A very smooth transition into his anti-Pop culture ranting. In this line ‘Backstreet’ and ‘Ricky Martin’ act as metonyms for the whole pop culture (which, IMHO, prevent the references from ever sounding dated or out of touch).
Worth noting that in the context of late 90s/ early 00s hiphop, referencing Biggie and Pac is about the most ‘serious’ thing you can do. Eminem has his comic persona down pat but also gives himself free reign to riff on taboo topics, up to and including the murders of two of the culture’s biggest icons.
No offense none taken though, as evidenced in the upcoming ‘pissed off 'cos Biggie and Pac just missed all this’ line.
Em is a modern day master of the unstable psychotic rap persona, and this opening verse is exhibit A. He starts by painting a picture of fairly stable ordinary activity, his calm breathing underlining his efforts to stay, well, normal.
Then, in the next line it quickly disintegrates into full blown insanity and wild surrealism. Eminem enjoys letting us watch his mind unravel. Note the repetition of ‘you might see me’, which almost acts as an anchoring motif… but as we know, Em can’t stay grounded for very long. See here for another example of disintegration into insanity in an opening verse.
Good call on the album length! golfclap
His pronunciation puts emphasis on ‘potent’. Em is notorious for his vicious, controversial, arguably dangerous (or potent) lyrics.
Sly aside to Run DMC’s classic 1986 release ‘Raising Hell’…
This line deserves a golfclap for its simple honesty and clean expression of truth. This whole song is evidence of the hunger (‘rage’) and energy (‘exuberanbce’) that keep Em in battle mode, and therefore relevant.
Subliminal 9/11 references. Em is always on the lyrical edge — he takes it there.
Weird thought: The decline into disjointed madness from a fairly stable opening reminds me of this Eminem verse, almost like Em (and The Doctor — Seuss, not Dre) can’t contain their wild imaginations for longer than one line.
Now, I’m not denying that women are sexual beings with sexual needs — we all are. But at this point in the song, the balance has shifted too far for this to be an innocent celebration of fun times.
There is literally NO female voice to counter the aggressively male demands and assertions offered by Thicke.
The video visually reinforces this by depicting doll-like, anonymous, naked girls, who are entirely subservient to the whims of dancing, clothed, affluent men.
The actions of the girl are interpreted by the male. How the hell does he know that she wants to get nasty? He’s simply projecting his wants upon her behaviour. And she isn’t exactly in a position to argue. Besides, a ‘good’ girl wouldn’t argue anyway, right?