On Wednesday, Eminem released the all-too-long (7 minutes, dude!) music video for his lackluster collaboration with Ed Sheeran, “River.” I’m not going to beat around the bush here—because Eminem has a history of being a terrible man and Sheeran beat my girl Kesha at the 2018 Grammys and couldn’t even be bothered to show up to the goddamn award show—their track somehow feels like the musical embodiment of sad dude indulgence? As does the video? It certainly has a particular boys-will-be-boys energy, the seedling that births a life of toxic masculinity...but let me tell you how I really feel, right?
The video, originally teased on Worldstarhiphop as a real sexy interaction between Em and an anonymous woman, later revealed as part of some elaborate promotional scheme (the Worldstar clip, ripe for tabloid culture, is used in the official visual), mostly attempts to detail the dissolution of a relationship. The result is a series of cropped scenes, a broken room/home (not on the nose at all) and Em playing victim, as he has been known to do. Sheeran shows up to talk about love, or something. I don’t know.
If you are a bro, were once a bro, have a bro, and said bro is going through a breakup, well, do I have the video for you. Everyone else—run far.