Recommended: Pam & Tommy on Hulu
What's Pam & Tommy About?
The release of Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee's private sex tape is the throughline to this miniseries about a feeding frenzy and how it damaged everyone who went near it.
Why (and to whom) do we recommend it?
This long-simmering project could have been simply a lowbrow escapade involving lookalikes re-enacting the 1990s marriage of Baywatch star Anderson and Mötley Crue drummer Lee, and indeed the first hour suggests that’s the road Pam & Tommy is heading down. (The opening scene, featuring noises of the happy couple screwing loudly in another room, is itself a tip-of-the-cap to movies of that era.) Though the storyline of the sex tape is entertainingly told thanks to Rogen and Offerman — in seedy roles one can’t quite imagine anyone else pulling off so well — the series morphs into a surprisingly deep exploration of celebrity culture at the dawn of the Internet age. This part of the series is powered by James and her sensitive portrayal of the woman at the eye of the storm, whose inability to find intimacy (in real life, Anderson is currently separated from Husband No. 5) might have something to do with the fallout from her sex tape. Pam & Tommy turns a notorious media moment into a captivating, if undeniably tawdry, exploration of the price of celebrity in a culture where the complete loss of privacy is considered the price of fame.
Pairs well with