You know that you have done something wrong, or right, whenever you get the wagging finger of shame from Cher. Miley Cyrus got just that when the 67 year-old singing and acting legend decided to wade in on the publicity volcano that Miley unleashed after her appearance on the MTV VMA show on August 25 this year.
But amazingly, Cher was not upset by the things that Mr and Mrs Average Viewer USA were bothered by. She saw nothing wrong with the Cyrus twerk-a-thon or the 20 yaer-old pop star grinding her nether regions into singer Robin Thicke’s crotch.
Not surprising, really. Back in the day, Cher was the queen of controversy. She could have given lessons to both Miley and that other master of publicity, Lady Gaga. But to be fair, Cher has done a collaboration with Gaga, so she apparently appreciates Mommy Monster that little bit more than Miley.
But possible favoritism aside, Cher told USA TODAY that it wasn’t the lewd dancing, twerking into Thicke’s crotch, or her playing with the giant foam finger that disturbed her. Cher felt that the performance was “ill-conceived.”
Cher revealed that it would not have bothered her if the Wrecking Ball singer had come out in her birthday suit, if she had “rocked the house.” But according to the long-time diva, the performance was not done well.
The legendary performer explained that Miley cannot dance and that her body “looked like hell.”
The other thing that bothered Cher was Cyrus and that tongue action. The musical icon’s advice to Miley was that if your tongue is coated, do not stick it out. Her main problem was that the whole performance had the appearance of being a last minute decision that had not been rehearsed or pre-planned. It was a spontaneous number that was not smooth enough.
The implication seems to be that until you’ve been in the business for quite a few years, leave your spontaneity at home. As Cher put it, if you are going to go that extreme with your performance, think about it beforehand.
Cher should know. Way back in 1989 she did a music video that made lots of waves and not just because it was filmed on the USS Missouri battleship. In the video, If I Could Turn Back Time, she wore a tiny swimsuit covered by a fishnet body stocking. The stocking did nothing to conceal her bottom in all its tattooed glory.
In those days, MTV was far less open minded about female performers showing off too much skin, whether it was tattooed or not. The video was banned initially and then released only after 9 pm until a new “tamer” video was substituted for Cher’s too revealing one.
The Turn Back Time singer then appeared on MTV in 2010 wearing the same outfit she wore in the controversial music video. Of course the biggest difference was not the outfit, but Cher’s age. She was 64 years-old when she made her appearance on the 2010 VMA awards.
So Cher knows all about controversy, and she knows a thing or two about shocking audiences. But the wagging of her finger at Miley Cyrus was not about the controversy, it was about the lack of professional polish. Cher’s complaint is that the whole thing looked rushed and that coated tongue.
By Michael Smith