess with Granny: In Chapter 74, Billy Squire, leader of the Red Circus, and the other members of his gang turn themselves in to the authorities on his orders, and he takes full responsibility for the schoolbus highjackings. However, Vadim decides to drive away in the school bus but is stopped when two armored police vehicles crash onto the bus, and when he staggers out in a daze Martha, Becky's butler/nanny and a woman who at the youngest must be her early sixties, jumps over the police barricade and zaps him with a taser before he could either run away or use a weapon.
  • Newspaper-Thin Disguise: In Season 2 Episode 1, while spying on Loid and Yor at a jazz club during their date, Anya and Franky use fliers with eye cut-outs to hide their faces.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed:
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed:
    • Westalian Foreign Minister Brantz is based on West German politician Willy Brandt (both the fictional character and the politician he is based on were famous for their attempts at rapprochement between his own country and its rival).
    • Ostanian Foreign Minister Windsor is based on East German politician Otto Winzer.
    • One student in Mission 57 mentions going to see the Pecassos at the art museum.
    • Wartime Westalian Prime Minister Adner is based on the first West German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer.
  • No Party Like a Donner Party: When Handler was reaming Keith Kepler's terrorist associates about their ignorance of what war truly was like, she asked them whether they ever stewed human flesh in a pot after asking them whether they were ever hungry enough to try to eat tree bark, implying that either she or someone she knew had to go through this.
  • Noodle Incident: It's never stated what's on the rap sheet of Edgar's daughter Karen as discovered by Twilight, but while her crimes weren't apparently as bad as Edgar's, her life would be ruined if any of them were publicized.
  • Oblivious Guilt Slinging: Yor ends up unwittingly guilt-tripping Loid in Mission 14 when he suspects her of being a secret plant by the Secret Police, due to him finding out that her brother was an officer, and attempts to confirm it by placing a tracker on her collar and interrogating her while in disguise. She not only completely affirms her loyalty to Loid but later tells Loid outright that she's happy she married him, leading him to secretly take the tracker off of her and crush it in self-disgust.
  • Old Maid: Yor's reason to join the family is based partly on this belief. The society she lives in will assume that she's committing treason before accepting that a woman might just not be married or in a relationship at the ripe old age of twenty-seven. It doesn't help that post-war paranoia has the government looking for spies in every shadow, and hauling people in for being even slightly suspicious.
  • One Cast Member per Cover:
    • Each manga cover has a different cast member sitting down on a chair, with the style of the chair and the objects surrounding it used to show that character's personality. Similarly, each of the Japanese DVD/Blu-ray covers for Season 1 has a different cast member facing front in the same order as the manga covers.
    • Volumes 11 and 13 are exceptions; Volume 11 features Ewen and Emile on the cover together, and Volume 13 features Camilla, Millie, and Sharon together.
  • One Degree of Separation:
    • It turns out Bond and Anya were experimented on by the same people. In addition, Bond was Subject 8 and Anya was Subject 007 — while the numbering formats are different, Bond being "8" in his format and Anya being "7" in hers alludes to a connection. That said, Handler mentions the initiative that created Bond was about creating Uplifted Animals, suggesting he and Anya were created as part of different, but related, projects.
    • Henry and Martha are on First-Name Basis and have no issue talking informally, which given that Henry is a stickler for propriety points to them having history together.
  • One Dialogue, Two Conversations:
    • When Anya tells Damian she's sorry for punching him in the face, he feels himself growing attracted to her. This causes him to panic and shout that he will "never accept it", making Anya think he's rejecting her apology.
    • Invoked between Twilight and Nightfall. Their casual chat in Mission 30 is actually filled with code words so as to talk about work in public.
  • "Open!" Says Me: Yor's work as an assassin is introduced to the reader by having her casually stroll up to a heavily guarded room before kicking the two guards in front through the door of the room she intends to enter, knocking the door off its hinges in the process.
  • Origins Episode: Mission 62 shows the background of agent Twilight before he became a spy.
  • Orphanage of Fear: For the sake of finding a child who could be incorporated into Operation Strix without raising any suspicions, Agent Twilight deliberately sought a seedy orphanage with poor record-keeping. The one where he found Anya was practically falling apart and the kids were wearing rags. The man looking after the kids didn't really care about them and, exactly as planned, didn't have him fill out any paperwork to take her.
  • Orwellian Retcon: The prototype Nightfall in the online Mission 29 was redrawn for Volume 5 to bring her in line with Nightfall's final design.
