"This is emotional and disturbing."
UK viewers have finally reacted to Surviving R.Kelly, after the controversial documentary made its anticipated debut on British television last night.
The six-part documentary from filmmaker Dream Hampton debuted in the US last month and features a string of testimonies who have accused the singer of sexual and physical abuse across several decades. Although Kelly has denied wrongdoing and has faced no criminal convictions, the show has resulted in a widespread boycott and even caused Sony to drop him.
Last night, the show finally aired on UK channel Crime + Investigation – with the first episode The Pied Piper of R&B focusing on his childhood and the formative years of his career. It also included archive footage of Kelly discussing the sexual abuse he suffered in his own childhood.
Posting on Twitter, one viewer wrote: “Wow this is emotional and disturbing. Can’t even find the words.”
Another described the show as “petrifying.”
Earlier today, it was reported that Kelly is planning a tour of Australia, New Zealand and Sri Lanka.
In a statement, Australia’s shadow minister for immigration and border protection, Shayne Neumann, has confirmed that the opposition Labor party would be “seriously concerned” if Kelly was allowed into the country to perform.
“Labor strongly supports the refusal or cancellation of visas of non-citizens on character or criminal grounds … Labor would be seriously concerned if immigration minister David Coleman would allow an individual such as R Kelly into Australia,” said Neumann.
At present, Kelly is due to perform two shows in Germany in April. A petition to stop the shows has so far attracted 40,000 signatures.