Santa has many Japanese fans!
Santa Claus is a recent feature of Christmas in Japan and sometimes a few details get lost in translation. Sometimes a LOT does. So, I made this list, checked it twice, and now proudly present to you the Top Ten Strange Santas from Japan - some naughty, some nice!
10) Sanders Claus, or Old St. Harlan
Hey, this can be excused, right? Old guy, white beard, eight tiny reindeer, seven herbs & spices... Sanders Claus brings buckets of joy to good girls and boys! He should wear the red suit all year round, then Pamela Anderson wouldn't dare hassle him. (Santa Claus image via Nipponsoup)
9) Green Santa, the Kyoto Claus
Dreaming of a white Christmas? Forget it! Here in Japan where the Kyoto Accord was signed, Santa Claus has gone green - literally. Our non-polluting Saint Nick feeds his reindeer organic corn and heats the North Pole with solar power. (Santa Claus image via ViewImages)
8) Global Warming Santa is All Wet
If going green doesn't work, this is what Santa Claus has to look forward to. Our swimming Santa Claus will have traded his reindeer for whales and the North Pole's been replaced by a striped buoy. "On Moby, on Willie, on Shamu!" (Santa Claus image via The People's Daily)
7) Doraemon Santa: The Cat Came Back
What could be more Christmas-y then a big blue robot cat in a Santa suit? Well, just about anything, but that doesn't matter when you're putting on a Christmas parade and want to attract attention. Doraemon, the aforementioned robot cat, is a long-time favorite of Japanese people young and old. Santa Claus, not so much. (Santa Claus image via Asia Pundit)
6) Samurai Santa... Not So Comical
"Samurai Santa wants you to have a Merry Christmas... or else!" Sounds like this Santa Claus spends his off-season slicing pastrami at the Samurai Deli. The pictured comic is Issue #1, were there any others? I'm guessing... no. (Santa Claus image via Art Of Jim Lee)