  • Outside-Genre Foe: Assassins as a whole, those trained by the Garden in particular such as Yor, are warriors who eschew the use of firearms, but are instead masters of Martial Arts and medieval weaponry, while honing their speed and strength beyond the limits of peak human condition. This makes them foes more fitting in a Hong Kong Wuxia film rather than those found in a Dirty Martini Cold War Spy Thriller. As a rule, spies and combatants who rely on firearms in the Spy X Family universe are completely outmatched, if not utterly helpless, against the warriors of Assassin Organizations.
  • Paper Destruction of Anger: In the first episode/chapter Twilight furiously tears a newspaper in two when he finds out what his new mission entails.
  • Parody Episode: Mission 94 has all the trappings of a stock Ten Little Murder Victims plot, with the Forgers filling in the cliché role of the Amateur Sleuth who partakes in the gathering via Contrived Coincidence (think of almost every episode from The Kindaichi Case Files and to a lesser extent, Case Closed). Except in this case, two of the protagonists happen to be an extremely competent, multi-skilled master spy (Loid) and a mind-reading telepath (Anya), meaning the killer never stood a chance and gets soundly defeated before they even commit their first kill.
  • Patriotic Fervor: Many Ostanians loathe Westalis and its people, desiring a war to destroy the neighboring country. With how hostile the tensions are between the two nations, it’s heavily implied that the people of Westalis are no different.
  • Perilous Marriage Proposal: Loid Forger asks Yor Briar to be his wife (for the purposes of his current cover ID) in the middle of a street battle with some mooks, using the pin from the grenade he just threw in lieu of an engagement ring while they're taking cover behind a dumpster.
  • Pet the Dog: Yuri, for all his quirkiness involving Yor, is utterly ruthless as a member of the SSS. That said, when going after a journalist publishing slander against Ostania, he patiently waits outside to arrest him so as not to upset his father (an older man who relies on his son for support), and promises to submit an application for his father to receive financial assistance.
  • Plot-Based Photograph Obfuscation: Yuri's face is obstructed by a glare in the frame before he makes a full appearance.
  • Police Are Useless: Despite their brutality and multiple spy crackdowns, Ostania's Secret Police, the State Security Service, have been utterly unable to catch Twilight nor the core members of WISE operating in their country. Further, the Garden and WISE itself are often shown to be the ones cleaning up criminal organizations and corruption in Ostania, rather than the SSS, leaving the impression their Sinister Surveillance is barely catching any criminal activity. The Cruise Arc indicates that while they do care to a point about keeping people safe, the SSS prioritize keeping up appearances of safety and stability over actually handling crises properly, and on threatening or arresting otherwise regular people who are too critical of the government (the exact line where criticism becomes a crime being unclear) or simply reported for being too "suspicious". Their biggest success was capturing a fair number of female WISE agents early in the series, though that was less the result of competence and more that they arrested so many women that it was inevitable some would be spies.
  • Poor Communication Kills: George overhears his parents discussing about how their company is being bought by the Desmond conglomerate, with him coming to the conclusion they're going bankrupt and he'll end up in poverty, making him hate on Damian, and eventually guilts the whole school into helping him treasure what he believes is his last day at the school. Then he gets home and his father explains to him that the Desmond conglomerate buying their company is actually to help their financial problems, meaning the company stays strong and George still goes to the school. When George comes back, he feels extremely embarrassed, with his schoolmates having him repay them for their wasted sympathy, and Anya expressing extra sympathy for his mistake.
  • Potty Emergency: Exploited by Anya and Damian in Mission 70: with her school bus hijacked by terrorists, Anya wants to know where they're headed. She loudly acts like she has to pee really bad to plant the thought of where they're headed, and how far away it is, into their minds so she can use her telepathy to learn their destination. Shortly after that, Damian pretends that he needs to take a dump to distract them and give Anya an opening to try sending out a distress message.
  • Powered Armor:
    • Mentioned in Mission 25 where Becky makes a paper armor accessory for her Loid model based on an experimental set her father's company Blackbell Industries is developing.
    • Mission 43 has Franky unveil a bulky exoskeleton power suit he claims will give him super strength to catch a cat, except it needs 10 minutes to warm up and Yor ends up tearing a piece off to distract the cat.
  • The Power of Love: Nightfall tries to invoke this against Yor's supersonic tennis ball in Mission 34, but ultimately the ball's speed is too much for her racket. Nightfall takes it hard, seeing it as the defeat of her love; she admits Yor's superiority for now and declares that someday she'll challenge her to a rematch.
  • Previously on…: Parodied in the fifth episode of the second season. Anya does a brief recap of her previous encounter with Damian, adding in stuff he never said.
