Review: "The Thing About Pam" Starring Renee Zellweger Nails "Midwestern Nice" and Sociopathy (No Spoilers)

Eric Sentell
A woman with bloody face and baseball batPeter Scherbatykh on Unsplash

What is "The Thing About Pam"?

"The Thing About Pam," starring Best Actress Oscar winner Renee Zellweger, aired on NBC and can now be streamed on Hulu and Peacock.

If you like True Crime, then you will love "The Thing About Pam."

The show is based on the true story of Pam Hupp, a midwestern suburban mom who may have killed her best friend and her own mother for insurance money.

Those are just the suspected murders. Pam is currently serving a life sentence for shooting Louis Gumpenberger.

As the saying goes, life is stranger than fiction.

The show is based on a series of Dateline episodes and a Dateline podcast of the same title. Dateline's reporting brought national attention to the strange murder case in Troy, MO, just outside of St. Louis. Renee Zellweger listened to the podcast, and now we have the six-episode miniseries, "The Thing About Pam."

Zellweger plays Pam, and she nails the real life Pam's midwestern appearance, accent, and mannerisms. You will recognize your mother, aunt, or friend in Zellweger's portrayal of Pam. Minus the sociopathy, hopefully.

She starts every day with a soda at the gas station. She inserts herself into other people's business and manipulates their behavior. With her veil of midwestern nice, Pam coerces people into doing what she wants them to do.

The show begins with Pam bullying her best friend, Betsy Faria, but in such an "aw shucks" nice way. When Betsy's husband, Russell, discovers her body, the police immediately suspect he killed her. Pam then positions herself as the star witness, as the person "in the know" about the Faria's allegedly troubled marriage. The police are eager to believe such a nice, helpful person.

From there, we observe the twisted psychology and masterful manipulation of Pam Hupp until it all comes crashing down. Pam's own pride and arrogance lead her to keep pushing the envelope, inserting herself into the police investigation, and trying to cover her tracks.

You can guess the story's ending, but you can't imagine how Pam gets there.

This is original content from NewsBreak’s Creator Program. Join today to publish and share your own content.

Comments / 10

Published by

Lover of books, writing, teaching, and the St. Louis Cardinals

Piedmont, MO

More from Eric Sentell

Comments / 0