Sexual misconduct allegations have been following the famous RNB singer of all time, R Kelly, for two decades and a half without justice.
In this documentary series women speak about how the notorious singer lured them with his music in order to fulfill his sexual hunger. However the allegations had been bashed by some of his fans including women saying that ladies accusing him are attention seekers.
Which is somewhat saddening and appalling in this age and era according to Rosie Motene who was the host of the Surviving R Kelly Screening at Multi-Choice in Randburg on Thursday 31 January 2019.
The series delivers objectivity around this matter as it delves deeper into the life of R Kelly: his life before and after fame.
It also features his family and colleagues including his manager and producer- who admit seeing signs not once but in various events that Mr. Kelly is involved with minors in an ‘immoral kind of way’.
Some like his music schoolteacher Ms. Lena Mcline warned him ‘not to meet young girls’ without succeeding, without no one taking action against him while some suffered in silence.
It also features current and old journalist’s interviews and reports made about R Kelly. In one of the interviews when the ‘I believe I can fly’ hit maker asked if he is involved with teenagers sexually he answers, “How old are you talking about?
I mean I have friends who are 19.” He indeed believed he can fly and that he is above the law and continued to deny all allegations against him until this very day. He took it further by recording a sex tape and urinating on a 14 year old in his song ‘Ignition’.
Though that counts as child pornography the singer got away with it and this series shows how he managed to dodge so many bullets for the past 25 years as the victims, interviewees, journalists and psychologists give more insight.
The victims explain gruesome shocking events where he took advantage of them sexually and emotionally as teenagers. One can see the pain in their eyes as they narrate what he did to them when they were ‘naïve’ teenagers who wanted nothing but to follow their dreams and be stars.
Dream Hampton, the executive producer of The Notorious B.I.G, produced the six- episode series. He takes us into the young R Kelly’s life.
Getting to understand his history a lot hits home about how come such a famous talent ruin it all only for sexual pleasure. The docuseries also casts Tarana Burke- an activist and founder of #MeToo. John Legend and Wendy Williams.
Surviving R. Kelly also reveals that there is a lot to be done within the society in order to deal with sexual harassment and abuse.
As it highlights that close people with R Kelly knew about his shady business but didn’t make it their mission to put an end to it. Instead some helped him safe his image and continue with his hideous lifestyle.
In an interview his manager admits to helping him forge papers so that R Kelly can marry the late RNB singer Aaliyah who was then 15 and R Kelly 27. He forged them to say that Aaliyah was 18 so that she can get marriage rights.
Rosie who is a gender based violence activist and an abuse survivor urges women in the industry to break the silence.
She believes this series will be an eye-opener and will push people into the right direction. “ Such shows are needed on our screens and as such the media shouldn’t shy away from gender based violence.”
The series will appear on DStv Crime and Investigation channel 170 starting from Wed to 6 March by multichoice. Other broadcasters also boycott the airing R Kelly’s music.
By: Mogotladi Makgato