MANGA REVIEW | "Mission: Yozakura Family" - Vols. 3 & 4
What’s harder: marrying into the mob, or marrying into a spy family? After seeing what Taiyo Asano had to go through in the first two volumes of Mission: Yozakura Family, it’s clear that the spy life is the tougher of the two. Sure, both have the need to look over one’s shoulder every waking day. However, as the third and fourth volume continue to show, it’s far more dangerous to live in a house where just about anything can kill you!
After dealing with a pesky jealous rival at school, Taiyo’s time to wed Mutsumi finally arrives. However, it’s clear from the get-go that the wedding reception is yet another test, with just about every person there placing a target on Taiyo’s back. Thankfully, a video from Mutsumi’s late mother puts a temporary halt on the bloodshed, especially from the sis-loving Kyoichiro. Meanwhile, a government spy agency aims to steal the jobs of the Yozakuras, with Taiyo tasked to spy on them in order to find out their secrets. Then, there’s the Elton John-looking political candidate Kuroyuki, who has his own fair share of dark secrets.
Poor Taiyo has just about everything thrown at him from sunrise to sunset. But it’s all to protect Mutsumi, the one constant place of solstice in his life. Even after being battered and bruised during his training and missions, she’s there to remind Taiyo that all will be okay…so long as Kyoichiro doesn’t have his way. However, it’s with the flamboyant political candidate where he shockingly finds some relatable baggage from his past.
It’s a moment in Mission: Yozakura Family where Taiyo might find some truths about his own family’s death. When Kuroyuki reveals that their deaths weren’t an accident, it shakes Taiyo to the core. Although Kuroyuki is in the wrong for the terrible things he does, Taiyo fully understands where he’s coming from. It leads to what could be a form of closure that the boy desperately needs.
However, that closure may have to wait a bit more, especially when the object with the info on there is hard to encrypt. For now, Taiyo must deal with a new clingy maid, a spooked-out sister-in-law, and a horn-dogged grandfather-in-law whose lips are as loose as his hips. There’s a fantastic balance of both comedy and action in all of these moments, with a highlight being a two-parter involving Nanao.
Taiyo finds out how his superhuman brother-in-law has been going to school, with a transformation that makes his jaw drop. However, Nanao goes through all of this just so he can have some sort of normalcy in life. Plus, it’s obvious that he’s got a crush on his Biology Club cohort Kitasato, making it even harder for him to show his true self on-site. Thankfully, big brother-in-law has got Nanao covered with some quick thinking and fast-paced sedative injections.
But when Kitasato’s beloved snake gets its fangs on one of Nanao’s pills, things go chaotic very quickly. It’s a moment that Nanao had feared would occur sooner or later, but it’s nevertheless still hurts him to think that the time to leave school was nigh. However, Taiyo once again aids Nanao in a proper way that a big bro should, giving the sometimes-muscle bound boy a bit of hope for something of a normal life. Well…as normal as one can be in a family of spies.
There’s a lot to unpack in the third and fourth volumes of Mission: Yozakura Family. Thankfully, it’s all showcased with a great dose of action, comedy, and heart. No longer a series that’s hiding behind the shadow of Spy × Family, Mission: Yozakura Family finds a way to stand out on its own. Although poor Taiyo could use a break right about now…
VOL. 3 RATING:
VOL. 4 RATING:
Promotional consideration provided by Chantelle Sturt of VIZ Media.