The XXL 2012 Freshman Class Is Angering the Internet

As it does every year, XXL has just released its 2012 “Freshman Class” cover, a collection of MCs the magazine has decreed to be ascendant, near-world-conquering types. Considering the basic facts of the exercise — the max number of people that can be represented, the implied attempt at diversity in the selections, the sheer impossibility of getting a bunch of rappers together in the same room at the same time — the omissions and inclusions on this list always piss people off. So, congratulations to: Machine Gun Kelly, Danny Brown, Kid Ink, Future, Roscoe Dash, Hopsin, Macklemore, Don Trip, Iggy Azalea, and French Montana. Now here are the manners and reasons as to why people are mad at you on the Internet right now.

Because You Don’t Belong on the XXL List

This one’s split into two parts. Part one: You Don’t Belong Because You’re Not Famous Enough. Sorry, Hopsin, Kid Ink, Macklemore.

Part two: You Don’t Belong Because You’re Too Old.

And then there’s Danny Brown, who is at the relatively advanced rap age of 30 (that’s why his mixtape was called XXX) but did just have his breakthrough year, and therefore is totally validly represented. Congratulations on your much deserved placement, dude.

Because Other Rappers Should Have Taken Your Spot

Brooklyn’s Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire would have been an excellent cred-boosting selection for the list, but didn’t make the cut. Should he be pissed? He is not pissed! (OK he’s maybe a little pissed).

Also not mad: Cleveland’s Chip tha Ripper. Not mad at all. Nope. Not even a little bit.

Meanwhile, one would have assumed Azealia Banks — who is already famous enough to pal around with Kanye and various snooty fashion designers — is absent because she turned down the list. So why’s she so upset about Iggy Azalea being on there?

So is she jealous after all? Or is there something more nefarious going on?

Oh. OK. Got it.

And the big question of the day is: did A$AP Rocky turn down the cover, or was he purposefully left off? In a recent radio interview, Rocky responded to that question ambivalently, saying, “Nah, not even, I was busy [when they asked],” then adding, “I don’t know who they spoke to [but] I wouldn’t mind doing it.” If you’re listening to Queens’ Action Bronson, though, Rocky just said no:

On that note: wouldn’t Action have been a good pick? Was he left off for any particular reason? Is he feeling slighted today? Of course not. He’s got bigger things brewing:

Because You Wore a Bear Hat on the Cover

French Montana wore a hat that is the head of a bear on the cover. It looks awesome. Some people disagree.

And that, XXL Freshman Class of 2012, is your complete list of why people are mad at you on the Internet.

Filed Under: Danny Brown, French Montana, Future, Music

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Amos Barshad has written for New York magazine, Spin, GQ, XXL, and the Arkansas Times. He is a staff writer for Grantland.

Archive @ AmosBarshad