STUDIO:  Disney
MSRP:  $23.99
RUNNING TIME:  588 Minutes
Back Home Again With Miley
2008 Disney Channel Games Kickoff Episode with performance by Miley
Hannah’s Highlights

The Pitch

“Guys, the Disney Channel‘s numbers aren‘t so hot.”  “Yeah, and Disney Records is about to tank.”  “What are we gonna do?”  “Um, hey y’all, I’m Billy Ray Cyrus – y’all might remember me?  I’d like y’all to meet my daughter…”

The Humans

Miley Cyrus, Billy Ray Cyrus, Emily Osment, Jason Earles, Mitchell Musso, Moises Arias

The Nutshell

Normal middle-schooler Miley Stewart leads a double life as “International Pop Superstar” Hannah Montana.  But the kids at school don’t know that.  Because apparently a blonde wig is all you need to dupe every kid in Malibu.

The Lowdown

Ya know, I’ll admit it – I don’t hate Hannah Montana.  I don’t love it, by ANY stretch of the imagination, but it’s a decent little show.  Especially in the first season, as Miley is really written as just a normal girl (a quality that‘s replaced by annoying spoiled-brattiness in later seasons).  The Hannah stuff feels pretty natural and the conflicts that arise from the double life are organic and simple.

Miley is fine as a typical 11-year-old girl, as is Emily Osment, even if they’re both a bit flighty.  Musso kinda gets on my nerves and the Elder Cyrus is a black fucking hole.

“Is Miley Cyrus gonna have to go SCANNERS on a bitch?”

But that Jason Earles kid?  Well, I’ve been watching Hannah Montana for a few years now (against my will) and that kid has been making me laugh since day one.  He’s got great timing and energy.  I’d really like to see him do something outside of the Disney corral.  The show is no iCarly (which trumps everything on the Disney Channel by itself), but it’s harmless for the most part and can be sorta fun.

And yeah – I dig the music.  Fuck off.

The Package

The box art is snazzy – a purple slipcase with Hannah on front over a mosaic of shots from the show.  The show logo (which is a design I’ve always liked for some reason) is all shiny and glittery, as is the purple box.  Definitely a catchy, well-designed box.

Disney Channel is known for its “No Commercials” policy, so instead they fill the space with little 5-minute shows and educational vignettes like this one:  “Disney’s How to Be a Douchebag.”

Feature-wise, you have the Back Home Again with Miley Featurette, where Miley takes us on a tour of her hometown of Nashville, the 2008 Disney Channel Games Kickoff episode with Miley’s performance at the end (The DC Games are kinda fun, if a little tedious) and Hannah’s Highlights.

Hannah’s Highlights is a pain in the ass – there’s one on each disc and it takes an episode from that disc, plays it in full and Miley plays Pop-Up Video once during the show, for about 20 seconds, then never shows back up.  More often than not what she’s talking about isn’t even related to the episode you’re watching.  Waste of space.

OVERALL 5.0 out of 10