Pam and Tommy (Ep 1-3) Review: An Intimate Look At the Controversial Sex-Tape Saga

Hulu’s latest miniseries titled Pam and Tommy goes for the full swing. Directed by the brilliant Craig Gillespie, who has given us I, Tonya and Cruella, the show is written by Robert D. Siegel based on the article Pam and Tommy: The Untold Story of the World’s Most Infamous Sex Tape by Amanda Chicago Lewis (first published in Rolling Stone in 2014). It is developed by Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen and, produced jointly by Point Grey Pictures and Annapurna Television.

The series closely tracks the life and marriage between the Baywatch sensation Pamela Anderson and Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee and, threads carefully to tell the story of the release of the duo’s unauthorized sex tape and how it affected them. Actress Lily James stars in the titular character of Pam aka Pamela Anderson and, Marvel’s Sebastian Stan plays the role of Tommy Lee. The other cast members include Seth Rogen as Rand Gauthier, Nick Offerman as Uncle Miltie and, Taylor Schilling as Erica Gauthier. The first three episodes are out, each with a runtime of an hour.

– Hulu’s Pam and Tommy Review Does Not Contain Spoilers

(TW: Nudity- Viewer Discretion Advised)

Pam and Tommy (Episodes 1 to 3): The Tale of The Greatest Love Story Ever Sold Begins!

The first episode of the series is titled ‘Drilling and Pounding’ and, starts from the time Pamela and Tommy have been married and are renovating their house. The first episode places its focus mostly on Rand Gauthier’s character- the one who seized and sold the tape. We see him doing carpentry at the Lee household and, get an insight into how he was being treated by the owner- changing designs unannounced, not getting paid for his work, getting superior and entitled treatment from Lee. It is by the end of this episode, when due to the differences between Lee and Gauthier and, Lee’s traumatizing behaviour that leads Gauthier to steal from the couple, which is when he finds the tape.

The first episode runs deeper than one would expect and, the audiences are cued in to understand that it is not just Pamela and Tommy’s story but, also Rand’s point of view. We get Rand’s childhood flashbacks and, his motivation behind stealing in the first place, which does not lay down a mattress of justification but, tells us the story that runs deeper than what the tabloid prints.

The second episode- ‘I Love You, Tommy’- is a flashback episode where audiences get a closer look at Lily James’ Pamela Anderson for the first time. Not only is the actress unrecognizable in her makeup and body prosthetics, but she also makes every word spoken believable of the character she is playing. We see Anderson and Lee’s first encounter and, how what-leads-to-what moments before the duo get married.

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The cinematography is symbolic in the second episode, from tracking the four-day adrenaline journey of our duo that led them to tie the knot with unsteady camera movements and loud lights to the toned-down palette when the couple gets to know each other for real after the marriage. We see how the couple is young, running wild and wacky with desires. It will be interesting to see how the tables turn on them in the upcoming episodes.

‘Jane Fonda’ is the third episode and, it is metaphorical and beautiful, how the veteran actress’ name and journey reflects so appropriately on Pamela Anderson’s character. In the background of Rand’s planning to monetize the Anderson-Lee sex tape, we get to see Pamela for the first time as a person, not a sex-icon or Lee’s wife or Baywatch’s actress, but a person who wants to be recognized for more than her humongous curves.

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We get to see how she was never appreciated and, mostly underestimated at the sets of Baywatch to be a real actress with dialogues. We also get to see how she feels she knows her husband less than she thinks. But mostly, we get Anderson’s voice trying to find freedom in a hypocritical world. Lily James nails the Pamela Anderson vibe with all her might and, it will be exciting to see how deeper we get to look at the 90s icon, who was so lost and misunderstood.

Pam and Tommy (Episodes 1 to 3): Final Thoughts

Pam and Tommy’s first three episodes have started off on a high note. It is intimate, controversial but, also serves as a cautionary tale about the internet black market and, how easily it can be misused. There is a sense of understanding the characters, who are real-life people, more closely to help us know their story better. This show is more than the infamous tape, it is about lives and events that are a reflection of how we view the world.

You can stream the first three episodes of Pam and Tommy, now on Hulu. The eight-part series will hereon after get a weekly release on Hulu, with episodes coming out every Wednesday.

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Pam and Tommy's first three episodes give us a deep yet quick look at Anderson-Lee's relationship and, the beginning of the sex-tap scandal.

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Pam and Tommy's first three episodes give us a deep yet quick look at Anderson-Lee's relationship and, the beginning of the sex-tap scandal.Pam and Tommy (Ep 1-3) Review: An Intimate Look At the Controversial Sex-Tape Saga