United States Of Tara: Aftermath
by Brett Love, posted Jan 26th 2009 10:02AM
(S01E02) Last week we were introduced to T and Buck, and this week we got to meet Alice. While T may be the most outrageous, and Buck the strangest, this first impression suggests that Alice is the most dangerous of Tara's alters. Along with learning about Alice, and her future plans, it was also a big night for guest spots. Tony Hale, Patton Oswalt, and Nathan Corddry were all along for the ride.
First off, it was pointed out in the comments last week that I didn't make any mention of Toni Collette's performance in my review. That's a fair point, I should have mentioned it. So, let's start there this week. With Alice, we now see her working with her fourth character, and it is very impressive just how different each of them are. As much as I enjoyed T and Buck, though, I'm most looking forward to seeing more of Alice.
And it all really comes down to that one line Alice said to Marshall. "If things go the way I'm hoping, I'll be here all the time." I didn't see that coming at all, and it's a little scary. I was operating under the impression that the alters were there when Tara couldn't deal with things, as we heard from Alice at the restaurant, "Tara is not equipped to manage this family at this moment." The idea that one of the alters is planning a coup adds a whole new twist.
Not that Alice is all bad. I suppose if it has to be any of them, she would be the choice. She means well, and she does get things done. The scene with Marshall's teacher was great. Tony Hale was perfectly cast, and the calmness in Alice as she went on was almost a little creepy. "Poor little Oral, sitting in the back of the class, daydreaming about sports he'd never play ... girls he'd never touch ... "
With Kate, as crazy as the soap in the mouth was, it's hard to side completely against Alice in the exchange. Again, she means well, and did take the time to explain Tara's part in all of it. Kate shares a little responsibility because she was clearly pushing Alice's buttons. She was provoked, sure, with talk of guarding her flower and being called a graceless ingrate, but still, no back door shyness? There are lines, and alter or no, that crosses one, I'm sure.
It does move us down the road a little more where Kate's story is concerned. We saw her talking to Gene (Nathan Corddry) about a job, and given the fact that they hired Nathan Corddry for the job, I'm going to go ahead and assume that she gets it. What I like about Kate's story, though, is how uncertain it is. She goes from "God, I want out" to looking back longingly at the photo album.
Max is quickly becoming my favorite part of the show. He's a guy dealing with more than most, and managing it as best he can. There's a sadness to it, like we saw when he was looking for Tara in Alice. But there is also an underlying hope, which we see when he compares the return of the alters to a Genesis reunion. It's the path he has to take to get things back to where they should be. He also appears to be the most tolerant man on Earth, as we saw him dealing with Neil (Patton Oswalt). It was another very good cameo.
Overall, another solid episode. They now have me hooked on the story of the Gregsons. Theirs is a crazy world, and I'm looking forward to learning more about it.