The only thing better than when I get my check in the mail from XXL is when I get the new issue. XXL was my favorite magazine a long time ago and it is still holding down the same quality that I remembered made me fux with it from the gate. The art direction is great. In this digital age of downloading everything there is still something special about print mags and all that goes into rolling them out. Kudos to the masthead of XXL magazine. The current issue is on some collector quality shit.
Fuck around in this economy of diminishing profits and my words might be prophetic. Copp this issue for that reason alone.
I have to tell you that I take my comic book shit hell’a seriously. That is where my first writing influences came from. I wanted to create the stories where my favorite heroes never died and never got old and never failed to be heroic. The best written single issue in my mind is X-Men #137. In this issue Phoenix commits suicide because she realizes that she can’t control the Dark Phoenix anomaly that exists in her body. Shit was a real heartbreaker for me. I wanted her and Cyclops to get married, but that wasn’t what the writers decided her fate would be. That book made me grow up a little bit more than I expected. The world is a real place where even comic books have to reflect the ultimate truth.
Excuse my digression…
This month’s XXL issue features Eminem cast as the Punisher. This is a character that Marvel Comics has taken several attempts at creating a feature film vehicle for. They ended up with a big PU~ at each turn. I like the Punisher character but he is pretty didactic and without the compelling depth of the top tier heroes. The Punisher emerged from his supporting character status under the scripting of Frank Miller. If you aren’t familiar with Miller, but you enjoyed the Sin City and 300 films I advise you to copp the graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns. That shit is the greatest piece of American literature in my mind.
Frank Miller was writing the DareDevil comics and he gave the lead character a series of satellite semi-heroes and villains that were so complicated and crazy it made DareDevil the hottest comic series for that period. There was DareDevil’s love interest Elektra, the Punisher, the Kingpin and the most insane, malevolent bad guy of all time, aside from the Joker, of course. His name was Bullseye and dude was the essence of 7:30. Bullseye was a str8 killer. Not even for money, but for the love of looking people in the eye when he slew them.
I’m sorry that Eminem didn’t select Bullseye as the character to embody the persona he raps as under his new album. When you listen to some of these lead-in singles like 3AM, Bagpipes From Baghdad, My Mom and even Beautiful we are listening to the diary of a madman. A joyous, unrepentant maniac. This album is the type of shit that only Eminem could release. The complex lyrical ability of a Redman on speed, with the cultural cache of a Johnny Cash. The album is rebel rockhead retard revelry. Eminem will certainly have the bullseye on his back as the album seeps into the mainstream. Any school massacre, DUI, terrorist incident or accidental death will be blamed on the Relapse CD. It’s that subversive, and that well written. Eminem isn’t the Punisher. Eminem is clearly the psycho-sociopathic Bullseye.
Bullseye got a contract from the Kingpin to kill Elektra, but when he discovered that she was the lover of his arch-enemy DareDevil he decided to do the job for free. I hated Bullseye for merc’king Elektra. She was hot. Bullseye did not give a fuck. On some secret comic book nerd shit when a character kills someone in cold blood the Comics Code Authority requires that the character who committed the murder has to die. Because Elektra had killed people she was required to die and Bullseye was given an exemption for killing her. Yeah, I know, believe me that there was nearly a nerd riot after Elektra’s assassination coming a year or so on the heels of Phoenix’ suicide.
DareDevil would end up kicking Bullseye’s ass totally and repeatedly, but that is still no reason not to assume the character of Bullseye. There isn’t anyone in the Marvel Universe who has the body count of Bullseye on Earth prime. If you wanted to imagine yourself as a wanton serial killer with no boundaries and no morals then you would have to be Bullseye. I think even the Joker has to give Bullseye his props. Those two together would be a problem. This new Eminem album is a fucking problem too. I almost wish he used the artist name Slim Shady or eM Manson. The character that spits throughout this album is definitely a drug addled lunatic. If the beats were better this album could have been a classic.
The beats by Dr.Dre are so formulaic at this point. The pianos, the drums, the synth shrieks, it’s all that shit he has been using for the last fifteen years. The sound isn’t bad, but it lacks the creativity that Eminem’s lyrics are bringing. There are still some stand out tracks on the album and it plays pretty well on a rainy day. I’ve been loving the DOOM album ‘Born Like This’ for all the lyrical complexity and production that it has displayed. I would love to hear this Eminem album remixed with some of DOOM’s darker production. Then we could really see the effects of excessive pill popping.
With several songs over five minutes and a couple tipping the scales at over six minutes I don’t know how much of this album we will hear on the radio. And frankly, I don’t think radio wants to go this dark into the wormhole of Marshall Mather’s mind. I’m keeping this joint on my iPod though. When it comes to lyrics Eminem is on target like Bullseye, too bad XXL’s cover art wasn’t.