News broke on Wednesday that Hello Kitty is not, in fact a cat, but a little girl, according to the Los Angeles Times.
"She's a cartoon character. She is a little girl. She is a friend. But she is not a cat," Christine R. Yano, an anthropologist from the University of Hawaii told the newspaper. "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."
That was shocking news to the legion of Hello Kitty fans.
But a spokesman for Sanrio Tokyo, the company behind Hello Kitty, today told the website Kotaku that saying Hello Kitty is not a cat might be taking it a bit far.
"Hello Kitty was done in the motif of a cat. It's going too far to say that Hello Kitty is not a cat. Hello Kitty is a personification of a cat," the spokesperson told the site.
When Kotaku asked again for clarification, the Sanrio spokesperson said, "Yes, that would be going too far" to say Hello Kitty is "not" a cat.
So, if Hello Kitty is the personification of a cat, maybe she is some kind of hybrid girl/cat?