Leaving Neverland is gut-wrenching

Leaving Neverland packs such an emotional punch that it leaves me in no doubt that Safechuck and Robson suffered abuse from Michael Jackson.

The tortured pain  and suffering is written all over their faces as the film documents their stories.

Trying to unpick Jackson’s life has always been a tricky business, especially after he died, when the media refocussed on his musical legacy, to celebrate his songs and videos and legendary performances.

This film forces you to reevaluate all of that; to brush it aside, and look beyond the glitz and glamour, to look behind the smoke and mirrors.

My emotional response to Leaving Neverland is in part informed by being a parent; both Safechuck and Robson have young sons, and it was through becoming fathers for the first time that the full emotional effects of the abuse they suffered began to unravel their lives.

I defy anyone not to be moved by the final act of the film, in which the impact of the abuse finally hits, like a tragic timebomb that had been waiting all these years to explode its truth, demolishing lies and lives in its wake.

As a parent, I cannot imagine allowing either of my sons to share a bed with an adult man that we had only just met, regardless of how famous they are.

I shudder at the thought of anyone sexually abusing my children, and worse, making them feel like they were complicit. And burying it so deep that they felt they couldn’t tell a single person.

And lying in a court of law about it, defending the very person who had abused them, because they were afraid, and somehow still loved the man who had done this to them.

So what happens now?

My children have the Moonwalker DVD, which they find very entertaining. One of my sons loves the Bad album. Do I take those away, hide them in a box, and stop my children from enjoying them?

Do I banish all the Jackson CD’s that we have in the house; the copies of Thriller, Off The Wall, and Dangerous?

I, for one, cannot bring myself to listen to his music any more.

It makes me feel sick that Jackson got away with being an abuser for so long, even under the full glare of the world’s media and despite the whisperings, suspicions, court cases and unhinged behaviour.

Diehard Jackson fans are claiming that Safechuck and Robson are in this for money, but neither of them have been paid to appear in Leaving Neverland.

Rather, they are telling the truth in order to survive.

In this era of #MeToo, you need to watch Leaving Neverland. Let their voices be heard.

Safechuck Robson

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