This year has been an eventful year for Miley Cyrus. Previously Disney Channel’s golden child, most were shocked to witness Miley’s 180-transformation. When the summer anthem “We Can’t Stop” hit Vevo and broke the record for most views in 24 hours, it became a hot topic of discussion everywhere.
The catchy beats and lyrical perfection kept “We Can’t Stop” at the top of the charts for months. At the surface, it appears to be reckless teenagers trying to grab people’s attention with awkward teddy bear suits, french-fry skulls, and out of control dancing. While, most were more concerned with this “raunchy” and “inappropriate” rendition, I took the time to thoroughly analyze the video. Miley was not just singing about partying and being reckless, but rather she was making a statement about her life. “We Can’t Stop” is the manifestation of her taking control of her life: it is a statement to be heard.
She is untouchable; she is her own.
The first scene shows Miley cutting off an ankle bracelet, signifying her refusal to play by the rules. The rest of the video dilutes the true meaning: dancing on a bed, half naked swimming bodies, “twerk” alphabet soup and faux fur jackets. It becomes easy to get lost in the insignificant details and miss the message this video is trying to
Her scene in the swimming pool clearly defines her gaining control of her life. First, we see her floating with a tag that reads “censored”, demonstrating how she has never been able to be herself. Then, she is holding a doll that looks and is dressed exactly like her: this signifies how she has been a doll to the industry. Finally, when she kisses the doll, she demonstrates the love that she has for herself, and gives the motive for taking back control. Matched by the lyrics of “we can’t stop, and we won’t stop” it is undeniable that Miley is making a statement that no one can dictate what she does anymore.
It is easy to judge at the surface, but “We Can’t Stop” is the perfect example of how artistically ingenious someone could be, while still creating a smash hit. Taking a view of this video through a different lens allows one to hear Miley’s message loud and clear: you are in control and no one else. Regardless of the surface level critiques, she is the topic of discussion everywhere. Miley has taken control as a true genius.