  • Psycho Serum: Chapter 31 shows two tennis players injecting themselves with a drug that makes them Hulk Out.
  • Pulled from Your Day Off: In a bonus chapter, Twilight is looking forward to having a day off to spend time with Yor and Anya (technically part of his mission, to uphold the illusion of a family), but his contact gives him an assignment that has to happen that day, coincidentally at the same aquarium where they're going. Twilight has to sneak away from his "wife" and "daughter", disguise himself as a zookeeper, retrieve a microfilm from inside a penguin's throat, fight off an enemy agent, and get back to Yor and Anya before they notice he's been gone too long.
  • Punny Name:
    • The city of Berlint is written as a combination of the word "Berlin" and the "n't" contraction, which is used in words such as "doesn't" and "isn't" to indicate negatives, making fun of the fact that Berlint isn't Berlin despite obviously being based off of it.
    • When Yor imagines killing a man to take his son's slot at Eden for Anya, the hypothetical target is named "Zachary Feiss" which sounds like "Sacrifice".
    • A bit of a stealth pun shows up in the Inusan Crisis Arc. While their actual group name is never stated the terrorists who wanted to use dogs as explosives all have names that start with K and there are 9 of them. For added emphasis the first member we see even wears a jacket with K9 as a logo.
    • Twilight and Nightfall's aliases for the tennis tournament have the last name "Foney".
    • The drug-using tennis players are called Anan and Catan Bolic (as in anabolic and catabolic steroids).
    • All of the one-off characters in Mission 94 have these sort of names, relating to either what they do or their personalities: Max Slacker (a guy who slacks off), Adrahma Queen ("a drama queen"), Shorton Kreditz ("short on credits"), Needa Jobsoon ("needs a job soon"), Rodger Hostman (the host man), Spoussa Hostman ("spouse of host man"), Porter Partheimer ("Porter Part-timer"), Hack Scriver (a play on "hack scribe", because he's a tabloid writer), and Guy Luvstaski ("loves to ski").
  • Put on a Bus: For the bus arc (heh) of volume 11, Twilight is out of town on another assignment, while Yor is ignorant because the police are keeping everything under wraps. That leaves Anya as the only one who can save the day.
  • Putting on the Reich: The Secret Police, which are even called the SSS. However, the full name they give, the State Security Service, is one of the English names of East Germany's secret police, The Stasi, in keeping with Ostania being an East Germany expy. Their uniforms also resemble the Stasi's.
  • Putting the Pee in Pool: A Volume 2 omake sees Loid and Yor taking Anya to the pool at her request. The latter excitedly rushes into the water, but is later horrified when she reads the other children's minds and finds out that several of them have secretly peed near her. Afterward she sits in the Corner of Woe and vows to never go to the pool again, much to her parents' confusion.
  • Race Against the Clock: Subverted. During chapter 21 when Anya reads Bond's mind, she sees the bombs going off at 5 o' clock. Being a fan of spy fiction she recognizes this trope and attempts to play it straight... but it turns out Anya doesn't know how to read an analog clock. Since she doesn't know how to defuse a bomb either, the most she could do was leave a very crude message for Twilight to warn him about the door bomb.
  • Rage Breaking Point: Loid, along with Yor, becomes irritated during the school interview due to Murdoch's unsavoury remarks but maintains his composure so that he doesn't ruin Anya's chances of getting accepted. His Papa Wolf side starts to emerge however when Murdoch makes Anya cry by asking about her birth mother. When he refuses to back down and continues to make matters worst, Loid finally has enough and gets close to punching him — he narrowly avoids hitting him by redirecting the punch into the table instead (explaining that he was killing the mosquito on it) and snapping it into two. Murdoch's treatment of the Forgers also causes Henry (who is composed up until this point) to punch him in the face out of anger after they leave.
  • Reading Lips:
    • Twilight and Nightfall can communicate secretly by reading each other's lips, while carrying on a completely unrelated conversation with their audible voices as cover.
    • In Chapter 70, Anya, after using her telepathy, claims she learned how to read lips from a spy cartoon to explain to Becky how she figured out where the kidnappers are taking their bus.
  • Recursive Translation: In Chapter 60, Franky's door has a button labeled "Press Button for "Service" in English (the button is booby-trapped). There's a text box pointing at it, translating it for readers who don't understand English, but this is kept in the English version, despite the text on the door plate being clearly legible, presumably because redrawing the panel just for one language would take more effort than it's worth.
  • Relocating the Explosion: On the cruise ship, Twilight (in disguise) deals with a bomb inside a clock by throwing it over the side of the ship and into the water (where it happens to blow up near the bomber's boat, capsizing them).
