I know it’s unfair to compare how this season ended with something like Mob, but man, this season finale just felt so lack luster. While yes there was some progress with the mission where Loid finally made contact with Donovan Desmond, but this feels more like a middle of the season type of thing rather than the season finale. Granted, I do think that adapting a series like Spy x Family into a full length series is actually pretty difficult due to the fact a lot of chapters are like oneshots. Which is probably why they added a lot more anime only filler into this second part of the season.

But before I get ahead of myself, let’s talk about what actually happened in this episode. This was a very Damian centric episode, which makes sense since he is the target’s son. But it also highlights yet again how desperate Damian is to earn his dad’s approval. To which, that in itself is incredibly sad. Especially since a kid shouldn’t be trying to prove himself worthy of their parents. We already knew that Damian and his dad didn’t have a close relationship and most of his parents’ attention most likely went to his older brother. However, this was the first time where we actually got to see just how bad the relationship was first hand. Due to an Imperial Scholar event happening, this was the biggest chance for Twilight to finally make contact with Donovan due to his oldest son, Demetrius being an Imperial Scholar. However, due to the tight security, there was no way he would even be able to get in. But upon hearing of Damian wanting to meet up with his dad after the event, he decided to capitalize on that chance and made it so that he would show up and have a small chat with Damian just as Donovan was walking up.

And not gonna lie, Loid made me cringe a little during his interaction with Damian. He was a bit too over the top for my liking.

It’s honestly really sad watching Damian try to do so many different things to try and get his dad’s attention and approval. Every time he accomplishes something, he has this hope of possibly getting his dad’s attention. However, just from this interaction, it’s pretty obvious how very little Donovan actually cares about Damian and how distant his relationship is with him as Damian can barely even talk to him. Even when being told about Anya punching Damian, Donovan just brushed it off and didn’t seem the least big bothered  by the fact that his son got punched in the face. To which, I think it’s fair for Damian to be bothered by the fact that his own dad didn’t even get angry for him or even ask if he was alright. And when he spoke up about it, Donovan just looked incredibly annoyed. It was sad to see how quickly Damian shut up after that and even apologized. Their relationship is incredibly unhealthy and I definitely have a lot of sympathy for Damian and what he most likely has gone through despite being literally just six years old.

We could already tell that Donovan was already not the best dude just judging him on his design alone. But from this one interaction with both Damian and Loid, it’s obvious just how cruel and emotionally unattached he is. He obviously has little care or interest in Damian, despite him being his son, even going as far as to say that he essentially views him as a stranger right in front of Damian. Which was just downright cruel, cementing the fact that no matter what Damian does, there’s just no pleasing him. It also demonstrates a possible core belief of not being able to understand others, which could be prompting him to be making military threats towards outside the country.

While Loid was trying to be extra careful in not pushing too much for information, he did end up going beyond some boundaries, speaking out as a father instead of a spy after hearing how Donovan most likely views his own sons as strangers. After seeing how Donovan brushed him off when he tried to extend an apology to him for Anya’s earlier transgression, he immediately backed off since Donovan would end up getting more suspicious if he persisted. But after witnessing the relationship between Donovan and Damian, I think the father side of him just had to step in for Damian’s sake. It was subtle in the moment, but I’m pretty sure that his emotions drove him to speak up rather than continuing to draw back like his spy side would have. And I think it shows just how much Anya has influenced him. While he hardly has a grasp on what goes on in her head, he still makes stride to try and understand her more. Which he extends to everyone else as well and I think it’s a beautiful sentiment. An idealistic one, but still something I feel like everyone should stride for to build empathy rather than drawing sides.

It’s hard to say whether Loid acting out as a father rather than a spy was beneficial in the end. While Donovan is now aware of him, it’s too early to tell whether that awareness is a good or bad thing, considering the look Donovan gave him while Loid was walking away. While it’s up in the air of whether or not this interaction was good for the mission, it definitely was good for Damian. Both Loid and Anya’s words of encouragement allowed Damian to speak up about what he has accomplished, even confessing to the bad ones. And it’s just so sad to see Damian have such a hard time having just a simple conversation between a son and father with his dad. Especially when his dad seemed to show very little interest in what Damian had to say and gave him a pretty generic response. And even from the very little acknowledgement he gave him, it was enough to make Damian so happy, which absolutely breaks my heart. It’s so sad to me just how much Damian seems to look up to his dad, but gets little to no attention or interest in return.

It’s a bit disappointing that the first season ends there since the followup to this scene does really well with Damian’s character along with his relationship with his two “lackeys.” But I guess this is where the first season of the anime ends for now.

Final Impressions

Aside from the Dog Arc, this second half of the season felt like a SLOG. With the occasional good bits, I felt like I wasn’t really engaging with what was happening in this part of the season. Which I feel is a big shame because I love the manga. But I think that just goes to show that this series is very difficult to adapt, especially with how things are laid out in the manga. I feel like this series could have benefited more if it were like those shorter series with 15 min instead of the usual 24 min since so many of the chapters are self-contained hyjinks and isn’t as plot heavy as the anime made it out to be.

I think the biggest problem was instead of focusing on the comedy, it was directed in a way where it felt like it tried to be more action and plot driven when that isn’t the main focus of the series. There is an overarching plot yes, but not all chapters are plot relevant and focuses more on character growth and silly shenanigans that come of it. And I feel like the anime just didn’t capture all of the charm that the manga had. In terms of being a faithful adaptation, it essentially had a lot of the panels scene to scene, but other than some action shots, I feel like it didn’t really add much that would make me choose to watch it as opposed to reading it. And don’t even get me started on the amount of filler they put into some of the episodes.

The dog arc was definitely the biggest highlight in this part of the season as the anime seems to handle plot driven circumstances and action scenes really well. Like the scene where Loid and Fiona were going hard during their rally with the Campbell twins was AMAZINGLY animated and was a fantastic spectacle. But when it came down to the mundane and comedy parts, it fell a little flat to me and didn’t have me burst out laughing as I do when I read those parts in the manga. Like when Anya was crying over her ripped up Penguin plush, her sobbing faces KILLED me in the manga, but only lightly chuckled at her faces in the anime. It just didn’t hit the same to me. Which is unfortunate because I was really looking forward to this adaptation and I’m sad that I ended up not enjoying it as much as I had hoped.

I know everyone and their grandparents really like this anime but… it just didn’t stand out to me as much as opposed to the manga. If I ever wanted to go back and relive some of the earlier scenes, I’d just read the manga rather than rewatch it. The Dog Arc was a solid 8, but overall, I think I’d give this part of the season just a 7/10. Though I did feel like my enjoyment fluctuated between a 6.8 to a 7.2. It wasn’t bad by any means, but it just wasn’t as engaging to me. A second season and a movie has already been confirmed, but who knows when those will come out. I’m not sure if I will continue blogging about this series considering all of the complaints I have about the adaptation. But they’ll most likely be covering a really interesting arc that I’m sure they will adapt really well due to the action in it. So… we’ll see.


A passionate yet somewhat awkward individual who just wants to talk about anime