The first official trailer for the forthcoming HBO documentary, Savior Complex, cycles through multiple complicated and often conflicting perspectives. The first presented in the clip is that of the documentary’s primary subject: Renee Bach. “I think some of the most wild accusations that were made about me is that I killed 800 children, I was medically experimenting on children,” the former homeschooled missionary states. “Compared to Adolf Hitler, assumed to be part of the KKK … It’s kinda like, where to begin, you know?”
As Bach speaks, photographs flash across the screen of young Ugandan children, like the ones who lived in the southeastern village of Jinja, where she launched the unregistered pediatric health facility Serving His Children when she was 19 years old. “I just started seeing malnutrition everywhere,” she says. “So many children came seeking help.” But the other perspectives shared in the trailer for the three-part series, set to premiere on Sept. 26, suggest that Bach wasn’t truly equipped to help, especially not in any medical capacity.
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When a former nurse who worked with Bach is asked whether she believes the woman dubbed the “Angel of Death” on social media is a murderer, she begins to speak before cutting herself off to say: “Oh, God, that’s a good question.”
“She would do things as if she was a medical personnel,” a man states, a woman adding: “She was not qualified to do this.” Bach defends her belief that the center helped to save “hundreds and hundreds” of lives; however, the woman speaking in the trailer states clearly: “Angels like Renee bring death on the continent.”
According to a synopsis for the documentary, Savior Complex will address “the wider questions around “white saviorism” and the ethics of foreign aid work done in the name of humanitarian and religious ideals.” It adds that the series will include commentary from Bach, accusers, lawyers, activists, and mothers seeking to hold her accountable.
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