Anya Gets Kidnapped Again?! Spy x Family Season 1 Part 2 Episode 13 [Review]

On the way to look for a pet dog to give to Anya for her achievement of a Stella Star, Loid ends up with a severe “stomach ache” and Anya ends up reading the mind of a fluffy white derpy dog. This episode covers chapter 18 and 19 in the manga.

Recap & Reaction

The episode actually starts off with a little bit of filler as the television shows that a delegation from Westalis led by Foreign Minister Brantz, arrived in Ostania for a East and West Summit (whatever that means). The creators added in a little nice “feel good” family breakfast scene to break in the mood.

If there is one slight downside to this story, then it is (probably intentional) the vagueness of the issues between Ostania and Westalis. There are no clear indicating factors that spells out anything easy for the audience. There hasn’t been any ideological reasoning that has been hammered home.

All we know is that Damian’s dad wants to start a war. Loid is undercover for Westalis, trying to prevent any actions that could start a war from breaking out. Yuri works for the State Security Service for Ostania. However, we aren’t aware of what kind of ideology Yuri stands for. Up to this point, the whole main plot has been left pretty vague; which makes these kinds of episodes a little hard to follow to figure out some of these bad guys’ motivations.

As Loid and Yor takes Anya out to go dog shopping to reward her for getting a Stella Star, he gets contacted for another mission to stop an assassination attempt on Foreign Minister Brantz.

There’s nothing in these scenes that really jump out. Just another toilet humor excuse from Loid, some over-the-top facial reactions and the fact that the dogs are posing like body builders. It’s these little slight humorous takes of the situations and characters that makes it a “Spy x Family” humorous thing. Add in the way that Loid gets contacted in the most subtly hilarious way possible, it’s hard to not at least put on a smile.

Sylvia Sherwood gets one of the people that’s a part of this plot to kill Foreign Minister Brantz in custody. Funny enough, these “terrorists” are made of college students. This college kid that’s in custody gets bamboozled by an undercover Loid pretending to be Keith, the ringleader. Loid puts on a magnificent display with very little footage of Keith to base his disguise on to convince his buddy that he is snitching him out; convincing that college kid to instead, rat him out in return. Sylvia Sherwood takes the man in the interrogation room, where he explains their plans.

The college kid, Kris, goes on to explain that they were going to kill Foreign Minister Brantz by using “Bomb Dogs.” A scene later with Keith and the other college students discuss wanting to use Foreign Minister Brantz as the catalyst for war to “restore Ostania back to its former glory.”

Again, the main plot is pretty vague and these terrorists’ motivations don’t explain much in context, other than their intentions to kill Brantz. What does “restore Ostania to its former glory” mean? Maybe the story is just meant to be that way because no side is really in the right or wrong? Maybe there isn’t a real ideology that the story is trying to push on us? Maybe that’s why it’s vague because in real life, these things are really complicated. It’s a character-centric comedy drive anime and I get that, but it wouldn’t hurt to provide just a little bit more context to the true issues between the opposing nations.

As Anya and Yor are inside a pet store, she sees this white fluffy dog being walked outside and ends up reading its mind. She sees that the dog sees an image of the Forger Family. Seeing that Anya won’t be able to convince Yor about the dog, she takes matters into her own hands and seeks out that dog, following it into a building.

Anya is a parent’s worse nightmare here. Yor is pretty irresponsible here as well. How do you lose your kid?!

She goes into this building where there are a few other dogs and notices a bunch of people speaking in another room. There, she listens on their plans to kill Foreign Minister Brantz. Scared, she backs up into one of the men that ends up taking her hostage. Keith, wanting to make sure their plan doesn’t get upended, takes out a knife to attempt to kill her, but the white derpy fluffy dog breaks free to try to defend her.

Meanwhile, Yor completely freaks out for the obvious reason of a missing Anya. She searches everywhere and does crazy acrobatics, while thinking of the funniest ways that Anya could have been missing like getting eaten by a dog and being kidnapped by some pervert.

Writing for Yor’s character has to be one of the most enjoyable things to write for. She’s this super powerful aloof virgin that has very different contrasting qualities from her normal wife, mother and work personality to her all powerful and confident “Thorn Princess” personality. When her motherly instincts and failure to be responsible personality comes out, her aloofness gels in such a funny way with her assassin qualities.

