He's in my top 10, but I can't answer the question. There are just so much other things we have to consider - and BTW, Eminem has variety, I would say even more than Nas.
Is he better than Nas - does he have a better discography. Yes, less shitty tracks.
Better than Jay-Z, yes, well, he is.
More fun then Redman - this a close one, I heard corny Red jokes too, so yeah.
He doesn't twist words with slang like some of the Clansmen, but he doesn't need to do that - he is incredible while saying shit everyone can understand, and we all know some Wu tracks with 'deep' slang are just dope flows and nothing else - so, better than half of the Clan - yes?
Better lyrically than INS - well, he has a better career and I think Em has more quotables in the end.
Better than Masta Killa - no. Nobody is better than the Masta!!
Better than GZA - well, while GZA got the 'being original with concepts' title, Em eats him everywhere else actually. I don't think I ever heard GZA rapping something about his feelings other than on the ODB tribute track. Just one example...
And yeah, I think he is better than Canibus and Chino XL. Canibus is truly a mashine, but sometimes his geekyness is too much. Just too much. Chino, well, not all of his material is great and all, and sometimes he is really forcing himself to find some obscure metaphor AND FAILS HARD. Still a dope emcee tho.
Better than Mos Def, Common, Talib Kweli - well, yes. Better than every group ever done - yeah.
Eminem actually takes his time when doing songs, like laying punches one after another.
The only two rappers I think could be on his level are One Be Lo and Pharaohe Monch. If those three battled, we would've got our answer [the best thing that could happen would be if these three made a track together....with just punchlines and metaphors busting from all angles...]
Yeah, he isn't the type of rapper who would do songs about human existance [Eyedea], isn't the most rapper when expression emotions [still think nobody could top Sage and Slug at that], BUT otherwise, yeah, he is probably the best rapper ever [mainstream for sure]
bring back begongo!!