If you only had one shot, one opportunity, to seize everything you ever wanted, would you capture it, or just record a turgid love letter to an urban wasteland?
I’m not going to get into the complicated cultural ramifications of Detroit’s long and steady decline into what basically amounts to pre-Apocalypse, post-Apocalyptic disaster. It’s like a bomb went off that killed all the people but left all the buildings intact. Well, kind of intact. There is a lot to love about Detroit, in that condescending way that people love something because they don’t have to be a part of it. But the reality is that it’s a ghost town, and even most of the ghosts are just driving in from the suburbs to hang out at a bar for a couple of hours before driving back out again. Its collapse is beautiful in a way. And completely unacceptable. This is what happens when Katrina happens over decades.
But my point is that as much as a rousing call of support for the city might be more symbolic than actually relevant, because the damage is now 40 years deep, if you ARE going to ask people to open their eyes to the reality of the ruins as a place where people actually live, and draw attention to the potential that still thrives in its industrial roots, at the very least MAKE IT ROUSING. This is the most depressing love letter of all time, Eminem. You might as well be writing to Stan. (Who is also dead.)