By Paul Cantor
Nicki Minaj told MTV News’ Sway Calloway that she was still in shock after working with Eminem. A day after the song in question, “Roman’s Revenge,” leaked online, shock is an understatement to describe the tune.
First, there’s Nicki in her Roman Zolanski character, throwing glaringly obvious shots in the direction of hip-hop’s former Queen in residence, Lil’ Kim, who she’s been trading insults with all year. Then there’s Eminem’s verse, which finds him embodying his Slim Shady alter ego, which hasn’t been seen much since Em’s Relapse LP.
On Twitter, fan reaction to the song itself has been mostly positive.
“ 'Roman's Revenge' by @NICKIMINAJ is giving me frills - Love it start to finish, especially the English accent!" said @AdeleRoberts wrote. "Bring on Pink Friday!”
And @EverettDeLorean said, “This is the first time I've heard a rapper hang with Eminem lyrically and flow wise on a track. 'Roman's Revenge' is heavy as heaven.”
Others are giving credit to Nicki for finally delivering a heavy handed lyrical blow to Lil Kim.
@GuiltyReece wrote, “I been waitin on @NICKIMINAJ 2 shut Lil Kim's ass up! She handled it like a pro. ROMAN'S REVENGE. Let the work speak 4 itself! *clap clap*”
@NakiaNov23 concurred, “I jus let my sister hear 'Roman's Revenge.' Lmao! She was like 'Oh Nicki Went Ham, she jus sh--edd on Kim wack ass!'"
Still, not everyone was pleased. The Roman Zolanski character and the Kim beef, which isn’t really a topic that every casual fan knows about, are leaving people puzzled. Beyond that, the song just isn’t clicking for some fans.
“I just don't understand 'Roman's Revenge,' ” said @ashjaybaybay.
@ShanaTheMost agreed, “Sooo the only thing hot about 'Roman's Revenge' is the beat. I can't get into it.”
“Its really bad when you feature someone your song and they just str8 kill you on your own song," said @shazamxnyc. "Eminem killed 'Roman's Revenge.' "
And @Meeoowww_Bitch wrote, “OK, I just heard 'Roman's Revenge.' Yea, Nicki & Em killed it but I can't see myself adding this to my playlist ... its not catchy to me."
“Eminem really helped Nicki on Roman's revenge. Cause that track was going for fail if he didn't feature,” concluded @masen_xo.
While reviews are mixed, if you're a fan that missed Nicki displaying her talent for pure rhyme, "Roman's Revenge" was just what the doctor ordered.
What do you think about “Roman’s Revenge”? Did Nicki dis Lil Kim hard enough? Who had the better verse, Nicki or Eminem? What do you think about Nicki’s Roman Zolanski character? Tweet us at @MTVRapFix or tell us in a comment below!