Miley vs. Hannah

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Miley Cyrus

Miley Cyrus just threw Hannah Montana under the bus.

Hannah Montana, of course, was the famous character who rocketed young Miley into the stratosphere of superstardom. The Disney Channel series of the same name aired from 2006 to 2010. It spawned a concert tour (Best of Both Worlds) and a concert-tour movie (Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert) as well as a feature film (the not-so-cleverly titled Hannah Montana: The Movie.) And there were associated soundtracks too.

At peak Hannah mania in 2008, some estimated that the franchise was worth a cool billion. And by the time the franchise, in all its iterations, ran its incredibly lucrative course, I think it’s safe to say that Hannah Montana fatigue had begun to set in. That perhaps was most true for the series’ star herself.

Miley, now 24, recently offered some perspective on playing the dual role of Hannah Montana and her alter ego, Miley Stewart. She critiqued the effect of playing these semi-fictional, semi-autobiographic characters, which she began portraying at the tender age of 11.

In some ways, she had a blast. “I loved being that character,” she said in an interview with CBS Sunday Morning. “That’s what made people love her.”

But there was a darker side, too.

I got to wear a wig, and that was awesome; I got to wear a lot of sparkly things, so that was cool. I think, now that I’m older, I realize, that’s a lot to put on a kid. It’s a lot to put on a kid to have them have to get their makeup done, and then also balance school, and then also have me dress up in a wig, as a kid, is a little weird. It’s a little Toddlers & Tiaras.

Elsewhere in the interview, she said that the boundaries between her and her characters began to blur during the Best of Both Worlds concert tour. “I think that’s probably what’s a little bit wrong with me now. I mark that up to doing some extreme damage in my psyche as an adult person.”

In a world where many young people today want to be famous more than anything, Miley’s cautionary note here is good to remember: Fame comes with a price. And that price is often one that the children paying it can’t even comprehend until they get older. Extreme damage in my psyche, Miley says of it.

We’ve often critiqued Miley Cyrus’s post-Hannah Montana decisions, especially when she’s gone to great lengths to take a literal and metaphorical “Wrecking Ball” (even infamously riding one naked in the video for that song) to the wholesome image she and Disney cultivated in her early years of fame. Obviously, many of those choices were deeply problematic.

But now even Miley recognizes that those decisions were influenced in part out of the extraordinary pressure placed on her to shoulder a billion-dollar franchise—a burden that can’t be carried without doing significant collateral damage to the child carrying it.

Who wrote this?

Adam R. Holz is a senior associate editor for Plugged In. He also writes for Focus on the Family’s Clubhouse magazine and has been a Boundless contributor. In his free time (which there is sometimes precious little of) Adam enjoys playing guitar and constructing LEGO kits with his son. Adam and his wife, Jennifer, are the proud parents, in fact, of three children, one boy and two girls.

Have something to say? Leave a comment.

Anonymous 11 days ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

Guys, can we talk?

I look at the comments in not just this post, but multiple posts from this website and all I see is hateful, name calling comments being posted. To me, it just makes me sad, and it makes me somethings wish Plugged In would take away the reply button.

Now I understand that I once triggered one of those out of control comment sections, but I was trying to somewhat help resolve the crisis. Now, after a few weeks, I see that I was wrong.

I don't think of myself as a very wise person per se, but maybe some words of wisdom could be used here.

Inkfeather, bobed is welcomed to his own opinion. There's no reason for you to say he's wrong about Miley's eyes. Let him speak what he thinks and share what he has to say.

bobed, your opinion, while you're entitled to it, is filled with name calling and bullying. You seem to basically say 'I'm right, you're wrong,' with your comments. How about trying to be more open minded?

I don't think myself as a wise man, but I just wanted to state why I don't like these comments and maybe offer some advice. Please try to reconcile and learn to post politely.

Proverbs 15:1 - A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
Evan Weisensel 11 days ago
Well said, my man! :)
bobed 11 days ago
I admit that I have been acting out of anger.
Anonymous 11 days ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

We all get angry sometimes. Nobody's perfect. When we get angry and say hurtful words, though, the best thing we can do is try to do better next time.

Course, at the same time the person trying to anger another person shouldn't be doing so in the first place. It's at two way street.
bobed 13 days ago
Look at her eyes. She doesn't look well.
Anonymous 13 days ago
In my opinion she looks pretty normal. At least compared to a few years ago.
bobed 13 days ago
Her eyes don't have any life or spirit in them. She looks dead, mentally and spiritually. I pray for her.
Inkfeather1 . 13 days ago
She looks just fine. You're just judging as usual.
Andrew Gilbertson 15 days ago
Completely off-topic, but since you don't have comments on your reviews... you recently tackled Stranger Things 2. Did you review the whole series, or just one episode? VidAngel is making some claims about the content of ST2, which I believe to be false (including 5 uses of the F-word, which I certainly don't recall hearing); and I figured if anyone would have an independent content-count to confirm or deny these allegations, it would be PluggedIn.
Dan Haynes 14 days ago
I watched it all in one sitting, and I sure don't remember any F-words. 
charitysplace 14 days ago
No f-words.

They take the Lord's name in vain plenty, though.
bobed 13 days ago
...which is just as bad, if not worse. There's lots in the Bible about not cussing, but there's a whole Commandment about the Lord's name. It's Biblically a much more serious issue.
Andrew Gilbertson 12 days ago
Very true. believe me, I'm just seeking out accuracy in claims, not making a value judgement on offenses.