Back in the mid 70’s when I was a little kid (yes I’m old) watching Kikaida and the like on KIKU, my sister and her friends were introduced to Hello Kitty. The boys had their Japanese action figures (not dolls, lol) and the girls were into puffy stickers, Japanese smelly erasers, and the invasion of Sanrio products. Hello Kitty was the first “kawaii” (cute) character adorning stationery, school supplies, and accessories along with Little Twin Stars and My Melody. Twenty years later my girlfriend at the time, though in her twenties got into a cute Sanrio frog called Keroppi and a kawaii dog, Pochacco. Sanrio was alive and well in the 90’s
Flash forward another decade and Sanrio opens a store in Ala Moana and amongst other cutesy items sells a Hello Kitty toaster that toasts Hello Kitty’s face on bread. My sister of course had to buy it. Since then it seems like Hello Kitty is everywhere. From blinged out iPhone cases to steering wheel covers. I’m pretty sure that a good number of these products are not officially licensed by Sanrio but nevertheless Hello Kitty and Sanrio are doing more than fine financially. Turns out Hello Kitty and Sanrio are number 5 on Forbes list of the 20 best selling licensed entertainment products at $800 million!
A couple of Friday’s ago a new karaoke place opened up at the old Ichiriki Loft location on Piikoi called Air Park Karaoke Lounge. A friend of mine went to the grand opening party and got to sing in their……yup, Hello Kitty room. Ohhhhh nooo! What, no Kikaida room?! A’cmon!