S03E03: Now THIS is how you end an episode! Holy shit that was an incredible ending for United States of Tara. You can’t get better than that. It’s so fun to experience an episode like that. Everything was going decently up until that point (and we’ll talk about the ending later but I didn’t want to spoil anything right off the bat) but that last image hit and it was like a punch to the gut. It really reminded me why this show is great and why television is amazing to begin with anyways.
"Roughly translated I will email you from Osaka!" -Kate
Ah, but now that we’re off the high of that final image, let’s get down to the nitty gritty shall we? As far as Tara is concerned the show didn’t move her along, instead allowing the other charactesr to develop and move their plots forward. Like Kate! She is dead set on leaving for Japan and takes off without saying goodbye hoping to avoid all the tears and what not. But oof, there is some unfortunate timing with the plot device of keeping Kate in America. I know this episode was written months ago, but it is unfortunate that they let Japan be hit by a natural disaster. These things happen folks. Besides, it’s not like they would actually let her leave. She had to stay somehow (which she eventually did when she talked herself out of it). Kate unfortunately isn’t quite ready for the real world and heads back into the crazy.
One of my favorite things about her character in this episode was how adamant she was about being taken seriously, and yet she wore overalls with a bear on them? I mean, Brie Larson is really cute but not cute enough to pull off that outfit and still be taken seriously.
"Gregson boys love them some crazy." -Grandma Sandi
The next big thing we learn in this episode is about Max’s mother. It turns out Max’s mom is a hoarder. Man, the female characters in this show are all kinds of fucked up, no? Actually most characters in this show are fucked up. Anyway, she’s also a talker and very blunt, but aren’t all grandparents like that? Her and Marshall’s talk was one of the sweetest bits we’ve seen on the show despite how rude she was. I think it really speaks for the show that despite all the crazy on the surface there is a deep love underneath everything.
One interesting character note that was said about Max is how he seems to be attracted to very crazy women. I mean, it’s no Oedipus complex or anything but Max does have a tendency to gravitate towards women with psychological trauma. Is it his need to fix things or can he not stand to be normal? This is an interesting development with his character and I hope we get deeper into in the season. Also, Beaver Lamp is one of the greatest fictional band names ever.
"Hey, this is 'fuck you.' That was just a finger.’ -Tara
But then we have the big news of the episode: Char had a baby! Sure, she had it in the grocery story parking lot while T crashed a car, but still, a baby! Yay! Up until that part (which may be one of my favorite moments of television ever), Char had been going through quite a lot. Interestingly, she didn’t seem to mind Alice when she showed up to help with the baby shower but when Char was at her lowest, it was Tara that came to the rescue. The scene at the grocery store was one of the most well-written bits and if you’re looking for an mature female monologue I suggest you look no further. Usually, Char has some of the weaker stories (except when she’s showing off her bad boob job) but this week provided a really strong arch for her.
While there wasn’t that much going on for moving Tara forward (Eddie Izzard was nowhere to be seen) we did get a little insight into her. Alice said something interesting again about how the alters are now seemingly working with Tara to help her, but this is only when Tara is in a normal state. When she was tired, Buck came roaring out to go look for Bryce (and when he found a black guy? Hilarious!). When she downed a Red Bull, T came running out. What are the alters doing? These are some interesting developments that I’m sure the writers are going to explore further, and if it’s anything like a baby plopping out in the middle of parking lot, oh hell yeah.