United States of Tara

Amercan television is in a wonderful state of flux at the moment. Schedulers are still in a mild state of panic after the writers strike and instead of commisioning the usual 22+ epsiode runs that they used to, the British model is starting to be followed. So now we have series that run for around 13 episodes (which also works alot better for exporting purposes don’t you know)  and with lower financial risk and less time commitment from actors there are some truly unique gems popping up, which sadly will probably not make it to these shores, well that is unless channel 4 decided to pick them up edit tha crap out of them and bounce it all over the midnight schedule (yes I am still bitter about what they did to Angel.)

The United States of Tara is one of those gems. Produced by Stephen Speilberg, written by Diablo Cody and starring Toni Collete. This tells the tale of your all American type family, except for the small problem that Tara (the mother of the family) suffers from multiple personality disorder. This leads the family on many wacky adventures as the people inside of Tara pop up when she simply can’t cope.

This could have all been played out for laughs but Diablo is incredible at writing very natural human reactions to extreme situations and every action/reaction is grounded in real human emotion. Kind of think ‘Six Feet Under’ before it got seriously weird. But this show is truly made stand out by the supporting cast, each member of the family of course has there own problems, but I can’t tell you anything for fear of spoiling you.

This show is a lil out of our usual sci-fi fantasy loop but if you have a love for well written scripts, family drama that doesn’t follow the glossy world of the Gilmore Girls and fancy watching some truly unique television with out having to dedicate 20 odd hours to it, I cant recommend The United States of Tara any higher. Hunt it out online or on DVD, just go and do now.

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