Baffled! It was revealed this past week that Hello Kitty, the popular cartoon character with whiskers and triangular-shaped ears, is not a cat.
"Hello Kitty is not a cat," Christine R. Yano, an anthropologist and the author of Pink Globalization: Hello Kitty's Trek Across the Pacific, told the L.A. Times on Wednesday, Aug. 27. "She's a cartoon character. She is a little girl. She is a friend. But she is not a cat."
Yano even dissected Hello Kitty's behavior. "She's never depicted on all fours. She walks and sits like a two-legged creature. She does have a pet cat of her own, however, and it's called Charmmy Kitty."
Yano said this bombshell revelation actually came directly from Hello Kitty's creators. "I was corrected — ery firmly," she recalled of the company's fix in her text for an exhibit. "That's one correction Sanrio [the company behind Hello Kitty] made for my script."
Hello Kitty fans around the world reacted to the news with shock.
A spokesperson for Sanrio Tokyo responded to the news and explained what Hello Kitty really is — sort of. "Hello Kitty was done in the motif of a cat," the spokesman told gaming website Kotaku. "It's going too far to say that Hello Kitty is not a cat. Hello Kitty is a personification of a cat."
Still confused like Us? Below is a primer of what fans should know about Hello Kitty, nee Kitty White.
Parents: Mary and George White
Sibling: Twin Sister Mimmy
Pets: Charmmy Kitty and Pet Hamster Sugar
Birthday: Nov. 1
Blood Type: A
Height: 5 apples
Weight: 3 apples
Favorite Color: Red