By Neil Drumming
Updated October 15, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT

…Or is Eminem’s new single so desperate a stab at offending that it must be a joke? Once the king of controversy, Em now strings together rhymes about farting, streaking, and molesting kids on the puerile, utterly uninspired ”Just Lose It.” Rumor has it that Encore, his upcoming fifth solo album, has a strong political bent, and smart money believes the single and its manic video are a red herring, a slapdash diversion meant to misdirect the media hounds until the incendiary MC bows with his most mature polemic yet. At least that’s what we’re hoping.