  • Retraux: The series itself isn't this, but the colorized version uses a palette that makes it look like a comic faded with age. The "Spy Wars" cartoon seen throughout the anime, meanwhile, is done in the style of an anime from the '70s.
  • Retro Universe: The setting in general is an amalgamation of various periods of the Cold War, specifically The '60s and The '70s.
  • The Reveal: In Chapter 75, Anya discovers Melinda's... divided feelings towards Damian.
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons:
    • The woman who Yor's coworkers said was arrested by the brutal Ostanian State Security Service after her neighbors reported her because she was unmarried at 30, which seemed like massive Disproportionate Retribution? Turns out the woman was an actual informant for WISE, as were a number of other women arrested for similar reasons, as Twilight comments to Franky that a lot of WISE's female agents in Ostania were captured in a recent crackdown.
    • Yuri thinks that Loid is a spy because being a nice guy to trick women is a way they worm their way in. He is 100% correct but it's obvious the only reason he thinks this is because he just personally doesn't like Loid for taking his sister.
    • Gerald Gorey calls the SSS and claims that Loid is a spy. He is correct but is only accusing him because he is jealous at how well-liked Loid is and thinks he is after Fiona, who he has a crush on.
  • Right-Wing Militia Fanatic: A group of college aged nationalists/isolationists, led by Keith Kepler, desire to bring Ostania to her former glory and end the collusion between Ostania and Westalis by starting a war; Keith's idea of carrying this out involves bombs strapped to dogs in an attempt on the life of the Westalian Foreign Minister.
  • Rule of Symbolism: The above-mentioned Freeze-Frame Bonus where Loid and Yor lock eyes. He's on the ground in the shadows while she's up on a balcony in the sunlight, demonstrating how they're part of two different worlds. Despite this, their eyes still meet, showing how in spite of all that stands between them, they still have eyes for one another.
  • Running Gag:
    • Whenever Anya's Imagine Spots feature Damian, there's a good chance he'll be childishly drawn, with wonky eyes and a runny nose. She's imagined Melinda the same way at least once.
    • Whenever Anya looks in her purse, there will be at least one piece of Bond's kibble in it.
    • Anya frequently creates things (writing, drawing) that would accidentally out her as a telepath... if the people who found them could make heads or tails of her childish scribbles.
    • Anya patting someone on the arm in sympathy when she reads their thoughts and sees how bad their situation is.
  • Ruritania: The story takes place in a vaguely European nation called Ostania, with a longtime rivalry against Westalis. They're trying to prevent a war from breaking between the two. The map of the border between the two nations, and the time period the setting takes inspiration from ('60s to '70s), makes it very reminiscent of Eastern Germany and Western Germany in a Cold War era conflict; despite English being the official language of Ostania/Westalis their names (East) and (West) are dead ringers to the potential reference.

    Tropes S–Z 
  • Saying Sound Effects Out Loud: A characteristic gag seen both in the anime and manga, in comedic moments characters will sometimes voice their shock by saying the actual sound effect in Japanese with "gannnn~!”; Anya and Yor are the most common users of said gag but others like Loid can be seen doing it too, just less so.
  • Scare 'Em Straight: To interrogate a gang of pro-war terrorists, the Handler tells them, in graphic detail, exactly what being at war is like. Her words seem to make the dumb college kids realize how little they understand.
  • Secret Police: The State Security Service, Ostania's secret counter-intelligence agency, and WISE's natural enemy. Unusually for this trope and fitting to the Gray-and-Gray Morality theme, they are portrayed as just people doing their job for the good of the nation. The members are friendly and express concern for each other's well-being, they seem to arrest only after a reasonable suspicion and/or evidence, and even then, they might even offer assistance for the suspect's family so they are properly taken care of. That said, they are also known for their use of torture on those in their custody, as well as their role in brutally stamping out government criticism, and thus are feared by most citizens. The Red Circus arc brings further attention to just how much damage they have done to the people of Ostania over the years, and how cruel their organization can be, even if individual members are still humanized and the gray in their actions remains to some extent. Notably it's implied they at one point outright slaughtered peaceful protestors to the degree that many of their remains could not even be identified, or at least condoned it being done.
  • Secret Test of Character:
    • The interview process for Eden Academy ends up being this, as both the parents and their children are being secretly observed by the faculty the moment they step through the school gates, and they're not above staging incidents to see how their subjects will react.
    • Played with in the case of one of the staged incidents, a muddy student stuck in a drain and crying for help. In most cases, the winning action would be to demonstrate compassion by stopping to help even at the risk of being late for the interview, but in the case of Eden Academy it's suggested that the winning action is to avoid doing anything that would result in being late, dirty or disheveled. Loid manages to cover both possibilities.
