Margeaux Watson
July 15, 2005 AT 04:00 AM EDT

R. Kelly’s at it again. Thanks largely to a companion DVD featuring the long-form music video for ”Trapped in the Closet (Chapters 1-5),” the R&B crooner’s latest CD, TP.3 Reloaded, sold nearly 500,000 copies in its first week. The 20-minute operetta — which will resume on his next CD — stars Kelly as a married man who wakes up in a strange woman’s bed. Soapy melodrama ensues. (Did we mention his name is Sylvester?) To size up the video’s twists and turns, we consulted Dena Higley, head writer of One Life to Live.

SETUP: ”He jumps into the story right away. The usual questions would be ‘Who am I rooting for?’ and ‘Why do I care if this marriage [lasts] or falls apart?’ But he holds your interest even though you don’t know these people.”

RESOLUTION: ”He stopped at the right point where the biggest plot twist happened [Sylvester’s two-timing wife, Gwendolyn, reveals her lover is a cop she apparently met through Sly’s shifty mistress]. There’s a hint that there was some sort of conspiracy, so you’re dying to find out what it is. It’s brilliant.”

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