Michael Jackson
Singer Michael Jackson appears at the balcony of the Adlon Hotel with an unidentified child in Berlin, Germany, Nov. 19, 2002. Olaf Selchow/Getty Images

After HBO premiered the two-hour-long first part of the two-part documentary “Leaving Neverland”– based on the allegations of child molestation and sexual abuse that trailed the last 15 years of the life of Michael Jackson till his death at the age of 50 – on Sunday, many people took to Twitter to express their shock and disbelief.

The documentary was centered on testimonies from Jackson’s two alleged victims – James Safechuck, 40 (10 years old at the time of the claimed abuse), and Wade Robson, 36 (seven years old at the time of the claimed abuse). Both of them provided detailed and eventually graphic account of how they met the King of Pop and were lured into moving in with him. With the promise that they would get their shot at stardom, Jackson took them in and a variety of abuse followed at his residences including in Neverland and two other Los Angeles locations – a “hideout” condo in Westwood and a place he kept in Century City.

The pair alleged that Jackson groomed them and their respective families before they were sexually exploited, which included telling them not to trust people and to never divulge details about what was happening inside the houses as they would be punished. “This is how we show our love,” Jackson allegedly told the boys as he introduced them to masturbation at a young age, which steadily progressed to kissing, fondling, watching pornography and taking showers together.

When the documentary originally premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, the theater had health professionals waiting in the lobby to tend to anyone who was disturbed by the movie. The first half of the powerful piece also evoked strong emotions among people on social media. While some ardent followers of Jackson refused to believe the testimonies of the accusers, others condemned the pop star for creating a toxic environment for minors.

Taj Jackson, Michael’s nephew, was one of strongest defenders of the pop star on Twitter. “You are right. I’ve been around my uncle only thousands and thousands of hours. And since my uncle is not here to defend himself, the credibility of the accusers matter. And Wade and James have none,” he wrote in reply to a user claiming that there was no way Taj could have known if his uncle was secretly abusing children.

Here are a few other reactions:

The Michael Jackson estate has denied all the allegations implied in the film and sued HBO for $100 million, claiming that the studio violated a non-disparagement clause in their contract that

was present in previous TV specials about the pop singer.

"This is yet another lurid production in an outrageous and pathetic attempt to exploit and cash in on Michael Jackson," the estate said in a statement to E! News around the time of the premiere. "Wade Robson and James Safechuck have both testified under oath that Michael never did anything inappropriate toward them. Safechuck and Robson, the latter a self-proclaimed 'master of deception', filed lawsuits against Michael's Estate, asking for millions of dollars. Both lawsuits were dismissed."

In February, Southern Christian Leadership Conference President/CEO Dr. Charles Steele wrote a letter to HBO asking the network to reconsider airing the documentary.

“It troubles me that HBO/AT&T/Warner Media would lodge allegations against someone who is deceased and not able to defend himself. These same allegations, when raised in trial in a court of law during Michael Jackson’s lifetime, affirmed his innocence. Furthermore, the subjects of the documentary have given numerous conflicting stories and have been widely discredited. Additionally, the documentary is admittedly one-sided, offering no chance for rebuttal,” Steele added, invoking the nonviolence philosophy preached by the founder of the organization and the famous civil rights leader, Martin Luther King Jr, Variety reported.