It’s always sad when things end. It’s even sadder when they are ended pre-maturely.
United States of Tara was one of those things.
The series starred Toni Collette as a woman struggling with multiple personalities (dissociative identity disorder). Strange, well-written with a solid cast and plenty of heart and humor, the series aired for three seasons before being cancelled. It was created by Diablo Cody (Juno) and emerged out of an idea from Steven Spielberg – all the right ingredients for a great series!
John Corbett, looking better than ever, co-stars as Collette’s husband. Rosemarie DeWitt, who now seems to be (deservedly) appearing in everything, plays Collette’s sister, and comedic gem Patton Oswalt plays Corbett’s business partner and friend.
Toni Collette really shows her chops, playing multiple characters convincingly and (seemingly) with ease. She is authentic, physical and raw in her performance and has me wondering how long it will be before she snags an Oscar.
The ‘children’ in the dysfunctional nuclear family are played by Brie Larson and Keir Gilchrist – two actors I’m convinced will make it big. Larson plays the rebellious teen Kate with vulnerability and spot-on comedic timing while Gilchrist plays the sweet and geeky son Marshall who gradually comes out of the closet. Both actors infuse their characters with life and subtleties that add depth to the series.
[ Plus, for my GIRLS fans, Shosh guest stars in the second season! ]
The show offered a unique look at the impact of mental health disorders on the entire family without being heartbreaking to watch.
I can see the concerns: Where was the show really going to ‘go’? There’s no clean break from mental health issues, so how many new personalities could they introduce before it got stale?
Still, I think it ended before its time and was forced to wrap up quickly rather than transition into a conclusion.
You can watch the first season on Netflix and mourn with me!