Okay, so this has been an absolute rant/hype amongst kawaii girls since it was released a few days ago; and tbh I’m not entirely sure how to take it?? I didn’t feel an awful lot for Avril Lavigne’s new song and video ‘Hello Kitty’ other than confusion now that I have watched it a few times.
So firstly, the confessions:
- Avril Lavigne is still so damn pretty, I hate her for it – When I was younger with my punk/rocker style and long, pin-straight hair, so many people told me that I reminded them of Avril Lavigne. I took it as a compliment because she is so pretty, and she still is in this video.
- It’s catchy in a weird way – I don’t know why, but the ‘Come, come, Kitty, Kitty’ part is catchy as much as I hate to admit it.
So, let’s do an overall review of the video; there are so many things that are angering people and yet things that people are defending her for, so you can understand my confusion right? What was she trying to achieve with this video? I like to consider myself a kawaii girl since I own a lot of kawaii clothes, love J-Pop such as Kyary Pamyu Pamyu (seeing her next Tuesday), want to go to Japan, love Anime/Manga/Studio Ghibli, and anything cute/kawaii that is Japanese related; so I feel it is acceptable for me to have an opinion on this video. I guess we start with the ‘good’ points? These aren’t necessarily what I think but what I have read from other people’s comments:
- She is thanking her Japanese fans – She starts the song by saying ‘Min’na saikō arigatō’, which I believe means something along the lines of ‘thank you very much’ (forgive me, I haven’t learnt Japanese); many people have said that she is thanking her Japanese fans and made this video for them. So that’s a good thing right? She said that she produced this video with her Japanese label, and that she had a Japanese team that consisted of Japanese Choreographers and a Japanese director, the video was shot in Tokyo, Japan and was made specifically for her Japanese fans.
- She is embracing the kawaii style – After so many years of being the Skater girl, Avril Lavigne decided to turn to a more girly lifestyle and embraced being kawaii. Apparently she spends a lot of time in Japan, so she must have picked up quite a few things and knows her stuff, no?
Then how come this video is SO CONFUSING?? From looking at the above, you would think ‘aww that’s sweet, she is reaching out to other fans around the world whom she really admires and appreciates by creating this video just for them’! That’s great and all until you look at the ‘bad’ points…
- She isn’t kawaii enough – IF Avril has decided that she wants to immerse herself into the kawaii lifestyle and loves Japan so much that she often visits there, how come her kawaii-ness is lacking?? Like, SERIOUSLY LACKING. Those of us who really do live our life in a kawaii way, dressing ourselves in kawaii brands, wearing kawaii styles and owning the kawaii version of anything, really take it seriously; it becomes a lifestyle choice to the point that you’re thinking of ways to make anything you do or buy, kawaii. Avril seems to have done her share of kawaii, less than half-heartedly; her outfit for example, is hardly kawaii at all and yes, I mean that skirt. Chrissa Sparkles quotes ‘Kawaii girls love their cupcakes but what kawaii b***h wears ugly cupcake toys, and slaps it on a tutu?’ I know this seems like a petty point to some, but she is right; if you’re going to do kawaii, do it correctly. The idea of the skirt isn’t the main problem, it’s the fact that her costume isn’t capable of being considered kawaii because it looks like it was put together by someone who is amateur in kawaii. If you want to be kawaii, the best way to get over looking like an amateur is to go straight for the Japanese version, or the version that looks most Japanese (since kawaii originated in Japan, this is the easiest step)! For someone who spends a lot of time around Japanese people in Japan, I thought she would have had a much clearer idea of how kawaii is supposed to look (you know, having access to all things kawaii and the money to afford it, being in Japan so frequently); I know it is hard for people in the West to get any Asian look (whether it be J-Pop, Kawaii, Lolita, K-Pop) to look half decent since we have limited access to kawaii products and we aren’t surrounded by kawaii everywhere we go, unlike Japan who just so happen to have kawaii encoded in everything they do whether they mean to or not. It’s just confusing that she looks so plain, not kawaii enough for sure!!
