Monday, April 28, 2003
by Lenka Reznicek [permalink] 
Hello Kitty(TM) is the trademark of Sanrio Corp., and this image is intended to be satirical.  We have to write this, because Hello Kitty(TM) is indeed watching.To be perfectly honest, I've never watched the Hello Kitty animated series; but I'm simply flabbergasted by the mindboggling range of merchandise Sanrio has managed to whip up based on this little white creature that looks like a marshmallow Peep.

Hello Kitty is everywhere.

She's no spring chicken...or is that spring kitten...she's been around since 1974, the year Richard Nixon resigned and India conducted her first nuclear test. Coincidence? Perhaps.

Even Santa Claus doesn't have as many domestic uses, and he's just a seasonal character. At the risk of inflaming the pious masses who burned Beatles albums by the gross after John Lennon's ill-fated boast, one could say Hello Kitty is more popular that Jesus.

Here's what I mean. You can buy Hello Kitty golf clubs, microwave ovens, underwear, sandwich irons (!), baby silverware, cellphone covers, toothbrushes (manual and electric), adhesive bandages, adult novelties (I kid you not), handbags, shoes...I could fill pages.

This list doesn't include the myriad incarnations of Hello Kitty wearing different clothes and accessories, and her dozens of auxiliary marketing tools - er - friends.

Granted the majority of Hello Kitty products are sold to pre-teen girls, harried mothers, hip middle-aged women - and of course gay men, but you're talking about a segment of the population that tends to have plenty of discretionary income. As an ex-writer of TV commercials, I am utterly in awe of whichever marketing genius managed to keep the Kitty cash rolling in for so long. My hat's off to you!

Let's psychologically analyze the benevolent, mouthless (and thereby lacking a posterior orifice?) being that is Hello Kitty.

One could say she is the yin archetype to the yang of overbearing modern metallic masculinity. Our heroine is the anti-GI-Joe, the anti-Hulk...the anti-Goliath and the anti-Osama Bin Laden. No one ever put Hello Kitty's face on the nacelle of a B-52 bomber, on the casing of a nuclear warhead, or on a M1 Abrams tank. At least not to my knowledge.

soft white bright kitten
mouthless; tells no lies. Yet she
makes filthy green cash

Sanrio Say: Make Kitty, not War.