Quantcast
Latest Stories

Singapore gripped by Hello Kitty frenzy



his photograph made available by The Straits Times newspaper on June 27, 2013 shows people waiting in a queue to purchase a Hello Kitty toy in a skeleton outfit at a Mcdonalds restaurant in Singapore. Tempers flared and police had to be called in on June 27 as anxious Singaporeans rushed to McDonald’s outlets to buy Hello Kitty plush toys being sold by the fastfood chain as a promotion. AFP PHOTO / STRAITS TIMES

SINGAPORE — Tempers flared and police had to be called in Thursday as anxious Singaporeans rushed to McDonald’s outlets to buy Hello Kitty plush toys being sold by the fastfood chain as a promotion.

Hundreds had begun queueing from Wednesday night to get their hands on a kitten in a skeleton outfit, depicting a character from the German fairy tale “The Singing Bone”.

It was the last of a series of six limited-edition Hello Kitty characters dressed in different outfits from popular fairy tales which were being sold by McDonald’s this month.

In some outlets, chaos broke out amid rampant queue jumping as supplies of the toys ran out soon after the stores opened for business on Thursday.

One video uploaded on YouTube showed police officers mediating between two customers in front of a McDonald’s counter.

Another showed an irate man asking an agitated crowd “Is he Singaporean? Is he educated?” apparently in reference to someone who had gotten a queue ticket ahead of others.

Some customers took to Facebook to register their anger after they went home empty-handed, while others immediately put the toys — sold for Sg$4.60 ($3.62) with set meals — up for sale online at far higher prices.

Some Singaporeans are obsessed with completing the entire collection.

“This is absolutely ruining the Singapore reputation. Poor management and irresponsible,” wrote Catherine Ong on McDonald’s Singapore’s Facebook page.

Others voiced their annoyance at compatriots who had let their Hello Kitty mania run out of control.

Singapore last went into a Hello Kitty frenzy in 2000, when McDonald’s sold a series of the toys in wedding outfits to usher in the new millenium.

Hello Kitty, which started in 1974 in Japan as a moon-faced cartoon cat on a coin purse, has developed into a global cultural phenomenon.

Sanrio, the Tokyo-based company behind the Hello Kitty industry, says it now has around 50,000 different products on sale in 109 nations and territories.

Kitty mania is also well established in Hong Kong where both men and women line up for hours outside McDonald’s outlets during promotional schemes.

In 2008, Japan appointed the character as its goodwill tourism ambassador to China and Hong Kong.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Culture , Hello Kitty , Lifestyle , Offbeat , Singapore



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. 12 other things you can do at Pico de Loro Cove
  2. Lover’s quarrel linked to hunger – study
  3. Encounter with a ‘Mangkukulam’
  4. ‘Kamias’ for fever, ‘siling labuyo’ for headache–first aid in the kitchen
  5. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  6. Summer treat for your aspiring astronomers
  7. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  8. Marcos grandson to wed beautiful Rocha scion
  9. 90 percent of Filipino households don’t practice proper toilet hygiene, sanitation
  10. ‘Heaven is for Real’: Nonfiction book on life after death reaches screen
  1. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  2. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  3. Marcos grandson to wed beautiful Rocha scion
  4. France makes work beyond 6 p.m. illegal
  5. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  6. South Koreans crave Asia’s smelliest fish
  7. Ever heard of HydroBob?
  8. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  9. 90 percent of Filipino households don’t practice proper toilet hygiene, sanitation
  10. Prince William fuels speculation of second royal baby
  1. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  2. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  3. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  4. Manila in shock over model Helena Belmonte’s death
  5. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  6. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  7. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  8. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  9. Sen. Angara: I thought Pia Wurtzbach gave a good answer
  10. Ex-Givenchy model fights for ‘Yolanda’ survivors

News

  • Aquino urges public to help prevent brownouts, keep aircon usage low
  • 292 missing, 3 dead in South Korea ferry disaster
  • Romblon mining site collapses; 3 killed
  • South Korea says 295 missing in ferry disaster
  • OFW who returned home from UAE tests positive for MERS-CoV – DOH chief
  • Sports

  • China, Taiwan rout foes for 3rd, 5th places in Asian Club volleyball
  • Ginebra’s new import Freeman arrives, makes PBA return vs ROS
  • Fielder ends HR drought, Rangers beat Mariners 5-0
  • Power Pinoys salvage 7th place in Asian men’s volley club championship
  • Knicks prevent Nets from clinching fifth seed
  • Lifestyle

  • Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  • Celebrate Easter Sunday at Buddha-Bar Manila
  • Moriones feast: A slow, steady transformation
  • Weaving ‘palaspas’ a tradition kept alive in Tayabas City
  • Finalists announced for best translated books
  • Entertainment

  • Mommy Dionisia Pacquiao’s greatest hits
  • Deniece Cornejo posts bail—report
  • Miley Cyrus hospitalized, cancels US concert
  • Otaku Summer Jam 2014: Summer’s hottest J-rock/Cosplay event
  • 2NE1 returns to Manila with “All Or Nothing” Tour
  • Business

  • I-Remit teams up with Lakhoo for remittances from Oman
  • Megawide nets P1.4 B in 2013
  • Longer TRO sought on rate hike
  • Make a stylish statement with the all-new Yaris
  • Hearing set in Olarte case
  • Technology

  • Smart phone apps and sites perfect for the Holy Week
  • Tech company: Change passwords or suffer ‘Heartbleed’
  • Filling the digital talent gap
  • SSS to shut down website for Holy Week
  • Another reason to quit social media this Holy Week: your safety
  • Opinion

  • We may never know
  • Couple of things
  • Mommy D’s magic
  • Stop bizarre and bloody Good Friday rituals
  • Holy Week taboos
  • Global Nation

  • Visa-free travel to Japan could boost tourism
  • 2 PCG men ordered arrested over Balintang Channel shooting
  • US Embassy closed on Holy Thursday, Good Friday
  • Relief worker draws inspiration from helping Yolanda victims
  • Philippines says peace pact should hold despite clashes
    Marketplace