Eminem's "The Monster," Featuring Rihanna: Why This Song Sucks

Categories: Serrano Time

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Marco Torres
[Editor's Note: In his column Serrano Time, award-winning writer and goofball Shea Serrano writes about his life and times.]

Song: Eminem's "The Monster," featuring Rihanna

History: Eminem did a freestyle battle. He went up against Papa Doc and choked. It was pretty sad. Then some more sad stuff happened to him. But then he did another freestyle battle and, if you can even believe it, he ended up going against Papa Doc again and THIS TIME HE WON BY MAKING PAPA DOC CHOKE. That's a little thing called true justice. After that, Rihanna was like, "Oh my God, this dude has mad skills. I need to do a song with him." So they did some pretty good songs together. And then they made "The Monster."

Atmospherics: Kind of like what the teen section at Nordstrom sounds like. Except teens don't shop at Nordstrom, so it's always, like, someone's uncle buying jeans from there. That's what this song sounds like: Someone's uncle trying to buy cool jeans from Nordstrom.

Analysis: Snoozefest. I wish there were a more nuanced, more clever way to say that, but every time I try to think of one my brain jumps clean out of skull and sprints right the fuck down the street. That's not a metaphor or anything. My brain literally grew these tentacle-like things and it was splitskis, bro. It's like Krang from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

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YouTube screengrab
Krang
Remember him? He was the grossest. HE WAS A FUCKING LIVING, BREATHING BRAIN LIVING INSIDE OF A ROBOT. Gone.

But look:

On 1999's "My Name Is," Eminem's very first single from his very first proper album, back when he was still interesting and had not been hollowed out yet:

Hi, kids!
Do you like violence?
Wanna see me stick nine inch nails through each one of my eyelids?
Wanna copy me and do exactly like I did?
Try 'cid and get fucked up worse than my life is?

That's clever and fun and acerbic and biting and insightful. I can't immediately think of a better opening salvo from a modern American musician.

Here's how Eminem opens 2013's "The Monster," the 93rd single from his 25th album:

I wanted the fame but not the cover of Newsweek
Oh well, guess beggars can't be choosy

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1. Newsweek? Bro, that's the most boring shit of all. Remember when Newsweek put Sarah Palin on the cover in jogging shorts? That was them being divisive. Newsweek is like when they show that movie Nerds on AMC and then AMC zooms all the way the fuck in so you can't see any boobs during the panty raid scene.

2. Did you really just say "Oh well," Eminem? In the first verse of a song called "The Monster"? Because, I mean, there just aren't enough sighs.

3. Did you use the word "choosy," rather than "choosers"? Because everyone knows the expression is "beggars can't be choosers." You can't just make up a new expression to rhyme with Newsweek, which you shouldn't even be talking about in the first place.

Let's continue:


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36 comments
Tuyen Hua
Tuyen Hua

It's one thing to have an opinion but another to sound like a complete idiot making it... Please review music when you actually know what you are talking about or better yet, don't.

Sally Olson
Sally Olson

I don't care about the song, I'm just baffled by what RFT posts here sometimes. Your featured articles are so shallow and lack substance. I feel like I'm reading a high school newsletter.

Frank Corona
Frank Corona

After "reading" two RFT articles in one day. I am inspired to become a writer. I have written grocery lists that are more interesting and cohesive. Though, I am in full agreement that Vanilla Ice 2 and whoever that other person is, are hacks of the highest order.

Jenny Sandifer
Jenny Sandifer

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that this song sucks because it is, in fact, a song by Eminem and Rihanna.

Alyssa Jones
Alyssa Jones

Stop trying to make this column happen. It's not going to happen.

Steve Horak
Steve Horak

That was the worst article I have read in awhile.

Josiah Rosen
Josiah Rosen

Of all the horrific songs from the past few years ... Really? Eminem is one of the last remaining artists in any genre. This is a great example of why St. Louis will never be a music city. Please hire a real music journalist.

David Cromdale
David Cromdale

Is that ucktard ever not mad when he be rappin, lol?!!!

Ryan Masters
Ryan Masters

Eminem has sucked for awhile now. His name sells his music.

Audacious Melodious
Audacious Melodious

Also check out The Midwest Vinyl Vixen...Vinyl Bitchie music is available all over online and in Vintage Vinyl

Bridget Aholt Blair
Bridget Aholt Blair

Lol, Jamie!!! I think you completely baffled folks with the use of misogyny. Love it!

Jamie Van
Jamie Van

Yeah, young women love misogyny.

Jamie Van
Jamie Van

I'm not gonna read it, but am I wrong in assuming it sucks because it's Eminem?

Jeff Duerst
Jeff Duerst

Has the critic who wrote this heard the rest of the album? Or his last album? Turn off the radio, and critique a song that wasn't meant for the political correctness of today's airwaves. Younger women (radios major demographic) love that kinda stuff. Now if ya wanna dog on Rihanna that's fine and personally I don't really care for that song, but to say em needs saving is bs.

Kristy Meyer
Kristy Meyer

See i knew you guys had some good stuff in there :). thanks for the shares!

Brittani Bethmann
Brittani Bethmann

Second time RFT has pissed me off in a week lol but i still love u

Tony Bologna
Tony Bologna

If you like pop rock stuff Kristy you should check out Last Nights Vice. Totally super stuff, check out the track Perfect Little Noise or Dance While You Still Have Time. They're both on spotify. :)

Kari Collins McCormick
Kari Collins McCormick

Everyone likes what they like - it's kind of a waste of time to say that any song sucks, because millions of people will likely disagree.

Jim Wood
Jim Wood

Anything not local that I can listen to?

Kristy Meyer
Kristy Meyer

I'd like to request that you stop telling me what tunes suck, and start telling me the ones that are awesome.

Jesda Ulati
Jesda Ulati

The Rihanna half is the worst half of this shit sandwich.

Christian Knobloch
Christian Knobloch

And this is different from every other Eminem song because . . .

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