    • Loid and Franky, disguised as SSS agents, confront Yor on the suspicion of being a spy. They casually mention that there was a girl like her who was released after she mentioned that her family member was also in the SSS, simply to see if she actually knows her brother is an SSS member and will use that to get out of this. It’s made clear that she doesn't and Loid actually feels disgusted with himself for putting her through that.
  • Selective Obliviousness:
    • Both Loid and Yor are in denial about actually getting attached to the others because they're supposed to be focused on their jobs.
    • Damian denies his own feelings towards dirty commoner Anya by literally slapping his "doki doki" Speech Bubble.
    • Despite Yor having constantly returned home covered in blood from her job throughout his childhood, Yuri apparently hasn't realized Yor is an assassin (in part because he thought the blood was hers).
  • Serious Business:
    • Zig-zagged. The series often has Twilight treat what seems to be very basic things (such as Anya becoming friends with Damian Desmond) more seriously than needed. While some cases are indeed fairly mundane and don't impact his mission much, other cases do directly relate to it and have world peace on the line and thus justify his concerns.
    • Mission 34 has Fiona challenge Yor to a friendly tennis match... which both women have independently concluded will decide the future of Yor and Loid's marriage (Fiona thinking Yor will feel like she's in over her head somehow if she loses and Yor thinking Loid reports weak tennis players to the secret police). Loid meanwhile is utterly baffled as to why this tennis match means anything, why Fiona runs away after losing, and why Yor keeps saying "I beat her!" afterwards.
    Loid: I... guess she's just really passionate about tennis.
  • Share Phrase: Every time somebody involved with Twilight speaks to or about him in that identity, including himself, they often preface it by saying "good morning, or perhaps good evening", as a play on his codename being the time between day and night.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: There're hints that Twilight's dad was traumatized by warfare seeing how harshly he treated Twilight for playing soldier. This also applies to Twilight himself, who is implied to have repressed his memories from his time as a soldier.
  • Shockingly Expensive Bill: The bill from renting a castle and all the furnishings for Anya to play being saved from a castle as an award for being enrolled. Loid made WISE cover it as necessary expenses for Operation Strix, and gets chewed out by the Handler when he next comes in for a mission briefing. He then casually tacks on more bills from purchasing Anya's school uniform.
    Loid: Going to school is very expensive.
  • Shout-Out: Has its own page.
  • Shown Their Work:
    • Nguyen, one of Edgar's goons, has a Vietnamese name that sounds out of place in the Cold War-esque settings. note  In real life, East Germany and North Vietnam had student exchange programs as early as the 1950s (as part of the Communist Bloc), and by the mid-1980s Vietnamese and Mozambican people made up the majority of foreign laborers in East Germany. Today, there are still major Vietnamese-German communities in Germany.
    • The incident in where Ken nearly drowns in Episode 11 is a realistic depiction of drowning when he falls into the pool. Unlike Hollywood Drowning, he is unable to scream due to his mouth being full of water and his injured leg prevents him from swimming up. Note that the next pool over is filled to brim with adults, hammering in just how quiet real-life drowning is. If it wasn't for Anya reading his panicking thoughts a few rooms away, he would've died.
  • Show Within a Show:
    • The adventure cartoon Spy Wars, which is Anya's favorite show; many of her fantasies are filtered through a Spy Fiction lens inspired by the show, and she gives Bond his name as an allusion to the show's main character, Bondman.
    • Becky also occasionally talks about her favorite, a live-action romance show called Berlint in Love.
    • Monica McBride's favorite film is Ber-Ber-Berlint.
  • Silver Spoon Troublemaker: When Mr. Henderson is comforting Anya over getting a second Tonitrus Bolt, he tells her that even Imperial Scholars have gotten them. One of them has as many as six Tonitrus Bolts!
  • Single Parents Are Undesirable: Marrying a parent already with child being a turn-off due to "baggage" seems to be a rather common mindset, if the comments made by Yor's friends and coworkers are anything to go by.
  • Skewed Priorities: Since there isn't enough time to disarm it, Twilight resorts to Relocating the Explosion. One of the ship's crew becomes upset at this and urges him to stop because the clock the bomb was attached to was an antique.
  • Snot Bubble: Sometimes when Anya sleeps, she is shown with a snot bubble and Comical Nap Drool.
  • Spanner in the Works: Thanks to her Telepathy, Anya can act as this.
    • During the aquarium mission, she helps Loid to quickly identify the penguin that has the microfilm, and then grabs the enemy spy before he can escape so Yor will stop him.
