Avril Lavigne's Hello Kitty song and music video were an immediate hit in Japan. The singer's latest album reached platinum status in the country, and the song debuted at number 82 on the Hot Top Airplay chart. While the single's performance in Japan was positive, Western critics were quick to point out the misappropriation of Japanese culture.
One of the most notorious aspects of the video is that it elicits racist stereotypes of Japanese women. According to a writer at The Independent, the music video "typecasts Japanese women as childlike."
The singer has responded to criticism of her Hello Kitty song and video by stating that she did not set out to promote "Japanese culture" in her song. Instead, she had the song as an "homage to Japan," and it was meant to be a tribute to her love for the toy.
In addition to the "Hello Kitty" song, Avril also released a video about the Japanese culture. This was a response to a fan's question: What does Avril think about Hello Kitty?
While the Hello Kitty song is not bad, it is the weakest song on Avril's fifth studio album. It's hard to get into the spirit of the song, which features a fake-punk character screaming "Hello Kitty" over and over. Similarly, the video is loaded with meaningless consonant and vowel combinations.
Some critics said that the song's lyrics were immature. They noted that it sounded like seventy thousand synthesizers. But they also pointed out that the video was not particularly wacky.