Eminem has a long history of performing for shock value. He also has a lyrical history of using female bodies for his sadistic pleasure and entertainment. We've become so accustomed to it that it's generally dismissed and given the "Whatever" reaction. Lately, he's been at it again, and frankly it's boring.
His latest targets: Lana Del Rey and Iggy Azalea.
Shocking Eminem lyrics have been par for the course since 1999 with "My Name Is"—it's hard to ever take him too seriously. And at times, his pop culture digs have been sick yet skillfully-rapped fantasy. He's such an expert attention-monger that sometimes getting upset means you fell for his schemes. It's sad, though, that even when he brings up assault and rape, no one's even clutching their pearls.
In an audio snippet that surfaced online this week, from his forthcoming Shady XV compilation, Em directs his faux venom at Iggy Azalea. On a song called "Vegas," he raps:
"You're lucky just to follow my ride/ If I let you run alongside the Humvee, unless you're Nicki/ Grab you by the wrist, let's ski/ So, what's it gon' be?/ Put that shit away, Iggy/ You gon' blow that rape whistle on me."
Like us, Iggy is bored with this lyrical approach. Earlier today, she tweeted:
Rarely (maybe never) have I been one to agree with Iggy, but yes, we're all yawning. Eminem's prior hit list has also included Britney Spears, Mariah Carey and Christina Aguilera. (Remember this: "Christina Aguilera, better switch me chairs / So I can sit next to Carson Daly and Fred Durst / And hear 'em argue over who she gave head to first.").
In 2011, on "A Kiss," he rapped: "Tell Lady Gaga, she can quit her job at the post office, she's still a mail (male) lady." In a freestyle that popped up online this month, he mentions punching Lana Del Rey:
"Play nice? Bitch, I'll punch Lana Del Rey right in the face twice, like Ray Rice in broad daylight in the plain sight of the elevator surveillance"
For sure, male pop stars have been fair game in Eminem's manic world, too (Justin Bieber, N'Sync, etc.), and he's frequently mocked the whole pop culture circus in general. But as one of the most deft living rappers on the planet (and one of the few artists who sells like crazy whether his music is good or not), surely he has enough skills to figure something else out and not have to lean on this tired trope of his.