Christmas is around the corner. While we are looking forward to watching Jingle all the Way, It’s a Wonderful Life, and Elf, we also like to inject some anime into the festivities.
Below are Christmas themed series, episodes, and movies that will get you in the spirit.
1Itsudatte My Santa!
A boy named Santa hates Christmas since he was born on Christmas Eve and his parents had a cruel sense of humor. That changes when he meets Mai, a “Santa” in training at the Santa Clause Academy. It’s a bizarre love story from the creator of Love Hina (which also has a Christmas special).
2Polar Bear Cafe – Christmas Planning! / Christmas Trouble!
The episode takes the standard Christmas dilemmas of figuring out gifts and party planning, but swaps out people with adorable animals. You haven’t lived until you seen Wolf in a Santa costume.
3Pokémon – Christmas Night
If you can’t bond with your children or younger family members around some Christmas themed Pokémon, then you might as well work for Team Rocket.
4Gintama – People Who Say That Santa Doesn’t Really Exist Actually Want to Believe in Him
When Santa and his buff reindeer are about to give up on this Christmas thing, Gintoki takes on the task to show them the true meaning of Christmas while cleaning up their image. Expect Gintama style comedy and insanity.
5The Big O – Daemonseed
A giant robot fights a giant Christmas tree. What is there not to like? And compared to other Christmas episodes, The Big O uses the theme to tell an honestly touching story.
6Azumanga Daioh – Osaka’s Scary Story / Feeling Different / December / Incredible Santa / Christmas Meeting
The episode is packed with Christmas themed segments, with the best focusing on Chiyo’s father as Santa.
7Ranma ½ OVA – Tendo Family Christmas Scramble!
Tendo Family Christmas Scramble! will resonate with anyone who has been to a crazy family Christmas gathering, minus the weird uncle. The crazy Ranma ½ hijinks occur with added presents and karaoke.
8Toradora! – Mercury Retrogrades at Christmas / Under the Fir Tree / Christmas Eve Festival
These three episodes are the crux of the anime’s storyline. The main point is Taiga is setting up Ryuiji to finally confess. However, the entire arc turns bittersweet for everyone involved.
9Clannad After Story – Graduation
Let Clannad bring some melodrama into your Christmas celebration. From Tomoya talking to Akio to let him be with Nagisa, to Nagisa getting drunk and accusing Tomoya of being attracted to another woman. It’s one big, dysfunctional family fun fest!
It’s been a month after the cultural festival, and the SOS Brigade are planning a Christmas party. However, things go wrong when Suzumiya disappears, along with everyone’s memories of her.
11Lucky Star – Various Ways to Spend Christmas Eve
Like the title of the episode, the girls talk about Christmas Eve and the various ways to spend it. They chat about Santa, gift giving, bust sizes, and the dubious Christmas cake.
12Hetalia: Axis Powers – Academy Hetalia Christmas
All the countries at Hetalia Academy are preparing for Christmas in their own special way. You’ll laugh at the hijinks, but you might learn a few holiday tidbits from the different countries.
13K-On! – Christmas!
Ritsu decides to throw a Christmas party for the Light Music Club, and it’s being held at Yui’s house. There is a gift exchange, but you’ll watch for the touching interaction between Yui and her sister Ui.
14Chrono Crusade – Holy Night
Rosette, Chrono, and Azmaria take a break from demon slaying and murder solving to celebrate Christmas. While performing charity work for their convent, Rosette and Chrono realize the Azmaria has never had a Christmas celebration before, and they decide to set things right. This is one of the more religiously-themed Christmas episodes on this list.
Take a break from the Elf, A Christmas Story, and Die Hard marathons to catch some Tokyo Godfathers. Three homeless friends find a baby, and they spend Christmas Eve and Christmas day searching for the baby’s parents. Themes of forgiveness, family, and social classes give Tokyo Godfathers an added holiday punch.
16Hayate the Combat Butler – In English, “Unmei Means Destiny” / Hayate in Danger! Complete Shutdown!! / Friends of the Well-Behaved, Praise the Debt-Ridden Butler!
Hayate the Combat Butler has three Christmas episodes!
In English “Unmei” Means Destiny: The series’ first episode opens up with Santa telling a young boy he doesn’t get presents because he’s poor. Fast forward, and on Christmas Eve, Hayate learns that his parents gave him the Christmas gift of massive debt.
Hayate in Danger! Complete Shutdown!!: Hayate, Nagi, and Maria go to a Christmas party, only for Nagi to leave with Hayate. While Nagi tries to put the moves on Hayate, a cyborg butler appears to battle Hayate.
Friends of the Well-Behaved, Praise the Debt-Ridden Butler!: Hayate is talked into wearing an ancient butler robe that has rejected countless butlers in the past. Hayate’s friends try to save him, but it’s too late and he is turned into a nekomimi maid! Hayate eventually overcomes the robe and transforms into the legendary butler uniform. Nagi and Hayate then share a heartfelt Christmas moment with each other.
Yes, Hayate the Combat Bulter is a crazy series, you can still enjoy the ride if you jump to the Christmas episodes without any prior knowledge.
17Tenchi the Movie 2: The Daughter of Darkness
This non-canon movie combines the Tenchi Ryo-Ohki! and Tenchi Universe timelines for a crazy Christmas story. On Christmas, some of Tenchi’s hair is stolen to create a “daughter.” Tenchi’s harem doesn’t like this, especially when his “daughter” takes him to her Christmas themed world. It’s a fun mix of harem, action, and holiday spirit.
18Bunny Drop – Dear Santa
Released as a bonus episode, it focuses on Daikichi and Rin preparing for their first Christmas together. It’s a mellow, family-centered episode that is perfect for a calming Christmas.
19I Can’t Understand What My Husband Is Saying – Fusion Sage Day
Who doesn’t enjoy spending Christmas with their loved ones? I Can’t Understand What My Husband is Saying takes a funny, but a realistic approach to this topic when couple Kaoru and Hajime can’t spend the holiday with each other due to work. It’s a little bittersweet, but the episode’s ending is hilarious!
20Is the Order a Rabbit? – The Girl Dons a Red Coat and Drives a Team of Rabbits Across the Christmas Eve Night Sky
Working on Christmas day is no fun, but the girls at Rabbit House try their best to have fun while serving customers. Also, try not to squee from Cocoa and Chino’s cute interactions.
21Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid – Troupe Dragon, On Stage! (They Had A Troupe Name, Huh)
Do you love Christmas plays? Then you’ll love seeing the dragons put on an adaptation of The Little Match Girl! Plus Kobayashi and Tohru have a really cute moment you shouldn’t miss.
What is your favorite Christmas themed anime?