The Biggest Rap Battle of 2018: Eminem VS. Machine Gun Kelly


Ashley Mieles, Reporter

This year has been the year of hip-hop ‘beefs.’ The latest controversy in the entertainment industry has been between long-time “Rap Legend,” Eminem and former XXL Freshman, Machine Gun Kelly. This was brought about by the noticeable sneak disses on Eminem’s surprise album “Kamikaze” that made its debut on Aug. 30 in homage to Slim Shady. Shots sent on tracks like “Not Alike” said, “The people you run with are thuggin’ But you’re just a wanna be Gunna,” referring to MGK not being so-called “hard” and about the “thug life” as he always claims. Such lyrics caught not only the attention of Slim Shady’s fans, but MGK himself. He did not take Eminem’s commentary lightly, coming back with his own response.  

MGK released his dis track “Rap Devil,” a play on Eminem’s own “Rap God,” on Sept. 3, 2018. The track includes lyrics such as, “Still can’t cover up the fact your last four albums is as bad as your selfies” and “Somebody help your mans up, Knees weak of old age, the real Slim Shady can’t stand up!”

Eminem later responded with his own response track called “Killshot” on September 14, 2018. Not only did this cause controversy over which track was lyrically better, but it also caused both fan bases to debate over who they thought really won the feud. Radio stations such as Hot 97 and 105.1 commented on who they thought was better within the dis tracks and throughout the artist’s rap track record whether it be the comparison of Grammys Eminem has won,  to the features MGK is known for .

Since this feud happened, both rappers have been confronted about their roles in this popular beef. Even though they both appear to be unbothered in various interviews, such as NY radio show, The Breakfast Club, fans have already chosen sides. Fans have continued to display their loyalty through social media in the comments section and, some may even say, trolling each others rival.

Taking this issue from social media, The Campus took to the John Adams High School hallways and asked students and faculty what they thought of the matter. Out of the 30 students asked, only three were in support of the rapper Machine Gun Kelly. These students based their opinions solely on the raps themselves and not taking into account previous work and reputation. Although all three admitted to being Eminem fans, they all felt that when it came down to the disses, MGK was the winner.

Senior Caitlyn Santiago claimed, “Not only was his rap clever, but the beat was valid,” which begged the follow-up question, “How did Eminem’s rap compare?” Santiago continued, “I felt that MGK had a better dis track; Em’s just wasn’t as good as his because MGK’s track felt more like a deliberate diss on Eminem’s life”

Senior Tiffany Leverock  stayed on the other side, stating, “I don’t like many rap artists, but Eminem’s track was totally worth it because the beats were nice and his flow was unique”.

In regards to why Eminem’s supporters felt like he won, it appears to be a mix of loyalty due to growing up listening to him and also feeling that he is the overall better rapper lyrically.  According to most of those surveyed, Eminem is and will always be the “G.O.A.T” [Greatest Of All Time].

Spanish teacher  Carmen Camberrio, proclaimed, “Eminem female Stan.” Guidance Counselor Prateema Dhane and Dean/English teacher Denisa Mejia also thought he won because he is a “legend” and “recognizable.” The overall 27 out of 30 votes given by students were in favor of  Eminem because of his popularity and his rap sheet. The tracks don’t represent everything each artist can do and some even called MGK bold for targeting someone with Eminem’s stature. Eminem is credible and has been for his career, and they all claim that the track record of his career is something that should be talked about when talking about the feud. When it came down to John Adams votes, the majority is in favor of the infamous Slim Shady.