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Anderson revels in playing up image

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Pamela Anderson has made a career out of contradicting herself. Forget the fact it was reported that she only had a few years to live when she announced she had hepatitis C. Now she says her hepatitis is "very minor," and she's feeling fine.

She's known as the party girl who hangs out with the likes of Courtney Love and has had an on-again-off-again with ex-husband Tommy Lee of Motley Crue fame.

But she says she's actually just a domestic who loves baking cookies and spending quiet time at home with her children.

A Comedy Central roast of her earlier this year was "embarrassing," she says, though she adds she took all the jabs from tart-tongued comics about her womanly parts and sexual activity in stride.

And, to top it all off, "I hate to blow my image, but I do like to read," she says with a laugh.

Art imitates life

Part of maintaining her image is why she chose to do the comedy "Stacked."

She plays a former party girl who wants to settle down and get a respectable job.

She ends up working at a bookstore surrounded by the insecure and the nerdy, who drool over her.

That kind of thing happens all the time anyway, says Anderson, who has been a Playboy cover girl more than half a dozen times.

She figures making light of such an image would make for a funny sitcom.

She isn't looking for a statement of any kind with the Fox comedy.

"It's just a comedy like you used to see in the old days," she says, referencing everything from "All in the Family" to "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" with that.

It's not as if she hasn't taken a stab at her image before.

On "V.I.P," the syndicated lightweight adventure series in which she starred and produced, she took the bombshell image over the top on purpose.

She was a gun-toting, bikini-wearing secret agent who bounced around from adventure to adventure.

A couple of years ago, she lent her voice to a cable cartoon "Stripperella" for Spike TV about the capers of a stripper by day and a superhero by night.

Not going the reality route

By doing "Stacked," Anderson "chose to do something that is a challenge (for her) and is scary and different, and knowing she'd be judged on that," says executive producer Steve Levitan.

She passed on offers to do a reality show.

Anderson says she would rather play a character and go home to be who she really is: a single mother who likes nesting.

Audiences have been kinder to "Stacked" than critics, some of whom wrote scathing reviews. When facing those same critics last summer, Levitan said some jumped to unfair conclusions about the comedy.

Anderson says the notices do not faze her.

She notes the positive ones and charges into the series full steam ahead.

"I am surprised we got any good reviews," she says.

"I said from the beginning that people love to bash me. It's part of my charm."

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