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Manga / Itsudatte My Santa!

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Itsudatte My Santa! (いつだってMyサンタ!?, translating literally to Always My Santa!) is a short manga series by Ken Akamatsu, published before his better known work, Love Hina, was serialized. It stars a boy named Santa who hates Christmas, due to being born on Christmas Eve. However, a girl named Mai who's a student at the Santa Claus Academy is sent to him, being tasked with the mission of improving his luck and changing his views on Christmas for the better.

The manga ran in 1997 for only two issues of Shōnen Magazine. It later received a two-episode OVA adaptation in 2005.

Contains examples of:

  • Accidental Pervert: It's not actually Santa's fault, but he does get to see Mai naked...and get punished for it.
  • A-Cup Angst: Although not nearly as pronounced as other examples, Mai is offended when Santa teases her about her chest.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The manga only tells the story told in episode one, and only has two characters, Mai and Santa. The anime adds a second episode and introduces the characters of Sharry, MaiMai, and Miss Noel.
  • Big Eater: Sharry (and MaiMai) devour a mountain of cantaloupes while Sharry Info Dumps about she and Sharry's relationship.
  • Buxom Beauty Standard: Santa's entire attitude towards Mai changes once she transforms into her true form, with larger breasts.
  • Delinquents: A recurring group of characters are a gang leader and his entire gang, carrying food that inevitably gets smashed.
  • Embarrassing First Name: Santa is obviously very embarrassed about his name.
  • The Faceless: Mineko, the girl Santa has a crush on, is always shown from behind when Santa goes to her party, although this doesn't seem to be entirely intentional. There is one shot of her face, although it's from very far away and hard to make anything out.
  • Fanservice: As this is an Akamatsu work, there is a lot.
  • The Grinch: Santa, though he has a semi-valid reason, what with his parents abandoning him every Christmas and all.
  • Hair Antennae: Again, a staple of Ken Akamatsu's work, the female lead has a pair of antennae-like hairs standing on end.
  • Incoming Ham: "Ho, ho, ho! Long time no see, Mai and MaiMai!"
  • Innocent Fanservice Girl: It seems Mai has no idea how short her skirt is in the beginning of the first OVA - though she does get a taboo during her shower scene.
  • Innocent Innuendo:
    • When Mai asks Santa to spend the night with her in the first OVA, to the shock and mutters of people around them ("Kids these days...") Mai realizes the implications and hits Santa, telling him she's not that kind of girl (even though it wasn't really his fault).
    • Happens again in the second OVA, with an unfortunate misunderstanding about "oil".
  • Intimate Lotion Application: When Santa and Mai go to the beach, she produces a bottle of suntan oil and offers to rub it on his back, and he gets nervous at the prospect. The crowd who overhears this thinks they're being indecent, which causes Mai to conclude he was thinking perverted things and she beats him up for it.
  • Ironic Name: Santa, being named after the symbol of Christmas actually hates the holiday.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: The plot is partially centered around Genki Girl Mai getting Santa to come out of his shell.
  • Parental Abandonment: Santa suffers from this, to a certain extent - according to him, the only gift they ever sent him was a photo of them, smiling, and surrounded by other children.
  • Perennially Overshadowed Birthday: The protagonist hates his birthday because it's also Christmas and it contributes to his overall sense of feeling neglected and unloved. To make matters worse, his parents chose to name him Santa. However, he soon discovers that the kids at his high school do remember his birthday and when he shows up to a party they try to invite him in because they're celebrating him as well as Christmas, a revelation that starts to change his viewpoint.
  • Running Gag: MaiMai biting Sharry on the rear in the second OVA.
  • Santa's Existence Clause: Not only does Santa exist, but he is actually several hundred cute teenage girls!
  • Sexy Santa Dress: Worn by Mai in her Santa form and in the Eye Catch.
  • Shower of Awkward: Santa sees Mai completely naked during her shower (although he's fully dressed).
  • Shower Scene: Mai takes a shower when she gets to Santa's apartment, which ends with her bursting out and giving Santa a full view of everything.
  • Transformation Sequence: When Mai transforms into Santa Claus.
  • True Meaning of Christmas: According to Mai, this is a celebration of the birth of... the protagonist, Santa.
  • Tsurime Eyes: Sharry's eyes notably slant upward.
  • Unbuilt Trope: The series tends to use Mai beating up Santa for being an Accidental Pervert as a gag, just like Akamatsu's later Love Hina and many, many harem series from then on. However, the first time she does this — in front of an entire crowd — she gets hauled off by security for it.
  • Unlucky Everydude: Santa, as per the usual for Akamatsu's protagonists.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: As Mai states, she and Sharry fight every time they see each other since their ways of thinking and sense of values are different, but they've always been best friends.


Video Example(s):


Bad Anime-Cliche Proto-Twist

While reviewing 'Itsudatte My Santa!', Anime Americas Robyn expresses her disdain for the beat-up-the-accidental-pervert cliche commonly found in anime. However, she ultimately decides to let it slide when this OVA uses it because A) the original manga the OVA is adapting is from the 90s, before the cliche became widespread; and B) the use of the cliche in the OVA also has a humorous twist that future examples would lack. Something that Robyn finds satisfying.

How well does it match the trope?

4.79 (14 votes)

Example of:

Main / UnbuiltTrope

Media sources: