“I don’t think he really means to tie her to the bed and set the house on fire. I think he’s just trying to send her a strong signal, probably because she was cheating on him.”
I won’t say which one of my little nuggets had this nonchalantly matter-of-fact reaction to hearing Eminem’s “Love the Way You Lie” come on the radio tonight. But I will say that although I respect him as an artist and poet – the video is brilliant and honest, the emotional complexity a welcome refresher from top-40 cliches – this particular song is a poor fit for an album meant to celebrate his struggle against anger and addiction, and an even poorer fit for the prime-time airwaves: young people simply don’t grasp the kind of irony exemplified in the lyrics or Eminem’s choice of musical bedfellows. A point apparently lost on the two artists.