The following contains minor spoilers for Episode 1 of Spy x Family, now streaming on Crunchyroll.
Whether it’s Attack on Titan‘s Levi Ackerman, Makise Kurisu from Steins;Gate or Jujutsu Kaisen‘s Satoru Gojo, there will always be a supporting anime character who can steal the show and become extremely popular. Although it was enough to fall in love with the main characters for a show’s success in the old days, today it is widely agreed that a great story must feature three-dimensional supporting characters who could outshine the protagonist from time to time.
Despite being early in its run, Spy x Family has already secured its place among the best anime of 2022. However, more than the anime itself, the lovely and adorable Anya Forger has left an indelible mark on viewers and readers alike. As the psychic daughter of a spy and an assassin, Anya did much more than steal the show — she became the show. Even in early episodes, Anya was not the center of attention, leaving everyone waiting in the wings for her appearance. But why exactly is she so beloved by Spy x Family fans?
Anya’s Dark Past Makes Her a Spy x Family Favorite
At first glance, Spy x Family‘s Anya is a simple-minded, cheerful and chaotic kid. However, as the story progresses, she proves to be much more important both to the plot and the fans. In Episode 1, right after Loid’s (aka Twilight’s) need to adopt a child for his mission is revealed, she is introduced. With a dark past and feeling desperate for adoption, Anya lies about her age and fakes her intelligence, succeeding in her own mission. It’s soon revealed that she was created unintentionally by an organization in a secret experiment and possesses the ability to read people’s minds. Her dark past and the way she coped with it is certainly one reason why fans are so fond of her.
The allure of Anya mostly lies in her childish antics. It is not, of course, a big surprise that a cute and naive character has won the masses’ hearts. However, what makes Anya different from her counterparts is that she acts her age. Although she can show extreme maturity at times — she does not babble about her parents’ true professions — in most cases she is just a goofy little kid with a wide variety of meme-worthy facial expressions, with her “heh” and shocked expressions being the most popular.
Anya’s Telepathic Awareness Makes Her the Ultimate Ally
Last but not least, the most important reason for Anya’s popularity is that she is the only character in the series who is aware of everything. This makes her the perfect bridge between viewers/readers and the Spy x Family universe. The fact that Anya knows the secrets the adults are trying to hide through her telepathic powers positions her as the ultimate ally for the fans.
Anya knows that her father is a spy and her mother is an assassin, though she cannot exactly pinpoint what these things mean in the adult world. She believes them to be cool characters like in her favorite TV show Spy Wars. Although she comes to understand that she shouldn’t mess with her parents professions, to her they are both charming heroes and excellent parents.