Release the Spyce is a twelve episode anime series created by Sorasaki F., Takahiro (creator of Yuna Yuki is a Hero) and Namori (creator of Yuru Yuri). The studio that produced the anime was Lay-duce, and Yo Sato was the director.
Release the Spyce aired during the autumn 2018 season of anime, and can be watched on HIDIVE.
Release the Spyce focuses on Tsukikage, a group of high school girl spies. By ingesting Spyce, the girls can enhance their physical abilities. Their main enemy is an organisation known as Mouryou.
The show begins with Momo Minamoto being recruited into Tsukikage, with Yuki Hanzomon taking her on as her apprentice.During the course of the series, there are six active members of Tsukikage, split up into three mentor and apprentice teams. Whilst Release the Spyce does have some spy stuff going on, it devotes around the same amount of time to exploring the relationships between the three main couples.Taking into account the creators of Release the Spyce, calling each pair of characters a couple is pretty apt. The episodes that focus on the relationships between them are more on the cute girls doing cute things side of things.
Of course, that particular genre isn’t for everyone; perhaps you’d prefer them to get on with the spy stuff. It is there, but does it manage to strike a balance between being cute and spy action?
The answer to that question is going to vary person by person, so coming up with a concrete answer won’t be easy. Just know that it does indeed offer both things.Momo’s growth as a character throughout Release the Spyce is pretty good. We actually see the effort she puts in to becoming an apprentice worthy of being mentored by Yuki, and then Momo still isn’t a hyper competent spy.
The other characters all have their moments as well, though they have been with Tsukikage longer than Momo has so we don’t quite get to see the same kind of growth.On the subject of characters, there are a couple who feel like they could have done more. They show up once, either as an ally or enemy of Tsukikage, and then we never really hear from them again. One of the antagonists that Tsukikage has to fight is hit particularly bad with this; it feels like they should be a bigger deal, but instead we get a rather anticlimactic experience.Besides the main cast, there area few recurring characters – most notably Mouryou’s leader, the enigmatic Sparrow Woman. She is a competent antagonist, who has a history with Tsukikage. Without wanting to give too much away, the Sparrow Woman is effective at what she does.Release the Spyce‘s action scenes tend to be enjoyable, when they last. Mouryou tend to employ machines known as Puppets for combat, but that doesn’t really take anything away from Tsukikage cutting through hordes of enemies. Naturally, they do have the odd human opponent to fight as well.
Release the Spyce uses its soundtrack fairly well to enhance the spy action – there is one recurring track, presumably Tsukikage’s main theme, that helps set the tone when the girls are carrying out their missions as spies.Release the Spyce is another anime with a focus on female spies after Princess Principal. When it comes down to it, Princess Principal is a little better than Release the Spyce. However, Release the Spyce is still a very enjoyable show – particularly for fans of of the previous works of Takahiro and/or Namori.
Release the Spyce does actually touch on some rather dark topics, and it does get bloody when it needs to. Those who are aware of the creators’ original works probably won’t be surprised by this.
Release the Spyce mixes cute girls and spy action to make an enjoyable show.
Release the Spyce seems to be the Akuma no Riddle of 2018. By that I mean it’s not what the unsatisfied wanted it to be. Probably expecting something like the aforementioned PriPri instead of…you know, Yuru Yuri Spy Anime, which is exactly what this was?
Anyway, like AnR I enjoyed Spyce for what it was, a fun and fluffy action yuri show. Contrary to popular belief, simple and predictable aren’t flaws.