billy ray is bummed.
his life has gone south, literally and figuratively, and he's not certain why.
but he's pretty sure the devil is involved.
Billy Ray Cyrus says the Disney TV show "Hannah Montana" destroyed his family, causing his divorce and sending daughter Miley Cyrus spinning out of control.
He said the Cyruses and their six children were all baptized before leaving Tennessee for Los Angeles to inure themselves against evil and he believes Satan is attacking his family.
the devil, presumably, wasn't involved when little miley was riding the wave of disney stardom, raking in cash for the cyrus family. or, you know, maybe he was.
because, really, who could've predicted that a few years of celebrity, money, and uncritical adulation would adversely impact a young girl and her family in ways not akin to sunshine and bubble gum?
no, this outcome was not about bad choices and questionable parenting. heavens, no. this is a clear-cut case of bedevilry.
"It's the way it is," Cyrus said. "There has always been a battle between good and evil. Always will be. You think, 'This is a chance to make family entertainment, bring families together...' and look what it's turned into."
family entertainment. didja ever watch the show, billy ray? i mean, you must have...you were in it. remember? you played the clueless father of the disneyfied princess, who played dear old dad like a mystified chump. her character was full of adorably mouthy sarcasm and yours was full of mumbly bumbling.
hanna montana is part of a disney roster that portrays kids as worldly-wise and adults as dolts. not coincidently, the sassitude demonstrated by today's disney kids is imitated with charming precision by kid-viewers (or maybe that's just at our house).
is this the kind of "bringing families together" family entertainment you were referring to, billy ray? was the devil responsible for that expression of family values, or did you maybe just need some different writers?
but no, that might've turned off the fans, not to mention the money machine. and no one wanted that. surely a divorce and an out-of-control-spinning daughter is a small price to pay to feed the hype.
billy ray's gq interview reads like he's still the dumbfounded dad. he doesn't know how it all went wrong, only that it did and that it's his fault. or the devil's fault. or some combination thereof.
random metaphysical question: if the family's troubles were, in fact, the devil's handiwork, isn't billy ray off the hook?
since we're looking askance at disneyfied pop culture, we'd be naive indeed not to consider the possibility that the gq interview, and the attention it's generating, is well-planned. that billy ray's parenting philosophy includes the timeless classic, "any publicity is better than no publicity."
in which case we'd have to conclude that in the battle of good and evil, miley's dad has met the enemy...and it's wearing a mullet.