Another day, another article about Miley Cyrus post-VMAs. I kind of feel like her performance at that joke of an awards show will become one of those “do you remember where you were when…” moments. I remember where I was, at work. I first learned about her “controversial” performance on facebook and then a few news sites as images and video started to emerge of her performance. More than anything, I remember the reactions people had. Before I watched the video I thought she’d done something really full-on based on peoples reactions, so I was really disappointed when I actually got around to watching it. That’s it??? It was such a non-event to me, and certainly not the most controversial thing I’ve seen done in pop music.
So many people, including friends on social media, appeared mortified that she’d dared dress and/or act the way she did. Many people lamented that the old Miley was now gone and this new one was horrible and a disgrace. While I thought her performance was tacky and probably unnecessary, I couldn’t understand why people seemed to angry/appalled. But then I guess it’s because I never cared that much for Miley to begin with, whereas a lot of other people did. For some reason people were taking great personal offence that she’d decided to strip herself of her cute, all-American, girl-next-door image and now wanted to join the ranks of Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Madonna and countless other pop stars who use sexuality and unusual clothing choices to grab the public’s attention.
The more I think about it, the angrier I get. Not just at peoples dumb reactions to a celebrity they don’t even know and yet seem to think they have a say about what she does, but to every damn aspect of it. I hate the over reactions to something that wasn’t even that big a deal in the grand scheme of things. I hate the fact people are now acting like twerking is a new, exciting thing and actually proclaiming she is the queen of it (when she can’t even twerk at all). I hate how her body was critiqued because her bum wasn’t pert and perfect. I hate how Billy Ray Cyrus had to defend her, because idiots thought her dad should not let his adult daughter do undaughterly things on TV. I hated how she got all the flak and fucking Robin Thicke got nothing when his song is a rapey piece of shit and he looked like a puncier version of Beetlejuice in that damn suit. I hate how she’s obviously felt pressured to change her image like this in order to shed the Hannah Montana image that people cling so desperately to. I hate how she has to use her body and silly sexual gestures to get noticed, because it’s not enough that she can sing.
It’s a shit situation all round, but at the end of the day, it’s her life and she can do with it what she wants. She generated a HUGE amount of interest because of that performance, so really, if getting attention and some notoriety was her intention, then she did a fantastic job of it. I wish it wasn’t at the expense of her credibility and dignity, but hey, it’s pop music. Since when did pop stars ever get to keep their dignity? People should have let go of the Hannah Montana thing long ago, when she stopped playing that character and started growing up. They bitch and moan that her sexy new look is trashy and unattractive, but they forget that she was being fetishised as a underage sex symbol anyway, and at least now any sexual attraction to her is justified and less creepy because she is an adult, acting like an adult, and doing adult, sexy things that demand sexual thoughts.
I just hope that she gets all of this hyper-sexualised BS out of her system with this album, a few film clips, a photoshoot with Terry Richardson (ugghh) and then moves on to become the person she really is. If it turns out this is the real Miley, then good on her. Many of us go through most of our lives not knowing who we are or suppressing our true selves for the benefit of others. Whatever happens, I still won’t ever buy her records so really, it aint any of my damn business.