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Santa's Journey: It's An Anime Christmas
A look at this seasons shows and whether they've been naughty or nice
By Chris Beveridge
December 26, 2010
Santa's Journey: It's An Anime Christmas
© Mania/Bob Trate
It's the season for giving and Santa Claus is making his lists. When it comes to the anime world, we usually see a Christmas themed episode here and there, but this time around we want to look at the shows that are airing this season and see whether Santa would visit these people and whether they'd get presents or coal. Or in the case of some characters, huge lumps of coal that could have its own orbit. Considering what's going on in some of these shows, it could certainly go either way.
Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan
With much of this show involving a character that was trying to run away from his responsibilities, the main cast of characters didn't come across well from the start. With that and a heavy focus on secrecy to protect the clan itself from being exposed to the rest of the world, there are positives and negatives here that makes it a difficult choice. While some of the girls may make out alright by Santa with a visit, it's hard to tell whether Rikuo would really merit anything based on how he's acted, both with himself and his family and with his friends. Besides, any attempt to deliver presents to the clan home would likely result in him being beheaded by the defenses.
Set in a present day alternate world of Japan where it's kept more to the old traditions rather than get Westernized, it's not a place where you'd imagine Santa trying to visit. While he may want to try and slip in all Santa Ninja style, so much of the setting is designed to keep people out and away that it would not be a surprise to see him killed in action for his efforts. With the people involved not exactly being the types to believe either, because of their upbringing, there wouldn't exactly be a whole lot of sadness either from them. Santa would be better off not going there, though I'd certainly like to see either a Santa Samurai or Santa Ninja.
With a world filled with people who have abilities that are far more magical than Santa and one that has numerous creatures that go above and beyond, it's not the first place that you'd imagine Santa visiting. At the same time, Santa would definitely want to visit many of the people here who are doing the right thing and living their lives true to themselves. And you can especially see Santa visiting in order to bestow presents upon the numerous main characters who have been largely absent for this year so that they can get a little something for their efforts.
While Squid Girl is most definitely trying to conquer the world, she's doing it in a way that's getting her to be more familiar with humanity in general and it's softening her. She has a lot of anger over how the sea world is being treated, but she's earning points for treating kids well and helping out while she spends her time on land. It wouldn't be a surprise to see Santa Claus visiting this seaside restaurant and not only bestowing gifts upon the family as well as Squid Girl herself as she has mostly been a good girl this year.
Otome Yokai Zakuro
With Japan undergoing a period of Westernization when this show takes place, you can see Santa adding it to his list. With the spirit of harmony and working together very prevalent in it, combating prejudice and hatred, Santa has a lot of gifts to hand out here as the spirits, half spirits and humans are all doing positive things to try and change the world. Though the series does have an action component to it as they deal with yokai gone bad, it's a show that's far more interested in promoting the positive and showing people come together. How can Santa not reward such good living?
Hetalia: World Series
Santa gets around and with Hetalia, he's got every country to hit up here. This season of the show has focused more away from the core countries we saw in the first season and many of them have their own interpretations of Santa. With the theme, at least in the present day, of working together, Santa would reward their efforts, even if actual achievements are minimal. If Santa has to deal with some of the countries in past times though, he may actually spend a good bit of time with Germany to help ease the pain he feels in having to deal with Italy. Of course, all Italy has on his Christmas list is past and white flags.
The World God Only Knows
With a core cast of just two characters and a rotating cast of secondary characters, Santa has an easy choice when it comes to visiting this show. Elsie's nature may seem like she'd be the type that would not be good for Santa to deal with, but her personality shines otherwise as her whole objective is to help people in the end by acquiring the loose souls. Her demonic nature aside, she's the bright, outgoing and lively type that just brightens a room who is spending her time doing good, though not exactly for the most noble of purposes. Santa would definitely try to reward her while also hoping to sway her a bit. With Keima, his life has changed because of Elsie and while he's still very self centered and focused on his games, Santa would see that changes in his heart, seeing that it's not quite as small as it was, and help nudge him a little further by rewarding him with some new games.
While Naruto has been good for most of the year, dealing with his inner demons, protecting his friends and talking things out instead of going right to fighting, he's getting much closer to getting a big old lump of coal based on how he's been acting this fall. He's been childish, like he's regressed several years in age and is acting out. The positive side of Naruto is still outweighing the negative side that's been acting much stronger later, which is going to result in him getting a few less things than he would have otherwise.
The premise behind Shiki is that a somewhat remote village in the modern day is falling prey to a kind of vampire and the population is dropping like flies. Some come back to life only to slowly drain others. Considering that everyone is essentially out for themselves and taking, taking, taking, Santa's crossing this entire village off the list.
One of the few real world based shows this season, Santa's definitely going to be spending a little extra time with the girls of this apartment complex. The introverted young women here who do their best to avoid interaction and confrontation with the world at large are the types that Santa wants to put a little extra effort into so as to help them out. With them dealing with their social issues but also with the area they're living in being redeveloped which will result in the loss of their apartment building, they're facing a lot of adversity and trying to get past their issues. All things that Santa will definitely try to help them with by spreading some extra cheer their way.
Legend of Legendary Heroes
Santa's not just your average guy and he probably has some powers that would allow him to go anywhere, but traveling to this fantasy world that's embroiled in war and dark magic likely isn't going to be a high priority. While there are some good characters to be had in here that try and do the right thing, the majority of it is mired in questionable moral choices, lots and lots of violence and a fair bit of bloodshed. The angst is high as it goes on and Santa's not about rewarding such behavior.
Sora No Otoshimono Forte
With a series filled with angeloids, you may think it'd be ideal on first blush for Santa to visit. But with the heavy perversion of Tomoki here, Santa's definitely going to give him a wide berth so as to not be contaminated or used for Tomoki's own devious ends. Though you could see him giving in easily to Tomoki in getting the girls all the right kinds of lingerie for the holidays and making sure everything fits perfectly with a lot of showcasing of it.
If there's a show with vampires that Santa might visit, Fortune Artelier would likely be at the top of that list. The focus in the show on Kohei trying to find a stable life after visiting numerous schools over the year is a good one, since he ends up back at one he was at years before. Reconnecting with old friends and fitting into the school has the show filled with a lot of positive and Kohei handles things well when he gets sucked into the whole vampire side of it, as well as dealing with a budding romance with one of them. Santa's paying an extra visit here to help Kohei feel like he's really felt a home.
Tantei Opera Milky Holmes
This series features some of the slightly younger characters compared to other shows and it's also one that has a bit of a focus on Toys. With a capital T. The lead characters here as detectives in a detective school have not redeemed themselves well with their attitudes or how they're dealing with others. The only reason Santa would visit this show is in order to give them their Toys so they'd actually stop being so whiny and annoying. And I think we'd all thank Santa for that.
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