Liz and Dick, Sid and Nancy, Sonny and Cher, Sinatra and Gardner - there is no shortage of volatile Hollywood couples who have made more headlines because of their romance than their show business contributions. But perhaps the most extreme Tinseltown relationship of modern times was the union between Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee. It's hardly surprising that fireworks erupted when these two dynamic personalities got together. What was surprising, however, was just how brightly - and enduringly - those fireworks burned before sparking out.
From their whirlwind courtship in the mid-1990s all the way to as recently as 2018, Pam and Tommy have been the stuff of tabloid scandal dreams: still sparring; still falling out and coming back together again (no, that's not a reference to the infamous Anderson/Lee sex tape); still holding fans and curious onlookers captive with their complex, messy, crazy antics.
Pop culture's most complicated relationships anthology wouldn't be complete without some of the wild stories about Pam Anderson and Tommy Lee.
Lee Was Sentenced To Six Months In Jail For Assaulting Anderson
In February 1998, the couple had an alleged physical confrontation in their kitchen that drastically changed their relationship. Lee reportedly flew into a rage, screaming and breaking things. Lee later claimed Anderson then hit him in the jaw which prompted him to grab and kick her. Their son Brandon, at the time only a year old, witnessed the altercation.
The police were called, and Lee was detained. He served six months in jail for spousal abuse.
Anderson Accused Lee Of Being An Alcoholic, But He Denies It
Anderson wrote a piece for her website in 2018 in which she accused Lee of being an alcoholic, citing it as the reason for so much of the "sadness, drama and confusion" of their past relationship and Lee's strained bonds with his kids. Lee shot back with a statement of his own.
"Do I drink more than the average Joe? Yes," he said. "Have I ever hurt my sons or acted out of turn with them because of my drinking? No... I'm a happy, fun-loving guy."
They Divorced For A Second Time In 1998
Anderson and Lee called it quits - on paper at least - in 1998. The divorce filing came on the heels of Lee's arrest for domestic abuse after the physical fight in the couple's kitchen. While Lee served time, Anderson moved forward with her life, focusing on her kids and career.
After Lee was released, Anderson made it clear she wanted nothing more to do with him.
Despite The Divorce, They Kept Seeing Each Other
After their second divorce, Anderson and Lee continued to see one another off and on for years, despite the official dissolution of their union. On at least two occasions, in 1999 and 2008, they made public announcements that they were back together.
"We’ve only given it a try 800 times - 801, here we go," Lee quipped in '08. "Pamela and the kids have moved in with me. It’s awesome. It’s definitely working."
It didn't work for long, however; they broke up again a short time later.