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Hannah Montana: The Complete First Season - family and children's DVD / television series review
Unrated by the MPAA curledupdvd.com rating: 4 1/2 stars
Actors: Miley Ray Cyrus, Emily Osment, Billy Ray Cyrus, Jason Earles, Mitchel Musso
  Studio: Walt Disney Video
DVD release: 18 November 2008   Runtime: 594 min. (4 discs)
Format: Box set, Color, Dolby, DVD-Video, NTSC
DVD features: Audio tracks (Dolby Digital 2.0 - English, Spanish), Subtitles (English for the Hearing Impaired, Spanish), "Back Home Again with Miley," 2008 Disney Channel Games Kickoff Episode, Hannah Highlights - Select episodes w/ pop-up trivia and cast interviews

My eight-year-old daughter is a huge Hannah Montana fan, and after purchasing many of the short three-to-six-episode compilation DVDs, we were thrilled to see that the entire first season was finally going to be released on a four-disc set. All 26 episodes of the 2006-2007 season are included, many of which she had never seen before. Our cable on demand tends to re-run the same ones over and over, and it was a sweet treat to have so many choices.

It's fun, even as an adult, to watch Hannah Montana from its beginning. Each episode has a little mini "lesson" on how to be a good friend, respecting your parents, and the consequences of lying, among many other themes. The show is filled with humor, music, and good clean fun appropriate for any age.

For those who have been hiding under a rock and don't know what the show is about, here it is in a nutshell. Miley Cyrus plays Miley Stewart, a young girl who has moved to California to pursue a singing career. She's a pop idol known to the world as Hannah Montana. The twist: only a select few people know, including her dad, Robbie Ray (Billy Ray Cyrus, Miley's real-life dad), her brother, Jackson (Jason Earles), and her best friend, Lilly (Emily Osment), who actually finds out about it in the first episode on disc one. Later, she does reveal herself to a couple of others, including friend Oliver (Mitchell Musso), but for the most part, everyone at school and around her life is in the dark about her "alter ego" Hannah Montana.

Adults will probably have to suspend a bit of disbelief, because we all know that, logically, this could never happen. But it sure makes for a fun show for the tween set, and if you can get past the factual aspect, the humor and excellent singing and acting carry the show very far. It doesn't hurt that there are some excellent recurring guest stars in Dolly Parton and Carol Lawrence. Not many extras are included, but there is a fun short "Back Home Again with Miley," where Miley and Billy Ray return to Tennessee for Christmas. It's a great look into Miley's life.

I highly recommend Hannah Montana: The Complete First Season. It's an extremely worthwhile investment for the Hannah fan in your life, as it will allow fans to watch and re-watch favorite episodes again and again.
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reviewed by Melissa Parcel
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