Christmas is coming early for many of us. As you probably already know, the next 18 installments of R. Kelly's gloriously batshit hip-hopera Trapped In the Closet are premiering on IFC tonight. Just in case you haven't seen the first 22 -- yes, twenty-two -- chapters in this ongoing, one-music-video-at-a-time epic saga, let us recap them for you. This is going to be a long one, so let's not waste any time or words, but get right into it.
Chapter 1: R. Kelly is Sylvester, waking in an unfamiliar bed. Kisses from an unfamiliar woman, Cathy. "She ain't you," R. Kelly sings -- infidelity. Cathy's husband Rufus just got home. Sylvester hides in the closet. Husband enters, knows something's wrong. He searches, Sylvester's phone rings. Sylvester draws a gun. Rufus opens the closet.
Chapter 2: Sylvester holds them at gunpoint. Rufus berates Cathy, reminding her he's a pastor. Rufus' phone rings; Rufus tells his "baby" to turn around and come back. "Since we're all comin' out the closet..." Sure enough, "Baby" shows up, is a man.
Chapter 3: Everybody screams at each other. Sylvester fires his gun into the air -- or at least into the apartment above them. The fighting stops. Sylvester calls his own house, and a man answers the phone. "Jerry Springer - the Musical," observes YouTube commenter Remolfm.
Chapter 4: Sylvester drives home in a rage, and gets pulled over by a cop. The cop gives him a speeding ticket. Arriving home, Sylvester finds his wife Gwen alone. She claims her visiting brother Twan answered the phone. Sylvester fucks the shit out of her in relief. Once this is done, Sylvester flings the bedsheets aside to find: a condom wrapper. Not his.
Chapter 5: Sylvester threatens to burn the house down. Gwen turns the tables; she knows of Sylvester's own infidelity; Gwen was hiding in the club last night, spying. After a game of six degrees of separation, Gwen reveals she's boning the cop who pulled Sylvester over.
Chapter 6: It's "Gift of the Magi" but with fucking. Sylvester and Gwen collapse laughing at life's wackiness. The cop -- James -- busts in, mistaking the laughter for sounds of a struggle. He and Sylvester scuffle. A shot rings out.
Chapter 7: Gwen's brother Twan, only now arriving home from prison, has wandered into the bullet. It's a superficial wound, which he bandages while the events of the day are explained to him. Another knock at the door. Sylvester and Twan prepare to shoot whoever's on the other side, but are relieved to see it's only Rosie the Nosey Neighbor.
Chapter 8: Officer James arrives home, where his wife Bridget is acting strange. In a truly Shakespearean internal soliloquy, Bridget reveals she is cheating on James, and the other man is hiding somewhere in the house.
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Chapter 9: James smells a rat, and ferrets out the other man: A midget hiding under the sink.
Chapter 10: As James chases and assaults the little man, Bridget runs upstairs and calls the first phone number she grabs: Gwen's. That done, she rushes to the little man's aid with a shotgun and forces James to back off. Sylvester and Twan burst in, each pointing guns. The little guy craps his pants and passes out.
Chapter 11: Little man reveals his name to be Big Man, thanks to his impressive wang. Sylvester recognizes Big Man from the club where he met Cathy the night before. Bridget rushes to the sink to barf, and we discover she's three months pregnant. James already knew this, but he didn't know the next bit: The baby is Big Man's.
Chapter 12: Meanwhile, back at Cathy's apartment, the trio of Cathy, Rufus, and Chuck are arguing over which one has the best claim to ornery bisexual Rufus' heart. The phone rings. Cathy answers, and it's Gwen. Gwen relays the days events, and Cathy admits to being the "nasty wig-wearin' ho" Sylvester left the club with.
Chapter 13: Sylvester and Twan drive to meet someone who owes Sylvester money. Twan's angrily obsessed with a girl named Tina. Rosie the Nosey Neighbor and her husband Randolph -- R. Kelly in Nutty Professor makeup -- argue about Rosie's peeping. Twan drops Sylvester off at a seedy diner, then waits outside for an hour.
Chapter 14: Sylvester meets Cathy inside the diner. They argue and reveal they've been scheming together; Sylvester was supposed to be caught sexing up Cathy by Rufus. She grew a conscience and backed out of the plan at the last minute. A mysterious begrilled mouth calls Twan and tells him Tina is a waitress. The very waitress who's waiting on Sylvester and Cathy right now, in fact. Sylvester recognizes her. Tina screams for Roxanne, who runs in from the kitchen with a skillet. Tina draws a knife. Twan enters, unhappy.
Chapter 15: Twan accuses Roxanne and Tina of being responsible for his 3-year-bid in prison. Sylvester prevents an all-out melee and interrogates the girls. Three years ago, Twan, Roxanne and Tina were running drugs. Twan was driving, and also drunk. They were chased by the cops and caught, after which Roxanne rolled over on Twan. Tina wouldn't, because she was pregnant with Twan's child.
Chapter 16: Twan is resistant to the idea that he is Tina's baby's father. Tina and Roxanne threaten to sue him for child support. Sylvester and Twan argue, and Sylvester convinces Twan to try the family-man route. Twan offers to work things out with Tina, when Roxanne tongue-kisses her and proclaims "I'm fuckin' her now!"
Chapter 17: Tough guy Sylvester is fed up and leaves. Twan threatens to go get a gun, come back, and kill them both, before Sylvester succeeds in dragging him out the door.
Chapter 18: Meanwhile at church, Rufus (the pastor) receives a phone call from a heartbroken Chuck. Cathy enters and overhears it. She's not happy, but Rufus shoos her from his office and promises to take care of it. Chuck says he's going to the news with their affair, oh and also, he's in the hospital, sick.
Chapter 19: Back at the church service, Reverend Mosley James Evans -- R. Kelly in makeup -- and his congregation urge Pimp Lucius -- also R. Kelly in makeup -- to stop pimping. Pimp Lucius reveals a stutter as he explains to his partner, Bishop Craig, that pimpin' is for life. Can't stop, won't stop.
Chapter 20: Randolph bursts in on wife Rosie with gossip about pastor Rufus. While cleaning Rufus' office, church custodian Randolph hid in the office closet to avoid getting caught sneaking a drink. There, he overheard Chuck call and tell Rufus he has "the package." This appears to be slang for AIDS. Yes, really.
Chapter 21: Sylvester brings Twan along on another mission, reminding him to keep his temper in check. Sylvester plots with an extremely Italian mafioso named Joey while Twan falls asleep and dreams that the whole meeting goes tits-up and everyone's about to shoot each other. Sylvester wakes him up, and they leave peacefully.
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Chapter 22: This chapter is R. Kelly's version of "What's the Story, Morning Glory?" except everyone on the phone chain is informing everyone else that they might have AIDS. Yep, every single character so far might have "the package." Annnnd SCENE!