Monday, May 05, 2008

Kerfuffles , I love them. Vanity Fair got everything they wanted in spades, yes all the newsstand copies of the magazine will be dog eared with every adolescent boy in America checking Miley out. Not to mention the purloined copies that will be passed about, digitally and otherwise, among tween girls. Who, without a doubt, will check out the remainder of the magazine and make a subconscious note to come back to VF again when they get to be around seventeen or eighteen.

And Annie Leibovitz, some what bemused perhaps, that Miley’s dishabille was her fault, but another feather in her cap as the leading portrait photographer of our time. But what of poor Miley and her bumpkin parents and clueless managers, didn’t it occur to them that a fifteen year old, naked, wrapped in a sheet, looking to all the world as if she was glowing from an energetic romp would cause a bit of a flap? Sheesh.

Their intent is understandable, after all the use-by date for Hannah Montana is fast approaching. The tweens that are hooked in will come home from school one afternoon and throw their Hannah backpack on the floor and demand their mother’s buy them a different one as Hannah is so yesterday. This of course will take the mothers completely by surprise, as if their little darling was frozen developmentally in amber always to be cute and precocious.

Of course this has been happening right along, the fans hit 12-13 and Hannah is no longer cool, but there has been a new group of six year old recruits to take there place. But that train will end. Its not that younger kids won’t enjoy Hannah in re-runs, they will, they’ll just have no need for Miley. Part of the magic of Hannah for an 8-9 year old is that you can imagine being 12 to 15, its something you aspire to be. But now Miley is slipping beyond that age and no nine year old is going to be real excited about the live Hannah/Miley if she reminds them more of mom than themselves.

Quite likely, Miley is tired of Hannah also, and she wants to grow professionally and grow up. The intent of the VF article was to help Miley grow up professionally by beginning a shift in her image. But her parents and managers wildly miscalculated.

The recasting of child stars as hopefully adult stars has a long history of failure in popular culture. It is so notoriously hard to do that when it happens it is widely noted. A quick google on child stars who made the transition mostly turned up people like Natalie Portman and Jodie Foster, who were stars as children, cast as children in movies that were otherwise aimed at adult audiences, rather than in productions aimed at children.

Reportedly Miley canceled a Disney gig after the controversy started, I’d like to think that Miley is demanding to be Miley and is beginning to put Hannah behind her.

If you thought the Disney Company’s snippy press release about the Cyrus/VF kerfuffle was justified, check out this picture of a little bit of Disney kiddy-porn masquerading as a billboard in Beijing, it was photographed by a Slate correspondent.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alanis Morissette did it. Back in the day Kurt Russel did too. But yeah, you're right, it is a transition very very few can make.


4:14 PM  
Anonymous VJ said...

When Disney starts pimping them out it's getting all too damn creepy for my tastes. And we wonder why we're the world's ground zero for pervs. Look to the media. There's the answer! Cheers, 'VJ'

8:40 AM  

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