"The Monster (ft. Rihanna)" (CD Single)

Music review by
Kyle Jackson, Common Sense Media
"The Monster (ft. Rihanna)" (CD Single) Music Poster Image
Parents recommendPopular with kids
Em rants about the demons of fame again; get edited version.

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 9 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 21 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

Inspirational lyrics are about Eminem's improbable rise to stardom and the troubles and travails he has faced along the way.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Although the lyrics are typically self-centered and egotistical, it's always nice to see the vulnerable and brutally honest side of Marshall Mathers. Specifically, he continues to reference his ongoing struggle with addiction.

Violence

Threatens other MCs, claiming their "blood get spilled" when he raps.

Sex
Language

Explicit version uses the words "f--king" and "s--t" once each. 

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Em references his need for an intervention and his continuing effort to stay sober.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that "The Monster (ft. Rihanna)" is an anthemic, radio-friendly, pop-rap song about struggles with celebrity, sobriety, and sanity. Harkening back to the self-empowerment of earlier tracks like "Lose Yourself" and "Not Afraid," Em veers away from his Slim Shady persona, instead rehashing familiar themes of internal turmoil and a me-against-the-world attitude. The edited version is OK for older tweens and teens, whereas the explicit version features a couple of curse words ("f--k" and "s--t"). 

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byAlexandre M. December 28, 2017
The song is one of Eminem’s worst but it’s still good.The song is fine for a mature 9 years or for a unmature 10.
Adult Written byalex m. December 11, 2017
The song is just okay and is okay for kids 10 and up.
Teen, 16 years old Written bymusicforver November 21, 2013

Borderline Track

The Monster is definitely a new radio smash. It is only explicit because it uses f--k and s--t once each in the third verse. Good track, if you're a fan of... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byCooltiger37 August 9, 2018

So-so Eminem song hampered by lazy edited version

You might as well get your kids the explicit version of this song, as the edited version is so lazy that you can literally hear the swear words (two uses of s--... Continue reading

What's the story?

THE MONSTER (FT. RIHANNA) is the fourth single from Eminem's album The Marshall Mathers LP 2, the alleged sequel to 2000's smash hit Marshall Mathers LP as well as the fourth collaboration with dance-floor queen Rihanna. Following in the footsteps of "Love The Way You Lie" and "Numb," "The Monster" sees Eminem tapping into his emotional, fame-weary side, while Rihanna croons about how she's "friends with the monster that's under my bed."

Is it any good?

Although Em is adept as ever at wordplay, his pity party feels like a tired subject. One can't help but feel like he's said all of this before, and he's losing his flair for saying it in interesting ways. It doesn't help that the beat is a generic, cheesy house track with a vague chorus about trying to "get along with the voices in my head." Maybe some listeners will be able to relate to the internal turmoil portrayed in the song, and others might simply appreciate the fluid flow and steady dance pulse, but fans of hip-hop and the old Eminem may want to avoid this one at all costs. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the abnormal lives of celebrities that come from worldwide acclaim, worship, and criticism. Does the pressure of extreme public visibility and expectations lead to inevitable psychological and substance-abuse problems, as the story so often goes?

  • This is the second time we've seen Eminem team up with fellow chart-topper Rihanna, following the smash hit "Love The Way You Lie." Why do you think these two pop heavyweights continue to collaborate?

  • Eminem's career has had many stages. Why do you think he has chosen to return to his iconic Marshall Mathers LP for stylistic inspiration and the title of his new record?

  •  

Music details

  • Artist: Eminem
  • Release date: October 29, 2013
  • Type: Single
  • Label: Interscope Records
  • Genre: Rap
  • Parental advisory: Yes
  • Edited version available: Yes
  • Last updated: June 19, 2019

Our editors recommend

For kids who love dance-pop and rap

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