The world’s most favorite mouthless cat recently turned 40 last year, but despite being around for four decades and having her likeness reproduced on nearly every item of clothing, stationary, and household good imaginable, there is a lot more to know about Hello Kitty than you probably realized, like her real name, her family members, and the fact that… she’s not exactly a cat after all?
Fans’ love for Hello Kitty has taken her all over the word. Aside from her many enterprises in her native Japan, Sanrio’s most famous mascot has been at the center of ventures in the U.S., Taiwan, and China. You could even say the character’s popularity has reached astronomical proportions, just like Kitty-chan herself did when she made a trip into space as part of an awesome junior high school science experiment.
Hopes were high when Hello Kitty Park officially opened its doors on February 4 in Zhejiang Province, China. The largest Hello Kitty theme park in the world, Hello Kitty Park was backed by Kitty-chan’s creators Sanrio and The Hettema Group, a California-based theme park design company. Unfortunately for Kitty fans, however, the park has been widely blasted online during its initial opening period for its underwhelming attractions, small size, and rumours of fake Kitty goods.
With her many collaborations with a multitude of designers and brands, it seems like Hello Kitty has merchandise for just about everyone. But while the range from cheap Kitty-chan trinkets to premium luxury items means Japan’s most famous 2-D cat has covered the demographics of both young and old as well as rich and poor, things are a little bit less balanced when it comes to the catalogue of Hello Kitty tie-ins for men versus those for women.
The ever-industrious Kitty is looking to make things a little more even, though, and last year corporate parent Sanrio announced the Hello Kitty Men Project. As part of the initiative, this month fashionable dudes in one fashionable Tokyo neighborhood can get their hands on three new Hello Kitty items made just for men.
We all know that Hello Kitty is one busy and extremely capable, well, business…cat, shall we say? And yes, we love her for it, too. So, what new adorable form has she taken this time?
Well, it seems she’s now gotten close and personal with money — Japanese coins, to be exact. But not to worry, she hasn’t gotten involved in the counterfeiting business. She’s come up with magnets on which she appears attached to different Japanese coins, and as always, she manages to look cool and cute in the process!
For most travelers in Japan, the highlight of a trip to the hot springs is the rotenburo, or open-air bath. The idea of an alfresco dip is so appealing that drawing visitors to your hot spring inn or hotel becomes several degrees harder if you don’t have outdoor tubs.
But you shouldn’t write off indoor hot springs entirely, as they boast a couple of advantages. Having a roof over your head makes them a good choice for a rainy day, and being climate controlled means less shivering once you step out of the water. Plus, if you’re heading to Gunma Prefecture, soon one indoor hot spring will give you the chance to soak in the company of Hello Kitty.
Hello Kitty has been quite the busy cat celebrating her 40th birthday. Earlier this year, she was making rounds at theatres in Japan dressed as characters from Rurouni Kenshin, and now she has crossed the ocean to make an appearance at McDonald’s in Korea. This time, she’s cosplaying as some of her fellow Sanrio mates. Check out the cute kitty after the jump!
After 40 years of hard work, Japan’s precious Hello Kitty character (affectionately known as Kitty-chan in Japan), has brought Japanese “kawaii” to all corners of the globe. It hasn’t been all fun and games for her though; she has had to work really hard to keep her parent company, Sanrio, afloat.
But now, thanks to Kitty-chan’s popularity overseas and her success branching into other markets, Sanrio isn’t just floating, it’s positively surfing on waves of international profit.
The various Disney-operated theme parks scattered throughout the world have brought joy to children (and grown-ups!) for decades. Disney’s major character contribution is none other than Mickey Mouse, who has grown to become one of the most recognizable cultural icons on the world scene. But how about a famous cultural export from Japan? Why, that would be Hello Kitty, of course!
Sanrio’s darling may be celebrating her 40th birthday this month, but she’s showing no signs of slowing down. In fact, her birthday celebration comes along with a recent announcement that a new “Hello Kitty Park” will open in China early next year! Along with plans for the upcoming Shanghai Disneyland, China sure seems to be on a roll these days making children’s dreams come true. More details about the park after the jump.
