The explosive documentary Leaving Neverland – which aired in the UK this week and saw a number of sexual abuse allegations made against the late Michael Jackson – has divided public opinion.
Many viewers were left shocked and appalled by the film, vowing never to listen to the so-called King of Pop’s music again.
On the other side of the coin, a number of die-hard fans have jumped to the defense of the singer, leading to ads appearing on London buses as part of an ongoing #MJ Innocent campaign.
Whatever your view on the allegations may be, recent reports show that Jackson’s extensive back catalogue of albums have climbed the iTunes charts ever since the documentary aired in the UK.
The singer’s Number Ones album is sat at number 87 at the time of writing, although the Evening Standard reported that it was at number 43 earlier, having climbed 44 places in a matter of hours.
Meanwhile, his 2005 album The Essential Michael Jackson, 1987’s Bad and 1982’s Thriller are reported to have launched back into the Top 200 chart of late too.
This news arrives following the announcement from radio stations in Canada, New Zealand, Australia and the Netherlands that they have pulled Jackson’s music from their playlists after the release of Leaving Neverland.
However, although there were claims that Radio 2 had done the same, the BBC has denied the reports, with a spokesperson stating: “We consider each piece of music on its merits and decisions on what we play on different networks are always made with relevant audiences and context in mind.”
The four-hour documentary is available to watch on 4OD right now and follows the stories of Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who both claim to have been sexually abused by the late singer as children.
Although Jackson’s estate continues to engage in a number of adverts, lawsuits and interviews in an attempt to offset the damage of the allegations, online reaction has been largely negative, with many calling for his legacy to be destroyed.
One person tweeted: “Following the hashtag for this is pretty awful with the victim blaming and lack of understanding of how abusers groom the victims and their families.
“Actually, scratch awful. Horrific. One look at it explains all you need to get a small insight into why so many people don’t/can’t talk about child sexual abuse.”