Loid checks in on the location that the guy they captured revealed and intel is shared between both Sylvia and Loid.

Doggies Rule!

At the end of episode 12, this white fluffy dog gets teased, hinting at it’s future significant role. Half-way through the episode, he saves a kid from being hit by a falling sign. As the episode continues, they further explain that Ostania had a project to produce intelligent dogs for military purposes called “Project Apple.” This explains the supernatural abilities that the fluffy white dog has with its foresight or ability to see the future.

Having the introduction of a dog that Anya can completely relate to, brings in this lovable wholesomeness that comes naturally by being a kid and a dog. If it wasn’t clear before, tying in this other mysterious part of the plot that gives Anya and the dog similar backgrounds tells the audience many disturbing things. There are probably more characters like her and there is a lot more darker undertones that has yet to be revealed. In the context of the Forger family, it’s pretty obvious that this dog is going to be Anya’s.

There are some hints to how bad we are supposed to perceive Ostania with the crazy science experiments and being some scorn country that had been weakened. Yet again, nothing has been overtly conveyed and left for more speculation.

The Best Scene

Anya realizes that the dog is just like her, except he has the power to see the future. You can see the significance of this scene as it shows a first person view of the dog as Anya rides him. With a little bit of the music to show a moment of realization, this is when we all knew that this dog is going to be Anya’s!

This scene can be viewed as a “protagonist’s resolve” scene, as Anya deems that “she will be the one to solve this case.” As they run across town and Anya screams for help, they unknowingly catch the attention of Yor. The bad guys eventually get out to go chase after them. As Anya gets into her “waka, waka” excitement and no one comes to their aid, she starts to show that heroic resolve to “find a way.” The music helps egg on the scene and helps build this crescendo of child-like heroic fantasy, as Anya pulls out all the stops with her “Starlight Anya” bravado, only to run in circles back into the back guys’ hands..

Was it Funnier Animated or Funnier in the Manga?

For all intents and purposes of making the anime as true to the manga as possible, this episode did that. However, I take issue with how the punchline was delivered in this scene.

If you’ve read some of my reviews on Uncle From Another World, I’ve often praised some of the scenes for hitting the punchline hard. There’s a level of drama, execution and delivery needed to make the audience belch over, releasing a sudden burst of gas from your buttocks out of the shear comedy of the scene. That’s what this scene made me question, when Anya and the dog were escaping from the college kid terrorists.

Anya and the dog literally ran in circles, only to end up back where the terrorists were located. This happens somewhat abruptly as Anya hits the high point of vibes of this crescendo moment of Starlight Anya—only to come to a standstill against Keith’s terrorists and bomb dogs.

The animated scene of the last panel of manga chapter 19 of page 16, kind of took the muster out of the punchline a bit. The more abrupt and fast hitting they would have did that last panel, the better this scene would have landed. Maybe the creators could have changed this scene to make it more facepalming and dramatic? Maybe drive home the fact that the bad guys were just waiting at the building entrance the whole time? In the end, I just didn’t like the execution from delivery of the joke of the dog and Anya just running back into square one. The scene needed to be a little more deliberate to drive home how ridiculous and funny their escape was, as they ended up right back into the enemy’s hands. However, it was still a funny moment that I’m just nitpicky about because of how important I think the delivery of this moment meant.

Mother Thorn

Nothing can beat a dramatic entry of a protective and angry Yor Forger. It’s one thing to get on her wrong side and another to let her imagination run wild as to the reasoning of her mishaps. Kicking the crap out of the bad guy while spewing off a crazy and imaginative reasoning behind her kidnapping—makes it a humorously gratifying cliffhanger.

Last Thoughts

There were a few moments where the animation and the music helped make a few scenes that much better. Once Anya and the dog escaped, that feeling of tension and excitement building between Anya and the dog was a really special one. Although, I wished it hit the punchline of the joke a little better, I can’t knock on how well done everything else was. When it looked like Anya was in deep trouble, that dramatic Yor entry with that massive leg kick was just incredible! You can’t go wrong with these types of scenes in any story. A character coming out of the blue to rescue you in dramatic fashion, when it looks like you are down and out? Book one of those scenes in every arc please!


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