6 Christmas-Themed Anime Movies & Series To Watch This Festive Season

The holiday season is upon us, and there is are plenty of Christmas-themed films and TV shows to get you in the festive spirit. You might opt for romantic comedies like Love Actually or The Holiday, but there's so much more to see than those usual suspects. Instead of settling in for a cosy night in with The Princess Switch 3, why not give anime a try?

There are certainly plenty of festive treats available in the medium; Newsweek highlights 6 anime to give a go this festive season.

1. Tokyo Godfathers

No Christmas-themed anime list would be complete without the late Satoshi Kon's Tokyo Godfathers, the most iconic of all festive anime.

The film, which is a loose retelling of the "The Three Godfathers" by Peter B. Kyne, really captures the spirit of Christmas.

It follows three homeless people, an alcoholic called Gin, a transgender woman named Hana, and teen runaway Miyuki, who discover an abandoned baby on Christmas Eve and embark on a journey through Tokyo to find their parents.

While Tokyo Godfathers deals with some quite difficult topics it is a moving, thought-provoking piece of cinema that shows the true meaning of selflessness and giving.

The film —like Paprika, Perfect Blue, and Millennium Actress— cemented Kon's status as one of the greatest Japanese filmmakers of all time.

2. K-On!

Granted, K-On! is not a Christmas anime, but it does have a festive-themed episode in Season 1 that is sure to delight viewers looking for a short, sweet show.

K-On!'s festive-themed episode, aptly titled "Christmas", follows Yui Hirasawa and her sister Ui as they host a party for their friends in the music club to celebrate the festive holiday.

The characters exchange gifts and enjoy a meal, and it is overall a delightful episode as it shows them spending time together and marvelling at snow.

3. Lucky Star

In a similar vein to K-On!, Lucky Star also has a Christmas-themed episode that follows its main characters in the lead-up to the holiday.

"Various Ways to Spend Christmas Eve" is a fun episode that sees Konata Izumi and her friends discuss various topics at school ahead of the winter break, including when they stopped believing in Santa Claus.

Lucky Star also adds a festive touch to the episode by showing Izumi enjoying Christmas Eve with her father before her cousin Yui arrives at their house drunk in an amusing turn of events.

Tokyo Godfather
Satoshi Kon's "Tokyo Godfather" is a quintessential Christmas anime. GKIDS Films

4. Love Hina Christmas Special: Silent Eve

For a light-hearted festive film to watch during the holidays, why not try Love Hina Christmas Special: Silent Eve?

The Production I.G. film sees lead Keitaro be bombarded with confessions of love from multiple women during the Christmas period, while he tries to tell Naru of his own feelings towards her.

Since it's the Millennium, Keitaro, and the many women in his life, believe this Christmas Eve is special and if they declare their love then it'll mean their wish will come true.

While this may seem like a recipe for disaster, it's makes for a funny, easy-to-watch Christmas special.

5. Hetalia: Axis Powers

Hetalia is an anime that's more concerned with historical events and retelling them in a comedic way, but it also has a fun Christmas-themed episode that can be enjoyed during the festive season.

"Academy Hetalia Christmas", which is Episode 31 of the show, follows the characters —who are all human personifications of countries — as they try to show off the best way to celebrate the holiday.

From America, to Japan, to Russia, each character explains what the festive season means to them and how they mark the occasion, whether that's through baking treats and putting up festive lights (like America) or treating Santa Claus to wine (like France).

6. Log Horizon

For something more action-packed, Log Horizon has a Christmas special that combines a fantasy setting with the holiday.

The Season 2 episode, titled "Christmas Eve", sees members of The Round Table Council try and thwart an attack from Enbart Nelles as he attempts to destroy Christmas celebrations in Akiba.

If one battle wasn't enough, there's also another fight between members of the council and various monsters Depths of Palm.

It's not your typical Christmas-themed fare but perhaps it's the year to try something a bit different?