While the first episode of “George & Tammy” was about the start of their tumultuous relationship, the second episode is about its logistics and subtleties. Their love story was public knowledge and was one of the greater selling points of their careers. In this episode, we get a closer look at some of their existing power dynamics and why Tammy chose to stay back even when she could sense trouble brewing. Let us see how it all happens.
George And Tammy’s Marriage And Record Labels
After their elopement in Episode 1, George and Tammy must find a way to be with one another, as it is illegal in Tennessee to “steal another man’s wife.” American laws really surprise us sometimes. To avoid getting arrested, George checks Tammy and her children into a hotel. When he goes back home, as expected, the police are waiting for him with Don but since Tammy is not with him, he is not arrested. They meet the next morning and go to a diner for breakfast where they are recognized by the waitress. She promises to keep their date a secret but they both know that gossip travels fast. Tammy is worried about the scandal it could cause since it might still work with George’s ‘bad boy’ reputation, but it would be disastrous for her. George understands and to circumvent this situation, they decide to get Tammy’s divorce in Mexico, after which they get married there themselves. Their love story has become quite famous, not to mention how classy their PDA is, and Billy Sherill, Tammy’s agent and music producer sees the commercial value of it. George and Tammy recording together means big money, which means that either of them has to leave their label. But that is not the only problem in their relationship. Tennessee doesn’t recognize Mexican divorces, which means that Tammy is still technically married to Don Chapel. George Richey, George’s music supervisor, agrees to help sort it out. But the point is made that if Tammy could leave her marriage for him, he could leave his label. George is apprehensive because leaving his label would mean paying them a huge sum of money, but he loves Tammy and wants to be with her in every sense of the word. Hence, he makes that move.
George drives Tammy out to a somewhat isolated place, where he shows her the house he has purchased. Tammy is angry because he made that decision without talking to her. She tells him that her life is in the city, one that she has fought to earn, and she doesn’t want to give it up. This is when George confesses to her that he has given their old house to his music label to get out of the contract. And this house, right here, is all they are left with. He also tells her that they are completely broke but can make money again. We are sure of that, considering their popularity. But that is not the only trouble brewing in paradise. In the first episode, we saw Don take some pictures of Tammy in the shower without her consent. He uses them to blackmail her and get George to sing some more of his songs. Tammy finds herself in a tough spot. She doesn’t know whether she can trust George to stay with her even after knowing about the photos. Also, their getting leaked would spell disaster for her career. She pleads with Don to let go of it since she already gave him the house, the car, and whatever they had in their account. But he is not satisfied and insists on his deal. Tammy, having no other choice, pitches the idea to George, saying that if they make him some money, he might back off from their relationship, but George doesn’t agree. Let’s evaluate everything we have understood about their relationship so far. George and Tammy are very much in love, and it shows. They are also extremely good at flirting, as we saw at the beginning of the episode, which means there isn’t a chance that they will get bored of each other any time soon. But Tammy still doesn’t know what kind of a man George is. She trusts him enough to run away with him, but she has no idea whether he will understand her when he sees those photographs. As for George, maybe it was the mindset of those times, and he sees himself as a protector. But it remains that he is an alcoholic, and he is the one who needs protection from his addiction. Not to mention his insecurity, one that probably every artist carries within themselves, that of being ‘irrelevant’ one day, as he tells Tammy through the example of Anthony Quinn and Cassius Clay.
One particular night, when the couple is hanging out with their friends, George gets dead drunk and flips over the board game that he had been losing till that point. It is probably the first time that Tammy has seen the ugly side of his drunkenness. When George regains consciousness, he is in an unfiltered state, and he reveals that one of his greatest fears is that Tammy will leave him. We think we understand this fear. His ex-wife had also left him for a similar reason; she had married him because he was George Jonas but had not liked him in reality. We don’t blame her when we can see that the reality is this abusive. He pushes Tammy aside violently and starts breaking things in the house. When Tammy runs from him in fear, he follows her but doesn’t catch up. Either way, seeing the man you love in such a state is something a relationship cannot recover from. When Tammy calls Billy in fear, before she can say anything, he tells her that according to the law, she should have waited a year to marry Don after leaving her first husband. But she waited only 10 months, which means her marriage was never valid. Which, in turn, means that her marriage to George is legal.
‘George & Tammy’ Episode 2: Ending Explained: Does Tammy Get The Photographs Back From Don?
After the mishap with George, when she goes back to him in the morning, he promises her to quit drinking. While Tammy still loves him, she is extremely aware that she lives in a man’s world. When she came to know that she was, in fact, married to George, we saw a sense of shock on her face. Tammy was aware of abuse, both physical and emotional. She tells George about how it was her own mother who tried to have her institutionalized when she wanted to leave her first husband. Leaving a man is hard, and it is not always because of love. We believe that this is when she tells George about the photographs. Maybe it was to get a fresh start to their relationship, with a clean slate devoid of secrets, or it could have been her way of demanding payback for his behavior. Either way, George goes to Don’s house and retrieves the photographs. While he is doing that, Tammy records one of her most popular songs, “Stand by Your Man.” It is a silent acceptance of her role as a woman—to support and forgive the man you love “because that is what women do.” The mindset is no doubt a product of her times, but it is why she continues to be with George, as they run into each other’s arms every time they meet.
What Can We Expect From ‘George & Tammy’ Episode 3?
Tammy is beginning to question her relationships with men and her role in them, independent of what has been taught to her throughout her life. This could clash with George’s emotional downward spiral and his growing addiction. He would need Tammy to forgive him again and again, and there would come a time when she wouldn’t be able to do it. That is what we might see from next week onwards: two people who desperately need to be rescued from each other making some beautiful music together.