While one Showtime series is driving us slowly insane with its apparent multiple personality disorder, a newer series about MPD is improving with every episode. That show, United States of Tara, has just been picked up for a second season.
Although I wasn’t quite sold on the show in the beginning, Toni Collette’s deft handling of Tara Gregson, a woman with at least four distinct personalities that manifest regularly now that she has gone off her medication, has made me a fan. In fact, I wish Tara had a full hour so we could see even more of Collette’s magic.
The Advocate recently asked Collette if any of her personalities have “lesbian tendencies":
T, the provocative 16-year-old girl, could probably go both ways. We haven’t seen it onscreen thus far, but she’s definitely the most overtly sexual of all the alters.
Happily, Tara’s male personality, “Buck,” is quite clearly a male, despite the fact that he is in Tara’s body:/p>
Most people around Tara understand what she’s going through, and those who don’t understand learn very quickly … It’s not that Tara’s pretending to be a guy or dressing up as a guy. When she’s ‘Buck,’ ‘Buck’ believes that he’s ‘Buck,’ so there’s no question that he is a guy; therefore, people that know Tara treat him as a guy. He likes to go to titty bars and he flirts with girls. He’s also homophobic, actually.
OK, so a man in a woman’s body is a man. Would somebody please tell Alice?
Overall, I think writer Diablo Cody has managed to find a balance of humor and pathos that makes the tricky subject matter work. She also provides an awesome live Twitter commentary each Sunday when Tara airs that is a must for fans of the show. I’m happy that Showtime is going to give the show a chance to grow.
Has Tara won your heart? Which character do you find the most entertaining? Is the show believable?