North American fans of the mouth-less Sanrio feline can now rejoice as the first ever Hello Kitty Cafe will finally land on their continent!
Announced in the form of a bright pink food truck at the Hello Kitty Convention held in Los Angeles, fans were elated to learn that Hello Kitty will finally get her own cafe in California! Judging by the extreme cuteness of the pictures released so far, it seems like this cafe will take kawaii to a whole new level!
Between turning 40 and a host of confusion of what exactly she is, Hello Kitty has had quite a year. But we have news for the gijinka that’s going to make it a lot worse: Her boyfriend (catfriend? ginjinkafriend?) is out kabe-donning it up with any random stranger that walks by!
That’s right the once-lovable Daniel can now be found at Sanrio’s Puroland assuming the kabe-don position for anyone to waltz over and lock eyes with. This is the kind of betrayal that we doubt Hello Kitty will take in stride. And it’s not like she doesn’t know a crap ton of superpowered badasses!
Exactly 40 years ago today, on November 1, a very special mascot character was born. The cat with an adorable oversized head, named Hello Kitty, has since been an excellent ambassador for the Japanese “Kawaii” culture, and as we all know, has come to be loved around the world. And in honor of what can arguably be called Japan’s most famous export ever, we wanted to wish Hello Kitty a heartfelt Happy Birthday on this special day. Plus, we even have a delightful little video from Sanrio to share with you that takes you through 40 years of Hello Kitty’s history!
In many countries around the world, mandatory school uniforms are the bane of students’ lives, with their unflattering shape and drab color scheme. Their purpose seems to be to help pupils blend into a homogeneous mass of unfashionable conformity, and are often enforced under the logic that they “promote modesty” and “prevent distractions from learning”.
In Japan, however, it’s completely different. The Japanese tend to put a lot of stock in uniforms of all kinds, and school uniforms, which signify the wearer’s youth, are considered a prime status symbol. Now everyone’s favorite mute cat, Hello Kitty, is getting in on the action with her special snowy-white sailor suit for spring!
Christmas cakes (yes, it’s already time to start thinking about the holidays) come in all shapes and sizes, so it’s not surprising at all to see our favorite feline character and international celebrity Hello Kitty turn herself into one. But this “Hello Kitty Face Cake” requires just a little bit more artistic creativity from you than the average cake. You see, the cake doesn’t come looking like the picture above — you actually have to make it into its Hello Kitty form!
Japanese movie-goers are currently enjoying the third live-action Rurouni Kenshin film. The franchise is now a certified two-decade hit, debuting as a manga in 1994 before its 1996 anime adaptation and recent film trilogy, and it owes much of its success to the popularity of main character Himura Kenshin.
What makes Kenshin so compelling is that despite his formidable swordsmanship, he’s portrayed as consistently kindhearted and good-natured. In certain scenes, he comes off as downright cute, but Kenshin has never been quite as adorable as this stuffed animal of Hello Kitty cosplaying as the scarred warrior.
Now that the whole debacle over Hello Kitty’s identity is settled, fans can get back to other things, like preparing for the first ever Hello Kitty convention, set to take place from October 30 to November 2 in Los Angeles.
And, at least in that small corner of town, everyone is ready. The Line, the official hotel of the convention, is trotting out special Hello Kitty-themed rooms, and a Hello Kitty Spam musubi by chef Roy Choi.
As technology continues to advance and influence the way we communicate, it’s important for rules of etiquette to evolve along with the devices we use to keep in touch with each other. For example, by now most of us know not to type our emails in all caps and to turn off our cell phones inside movie theaters.
So why is it that we’ve learned to mind our manners in those situations, yet continue to commit the social faux pas of not making our iPhones wear proper underwear? That seems to be the question Bandai asked, and now we have the answer in the form of Hello Kitty panties for smartphones.