As an adult today, the Christmas season may not be as cheerful as you once remembered it. The insane traffic makes driving a nightmare, every store comes with their own mob, and thanks to a pesky global pandemic, visiting love ones is almost suicidal. Sucks right? But, at least you got all those warm fuzzy Christmas memories from when you were a child and still believed in good ole Saint Nick. Well, in search of similar feelings today, we decided to enter our memory banks and conjure up a list of our favourite depictions of the jolly man in animation over the years.
Imagine suddenly hearing a noise coming from your roof, quickly headed up there to see a burglar, kung fu kicking the Sh#t out of him to only realize moments later that you just decked Santa. Yep, that's the kind predicament legendary buffoon Johnny Bravo, found himself in the episode 'Twas the Night'. What I loved about this Santa Claus, is that despite Johnny being an idiot and breaking is arm, he thought of the children first and gave him a chance to redeem himself by delivery the presents in his stead. He even managed to deliver the Bravos' gifts along with one parting shot at the end before riding off in the night.
It is one thing to accidentally attack Santa Claus, it's another world entirely to go on a full-time assault against the jolly-est man alive. In the Christmas episode of Dexter Laboratory titled 'Dexter vs Santa Claus', the boy genius took a page out of fellow Cartoon Network alum Johnny Bravo's book, and confronted Santa all in hopes of exposing his Dad and proving to his sister Santa wasn't real. I liked this Santa because the writers gave him no dialogue only grunts and yells of pain in his hilarious scuffle with Dexter. What sealed the deal was at the very end when Dexter was proven wrong and tried to play-off the old cliche that Christmas is really about family for only Santa himself, showing him up with what Christmas is really about.
A four-ton robot designed by The Friendly Robot Company to judge whether people were naughty or nice and sort out presents accordingly, but Due to a programming error, went on a violent reign of terror because his standards were set way too high is more than entertaining television viewing...IT'S PURE GENIUS! RoboSanta's recurring appearances on Futurama gave us villain we didn't know we wanted. It was a great twist on the usual squeaky clean image of the giver of gifts.
By now you will realize we don't mind our Santa with an edge and non comes more badass than the Santa Claus from the South Park series. This series is famous for holding no punches in their mocking of popular public figures so it really shouldn't come as a surprise their portrayal of Santa Claus would be a bit off. But it is still mesmerizing to see jolly Saint Nick decapitating people and dropping F-Bombs in some scenes. Good thing he is here for the kids.
Christmas is hard to imagine today without the myth of Santa Claus. Yeah we know, it really unlikely for any one man to visit every home in the world in riding a magic flying in one night. But, what makes him live in our hearts so long, is the welcoming idea of a one-man being so kind as to dedicate his time to making children smile. Which brings me to our final entry on this list as for this reason I simple adored the depiction of Claus in the animated film Klaus. And while it may not be an exact true origin story of Santa Claus, the film did a great job humanizing the myth. It also doesn't hurt that the film is also a masterpiece and a great watch for the entire family.
And there you have it, our 5 favourite depictions of Santa Claus in animation. This list could have been even more interesting if we had included Anime (may be saving that for next year), regardless if you are 30, 60 or 6, it is clear Christmas is truly nothing without Jolly ole Saint Nick.
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Hey I am Marlon Mcfarlane the writer here at Blue Crescent Studio & a longtime lover of all things Animation & Gaming.