‘Pam & Tommy’ sex tape docudrama is oddly nostalgic


A version of this story appeared in Pop Life Chronicles, CNN’s weekly entertainment newsletter. To get it in your inbox, sign up for free here.

(CNN)I have a theory that Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee’s sex tape helped to usher in the age of social media, with all the darker ills that come with public (over)exposure.

Hear me out: The former couple’s most intimate moments, via a stolen video cassette tape, went viral back in 1995 — before there was such a thing — and infamously became a global sensation.

It set the stage for the frenzy that would become Paris Hilton’s sex tape in 2004 and Kim Kardashian’s sex tape three years after that.

    Do you see where I’m going with this? Now, here we are with social media being all in everyone’s business.

      Why isn’t there a series about that? Hold on, we’ve got you.

        Three things to watch

        ‘Pam & Tommy’

          Let’s start with how much Lily James and Sebastian Stan look like Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee.

          The Hulu limited series also stars Seth Rogen and Nick Offerman as the illicit entrepreneurs.

          It’s wild and also oddly nostalgic, with old-school VCRs and video cameras.

          “Pam & Tommy” is currently streaming.


          There are so few original projects in Hollywood today. How can you not get excited about an improvised crime show?

          That’s just what Will Arnett has come up with in this series, in which he plays a bumbling homicide detective.

          While that’s definitely a trope, bringing in a different celebrity guest star who doesn’t get a script in each episode is what “Murderville” is hoping will keep audiences coming back for more.

          It’s streaming on Netflix.


          How does a military hero end up jailed for murder?

          In order to set up a storyline where the cops need his help, of course.

          Alan Ritchson brings Tom Cruise’s movie role to the small screen in this Amazon Prime series, adapted from the popular Lee Child book series.

          The show started streaming Friday.

          Two things to listen to

          B.J. Thomas was a beloved singer who charted in multiple genres including country, pop and Christian music.

          “In Remembrance — Love Songs & Lost Treasures” features unreleased tracks from the “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head” artist, who lost his battle with cancer last year.

          “The 18-song CD will include 13 unreleased songs, eight unreleased songs from the Warner-Reprise Records vault, four songs from a limited edition direct response album in the 90s, rare photos, outtakes recorded with veteran songwriter/producer Steve Dorff,” according to Music Row.

          The new album released Friday.

          Korn was so psyched about their new album, “Requiem,” that they decided to do a livestream event, titled “Requiem Mass,” on the eve of its drop.

          Holy crap, that’s genius!

          Korn frontman Jonathan Davis told Blunt magazine the new album ends with “The Worst Is On Its Way,” as “This is the cycle of life.”

          He added, “I’m in an up period; I’m happy, everything’s going great.”

          “Requiem” dropped Friday.

          Something to sip on

          The death of 30-year-old former Miss USA Cheslie Kryst has stirred a great deal of conversation about social media, mental health and the importance of checking on people in the midst of this ongoing pandemic.

          Kryst, who died by suicide, was beautiful, accomplished and appeared — based on her Instagram account — to be thriving.

          But I find myself haunted by her Allure magazine essay, written in honor of her turning 30, in which she talked about her struggles and the internet trolls who seized on what they viewed as her failings.

          All while her harshest critic was oftentimes herself.

          “I discovered that the world’s most important question, especially when asked repeatedly and answered frankly, is: why? Why earn more achievements just to collect another win?” she wrote. “Why pursue another plaque or medal or line item on my résumé if it’s for vanity’s sake, rather than out of passion? Why work so hard to capture the dreams I’ve been taught by society to want when I continue to find only emptiness?”

          I pray she now has the peace that seems to have eluded her in life.

          To get help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). There is also a crisis text line: Text HOME to 741741. For crisis support in Spanish, call 1-888-628-9454.

          One thing to talk about

          I couldn’t be more thrilled that Rihanna and A$AP Rocky are expecting a baby (I love them together), but there is a but.

          We are never getting a new album, are we?

            As I smiled at how precious Rihanna looked with her baby bump, I couldn’t help but selfishly lament that RiRi in Mommy mode does not bode well for more music anytime soon.

            But perhaps she will surprise us with a special delivery?

            What did you like about today’s newsletter? What did we miss? Pop in to poplife@cnn.com and say hello!