    • While WISE does a good part of the job in stopping the terrorists, Anya's intervention is what ensures that their plan is derailed, as she distracts the group at a critical moment (helping to their arrest) and saves the day by warning about the bomb planted by its leader.
  • Spit Take: Twilight's reaction upon discovering his next mission involves getting married and having a child is to splurt his coffee out onto his (encoded) newspaper.
  • Spoiler Opening: The anime's first ending shows Yuri in a specific set of work clothes long before an anime-only viewer would be aware of him working the job that comes with them. While he wears the same outfit on the manga cover depicting him, the fact that it's the fifth volume makes it more of a Late-Arrival Spoiler.
  • Spot the Thread: Loid was able to figure out Yuri was a member of the Secret Police because of how he bought the wine, recognizing it as a cover story in the government agency's handbook. However he was certain of it when Yuri stated the price as the same as in the handbook, having not realized the price for that wine went up due to a poor harvest.
  • Spy Fiction: Dirty Martini. At a glance, we have a super-spy tasked to infiltrate the high society where his target resides. Look deeper, and we see an exhausted man being worked like a dog, so traumatized by his past experience of war that he'd do anything to prevent it, in the service of an agency staffed with people either broken in their own ways from the spy business, or just overworked bureaucrats doing a job.such as 
  • Spy Speak: Twilight usually gets his coded messages from WISE from undercover agents giving him something, then making an animal noise or repeating the same letter several times in a sentence so he knows what cipher to read the coded message with.note 
  • Static Stun Gun: In Chapter 74, Martha Marriott saves Anya by using a stun gun on the Red Circus member taking the latter hostage. Anya is impressed by it and Martha mentions it's a new taser developed by the Blackbell Industries.
  • The Stinger:
    • Episode 7's after-credits scene features Yuri discovering Yor's gotten "married".
    • The "Omelet Rice" segment in Episode 17 comes after the credits and shows how Yuri gained his ridiculously invincible body thanks to his upbringing under Yor.
    • The "First Fit of Jealousy" segment in Episode 21 comes after the credits and focuses on Bond becoming jealous of Anya's toy penguin.
    • Episode 23's after-credits scene features Nightfall practising tennis in the mountains.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike:
    • When Nightfall confronts Yor for a "friendly little tennis match", the ladies convince themselves the match will decide who remains as Loid's wife. After the match, the Not So Stoic Nightfall flees with the Ocular Gushers turned up while Yor marches right up to Loid to scream her victory in his face. As a bonus, Anya gets to see their Imagine Spots, so she too comes to see the "real" battle underlying the game. (Loid, on the other hand, has no idea what's going on and is beyond exhausted by the end of things).
    • Anya and Damian's mutual idea of how to distract terrorists: Saying they have to go to the bathroom really badly.
  • Street Performer: Anya's quick thinking convinces people on a cruise that a fight between Yor and an assassin is really a street performance so Yor doesn't have to worry about blowing her cover in public.
  • Stylistic Suck: The "Spy Wars" episode shown in Episode 28 of the anime is animated in a much more simplistic style with Limited Animation and you can clearly see a door at one point change color when opened.
  • Sure, Let's Go with That:
    • One of these pretty much kicks off the series in Mission 2, when Loid shows up late to the party where he's supposed to be attending as Yor's fake boyfriend (due to a violent fight with some smugglers) and loudly introduces himself as Yor's husband instead (due to a bleeding head wound that probably caused a concussion). Loid and Yor just roll with it, and after Loid impresses her with his willingness to accept her Warts and All, Yor spontaneously asks him if he'd like to marry her while they're running from the aforementioned smugglers.
    • In Mission 25, Damian and Anya's terribly designed art project got first place because the board thought it was a piece describing a nation rebounding from war and they nearly cried at the sight of the cruelly slaughtered baby that was beside it. Damian and Anya decide not to correct them.
    • In Mission 29, Anya messes with the dolls to make it appear she never left Loid's office when he was away. They are such a mess Loid mistakes it as Anya suffering from a lot of repressed emotions from being an orphan and he needs to give her more attention. Anya goes along with it because she realizes he is going to spoil her.
  • Star-Shaped Coupon: Eden Academy's Stella Stars, awarded to students who get exceptional grades or perform community service or other good deeds outside of school. Anya needs to get eight of them so she'll be promoted to Imperial Scholar and and she and her parents will become eligible to attend special social gatherings held at Eden, which are among the very rare occasions that the reclusive Donovan Desmond can be reliably seen in public.
