Hannah Montana: One In A Million
With all the press and attention given to pop princesses that have fallen into substance abuse, custody fights and DUI convictions it is refreshing to see a show that features talented, clean imaged young people. As a father with a daughter, albeit one older than the viewers here, it is nice to see a show that you can let your kids watch without any trepidation. Thanks to cable television networks can now engage in very specific niche programming. One of the popular, and lets face it, lucrative is the ever growing ‘tween market. These kids between the ages of about eight to fourteen now have a channel that devotes much of its time to quality programming just for them. This channel is Disney, the leader in family programming for many decades. Their foundation series is without a doubt, ‘Hannah Montana’. It has made a star out of the series lead, Miley Cyrus who can sell out a full national concert schedule in only a few minutes. Her concerts are the hottest tickets in town and for good reason, the girl has talent. Not only is her television series great for the kids it is something that is easy for the parents to enjoy as well. Finally there is a show that is truly family entertainment. Some may say that the series is too saccharine sweet but it comes down to whether your want your young, impressionable children watching this or something filled with questionable material.
The show revolves around fourteen year old Miley Stewart (Miley Cyrus) who leads a double life. She is a talented singer but wants to have a normal teen life. This led her to performing under the alias of Hannah Montana. The only ones who know about her secret identity is her family including her Dad Robbie (Billy Ray Cyrus) and brother Jackson (Jason Earles) as well as her two best friends Lilly Truscott (Emily Osment) and Oliver Oken (Mitchel Musso). To become Hannah young Miley dons a blonde wig, sure it would fool anybody in real life but for the kids watching it works. This is the ultimate fantasy for most kids and a good number of adults. As her theme song states Miley has the ‘best of both worlds’; the stability of a normal life and the glamour of pop stardom. For the parents watching this show just let go and let your inner child come out and play, you won’t regret it at all. If you aren’t familiar with this series just ask any of your friends with ‘’tween kids and they will give you every little detail.
Instead to the more expensive season sets for Hannah Montana Disney has been releasing four episode discs every couple of months. While this may seem to the parents as just another way to increase profits it isn’t that bad an idea. ‘Tweens get their favorite episodes spaced over the year so they always have something new to watch. In previous sets there was a central theme to tie the episodes together. The latest release is ‘Hannah Montana: One in a Million’. This is the most eclectic set so far. The theme here is famous guest stars. The term famous here refers to both people the kids will recognize along with a couple put in for the enjoyment of the parents.
Lilly's Mom Has Got It Goin' On
Season two episode 19; November 9, 2007
In this episode it appears that Robbie has become good friends with Lilly’s mother Heather (Heather Locklear). Since both are single parents the attraction is only natural. Initially the girls are overjoyed. They figure that their parents will get married and best friends will move up to becoming sisters. It all starts after a PTA meeting when Heather stays behind to help Robbie clean up. The two adults are flirtatious so the girls immediately jump to conclusions. Since the show takes place in health conscious California Robbie is tired of all the meatless dishes. When Heather is on the phone ordering a pepperoni pizza and a bucket of bacon he has found something in common. Robbie asks Heather on a date and the girls plan their lives as sisters. The date doesn’t go all that well and the girls start to blame the other’s parent. Miley feels that Lilly’s mom is too uptight. Lilly blames Robbie for being too much of a redneck. In the secondary story Jackson trades places with his pint sized, mean boss Rico (Moises Arias) which turns out bad when someone comes after him. Miley and Lilly start fighting and stop speaking to each other until the whole thing is resolved in school over a bucket of fish flung around in true ‘I Love Lucy’ fashion.
Me and Mr. Jonas and Mr. Jonas and Mr. Jonas
Season two episode 16; August 18, 2007
This episode features another Disney ‘tween sensation, musical group the Jonas Brothers. It starts out with Miley decked out as Hannah waiting impatiently with her dad for time in the recording studio. Initially when she finds out the studio is taken by the Jonas brothers she is infatuated, like most ‘tween girls in the world would be. The brothers are equally taken with meeting Hannah Montana as any red blooded ‘tween boy would be. The boys are also impressed with meeting Robbie since he writes all of Hannah’s songs. Hannah begins to get jealous her dad when the boys push her to the side to talk with him. This only increases when Robbie agrees to write a song for the brothers. Miley is afraid that since her dad is a man he might like writing for a boy band better than for her. Miley tries to win her father back any way she can including acting like a tomboy.
I Will Always Loathe You
Season two episode 20; December 7, 2007
Hannah is about to become the youngest person ever to win the ‘International Music Award for Female Artist’ and is understandably excited. Adding to this is the fact that her dad’s mom Mamaw Stewart (Vicki Lawrence) is comng for a visit and to watch her accept. The only fly in the ointment is the Stewart household is expecting another visitor, Miley’s godmother Aunt Dolly (Dolly Parton). Mamaw and Dolly have been feuding for decades over a man they once knew who happened to be Elvis. Now the two have to live under the same roof. They argue over everything including how Hannah should be dressed for the big show. Miley tries to show the two how ridiculous they are by having her and Lilly dress up and imitate the feuding women. Even Jackson gets into things by dressing up as Elvis. All Miley wants is to have the two women in the world she loves the most share a special night but instead they nearly ruin it.
That's What Friends Are For?
Season two, episode 18; October 19, 2007
Miley’s on again/off again boyfriend Jake Ryan (Cody Linley) tells her he wants their relationship to only be platonic. He knows her secret and is a star of a popular teen television series. Miley does her best to convince herself that it is alright until something forces her hand. Hannah’s arch rival, fellow pop star Mikayla (Selena Gomez) has always been ready to pull Hannah down. When Miley discovers that Mykayla has been hired to co-star on the TV show opposite Jake the old green eye monster gets the best of her. She plots to get Mykayla fired from the series. Gomez is now staring in her own Disney series ‘Wizards of Waverly Place’.
Okay, I admit it. I have actually seen some of these episodes before previewing this disc. Even without kids of that age the Disney shows are fun to watch and make a great alternative to the evening news. The Disney Company knows how to release a DVD to this age group. This one is filled with extras that all ‘tweens will go crazy for. First there are two music videos. The first is, of course ‘One in a Million’ and the second ‘True Friends’. Both are done with Miley in her Hannah persona. The next is a behind the set featurette that looks at the top ten character ‘feuds on the Disney line up. It is hosted by Jason Earles. Each item on the count down has a little scene and a short comment by Hannah. Finishing things off is a complete episode of another Disney series ‘That’s So Raven’. This is another disc that the whole family can sit and enjoy together.