I shall begin by stating the most obvious: There has been quite a bit of talk about Miley Cyrus lately. Even more obvious: Miley Cyrus, f/k/a Hannah Montana, is an ex-Disney Channel star who, perhaps knowing she will never live up to the legacy of the ever-superior Britney Spears, is trying to do the next best thing: create her own identity! She ditched the training bra for a weird-leotardy-contraption, replaced her busted grill with offensively large veneers, and got a super tasteless-but-statement-makey haircut.
I think she looks like a cartoon character. But no matter. See, Miley fancies herself all grown up now, and she doesn’t think you get to have a say in her Trying to Become Who I Am journey. I can relate to that! It’s totes normal to want to change your public image from, like, crybaby/pathological liar/baseball team groupie with a meathead boyfriend to, for example, sophisticated intellectual/writer-girl-style-icon/web-celeb. Oh wait, that’s me. Miley definitely isn’t going for sophisticated or intellectual.
Here’s another thing about me: I actively ignored ALL THE MILEY STUFF ON THE INTERNET until this weekend. Because I was too busy being an informed citizen and reading about more important things like the Government Shutdown? No. Because I was waiting. Waiting for Miley to watch SNL.
THEN: This weekend, with a full data set of sources, I carved out some “Me n’ Miley” time and caught up on all of it at once. VMA’s. Tatted & topless Rolling Stone interview. Late night talk show stints. All the twerks. Then I formed some opinions, sat with them for a day, wrote this post, edited it some times, changed my mind a little, sat with it for another day, and here we are, and here are some of my thoughts on spending the weekend with Miley. It is important to note that my immersion into Miley, which came all at once, with the exception of tweets I accidentally stumbled upon, began with SNL, and therefore involved Taran Killam, and therefore inevitably swayed my opinion in the positive direction, because I am in love with Taran Killam. Also because Miley and Taran’s Government Shutdown music video, “We Did Stop,” was both politically relevant and hilarious. Watch it here or just enjoy the below GIF.
Miley’s SNL was awesome. Tess Lynch, in her weekly SNL recap that you should read on a regular basis, writes that “Miley’s willingness to access her personal life for performance’s sake is exactly what distinguished her as a host: Nothing was off-limits.” And she’s right. We all have to respect the girl who can talk the talk, walk the walk, AND twerk in front of a national audience. It takes bravery, if nothing else. It’s okay if you made fun of Sinead O’Connor! You made fun of yourself too! And then someone made a funny video about both of you and the Internet got a new distraction for 10 minutes! So far so team Miley.
Post SNL, I moved on to Bangerz. “Immerse yourself in the Miley,” I pushed myself. But I just didn’t want to. I didn’t want it to be good, and I didn’t want to end up listening to it on repeat for multiple months like I did with Taylor Swift’s RED Album, because I missed out on a lot of new music when that happened. I procrastinated by reading my all time biggest writer man crush ever Rembert Browne‘s article, Streaming Miley Cyrus’s Bangerz in A Post-Government America, which convinced me that the experience would be both tolerable and temporary.
I love Bangerz. It’s no T-Swift, and thank god for that. I am not too attached. I will be saved from the humiliation of seeing the person next to me on the freeway judge me super hard while I belt “You call me up again just to break me like a promise!” at the top of my lungs in traffic on the 101. On the contrary, it’s full of bomb ass dank ass beats by Pharrell, catchy tunes n’ turns of phrase, and Miley’s young, wild, and genuine energy. Miley likes what she does, and I like that about her.
On another note, miss Miley “Parental Advisory” Cyrus isn’t actually talking about that cray cray of stuff! She’s no Marshall Mathers, just a confused twenty-something speaking in rhyming euphemistic terms about her life. Sure, she likes to do molly sometimes, and sure, thirteen year old girls in America don’t really need anyone else encouraging them to experiment with drugs. That being said, when I was thirteen (2001), BOTH Shaggy’s Wasn’t Me (“Honey came in and she caught me red-handed / Creeping with the girl next door / Picture this we were both butt naked / Bangin’ on the bathroom floor**…” **Which is also known as Cheating Really Hard and being totally disloyal to your girlfriend) AND Ludacris’s Southern Hospitality (“All the women in the house if you chasin’ cash / And you got some big titties with a matchin’ ass…”) were chart toppers. Maybe it’s just me, but I’ll take Miley’s “sexual phase” and a few odes to overrated party drugs over complete and total misogyny in music any day of the week.
