Miley Cyrus’ VMA Performance: Is All Publicity Good Publicity?

Miley Cyrus’ performance at Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards is one that will be branded into everyone’s minds for a while. Although the performance left most viewers feeling uncomfortable, reactions to Miley’s moves dominated the Twitter-sphere with a peak of 306,100 tweets per minute. To compare, the Super Bowl blackout garnered 231,000 tweets per minute, and last year’s election night saw a peak of 327,452 tweets per minute – just barely topping the “new” Miley’s stage debut.


Remember the days when Miley was still an innocent Disney Channel star, playing the tween-loving character, Hannah Montana? The once sweet and G-rated starlette has now rebranded herself into a twerking nightmare. However, we think she might be getting just what she was looking for – attention. Let’s face it, it’s almost been a week and viewers are still in shock! Between her obscene dancing, lack of clothing and, well, strange use of her tongue, we have a feeling that Miley is laughing all the way to the bank.

Apparently, her twerking is working. Miley’s buzz-worthy performance debuted just in time for the release of her new album, Bangerz, which is set to roll out in October. Between Miley and Lady GaGa, there seems to be a competition going for who can shock the audience the most. Though, we can’t help but wonder: was this good or bad publicity? Moreover, is there such a thing as bad publicity anymore?

Surely Miley has disappointed some of her fans, but, as her song so appropriately puts it—“It’s [her] party [she] can do what [she] wants.” Although she may have come off as a little desperate, we have to admit that we re-watched the performance on YouTube, and shamelessly forwarded it to our family and friends. And we weren’t the only ones – in true millennial fashion, unending memes and gifs have been created by viewers and gone viral, featuring everything from audience reactions, such as the photo of the Smith family with jaws dropped, to images of Miley sticking her tongue out next to a giraffe doing the same. For the few who still haven’t seen the act, we bet that won’t last long.

Miley Cyrus

So, is that what this is all about? Are shocking videos and performances the only way to stay relevant in the entertainment industry? We don’t know the answer, but we do know that Miley is definitely getting the attention she was looking for. No one may know what she will surprise us with next, but there are plenty of Americans out there who can’t wait to see what it is– no matter how disturbing it may be.

While we do think there are classier ways to promote an album and entertain America, such as that of Beyonce or Carly Rae Jepsen, there is no doubt that Miley Cyrus stole the show this past Sunday. It is unfortunate that this kind of behavior was exposed to so many young age groups, but this desperate coming-of-age act is not new to the VMA’s, and we probably should not expect the trend to stop anytime soon. Parents, keep your parental controls on next year, as there will always be another Britney, Christina and Madonna moment to look forward to.

Alas, we’ve learned to expect a shocking performance or two from the VMA’s. We’ll let you be the judge as to whether Miley Cyrus’ performance was good or bad publicity.

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