Miley Scandal a Matter of Brand Name

Simple break with Disney image caused uproar
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted May 3, 2008 7:10 AM CDT
Miley Scandal a Matter of Brand Name
Miley Cyrus rides the Jungle Cruise attraction at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on Thursday, May 1, 2008.    (AP Photo/Disney, Garth Vaughan)

The brouhaha over Miley Cyrus' Vanity Fair photo shoot is a “simple misunderstanding” stemming from a clash of brand names, writes Mark Feeney in the Boston Globe. Cyrus’ Hannah Montana is an established Disney brand--and when Hannah met Vanity Fair, a sudden change in that image was the result. “If Hannah Montana were a Fox franchise, would we have heard a peep?” Feeney asks.

“Context is all in popular culture,” Feeney notes, and Cyrus’ context “is one of relentless wholesomeness.” Further, there’s a “rancid tradition” of exploiting young female stars, and one could argue that the Cyrus photo isn’t particularly racy; hers “aren’t bedroom eyes. ...They’re the eyes of a schoolgirl.” Either way, if similar past scandals are any indication, the uproar will quickly be forgotten, Feeney writes. (More Miley Cyrus stories.)

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