In my early, formative years, I was still developing this delicate thing called taste. In the process, I inevitably followed the more questionable end of the spectrum. “Baywatch” is one such example. By any measure, it’s a terrible TV show. Of course, it’s easy today with our post-modern sense of irony to laugh at the show’s attempts at portraying women as strong, capable professionals while simultaneously leering at them. Does Pamela Anderson strike anyone as a model of female emancipation? Yeah, back then I watched it for the (barely concealed) bums and boobies. After a while though, I got bored of it. The show’s popularity outlived my interest in it, and to its credit, never turned its back on its slightly exploitative roots. The producers knew what the brand name was all about and they successfully milked it for over a decade.
Now, Hollywood is about to resurrect the property with a movie version. Paramount Pictures has secured the rights, and a script has already been written. Peter Tolan is the guy they hired to bring “Baywatch” back to life. He’s the creator of hit TV series “Rescue Me” (starring Denis Leary). Tolan’s script is a complete re-imagining and has nothing to do with the original series. Today, he told the Matthew Aaron Show that: “It’s not based on the show in any way, though there are a couple of winks at the show. I don’t know anything about the show. I didn’t watch it in preparation for writing this.”
Tolan did say that special roles have been written for the show’s stars David Hasselhoff, and Pammy herself. They will not be reprising their original characters, though. I say, make the Hoff the bad guy! And make this a full-on comedy! That’s the only way a concept as cheesy as “Baywatch” could ever work today.