It’s always assumed that Disney Channel has its finger on the pulse of the tween set, and usually it does. But new series Hannah Montana definitely misses a beat or two.
Miley Cyrus — daughter of singer Billy Ray Cyrus, who plays her father on the show — stars as Miley Stewart, the mild-mannered alter ego of pop superstar Hannah Montana. Miley goes to tremendous lengths to keep her other life secret from her friends and classmates.
In the first episode, her best friend Lilly, played by Emily Osment, sister of Haley Joel Osment, lands tickets to the Hannah Montana concert. Miley has to decline her invite without revealing her double life.
Lilly discovers Miley’s secret during a backstage encounter with her idol Hannah Montana and some awkwardness ensues, but in the end, their friendship endures.
The second episode is similar, but this time it’s her buddy Oliver (Mitchel Musso), obsessed with Hannah. Oliver is also let in on the secret and awkwardness and friendship ensue. Again.
For the most part, Hannah Montana touches on most sitcom clichés. All of this has been done before, and better, the only difference this time is that a former one-hit-wonder (and star of the i: Independent Television, formerly Pax TV, series Doc) and his daughter are the stars — oh wait, that was partially covered by Will Smith.
Unfortunately, Saved by the Bell was more dignified than Hannah. It’s hard to imagine that any child starting to come of age wouldn’t be insulted by this series. Tweens are much better served by That’s So Raven, or even digging up old episodes of Boy Meets World.
Hannah Montana debuts March 24 at 8 p.m. ET on Disney Channel.
A&E’s Odious Pitch
A&E Network hitches its wagon to the reality horse once again with King of Cars. If you don’t like automobile salesmen, you won’t like this show.
Joshua “The Chopper” Towbin, the self-proclaimed “King of Cars,” boasts that his dealership, Towbin Dodge, is the No. 1 dealership in the country. He urges his salesmen to use high-pressure tactics to close deals.
A&E’s look at the business from the sales side does nothing to paint these guys in a sympathetic light. Most people are not fond of salesmen and this show will do nothing to dispel their dislike.
King of Cars bows April 4 at 10 p.m. ET on A&E.
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