When R. Kelly made it clear that the first five chapters of "Trapped In The Closet," his nearly 20-minute music-video/story-song suite, represented only part of the overall saga, it inspired a kind of slack-jawed disbelief. After all, Closet's opening chapters, which can be found on Kelly's TP.3 Reloaded, employ seemingly every ridiculous plot twist in existence, from revelations of homosexuality among clergy to guns being drawn to interlocking patterns of betrayal so elaborate that they call for a diagram. What new twists and outlandish characters could Kelly possibly introduce to a story already swimming in hilariously over-the-top melodrama? A philandering white wife with a hillbilly twang? A wacky neighbor brandishing a spatula? Kelly doing double duty as protagonist and narrator? A sexually irresistible stripper midget? The answers, as found in the delightful new Trapped In The Closet Chapters 1-12 DVD, are, respectively, yes, yes, yes, and hell motherfucking yes.
Every time it seems Kelly can't possibly top himself, he ratchets the drama up to increasingly surreal levels. Also featured: Kelly's worshipful video commentary, in which he gazes reverently at what he's wrought, narrates the proceedings, and inexplicably marvels at how "Trapped In The Closet" rhymes, even though he wrote it himself. Chapters 1-12 is in a sense a giant tease, since Kelly's opus isn't anywhere near finished. But connoisseurs of pop-culture cheese aren't likely to delay gratification by waiting for the whole epic when this disc offers such a massive, immediate dose of the guiltiest kind of pleasure.