Since 1999, the Eminem Show has been one of the most watched in hip-hop. And as much as rap fans have been tuning in to the Rap God’s lyrical masterpiece theater over the years, judging by the official teaser released Friday (December 13) for the highly anticipated video for “Monster,” Em, too, has been watching.
The minute-long clip begins with the The Marshall Mathers LP 2 MC sitting in a dimly lit room as two pendulums swing ominously. A woman, later revealed as Rihanna, enters the room and cues up the television for the seemingly comatose rapper. After the word “Violence” appears on the monitor, images of a young and brash Eminem flash across the screen, as do images of Detroit’s iconic 8 Mile and what appears to be Eminem holding his young daughter Hailie, after the word “Family” is shown.
While Rihanna, clad in all black, examines her collaborator with a psychiatrist’s concern from a chair across the room, the word “Addiction” is shown next on the TV, with shots of Eminem downing copious amounts of illegal prescription pills. Still groggy, Em looks on in a stupor, while the pendulums still swing, slowly now, and the Bajan beauty quietly takes notes.
Suddenly, the cinematic visuals pan out to two heavily armed men flanking what looks like a cage. An unidentified beast snarls from inside as the gunmen look on with rifles locked and loaded. During the intense buildup, none of the hit song’s lyrics or music is played. Only a sequence of credits is used in the waning seconds of the clip to whet the appetites of fans until the video officially debuts: “Eminem,” “Rihanna,” “The Monster” and, of course, the usual cliffhanger, “Coming Soon.”