First of all, it’s probably impossible to be a 13-year-old pop star with a TV show without being just a little bit crazy. Miley had her daddy, Billy Ray, push her into show business, and soon she was sucked into the Disney Channel machine. Maybe you went to a Hannah Montana concert in middle school? That shit was crazy! She literally had to pretend to be two different people at the same concert, and she was like, 15! At 15 years old we were barely fit to be let into public, let alone playing sold out arenas.
Some early incidents, such as the 2008 photoshoot where she was only wearing a sheet, and the infamous fake pole dancing at the 2009 Teen Choice Awards, are tempting to discuss, but they didn’t really have anything to do with her sanity. Like, she wanted to be an adult even though she was still very much a child, let the girl live! No, the really questionable times didn’t come until 2012.
2012 was marked by Miley’s first engagement to Liam Hemsworth and the infamous blonde short haircut. After cutting her hair, Miley said that she had “never felt more herself in her whole life,” which sounds like the kind of thing you say when you’re not sure if you like your haircut but you’re not about to let anyone else know.
The following year ushered in the era, which is basically why we’re here today. Her VMAs performance with Robin Thicke is still one of the most cringeworthy moments in human history, and that was just one night. She followed that up with an entire tour where she flew around on a giant hot dog, not to mention the music video where she flew around naked on an actual wrecking ball. Just cute fun things!!
This also marked an interlude where Miley wore a gold grill, hung out with Mike Will and Juicy J, and thought she could rap. She insisted this was “the real her,” but we all took it about as seriously as your parents took your high school emo phase. Nonetheless, these were not fun times for anyone involved.
This was also the dark moment in history when Miley and Liam broke up. This hit hard, but honestly we couldn’t blame him for not being super into this phase. Her whole thing was basically acting disgusting. Things somehow got weirder in 2015 when she released a surprise album, , which we’ve honestly never even made it all the way through because our acid guy moved out of state.
But suddenly, in 2016, things began to turn around. She started to grow her hair out. She became a coach on . She threw off hip-hop culture like a pair of stilettos at the end of a night of bar hopping. And the best part, she and Liam got back together. This news felt like the official end of a confusing era, and it couldn’t have come soon enough. In terms of music, she had reconnected with her Tennessee roots and basically feigned amnesia that she had ever collaborated with rappers, instead making songs that actually show off her voice and don’t sound like she’s trying to be like Iggy Azalea. We’re into it.
Miley’s new album came out and was mainly normal like we expected, and it’s just so nice to have her back. We like our Miley fun and quirky, but the twerking was a bit
problematic much. Now all we want is beautiful Miley and Liam wedding photos, and maybe (please) for her to go back to the beautiful beachy waves that she had circa 2012. Hair that beautiful is meant to be treasured.