Feature

Show of the week: 'United States of Tara'

Showtime's new series about a suburban mom with multiple personalities was created by Diablo Cody, who wrote the screenplay for <em>Juno. </em>

United States of TaraSybil meets Juno in this new series about a suburban mom with dissociative identity disorder—that is, multiple personalities—created by Juno screenwriter Diablo Cody. The title role(s) is an actress’ dream, and the gifted Toni Collette throws herself into Tara’s “alters”—who include a hormonal 15-year-old girl and a gun-toting redneck man—with gusto. The show requires considerable suspension of disbelief, as Tara’s family reacts to her condition more with amusement than shock, and tends to speak in the same glib hipster lingo of Juno’s characters. But as with that film, United States of Tara compensates for its shortcomings with strong casting and characters one can’t help liking. Sunday, Jan. 18, at 10 p.m., Showtime

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