Endo Tatsuya's Spy x Family is one of the most wholesome pieces of popular entertainment to come along in quite some time. I can wholeheartedly recommend both the manga and the anime.
I had heard of it last year, but hadn't paid a ton of attention. Then I borrowed the first three volumes from a friend and was immediately hooked. I went and bought all eight volumes available at the time, which were then in turn read by my kids and borrowed by at least three other people.
The premise of Spy x Family is faintly ridiculous. Master spy Twilight, working undercover in a very thinly disguised 1960s East Germany, must recruit a fake family in order to provide a cover for an operation designed to gain information from a highly placed minister by infiltrating the nation's most prestigious school.
This could have been played super serious, "dark and gritty" seems like it describes every other story in any medium right now. But it wasn't. The capital city of Ostania, Berlint, is colorful and full of happy people living in Germanic order. I get the same vibe from Berlint that I get from the alternative history Europe of Kiki's Delivery Service, a happier place than the one we know from history. The actual Berlin of that era was split in half by an ominous wall that required constant patrols to keep the unhappy populace contained.
Endo also could have played up the ridiculousness, leaning all the way in to ironic detachment. That was also not done. The story is funny, but none of the characters are played as objects of mockery. The story is in fact sweetly earnest, with a light touch on both the espionage drama and the slapstick humor. It is precisely this that I believe is the source of Spy x Family's popularity: everyone is tired of misery porn and irony, and just wants to be entertained.
Spy x Family is also positive about marriage, family, and children in a way that very little else is right now. I heard a scurrilous rumor that Spy x Family is pro-family propaganda sponsored by the Japanese government.
I have no proof that this is true, but I am wholly on-board if it is. Or even if it isn't.
I'm also happy to see Endo, a member of Generation Y like myself, having a breakout hit like this. Gen Y has been living in the shadows for a long time, longer than previous generational experiences might have predicted, so I hope this is a taste of further good things to come.