  • Sweet and Sour Grapes: During the Eden Academy student admission interview, Housemaster Swan drives Anya to tears by badgering her, causing Loid to lose his temper and call the interview off, declaring that he wouldn't want his daughter to attend an academy where the housemasters consider this appropriate behavior. Anya flunking out of the admissions process would mean the failure of his mission, but in the moment he considers Anya's happiness more important. Fortunately, Housemaster Henderson agrees with Loid's assessment of Swan's actions, and his favorable opinion of Loid as a man of principle is what tips the balance and results in Anya being accepted as a student.
  • "Take Your Child to Work Day" Plot: Anya needs to write a report on what her mother or her father do for a living. After Anya's telepathy lets her see her adoptive mother Yor's gruesome Imagine Spot as the assassin Thorn Princess, complete with her imagining Anya getting drenched in blood whilst witnessing her job in action, Anya decides to follow her adoptive father Loid (aka the elite spy Twilight) to his day job as a psychiatrist instead.
  • Taking the Bullet:
    • Twilight intercepts a bullet for Nightfall during the underground tennis tournament; however, between Twilight anticipating something like this happening and wearing a bulletproof vest, and it being a rubber bullet, he's not seriously hurt.
    • During the Cruise arc, Zeb dives in front of Olka and Gram to protect them from an assassin's bullets. Fortunately he too was wearing a bulletproof vest and manages to survive, although he does complain that it hurts (albeit not as much as it should have, given these were real bullets).
    • During the Red Circus arc, Henderson throws his body in front of Anya when Vadim points his gun at her, although fortunately Billy makes Vadim stand down.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: Twilight's former spy apprentice, Nightfall, is in love with her teacher. However, since she never reveals any emotion, he has no idea.
  • Teens Are Monsters: The college student isolationist terrorists intend to kill a Westalian minister with bombs strapped to dogs in the hopes of starting a war to kill every single Westalian, though most of them are nowhere near as bad as their leader Keith, who Would Hurt a Child very easily.
  • Translation Convention: In the manga and anime, all text in-universe is in English. So, unless you're reading/viewing the dub...
  • Truth in Television: As Loid points out and Mission 16/Episode 11 depicts, many people drown in real life because it's much quieter and quicker than you would believe. Ken slipped into the pool in a split second and would have died without Anya's bravery. Even though there were many adults in the water, no one saw him drowning. note 
  • A Twinkle in the Sky: The fate of one of the volleyballs Yor throws through the roof in Mission 65.
  • Two-Teacher School: Housemaster Henderson oversees a lot of Anya's classes in Eden centric stories, which is explained by the regular teacher being indisposed.
  • Uncertain Doom: The last time a child Twilight ever saw his father, the latter was about to head out to the border for business ...shortly before Luwen is bombed by an Ostanian raid, giving the heavy implication whatever business he had to do by the border lead to his death, but his ultimate fate is left unclear.
  • Undercover as Lovers: Invoked by agent Nightfall in chapter 31. Since she wants to prove to Twilight that she can be a better cover wife than Yor, she registers herself and Twilight as a married couple for a tennis game in their mission together.
  • Wants a Prize for Basic Decency: A variation. When Murdoch Swan finds out that Yor doesn't do the cooking in her household, he begins berating her for this, considering her an embarrassment of a mother figure. When Loid comes to her defense and says she doesn't need to be good at cooking, and that she's good at plenty of other things, like keeping the house clean and taking care of Anya, Swan dismisses this as Loid praising her for things that are the baseline requirements of any woman in a relationship. Loid visibly gets irritated at this.
  • War Is Hell: Both Twilight and his commander have experienced the horrors of war first-hand, with Loid remembering losing his mother, friends, home and possessions. It's the main reason they both became spies.
  • The War Just Before: The story opens over ten years after the end of a devastating and protracted war between the nations of Westalis and Ostania. The war was a massive and messy one, opening when Twilight was a young child and still going strong when he was old enough to pass for an 18 year old. While both nations have since recovered in terms of their economies and infrastructures, the emotional scars remain fresh in the minds of many, and there is more than enough lingering anger and resentment on both sides that not only has a fierce Cold War remained in effect ever since the end of the active war, but a single diplomatic incident of sufficient magnitude would be enough to reignite full blown war and devastate both nations anew. Thus our heroes consist of multiple factions in both nations, who don't necessarily see each other as allies nor work together, who seek to avoid restarting open hostilities at pretty much any cost, while most of the antagonists are equally diverse factions who for various reasons seek war.
