TV SHOW REVIEW: UNITED STATES OF TARA THE COMPLETE SERIES
ON DVD / STREAMING VIA NETFLIX
A woman struggles to find a balance between her dissociative identity disorder and raising a dysfunctional family.
Created by Diablo Cody
Starring Toni Collette, John Corbett, Rosemarie DeWitt, Patton Oswalt, Keir Gilchrist, Brie Larson
United States of Tara is the type of show that’s easy to dismiss for plenty of people. Once some people see Diablo Cody’s name listed as the creator and writer of the show, I assume some people will just move one. Personally, I’ve been a fan of Cody since Juno and never went through the backlash about her writing style after that film came to prominence. I’ve enjoyed all the films she’s written, even liked Jennifer’s Body. I also have to admit I’ve been a big fan of Toni Collette since Muriel’s Wedding, so maybe I’m just a perfect mark for this show but none the less I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the 3 seasons of it. The writing and direction is excellent throughout, very few episodes ever fill like filler and deftly avoids falling into a repetitive pattern of plots. The cast of characters are all wonderfully written and well rounded over the life of the series. The cast is filled with wonderful actors whom I’d already been a fan of (Toni Collette and Patton Oswalt) and gave me new found respect for some I’d never given more than second thought (John Corbett & Rosemarie DeWitt). Toni Collette is front and center of course and her talents truly deliver throughout as she creates clearly defined personalities that go beyond wardrobe changes. Keir Gilchrist and Brie Larson deserve special attention because they really deliver even though their characters are written in the most “Codified” style. The cast as a whole gives the writing real heart and soul. The series, sadly, never had a proper finale and season 3 really heads down some interesting and dark roads. A shame but it doesn’t detract from an excellent run.