Survivors Detail Trauma in ‘Surviving R. Kelly Part III: The Final Chapter’ Trailer

December 20, 2022

The conclusion to the series will premiere on Lifetime beginning January 2

Surviving R. Kelly, the Lifetime documentary series, premiered in 2019 with its first set of episodes detailing decades of alleged sexual assault, abuse, and misconduct at the hands of one of R&B’s biggest stars. With the second set of episodes, released in 2020, the creators put a spotlight on the cultural impact of his downfall. Now, three years after the last installation of the series, the network will share Surviving R. Kelly Part III: The Final Chapter, capturing the lasting repercussions as the disgraced singer faces criminal charges and is subject to multiple federal and state trials.

The concluding season will premiere as a two-night event on Jan. 2 and 3 at 8 p.m. ET. The trailer for the updated docuseries sets the stage for the program, featuring testimonials and insight from legal experts, journalists, victims, and parents of those who were targeted.

The first night of the documentary event will follow Azriel Clary, Kelly’s former ex-girlfriend, as she provides court testimony detailing her experience of abuse after being instructed to lie in an infamous 2019 interview with Gayle King. His racketeering charges — for which he was convicted alongside charges of sexual exploitation of a child, bribery, sex trafficking — will also be dissected during the episode.

The second night will close out the series with the voices and testimonies of dozens of victims, including new survivors who had only recently emerged. “This is something unprecedented in the history of popular music with, I believe, hundreds of victims,” one participant says in the trailer.

In one instance, Kelly’s supporters are shown rallying behind him, his name shown to be tattooed across one woman’s chest while others chant for his freedom. The imagery informs a larger point, when a woman in a voiceover applauds “the collective power of the voices” as a means of bringing him down. The final moments will position victim impact statements at the forefront as survivors learn of the final verdict against their abuser.