Spy x Family Ch. 90.1 seems to be another short bonus chapter from Tatsuya Endo. He does these much shorter than usual chapters as a break from the longer normal chapter. Literally, he has to take a break from his usual breakneck publishing schedule for health reasons. Only this time, it appears that Endo is giving us a bonus chapter that’s actually relevant to the plot. Specifically: in relation to Anya.
Spy x Family Ch. 90.1: Details
Spy x Family Ch. 90.1 (known officially as Short Mission 11) is the latest chapter of the manga by Tatsuya Endo (Blade of the Moon Princess, Tista). Because it’s basically a bonus chapter, it most definitely does not continue the storyline of the previous chapter.
As it turns out, Spy x Family Ch. 90.1 is also a break for the manga’s usual translator and letterer: Casey Loe and Rina Mapa. This time, the translator is AK, and the letterer is JB. Just initials without a name this time. Shueisha originally published this manga in Japan under their Jump Comics+ imprint in the magazine Shōnen Jump+. Viz Media is the company publishing this manga in English in the NA region.
Where to Read
Spy x Family Ch. 90.1 made its online debut on November 26, 2023. You can read this chapter entirely for free on Shonen Jump on Viz Media. Ch. 90.1 will remain free for 2 chapter releases after it. Upon the release of the third chapter after it, Ch. 90.1 will go into the Shonen Jump vault. Once there, you will have to pay a subscription fee to read it and all previous chapters. Admittedly, the fee is only $2.99 per month, so it’s not that big a hit to your wallet. All the same, if you’re short on cash, then you might want to hurry up and read Ch. 90.1 for free before you can’t anymore.
Anime Adaptation Details
As a side note: Spy x Family now has an anime adaptation that premiered on April 9, 2022. In fact, season 2 just recently premiered on October 7, 2023. You can watch all episodes on either Crunchyroll or Hulu. Note though that only Crunchyroll has any of the dubs. So if you like watching the English dub for some reason, then you have to watch the anime on Crunchyroll.
Spy x Family Ch. 90.1: Plot Summary
Due to just how short Spy x Family Ch. 90.1 is, the plot summary for this particular bonus chapter is necessarily just as short. After all, Short Mission 11 is only 5 pages long after all. This is counting the special illustration and the title page after that, by the way.
The chapter actually does a bit of a temporal reversal, taking the readers to “around the time Anya first enrolled at Eden Academy”. Anya is watching one of her cartoons, and said cartoon is in the middle of a scene where an anthropomorphic bunny is knocking on the door of someone named Lucas. We know his name is Lucas because he has a nameplate with that name hanging on his door. We don’t find out who Lucas is, but that’s completely irrelevant to the plot of this bonus chapter. What is important is that Anya now wants a nameplate marked with her name on the door of her bedroom too. Yor offers to help, citing her skill with blades, but Anya insists on carving her own name in herself.
The end result is a new wooden bedroom nameplate that spells out “Ania”. Loid is the first to notice Anya misspelling her name, and corrects her on it. It’s here where Anya has the most peculiar reaction to that correction. She first stares blankly at Loid, looks to the side in thought, and then had a look of realization. A realization of what, we don’t know. All we know is that Anya carves her corrected name into a new nameplate, and ends up lying in her bed, staring at the ceiling and clutching her chimera doll, contemplating the spelling of her name. Why? Alas, we don’t know yet. All we can do is wait for some future chapter of Spy x Family for Tatsuya Endo to reveal if this chapter has any relevance to the plot.
Spy x Family Ch. 90.1: The Good
Amazingly, the story is the best part of Spy x Family Ch. 90.1, despite how little of it there is. The implications of Anya’s misspelling of her name as “Ania” is incredibly suspicious in terms of plot. For Tatsuya Endo to give this tiny detail so much focus means that there has to be some importance to it. How so? Well, let’s look at the linguistics of the spelling for clues. Anya is the Russian spelling of the name, which itself is the diminutive for Anna. Ania though is the Polish spelling of the name.
Does that possibly mean that Anya actually comes from her world’s equivalent of Poland? We know that the Spy x Family world takes place in a pseudo-Cold War setting, with Westalis and Ostania representing West and East Germany respectively. It’s not a 1-to-1 comparison, since obviously, the Cold War didn’t turn hot between the 2 Germanys. But Poland used to be under German control during WWII, and was under Soviet control for the entirety of the Cold War. It might very well be that this land’s Poland equivalent is now under Ostanian control.
However, this is pure fan speculation at this point. Take it with as many grains of salt as you like until Tatsuya Endo gives us that info in a future chapter of Spy x Family.
Spy x Family Ch. 90.1: The Bad
As you can also imagine, the short length of Spy x Family Ch. 90.1 is why this isn’t getting a perfect score. I love the plot implications, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s only 5 pages long. The only thing making up for this is that Tatsuya Endo genuinely needs the break. Mangaka are put under some seriously stressful publishing schedules in Japan. If a break is what Endo needs to continue giving us this wonderful manga, then a break he shall receive for as long as he needs.