People, Christmas is almost here. It’s less than a week until the big day, and you probably still have a lot to do. Perhaps you need to put up lights, maybe you don’t have a tree yet, maybe you need to buy some last-minute gifts, and maybe you need to watch some anime. That’s not true. To get in the mood for Christmas, you should watch some anime. There aren’t many anime that are completely dedicated to Christmas, but there are plenty that fit the winter setting or are inspired by the holiday spirit of love and giving. Hopefully, between this updated list and the list from last year, you’ll be able to find some great anime to watch this holiday season!
10. Stranger: Mukou Hadan (Sword of the Stranger)
Sword of the Stranger is a heartbreaking action-adventure. It follows Kotarou, an orphan, and his dog Tobimaru as they flee from a gang of assassins. Fortunately for the two, they come across a ronin with incredible skills who may be able to save them.
This choice may surprise you, as the show contains a significant amount of blood, which doesn’t quite fit in with the holiday season. It does, however, take place in the winter, and it conceptualizes and displays the concepts of self-sacrifice and giving. During this film, there are two scenes in particular that will warm even the coldest hearts. The first is a relationship between a boy and his dog, in which the boy is willing to go to any length to keep his puppy by his side. The second fight scene is between the boy and the stranger, which features one of the most epic fight scenes ever seen in an anime.
9. Ookami to Koushinryou (Spice and Wolf)
Spice and Wolf is a medieval fantasy novel that is a mix of light romance and economic intrigue. The anime specifically follows Kraft Lawrence and his crazy adventures after meeting the wolf goddess Holo. When it comes to wit, the two make a great business duo as well as sparring partners, thanks to his calculating ways and her ancient wisdom.
You might be wondering why Spice and Wolf made the cut, and you’d be right. Spice and Wolf, like another entry on this list, has two characteristics that allow it to be included. To begin with, much of the setting is appropriate for the holiday season. Our heroes are generally forced into a warm, hearty cabin or hall with a fire and drinks, even when there isn’t snow outside. These scenes elicit a strong sense of the winter season. The second is Holo and Kraft’s game of give and take, which creates a charming romantic atmosphere.
8. Kanon (2006)
First and foremost, make sure to see the 2006 version. You’ll most likely regret watching the 2002 original. Now, Aizawa Yuuichi used to visit his cousin in the city on a regular basis, but he has been unable to do so for the past seven years. When he returns to the city after such a long time, he realizes that he has no recollections of the place.
Yes, Kanon (2006) is a harem film, with several female characters falling in love with our protagonist. Having said that, the show takes proper care of each character and avoids many of the harem clichés. As a result, rather than getting stock characters, we find ourselves swimming through the tragic stories of the characters we meet. Our hearts open up to each character as we are led through drama and romance on a regular basis using this method.
7. Winter Sonata
For a long time, Yoo Jin has been madly in love with Joon Sang. When he is killed in an accident, Yoo Jin moves on with her life by marrying a childhood friend. Though she is initially content with her decision, she soon meets someone who bears an uncanny resemblance to her long-lost love.
Winter Sonata succeeds on multiple levels in terms of romance and heartfelt drama. Its stunning artwork enhances the impact of the characters’ expressions on the viewer and draws them into the scene. The incredible voice acting of the cast (from the Korean drama this anime is based on) is tied to the animation and deftly manipulates our empathy. There aren’t any laughs in this anime, so it’s really only for those who can handle a tearjerker during the holidays.
Clannad follows the unlikely friendship that develops between Tomoya, a truant, and Nagisa, a girl who has been absent from school due to illness. Though Tomoya initially tries to avoid Nagisa, she quickly becomes an important part of his life and development. Though this isn’t the only relationship in his life that is blossoming. There are a couple of other girls vying for his attention.
Clannad, which is more heartbreaking than heartwarming, is one of those shows that makes you feel everything, and it’s perfect for Christmas and the winter season. Tomoya’s relationships can be a lot like the ones you have in your own life. There’s the friend who really pushes you, the one who knows everything about you, and the one you want to help. We gain tremendous insight into each person’s life and become deeply invested in each of these relationships. Clannad is able to pull at the viewers’ heartstrings and bring out every ounce of emotion through this method, making you grateful for all of the relationships you currently have.
5. Itsudatte My Santa!
You might be tempted to name your child Santa if he or she was born on December 24th. That’s what happened to the main character in Itsudatte My Santa!, and as a result of his parents’ whimsy, he despises anything Christmas-related. After meeting Mai, a girl who is training to be a Santa, his hatred is put to the test.
So we have a character named Santa, a character training to be a Santa, and a reflection of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol within their relationship. To put it another way, a cold-hearted character who despises Christmas finds himself warming up to the season as a result of another’s endless kindness and joy. Finally, few anime contain as much Christmas imagery as Itsudatte My Santa!
4. Love Hina Christmas Special: Silent Eve
Love Hina is one of those harems that serves as an entry point into the world of anime. As the story progresses, Keitaro, a young man desperate to gain admission to Tokyo University, finds himself working at his grandmother’s hotel. The residents of this hotel are all female, and their peculiarities frequently leave Keitaro battered or exhausted.
In this special OVA, Keitaro learns of a rumor that if you declare your love on Christmas Eve, your love will be realized. Essentially, this OVA contains all of the comic gold that the anime has derived from the eccentricities of all of its characters, but in a more sufficient and heartwarming way. It’s a feel-good video for both you and the uninitiated, as the animation takes place entirely during the Christmas season and there’s a hopeful romance in the air.
3. Ookami Kodomo no Ame to Yuki (Wolf Children)
Hana, a dedicated college student, develops feelings for a mysterious man who attends some of her classes but does not attend college. Even after she learns that he is a half-wolf, their love blossoms quickly, and they have two children, a boy and a girl. Hana’s husband, however, dies one night, leaving her in charge of two children who have the ability to transform into wolves.
Wolf Children is best described as depressing but ultimately heartwarming. This is because the film’s central themes are the importance of family and a mother’s unwavering love. These two points show how important family is in all of our lives, despite all of the pain and suffering. Hana is everyone’s mother, and she constantly reminds us of how much our parents, particularly our mothers, give to us on a daily basis. The animation also receives bonus points for its beautiful animation and picaresque snow scenes, which are perfect for Christmas.
Toradora is a show about five high school students and how their love lives collide in a million different ways. It’s more specifically about Taiga and Ryuuji, both of whom have a dreadful reputation. Taiga is violent, whereas Ryuuji simply scares people away with his appearance. Because each is the best friend of the other’s love interest, these two form an unlikely friendship and decide to help each other out.
Toradora will both warm and break your heart, which is why it has been included on this list. This anime delves deeply into friendship, its trials, and the sacrifices required to keep it intact. What makes it unique is the way relationships are destroyed and rebuilt throughout the show as people restrain and release their desires. Furthermore, the plot of the show reaches a climax while the characters are celebrating Christmas.
1. Tokyo Godfathers
It’s Christmas Eve, and we meet Hans, Miyuki, and Gin, three homeless people. On this most joyous of nights, these three have the enjoyable task of sorting through garbage, and to their great surprise, they discover an abandoned baby. Uncertain of what caused the baby to end up in such a situation, the trio decides to do everything they can to locate the child’s parents.
Tokyo Godfathers is a beloved touchstone in the anime world, with an adventure that includes an unlikely group of heroes, the yakuza, and many other characters. Each of the main characters is a genuinely likeable person who enjoys self-sacrifice. The creator’s decision to see the world through their eyes provided a unique perspective for the story, forcing our eyes to see lifestyles that are usually hidden during the commercialized Christmas season.