Hello Kitty Is Not a Cat, But She Can Be Ice Cubes and Hot Dogs

Hello Kitty Is Not a Cat, But She Can Be Ice Cubes and Hot Dogs

The revelation from Japanese company Sanrio that Hello Kitty is in fact a human being takes the Internet by surprise

Sara Roncero-Menendez
  • 2 september 2014

The revelation that the iconic Japanese feline, Hello Kitty, is not in fact a cat has shaken the Internet to its core. People are now wondering when this decision was made about the character’s being and if she is not in fact a cat, what exactly is she? And how does it affect this beloved figure’s reputation on the eve of her 40th anniversary?

The news broke when Christine R. Yano, an anthropologist from the University of Hawaii, was setting up an exhibit on Hello Kitty for the Japanese American National Museum, located in Los Angeles. She was preparing a script for the exhibit when Sanrio, the company that created Hello Kitty and her adorable posse, corrected her that she is not a cat, but is in fact a young British girl named Kitty White. They cited that fact that she stands on two legs, walking and sitting like a human girl, and has a pet cat of her own named Charmmy Kitty. While this does not explain the ears and whiskers present on the character physically, it does make more sense in terms of the character’s typical presentation and posing.

Many have been shocked by this revelation of the character’s biological identity, and have come to question when this became part of the Sanrio canon. Some of have pointed to the Hello Kitty TV show while others suggest that some of the original merchandise alludes to this information. Still, many are questioning that if it looks like a cat, shouldn’t it be a cat? What does this say about her other friends — are they humans that also just happened to look like animals?

The logic here is not clear but ultimately it’s up to the fans to decide. After all, Hello Kitty has always been a figure that is flexible when it comes to product creation. From cat-themed ice cubes (or rather human shaped ones, given the new information) to stationary to hot dogs, she is as ubiquitous and ever changing as needed. Ultimately, this changes nothing about the character herself or the brand, just a confusing tidbit of knowledge that happened to be revealed 40 years too late.

[h/t] The Guardian

Image Courtesy of JD Hancock


Fitness Advocate: Paving The Future of Workouts With Audio

Fitness & Sport
Advertising Today

A Compelling Brand Purpose Is Never Born In The Boardroom

Strategist and Designer Anna-Rae Morris shares why she believes all brands exist for a reason, and how Snapchat has upended our behavior

Fitness & Sport Today

Editorial Roundtable: The Xs And Os Of Performance-Enhanced Sports

WHOOP, ShotTracker, Rithmio, PlaySight, STYR Labs, EverybodyFights and Lift / Next Level Floats explain that we're only at the iceberg's tip of performance enhancement


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Technology Today

Kodak’s Smartphone Is Inspired By A Retro Camera

Ektra is an Android phone with a powerful lens aimed at photographers

Related Expert

Ben Lerer

Media, Lifestyle, Venture Capital

Sustainability Today

Modern Home Created Entirely Out Of Modular Shipping Crates

A project in Ecuador used the ubiquitous material to design a spacious and industrial-chic house

Retail Today

Retail Concept Offers Food Hall Inspired Space For Online Brands

The store will offer a lower cost way for internet entrepreneurs to try physical retailing

Arts & Culture Today

Disney Retells Beauty And The Beast On Snapchat

In a partnership with LACMA, the entertainment platform drew from over 130,000 works in the museum's collection


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed Today

Creative Leadership Expert: Experiencing A Seismic Shift From Brand Loyalty To Interface Loyalty

Marc Shillum, founder of Chief Creative Office, explains why product designers must rethink the way they capture consumer attention

PSFK Labs Yesterday

The Keys For Exceptional Performance On And Off The Field

PSFK Labs' new report highlights five important insights for businesses to perform better than the competition

Automotive Today

Honda Has 3D Printed A Fully Electric Minivan

The car manufacturer partnered with product developer Kabuku to create the small versatile vehicles

Innovation Yesterday

After The Initial Success Of AR Gaming, What Does The Future Hold?

With Pokemon GO earning up to $10m a day, R&D departments are busy searching for the next phase

Arts & Culture Yesterday

The Next Great Art Movement Will Come At The Swipe Of A Finger

An improved app, optimized digital display and monthly art discovery service round out Electric Objects' renewed commitment to democratizing the art world

Media & Publishing Yesterday

A TV Streaming Service Is Designed Just For Kids

Toca TV is a new platform offering thousands of original and curated children's videos for a monthly subscription fee

Travel Yesterday

Bus Stop Transformed Into A Fitness Station For Commuters

Sports drink company Lucozade live-streamed an athletic trainer working out at a stop in Manchester to encourage travelers to get moving

Beauty Yesterday

Shiseido And Microsoft Have Created A Makeup Filter For Women Who Telecommute

The Japanese cosmetic company built an augmented reality app that works alongside Skype for Business

Mobile Yesterday

Samsung Is Using AR To Help Beachgoers Stay Safe

Pocket Patrol utilizes a phone's camera to promote beach safety and educate people about hidden hazards

No search results found.