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The Backstory Behind ‘Bigfoot,’ Nicki Minaj’s Megan Thee Stallion Diss Track

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On Sunday night, Nicki Minaj released a Megan Thee Stallion diss track called “Bigfoot,” as she’d promised to do earlier last week. The rapper teased the track in an Instagram live shortly after Megan released her song “HISS” on Friday, which features a line that many interpreted to be a dig at Minaj and her husband, Kenneth Petty. Over the weekend, Minaj tweeted heavily about her beef with the Traumazine rapper and made sure to let her feelings about Megan’s song be known.

Though the roots of their discord date back further, the feud hit its latest apex with the release of “HISS.” On it, Megan raps the line, “These hoes don't be mad at Megan, these hoes mad at Megan's Law. I don't really know what the problem is, but I guarantee y'all don't want me to start."

Many interpreted the line about Megan’s Law, which requires sex offenders to be put in registries that are publicly accessible, as a reference to Petty. In 1995, Petty pleaded guilty to the attempted rape of a 16-year-old girl. In 2022, he was sentenced to three years probation and one year of house arrest after failing to register as a sex offender when he moved from New York to California.

In response, Minaj released a track with no shortage of insults hurled at Megan. “Bad bitch, she like six foot, I call her Big Foot/The bitch fell off, I said, ‘Get up on your good foot,’” Minaj raps in the first verse, referencing the 2020 shooting in which rapper Tory Lanez shot at Megan’s feet. She goes on to claim Megan lied about getting shot, alludes to Megan’s late mother, and insults her rap flow. The song ends with a minute-long spoken word section in which Minaj warns that she has “a lot of tea” and a “second installment” still to come. Minaj, who released her latest album in December, said on X that she has “five extra songs” that she’s ready to release. 

“Bigfoot” was largely poorly received. Immediately after its release, X was filled with criticism on various elements of the production. “This cannot be the same woman who made ‘Itty Bitty Piggy’ … I am astounded by how bad this is. From the flow, to the punchlines,” one person tweeted. “Nicki Minaj allowed her own bitter jealousy to take her crown. Her fans won’t care, which is fine. But this is sad to watch.”

Another post read, “Reciting tweets we’ve already seen over a beat? Is this TikTok???”

It’s unclear exactly when Minaj began to take issue with Megan, but the pair previously worked together on Megan’s 2019 song “Hot Girl Summer,” one of her first mainstream hits. Some on social media have suggested that the origin of their supposed feud began when Minaj mentioned on Queen Radio that someone told her to drink alcohol while she was pregnant with her son. Minaj’s fans deduced that it was Megan and posted about it on X. Megan responded to the post and said, “LIE.”

Read More: Megan Thee Stallion Has a Warning For Her Haters on ‘HISS’

Some also speculate that Megan’s decision to work with Cardi B on “WAP” might have been seen as a slight toward Minaj due to the history between Minaj and Cardi B, two New York rappers whose rocky relationship culminated in an infamous fight at the Harper’s Bazaar Icons party in 2018. Additionally, Minaj’s 2023 song, “Red Ruby Da Sleaze,” contains a line referring to horses, where she says, “Seven-hundred on 'em horses when we fixin' to leave (Uh-oh)/But I don't f-ck with horses since Christopher Reeves.” This line was interpreted to be about Megan, referencing the “Stallion” in her stage name, but neither rapper addressed it.

Read More: How Megan Thee Stallion’s Summer 2019 Motto ‘Hot Girl Summer’ Set the Internet Ablaze

Megan has yet to comment publicly on Minaj’s response to her song. But she appeared on The Breakfast Club radio show on Friday morning after her song dropped to talk about the meaning behind it. “Every time one of these motherf-ckers uses Megan Thee Stallion's name, they get 24 hours of attention,” Megan said on the show. “I’m saying, a hit dog gon’ holler. That’s it. Whoever feel it, feel it.”

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Write to Moises Mendez II at moises.mendez@time.com