Friday, April 1, 2011

Chris watches Hannah Montana.

Hello, dear reader!  It’s time, once again, for me to sample a fluffy, televisual confection and break down the sugars into enjoyment enzymes for your weekend sustenance.  Was that the most pretentious sentence ever written?  Only time will tell!  Without further ado, I give you…

Hannah Montana!

Yes, I’ll be reviewing this tent-pole of Disney programming.  I can say with all the appropriate pride that I have never watched one moment of this show.  It’s all new to me!!!  Will it be a glacially-paced, character-driven masterpiece like The Wire or Mad Men?  Let’s find out together!  (Hint: No.)

Let’s Meet the Cast:

Character: Miley Stewart / Hannah Montana
Actor: Miley Cyrus
Initial Impression: Judging by the opening credits, Miss Cyrus will be playing duel roles in this program.  Just like Patty Duke!  (That reference is for you, friends of my parents!)

Character: Lilly Truscott / Lola Luftnagle
Actor: Emily Osment
Initial Impression: Another double role!  These children must be phenomenal actors!  It is the only possible explanation for this!

Character: Oliver Oken / Mike Standley III
Actor: Mitchel Musso
Initial Impression: YET ANOTHER DOUBLE ROLE!!!  Are they all super heroes?  Is this going to be like Watchmen?  (Hint: no.)

Character: Jackson Stewart
Actor: Jason Earles
Initial Impression: Finally, a person who’s only playing one part.  All of these actors are tremendously young and I bet they like music that I do not care for.

Character: Rico Suave
Actor: Moises Arias
Initial Impression: There is a character on this show named Rico Suave.  I’m really beginning to doubt that Hannah Montana will be better than The Wire.

Character: Robby Stewart
Initial Impression: Billy Ray Effing Cyrus.  Do you think he can still feel his mullet like a phantom limb?

Down to Brass Tacks:

Before we get started, I would be remiss not to mention the theme song that plays over the intro.  Here are the lyrics:

Come on
You get the limo out front (wahoo)
Hottest styles, every shoe every color!
Yeah when you’re famous it can be kinda fun
It’s really you, but no one ever discovers!!!
Who would a thought that a girl like me would double as a super star!?!
You get the best of both worlds!
Chill it out take it slow Then you rock out the show!
You get the best of both worlds!
Mix it all together and you know that it’s the best of both worlds!

Bayside High School.
How do you like them apples, The Beatles?  They just rhymed “worlds” with “worlds!”  As the theme song informs us, Miley Stewart is leading a double life as a rock star.  A rock star named Hannah Montana!  Did you see that coming?  PROBABLY!  As the show begins, we get our first glimpse of the central location: I’m pretty sure it’s the high school from Saved by the Bell.  There are many well-lit meeting places and absolutely no teachers.  It takes me back to my salad days in pretend high school.  We were all so pretend young…

We meet Miley/Hannah as she is trying desperately to snag a date to the junior prom.  Is Miley Cyrus going to talk this way the whole time?  Allow me to answer my own question.  Yes, she is.  I’ve heard her speak before and it didn’t sound like this.  She’s affecting some kind of Yosemite-Sam-by-way-of-Dolly-Parton accent.  I am making it a point to be offended on behalf of the South.  Is she masking her voice to protect her secret identity?  Just wear nerdy glasses, idiot.  

You're not fooling anyone.
Miley is talking with some douchey haircut guy and Emily Osment.  FUN FACT: Did you know that Emily Osment is Haley Joel Osment’s sister?  Is it more likely that they’re siblings or that Haley Joel couldn’t find much work after The Sixth Sense and threw on a wig?  I’m just saying you never see them in the same room.  How's that for a twist, Shyamalan?  The cast has made a conscious choice to pitch the acting between “Elementary School Play” and “teenagers escaping a carnival disaster.”  Every single line is shouted and accompanied by a spit take, eye roll, or pratfall.  The Three Stooges (who are doing shoddy home repairs for God now) would be appalled by the lack of nuance. 

Soon enough, the whisper thin plot kicks in.  Miley is guilted into going to the prom with Aaron…who’s a NERD!  We know he’s a nerd because he is wearing glasses.  Just get contacts, Aaron!  UNLESS you’re trying to mask your secret identity!  This show has so many layers, man!  We are suddenly transported to Miley’s house where we meet Billy Ray Cyrus and Miley’s brother, Jackson “Rod” Stewart.  I would be much more interested in this show if the actual Rod Stewart was playing Miley’s brother.  In my mind his only line would be, “Wake up, Miley, I think I’ve got something to say to you.”  Over and over.  It would be so much more fun than what is currently happening.

Suddenly, the phone rings!  It is American Idol’s David Archuleta!  He wants to record a duet with Miley/Hannah the same night as the prom!  AWW SHIT!!!  Miley is briefly conflicted but reasons that going to the prom with Aaron would make one person happy while recording a song with American Idol’s David Archuleta would make millions of people happy.  Way to take one for the team, Miley!  Miley goes over to Aaron’s house where he is already getting ready for the prom.  She breaks Aaron’s bespectacled heart and cancels their date.  The audience goes awwwww.

Back at The House that “Achy Breaky Heart” Built, Billy Ray and Lil’ Rod Stewart are fighting about Rod’s decision to drop out of college.  Billy Ray tells his son that he doesn’t have to go back to school as long as he doesn’t mind working at a snack bar for the rest of his life.  We are treated to a fantasy sequence of Lil’ Rod Stewart and RICO SUAVE! in bald caps and old age make-up.  What follows is like a tween version of A Christmas Carol except that it’s not, really.  When the fantasy sequence ends Lil’ Rod Stewart has a new outlook on life and, I assume, will go out and buy a fat goose for a crippled British boy.  Billy Ray Cyrus is resplendent in his smug victory.

We meet Miley/Hannah in the studio with American Idol’s David Archuleta.  They are blandly singing a very bland song.  Miley starts having second thoughts about ruining the life of her prom date.  American Idol’s David Archuleta asks Miley what the problem is.  FUN FACT: Were you aware that David Archuleta is our country’s leading exporter of anti-charisma?  It’s true!  Miley explains that she feels bad about missing her prom and American Idol’s David Archuleta is blandly understanding.  They blandly hug and Miley leaves for the prom.  American Idol’s David Archuleta returns to his natural state of soggy inertness.  We are next treated to a montage of Miley getting ready and meeting Aaron to go do whatever Disney people do at the prom.  I’m assuming they slow dance with 6 feet of space between their hips and then sing “Under the Sea.”  Well, that’s about it for Hannah Montana!  I hope you enjoyed it, Internuts.  I’ll see you all back here next week!

Out of Context Quotes:

“Single people.  So sad.”

“I just wasted a good hair flip on Oliver.”

“That’s not my perfume, that’s my safety siren!”

“Theresa is a great girl and I bet for prom she will even shave her back.”

“It’s time for you to cowboy up and act like a man.  Tomorrow morning you’re going down to Malibu Community College.”

“You just spit in my eye!”

“Last minute flights are expensive so we had to dip into our meat money.”

“Grandpa, get out of the refrigerator…that’s their meat!!!”

“It was the onion bagel, wasn’t it?”

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