Judging by Miley Cyrus' shocking MTV music video performance last Sunday night, you could be forgiven for thinking to 20 year-old former child star had gone off the rails as a result of years of sugar pop and smiles.

Miley Cyrus
Miley: Is It All Part Of The Plan?

Wearing a googly-eyed bear bodice which was ripped off to reveal a nude, latex bikini, Miley performed her signature dance routine - the twerk - whilst gyrating, grinding and lolling her tongue at her fellow performers, the live audience and MTV's cameras.

Cyrus' routine may have been rehearsed but she could not have prepared herself for the backlash of horror, confusion, revulsion and a smattering of admiration that she received from Twitter and the press.

Miley Cyrus Teen Choice
Miley Cyrus Has Emerged Like A Twerking Butterfly From Her Chrysalis Of Raunchiness.

You'd imagine that Cyrus would be stung by the strong response she's received and would vow to tone her shows down in future. However, it appears that raunchy routines and provocative performances will be a permanent fixture on the Miley Menu now she has chopped her hair and waved "bye bye" to her former 'Hoedown Throwdown' Disney star self.

Watch A Video Of Miley's MTV VMAs Performance:

Howard Bragman, seasoned Hollywood publicist, author, and good friend of Miley's father, country singer Billy Ray Cyrus, has explained how the shock and horror surrounding the young star is all part of the plan. "I think it's hard for parents to watch, but that's part of having a kid in entertainment," he said, via Business Insider. He went on to say that compared with her safe past, she "has a different kind of path ahead of her."

"I know Billy Ray really well; I've worked with him and he's my friend, and I think he adores Miley and respects her talent a great deal," adds Bragman. "He understands that this is how it works in this business."

Miley Cyrus Tongue
Miley Wants The World To Know She's No Disney Princess Any More.

Bragman also warned that the 'We Can't Stop' singer's future career trajectory shouldn't be judged based upon the negative press she's received - let's not forget that the media attention she's recently received has helped bring her music to a new audience and has seen her sales boosted after her much derided dancing. "It's a rite of passage, particularly with these Disney girls. They seem to want to say 'hey, I'm not that little kid anymore, I'm a grown up lady.

Effectively she killed Hannah Montana Sunday night," says Bragman. "Long live Miley Cyrus, I think that was the message."