Detroit/ Fun & Entertainment
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Published on May 15, 2024
Eminem's Slim Shady Persona Pronounced 'Dead' in Detroit News Ad Touting New Album TwistSource: Wikipedia/Snowdrop Productions, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

In what appears to be a unique marketing gambit for his upcoming album, an "obituary" for Eminem's alter-ego, Slim Shady, was slyly printed in Monday's Detroit News. The three-paragraph piece, disguised as an advertisement and without direct mention of the artist's name, heralds the final act for the notorious persona in line with the album's theme, "The Death of Slim Shady (Coup de Grâce)." Eminem himself remains alive, and typically vocal, but his Slim Shady alter-ego has reportedly met its end — as far as the narrative for the new album goes.

The rapper, a product of Detroit's 1990s underground rap scene, first catapulted the Slim Shady persona to fame with the hit "My Name Is" in 1999. According to the obituary published in The Detroit News, fans will never forget the controversial rapper who led them down a road that glorified a demonstrably nihilistic worldview. The copy highlighted his "complex, and tortured existence" and expressed a wish for peace in the afterlife for the character.

Mirroring the theatricality of Eminem's career, the faux obituary garnered attention by treating Slim Shady as if he were a separate entity. As reported by Rolling Stone, it's an effort that reaches for a Mandela Effect-level of remembrance, suggesting that the character's legacy is as unresolved as the fictional death itself. The narrative plays into Eminem's fraught relationship with the media, a theme frequently explored in Slim Shady's lyrics.

The album announcement was made following Eminem's appearance at the NFL Draft, and teased further by a fake "Unsolved Mysteries"-style show titled "Detroit Murder Files," according to The New York Post. In a trailer for the album, 50 Cent was seen making less than amicable remarks about Shady, stating, "He's not a friend, he’s a psychopath." The rapper's mentor, Dr. Dre, has been on the promotional trail as well, spilling the beans on an upcoming album during a stint on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" This marks Eminem's 12th studio album and follows the successful "Music to Be Murdered By" from 2020. The exact release date for "The Death of Slim Shady (Coup de Grâce)" remains under wraps.