Review: Growing Up With Hello Kitty Vol. 1 + 2

Hello Kitty is universally adored by women – and men – of all ages around the world. She’s a fan-favorite mascot who’s even got her own airline and range of household cooking products (incidentally, I reheated last night’s leftovers in a candy pink Hello Kitty microwave). She’s a veritable cultural icon, so it’s no surprise that she should be the center of an animated series aimed at how to share, make friends, and share various other golden how-to nuggets of simple learning that should enthrall and delight both children and parents who want a gentle way to instill valuable concepts in their young one’s mind.

AnimEigo’s Growing Up with Hello Kitty series, volumes 1 and 2 on DVD, explore familiar concepts that may seem embarrassingly rudimentary to older viewers, but they still manage to work as entertaining teaching tools for little ones who love Sanrio’s famous little kitty and her animal friends.

Soothing, sweet songs, colorful imagery, and sincere, friendly characters like Hello Kitty and her little sister Mimmy are accessible teachers and watching them learn is a treat. It’s absolutely adorable – the kind of thing you intend for your children to watch but end up getting hooked on as well even though you’re learning things like how to clean up your messes, when to go to the bathroom, and when to say you’re sorry. Who am I kidding, though? Some adults still need to learn these types of lessons, don’t they?

Each DVD contains six different episodes where Hello Kitty and Mimmy encounter a specific issue, then work to learn why it happens and how to solve it with the help of their loving and patient parents. Volume 1 leads off with “Hello Kitty Eats Her Vegetables” while Volume 2 explores more social territory with “Hello Kitty Learns To Share”; yes, these are barebone releases with little more on the discs than the episodes themselves. But there’ s a simple sweetness to the interaction between Kitty and Mimmy, and the important message that, with positivity, even the most insurmountable challenges can be overcome.

The two Growing Up with Hello Kitty DVD volumes are available at the paltry price of $10 (or less) at most retailers. They’re great gift choices and educational materials for the children in your life who need a little nudge in the right direction when it comes to internalizing and becoming familiar with some of life’s more confusing concepts, at least in those formative years. They’re a friendly, gentle way to make learning fun, Hello Kitty style. And in an age where everything’s so serious, harsh, and unforgiving, there’s always room for a little fun. If you’re a Hello Kitty fan yourself, get them for personal viewing. No one’s gonna tell.

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