Surviving R. Kelly: Miniseries (2019)

Surviving R. Kelly

Critics Consensus

By unearthing previously suppressed histories, Surviving R. Kelly exposes the dangers of enabling predatory behavior and gives necessary voice to its survivors.



Critic Ratings: 21


Audience Score

User Ratings: 30
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Air date: Jan 3, 2019
Air date: Jan 3, 2019
Air date: Jan 4, 2019
Air date: Jan 4, 2019
Air date: Jan 5, 2019
Air date: Jan 5, 2019

Tv Season Info

Celebrated as one of the greatest R&B singers of all time, R. Kelly's genre defining career and playboy lifestyle has been riddled with rumors of abuse, predatory behavior, and pedophilia. Despite damning evidence and multiple witnesses, to date, none of these accusations have seemingly affected him. For the first time ever, survivors and people from R. Kelly's inner circle, are coming forward with new allegations about his sexual, mental, and physical abuse. They are now finally ready to share their full story and shed light on the secret life the public has never seen.

News & Interviews for Surviving R. Kelly: Miniseries

Critic Reviews for Surviving R. Kelly Miniseries

All Critics (21) | Top Critics (14)

The series is comprehensively damning and powerfully disturbing.

Jan 7, 2019 | Full Review…
Top Critic

It is a staggering, stomach-churning narrative work -- especially for those who have experienced similar traumas.

Jan 7, 2019 | Full Review…

Surviving R. Kelly is all about making sure the women who have gone unheard get a chance to speak. It is brutal viewing. But it's so good to know it exists.

Jan 4, 2019 | Full Review…

Gives voice to those who have been neglected for decades.

Jan 3, 2019 | Full Review…
Top Critic

The series did stumble a bit in trying to be unbiased and show all sides, but it rebounded once such thinking was abandoned in the third hour.

Mar 7, 2019 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

There are moments where they sit back and they say, but we do have to look at the full picture... just a reminder, there's more there... and I admire that.

Jan 10, 2019 | Full Review…

It is an important and powerful watch, providing an opportunity for R. Kelly's alleged victims to share their horrific experiences of abuse.

Jan 10, 2019 | Full Review…

Bit by bit the stories of the participants become spellbinding, as each word adds to a vivid portrait. In a way, it is a symphony; each voice is an instrument.

Jan 7, 2019 | Full Review…

As a programme, Surviving R Kelly is deeply flawed. At best, it treads a fine line between attesting to the apparent pain of those taking part and exploiting it - and often gives in to temptation.

Mar 7, 2019 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Surviving R. Kelly calls on music fans to consider how their support, while seemingly innocuous on an individual level, is one of the many threads upholding a predator's web-and how, in some cases, it can be the catalyst.

Jan 10, 2019 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Surviving R. Kelly: Miniseries

  • Jul 27, 2019
    Exposes the horrendous crimes of R Kelly and gives a perfect timeline. Must see for everyone, especially parents.
  • Mar 10, 2019
    Women who didnâ??t have a choice to speak up, have now spoken. We are hear to listen #blackgirlslivematter #muterkelly #timesup
  • Jan 20, 2019
    Very unnerving expose on a sexual predator who should have been put in jail decades ago:
  • Jan 10, 2019
    This documentary is total bs, probably the worst documentary I’ve seen since May of 2014. Not only is, what is stated not factually true, but it is evident the sole purpose of the film, was to paint R Kelly as some kind of monster, when he’s no such thing. This documentary puts political agenda before facts, and I will not stand for that.
  • Jan 08, 2019
    R. Kelly needs to die, a slow and painful death.
  • Jan 06, 2019
    This is a documentary trying to desperately reach out to inform people and get support to stop an extremely sick, abusive, sexual predator who has gotten away with his perverted and vile behavior for over 25 years because he's famous and chart-topping songs. Yes, this piece can get a bit repetitive in the 6 1-hour segments of interviews and maybe it could have been cut in half, but I found this show very informative and necessary as a voice for the survivors/victims. Similar to Harvey Weinstein, Kelly seems to continually get away with crimes even though people around him knew/know what's going on. What's worse is Kelly's victims were more often underage girls (12-17-years old). Hearing from survivors, people in the industry, friends and family of Kelly, psychiatrists, and the families of girls still caught in R Kelly's web is informative and heart-wrenching. It is so sad that people turn their back or are even complicit in helping these narcissistic, bullies just because the perpetrator is famous and people don't want to loose their friendship, risk their job or just don't want to get involved so it goes on and on and on creating more and more victims and more and more pain and brokenness. It's also shocking at how many people so easily don't want to believe that a smooth voiced, smooth talking, charismatic, handsome musician would "do such a thing" when the damning evidence and witnesses are plentiful (I mean sex tape people!!) Finally, after all these years, people in the music industry are starting to stand up for these victims and let Kelly know they won't condone this disgusting behavior and treatment of girls/women and it's because of courageous people like the ones who made and spoke out in this documentary and the #MuteRKelly movement. Why do we let people harm others? Harvey Wienstein, Bill Cosby, OJ Simpson, R Kelly...maybe this film will help us open our eyes and recognize these predators, encourage us to stand up for victims (instead of judging, ignoring, or accusing them) and also maybe we can get these predator the help they need... hurt people, hurt people.
  • Jan 05, 2019
    Often times frustrating and other times heartbreaking, "Surviving R. Kelly" is a powerful documentary that highlights the alleged victims of R. Kelly in horrific detail while exposing his predatorial behavior and calls on authorities to take action against the R&B singer.

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