After a much longer wait than normal, Spy x Family Ch. 74 finally gives us the conclusion of Anya‘s sudden death round with some terrorists who’d hijacked her class’s school bus. Let’s just say that this conclusion is the result of some behavior from Anya that’s perfectly in-character for her. Plus some plot twists that I don’t think anyone expected to happen.

Spy x Family Ch. 74: Details

'Spy x Family Ch. 71.1' cover art.
It’s unfortunate that Yuri is no longer relevant to this chapter.

Spy x Family Ch. 74 is part 6 (you can read reviews for part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, and part 5 here) of this Red Circus bus hijacking arc of the manga by Tatsuya Endo. Casey Loe once more returns as the translator, with Rina Mapa also returning as the letterer. Shueisha originally published the manga in Japan under their Jump Comics+ imprint in the magazine Shōnen Jump+. Viz Media is licensing this manga for its NA release in English.

Spy x Family Ch. 74 released on January 22, 2023. You can read this chapter of the manga for free in Shonen Jump at Viz Media. This chapter of the manga will remain free for 2 chapter releases after this one. Upon the release of the third chapter, Ch. 74 will go into the Shonen Jump vault. Once there, you will need to pay for a subscription to read it and all other chapters (aside from the first 3 chapters, which are permanently free). The subscription fee is only $2.99 per month, so it’s not very expensive at all. However, if you wish to save money, then I suggest reading this chapter as soon as you can.

As a side note: Spy x Family now has an anime adaptation that premiered on April 9, 2022. You can watch all 25 current episodes of the anime only on Crunchyroll. The anime is also streaming on Hulu, but as of this writing, they only have the original Japanese audio with English subtitles. If you want any of the dubs, you need to pay up for a Crunchyroll premium account.

Warning: spoilers for Spy x Family Ch. 74 below. If you want to read how Anya resolves a hostage crisis for yourself, then stop here and come back once all the Red Circus terrorists have been subdued and arrested.

Spy x Family Ch. 74: Plot Summary

'Spy x Family' anime screenshot showing a determined Anya in the dodgeball game of the century...or not.
What Anya thinks is happening.

Spy x Family Ch. 74 does not pick up where we last left off in the story. Not immediately. Instead, the story briefly shifts focus to Yor, who is understandably worried when Anya hasn’t come home yet. A phone call to Eden Academy results in them telling Yor that Anya’s field trip had just run a bit long. However, a call to a coworker who also has a kid at Eden Academy revealed that not only did her kid come home hours ago, but the apparent field trip had been canceled, from what she’s been told. Naturally, Yor’s worry turns to panic at this revelation.

Meanwhile, Anya has marched up to the Red Circus terrorists, desperately trying to keep everyone from being blown up by a bomb one of the terrorists snuck into the bus and is planning on detonating if the police try to storm the bus. Racking her tiny kid brain for a solution, Anya comes upon: demanding more “ratchons” (she means “rations”). Her logic is that the police would back off when they’re eating just like last time. Amazingly, it works beyond Anya’s wildest dreams. But not for the reasons Anya hoped it would.

Anya the Accidental Savior

'Spy x Family' anime screenshot showing Anya with the derpiest of derp faces, as imagined by Loid.
What’s actually happening.

Somehow, Anya’s fumbling performance results in Billy (the Red Circus leader) seeing his deceased daughter in Anya. He’s not right, but he’s not exactly wrong either. In any case, Anya somehow manages to convince Billy to take his comrades’ weapons and the duffel bag bomb out of the bus, and surrender to the police. He even claims to the police that he was the sole perpetrator, and that he forced everyone else in the Red Circus to go along with him. All in all, Billy seems like a pretty decent guy.

Unfortunately, one of his Red Circus comrades isn’t nearly as noble. Upon seeing Billy throw away their plan (in his eyes), this particular terrorist tries to drive off with the bus (even with flat tires), but heavy armored police vehicles quickly grind that plan to a halt. He then tries to use Anya as a human shield to make a getaway. The SSS officer in charge tries to tell his forces to shoot the terrorist along with Anya, but the Blackwell butler woman Martha Marriott stops both parties’ plans. Mostly through a mix of parkour and a new taser from Blackwell Industries.

As Anya realizes how cool “Becky’s lady person” is and Becky herself runs out to hug Anya, Billy has a relieved expression on his face as the police lead him away in cuffs. Thus ends the Bug Hijacking arc, more or less. Hopefully, we’ll see an aftermath chapter before this arc of Spy x Family is officially over.

Spy x Family Ch. 74: The Good

'Spy x Family' anime screenshot showing Anya with a big grin on her face.
Go ahead, Anya. You deserve a reward for this.

Anya and Billy are definitely the stars of Spy x Family Ch. 74. Let’s start with Anya. Her performance in this chapter in convincing Billy to stand down was as hilarious as it was heartwarming. She is genuinely trying to talk Billy down to keep everyone, including herself, from going kaboom with that bomb. But she’s doing it in the classic Anya derp way that lends greater credence to the theory that she’s younger than she claims to be. It’s completely in character for her, and the fact that it somehow works is what makes this chapter great.

And of course, Billy is the other part of why Spy x Family Ch. 74 is great. He’s one of the most sympathetic villains in the manga’s history. Both for his tragic backstory and for him actually agreeing to release the kids after Anya accidentally reminds him of his deceased daughter. Then there’s Billy trying to protect his comrades by claiming to be behind everything, which only adds to his likability. I don’t expect Billy to survive his imprisonment, given what the SSS did to the other Red Circus members in captivity. I do honestly hope he does survive though. It’s a nice ending to the aftermath chapter of this Bus Hijacking arc.

Spy x Family Ch. 74: The Bad

'Spy x Family' anime screenshot showing Anya staring in shock at how un-bomb-like an actual bomb is compared to her cartoons.
My reaction to how anyone can think this manga is bad, especially this arc.

The Bus Hijacking arc of Spy x Family is one of the best arcs in the story. Honestly, it’s on par with the Cruise Ship arc and Loid‘s Backstory arc. So there’s not much about Ch. 74. Honestly, my one real complaint is that it took a week longer than the normal biweekly schedule for Tatsuya Endo to release this chapter. It’s a small complaint though, given the quality of the chapter we got. It was definitely worth the 3 week wait.

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