I would also like to state that, if given the chance, I would absolutely swing on a wrecking ball naked. Especially if I had Miley’s bod.
Speaking of nudity, let’s just include one of her Terry Richardson photos too because a) the female body is beautiful and I like to look at it b) Terry Richardson always takes pictures of people basicamente naked so it’s really not that shocking. (Looking at you AND your hyperbolic headlines, Buzzfeed) and c) the fewer clothes Miley wears, the better.
By the time I read the infamous Tattoo-Getting-Cocaine-Denouncing-Weed-Exalting Rolling Stone Article, I was probably already on Miley’s side. But frankly, I found it refreshing. Also, I like her tattoos, and I like her assessment of critics: “And on the inside of her left forearm, the words SO THAT HIS PLACE SHALL NEVER BE WITH THOSE COLD AND TIMID SOULS WHO NEITHER KNOW VICTORY NOR DEFEAT. ‘It’s from a Teddy Roosevelt speech,’ she says. ‘It’s about how people judge who wins and who loses, but they’re not the ones in there fighting.’ In other words, ‘It’s about critics.'”
Miley is right. I’m not the one in there fighting. Someday I hope to be, and I hope to bring the wise words of Teddy – Inspiration for VMA Background Dancers? – Roosevelt with me to my pilot pitches and the Emmys and all the fights I will someday fight. I’m a pretty exhibitionist, extroverted person. So I gotta stand by a girl who just wants a little effing attention. Haters gonna hate, lovers gonna love, Miley gonna live down the street from Diddy’s baby mama. DO YOU LIVE DOWN THE STREET FROM DIDDY’S BABY MAMA? I’d be down to live down the street from Diddy’s Baby Mama. I’d also be down to go sky diving with journalists from Rolling Stone and my best-friend-slash-assistant, if I were famous with unlimited dollars and blah blah blah. Here are some more naked pics of Miley just because I feel like it:
Miley also has relevant and non-stupid opinions about Breaking Bad: “America is just so weird in what they think is right and wrong,” she continues. “Like, I was watching Breaking Bad the other day, and they were cooking meth. I could literally cook meth because of that show. It’s a how-to. And then they bleeped out the word ‘fuck.’ And I’m like, really? They killed a guy, and disintegrated his body in acid, but you’re not allowed to say ‘fuck’? It’s like when they bleeped ‘molly’ at the VMAs. Look what I’m doing up here right now, and you’re going to bleep out ‘molly’? Whatever.”
Another thing I learned about Miley is that she thinks Kanye is “the shit” and that she has “a good relationship with him,” so that takes her down a notch on the credibility scale, but maybe there’s an alternate famous people world in which Kanye is not a completely insane person. #NODISRESPECTTOBENAFFLECK
So aside from Kanye, do I have any real criticism of Miley? Yes. Yes I do.
I really really really really really really really hate her clothes and style. Sartorially speaking, she’s sensory overload personified. Even for a girl who can’t stop and won’t stop and wants it all because that’s what happens when you’re a former child star with a rebellious streak and nothing is off limits, Miley is taking her (otherwise respectable) all-or-nothing approach to a totally horrendous level in the fashion department. All the colors. All the makeup. All the teeth. All the bleach. All the fabrics (unless she’s in the nude). All the extremes! Don’t forget to stick two mini popovers on her head to complete the look!
It makes sense. Miley is an extreme girl. However, I feel the need to express that in protest of her atrocious style, I will not be joining the masses and dressing up as Miley for Halloween.
That being said, I look forward to watching her grow, change, and reserve the right to do so on her own terms. Get it girl.