- What is going on with the lyrics!? – So apart from the Japanese at the beginning, the rest is in English and I wonder if Japanese fans understand how crappy the lyrics are =_=”. ‘We can roll around, have a pillow fight’ and spin the bottle, play truth or dare in our underwear?? How old does she think we are? We’re not 11 year olds!! I didn’t even do that when I was 11!! Does she think that all kawaii girls do is roll around in their underwear, having slumber parties and sharing secrets with their best friends that they do everything with?? Er, NAH. Why does the song sound so dubstep-y and why are the lyrics so lame??? It’s like some child used basic rhyming skills to create this!! It portrays her as someone who knows absolutely nothing about what kawaii girls are interested in and what they like to do; I still like to dress up and go to a club, or rock out to some metal music and drink a beer, thank you very much!!
- She looks like a racist now – Okay, I’m not entirely sure how this one works but a lot of people have accused her of being a racist now; perhaps it is the way she portrays Japanese people/girls? I know that a lot of people said the sushi part was awkward as she shows her ‘kawaii’ self sitting down to enjoy sushi, perhaps it is due to the stereotype that all Japanese/kawaii girls/people like sushi? I’m not entirely sure…
- Is the video supposed to be serious, or is she mocking kawaii? – This really confuses me; is this video supposed to be her serious, genuine attempt at kawaii or is she mocking the kawaii lifestyle despite this video being made for her Japanese fans?? We just covered the ultimate fail of her ‘kawaii’ costume, what else did she fail at? Kawaii girls take their clothing seriously, it’s the main make-up of being a kawaii girl! So the fact that she lacked dedication for her costume, causes concern for the rest of the video! The whole set-up was really poor; from the lyrics, costume and staging, to the miserable backup dancers she has following her as she struts down a street in Tokyo. Seriously, what is up with those dancers!? Why do they look so miserable!? Kawaii girls are always so happy and smiley! I just don’t understand why they look like they smelled something bad, maybe it is because they are dancing away to a song they know does not do kawaii any justice. Seriously, a Japanese team and label, and no one could step up and point her in the right direction of true kawaii? Seems like they were more concerned about how much they were being paid. And if it wasn’t for the dancers, then I wouldn’t have thought about this, but doesn’t this seem familiar?? Oh yes, Gwen Stefani and her Harajuku girls!
And there is another part that seems familiar… Didn’t Gwen Stefani take a photo of her Harajuku girls in her video Hollaback Girl?? Just like Avril Lavigne did in this video, much to her backup dancers’ excitement…
So… She basically stole that idea from Gwen Stefani, unoriginal!! So I’m really confused as to whether or not she is serious about this video…but she is doing it for her Japanese fans, so why so many mistakes Avril!? So many people have said it is meant to be funny and not serious, some even commented that it looks like she is making fun of ‘Weebs’. It seems like you jumped out of your depth Avril, and why that might seem adventurous, it does bode well to actually have a good idea on the new thing you are trying out!
Is it also worth mentioning that despite the song being named ‘Hello Kitty’ that there is not a single Hello Kitty in sight? Sanrio had nothing to do with song or video according to Chrissa Sparkles, which is kind of disappointing because I was hoping for it to be… Hello Kitty themed…
I’m not really ranting about this video, it doesn’t offend me as a kawaii girl but I am confused about her intentions behind this video; if it is genuine, which it apparently is, then how come her Japanese team didn’t prep her better on Japanese kawaii?? Throw some suggestions out there or something… I mean, come’on she’s AVRIL LAVIGNE!! SHE COULD AFFORD FOR IT TO BE AMAZING. Such a disappointment!
Here is the video for Avril Lavigne’s ‘Hello Kitty’ and below that is a real rant about this song by Chrissa Sparkles; if you are interested in learning from a real Kawaii B***h, then check her out on YouTube!!