  • Weird Science: The existence of Super Spy gadets and psychic powers notwithstanding, this is a world where Super Serum that turn sportsmen into literal giants and as of Spy X Family: Code White, cyborgs with machine gun arms are steadily becoming more commonplace due to the advances of this trope.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Mission 11. Yor's brother Yuri is revealed to be a member of the Ostanian Secret Police and is on the lookout for Twilight.
    • Mission 37 is a real doozy, as Loid finally has a face-to-face meeting with his target, Donovan Desmond.
    • Mission 62, giving a glimpse into Twilight's childhood at the start of the war between Westalis and Ostania, where he lost his friends and family, and enlisted into the army.
  • Wham Line:
    • Damian states "I know Father couldn't care less about me" in the tail end of Mission 25, as it not only reveals the kid's inner conflict, it puts how Operation Strix will work into question.
    • Mission 30 starts with a foreboding note as Fiona Frost aka Nightfall decides to visit Loid, with Handler and her fellow agents wondering if she's planning to sabotage Operation Strix. After confronting Loid and Anya realizing she's a fellow spy, she tries to ascertain whether she's a threat, but after reading this, she does a Double Take not believing what she finds out.
      Nightfall: Agent Twilight, I love you.
    • In Mission 65, Yor manages to join a circle of friends. All's well and good, until the very last panel, which reveals that her best friend in the group has a much bigger role in Operation Strix than it first seemed...
      "Oh my gosh. How crazy that we'd meet like this! Forgive me, I never properly introduced myself, did I? I'm Melinda... Melinda Desmond!"
    • In the aftermath of the bus hijacking, Anya finally meets Melinda Desmond in Mission 75 and reads her mind out of curiosity. Initially she's put off by the outpouring of love (even likening it to her uncle's thoughts around Yor), but partway through the conversation, Damian mentions his father to Melinda... and Anya's horrified to hear her next thoughts:
      "I never should have come here. If only he had died in the hijacking... Oh Damian, how glad I am that he's safe... If only I was not burdened with him. So sweet, the way he puts on that brave front... How he disgusts me. My treasure... my curse. When we get home, I will cook for him. It has been so long since I've done that... I pray he doesn't stay with me long. How I adore you, my Damian... I could not care less."
  • Wham Shot:
    • The ending scene of Mission 17. Within some sort of facility is a dog pen for illicit buyers looking for an obedient weapon, before one of the dogs there receives a vision of the Forger family.
    • After Yor saves Anya and "Doggy" from the terrorists at the start of the "Inusan Crisis", Anya notices "Doggy" having another future vision, where the happy Forger family image suddenly shifts to a much darker one where Loid is missing and Anya and Yor are completely despondent, followed by the reason why.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: In-Universe.
  • Whole Episode Flashback:
    • Mission 62 explores Twilight's past before becoming a spy.
    • Short Mission 11 is about where the nameplate on Anya's bedroom door came from.
  • Whole-Plot Reference: Chapter 94 is a Mystery Episode that directly follows the format of Case Closed, except the "detectives" are the Forgers, so the culprit is apprehended almost immediately after the attempted murder.
  • Who Watches the Watchmen?: The Ostanian Secret Police are typically given the authority to override the ordinary police force in matters deemed to be of national importance. Members' relatives are essentially exempted from scrutiny, and their approach to protecting the nation as a whole is cavalier toward collateral damage. In Missions 71 through 74, when previously-vanished terrorists kidnap two buses full of young kids, the organisation's response is to kill/apprehend said group at all costs, the children's safety being a complete non-priority. Their only concern is waiting long enough that they can plausibly (falsely) claim they "tried as hard as they could to resolve it peacefully" before storming the bus with guns blazing.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: The reason why they don't just send an assassin to kill Twilight's target? WISE doesn't know enough about him aside from the fact he is a potential threat to world safety and need to learn more before taking any direct action, as they don't know if merely killing him will end whatever plans he has. Twilight outright notes how a lot of things would be much easier if simply killing Desmond was the goal.
  • Wire Dilemma: Anya discovers that a terrorist group planted a bomb inside a clock tower. When she tries to defuse it by cutting the red wire (as seen on TV) she realizes that all of the wires are black. note 
  • With This Ring: Loid uses the pin of a grenade he threw at some mooks as a substitute wedding ring when asking Yor to pose as his wife. Ironically, he actually did have a proper wedding ring which he took from the smuggling ring he broke up, but at some point lost it.
  • You Remind Me of X: Anya stands up to the ringleader of the Red Circus terrorists and unwittingly reminds him of his deceased daughter, Biddy.

Alternative Title(s): Spy X Family

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Anya

Upon learning of Yor's upcoming assignment as a bodyguard, Anya's angel and devil convince each other to go on the trip.

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