I forgot to mention that on the Christmas episode of Polar Bear Cafe (episode 37), we had yet another instance of Catholicism in anime.
Penguin is asking the various cafe regulars about their Christmas plans, trying to get everyone to come together for a party. When he asks Llama and his friend Alpaca about their plans, they give their apologies and explain that they always go to Midnight Mass every year. This is followed by a shot of the two of them holding candles and songsheets, wearing white choir robes, and singing in the back row of the men’s section of their parish’s choir. (This segment starts 9 minutes in.) Penguin is disappointed and embarrassed (especially since he earlier opined that parties and Christmas cake were the reason for the season), and says, “You guys are really traditional, aren’t you?”
It’s an interesting little rebuke of societal attitudes by the writer, since most Japanese shows don’t notice Christmas as anything else but an excuse for winter presents, decorations, and romance.
Anyway, since this is a world where animals talk and work side-by-side with humans, and since Llama and Alpaca are Peruvian expatriates, this makes perfect sense. Of course they’d be Peruvian Catholics! But knowing that Llama is also a choir guy makes me like him even more. :)
This episode is currently free to anyone who’d care to watch it. (You’ll miss a bit of the humor, because this ep expects viewers to know the characters by now, but it’s essentially a sitcom and very accessible.)