10 Things We Learned From Michel’le’s Surviving Compton

October 17, 2016  |  
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Source: Lifetime

Source: Lifetime

There were several questions I had when I heard that Michel’le was releasing a biopic through Lifetime. Much of it was how did she go from Dr. Dre to Suge Knight. The biopic Surviving Compton answered that question and so many more. Check out the things we learned from the made-for-tv-movie.

 

surviving compton

Source: Lifetime

Eazy E was trying to get at her too

When Michel’le first met the men of N.W.A., it wasn’t just Dr. Dre, her future boyfriend and father of her son, who was trying to put the moves on her. Eazy E was also interested in adding Michel’le to his roster. And while she eventually ended up being with Dre, she and Eazy were able to maintain a brother-sister type relationship.

Can't #thank these #beautifulpeople enough! ❤️ #behindthescenes

A post shared by Michel'le (@michellemuzic) on

Did anyone step in?

I was so curious to see if the members of N.W.A. were aware of the abuse Michel’le endured. And more specifically, if they ever stepped in to try and stop it. Some of them did. In an interview with Wendy Williams, Michel’le said that Ice Cube was rarely around when Dr. Dre abused her in public. But she did say that D.O.C. saw a lot of the beatings and was one of the only men who tried to verbally stop Dre from hitting her. Eazy also confronted Dre and would call Michel’le when Dre was on his way home, after having too much to drink.

surviving compton

Source: Lifetime

Denial

At the very end of the movie, we see the apology Dr. Dre released after Michel’le and Dee Barnes’ story became more widespread. He never mentioned his ex girlfriend or the music journalist by their names. Instead, he said to the “women he hurt.” Perhaps that would have been acceptable to some people. But Dre added insult to the sparse apology when he denied ever putting his hands on Michel’le. While there have been threats that he will sue, she is confident that if the case goes to trial, there will be those who will tell the truth, during the deposition.

surviving compton

Source: Lifetime

Out here.

It was very clear, watching Straight Outta Compton that all the members of N.W.A. were out here. There were so many women, who weren’t called women. So I knew he had children. What I didn’t know was that by the middle of he and  Michel’le’s relationship, he already had five children. His first one was born when he was just 16-years-old.

surviving compton

Source: Lifetime

Michel’le wrote most of her own songs

Toward the end of the movie, when Michel’le had gotten the nerve to leave Dre and when she started working with Death Row Records, Suge tells her that he’s hired a writer to help her with the next project. That’s when Michel’le told him that she normally wrote her own music. She collaborated with Dr. Dre for quite a few of them but she was involved with virtually every song on her debut album.

surviving compton

Source: Lifetime

Suge Knight helped out when Dre was acting up

If you lined Suge Knight and Dr. Dre up next to each other, you might believe that one (Suge) would be worse, more diabolical, than the other. And that might be the case in the totality of their lives; but when it came to Michel’le, Suge Knight was very helpful to her. One time when Dr. Dre was on tour and Michel’le was left at home with their son, he had not paid the light bill and there were no groceries in the house. When Suge learned of her situation, he brought groceries over for she and her son.

Helped her get into rehab

The groceries were just the beginning of the helpful hand that Knight offered. When Michel’le was struggling with an addiction to pills, and begging for Dre to get her some help, it was Knight who stepped in and helped send her to rehab.

surviving compton

Source: Lifetime

Trying To Buy Her Off

But Suge wasn’t exactly an angel, as you know. His kindness and generosity came at a cost. While he was in prison, he offered to pay Michel’le $30,000 a month for accepting his security detail, maintaining his house while he was away. Another part of that deal was a fake marriage, buying property in her name and keeping Michel’le away from her family and friends.

Jerry Heller

In Straight Outta Compton Jerry Heller was portrayed as a scoundrel. He fell out with every single group member of N.W.A. But Michel’le regarded him differently. When he passed away a few months ago, she wrote a very heartfelt tribute to him on her Instagram page.

surviving compton

Source: Lifetime

Unafraid

An abuser is only as effective as the fear he (or she) places in the heart of their victims. And once Michel’le was no longer afraid of both Dre and Suge Knight–(God only knows how she got to that point.)–that’s when the abuse and manipulation stopped. After Suge pulled a gun on her and she told him that he wasn’t afraid of him, that’s when he left her alone.

 

 

 

Veronica Wells is the culture editor at MadameNoire.com. She is also the author of “Bettah Days.” You can follow her on Facebook and Twitter @VDubShrug.

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