‘United States of Tara’ – ‘Dr. Hatteras’ Miracle Elixir’: The no-win scenario?

A quick review of tonight’s “United States of Tara” coming up just as soon as I put a dress on a tree and take it to the movies…

“What if there’s no fixing me?” -Tara

Tara’s asked variations of this question before. It’s obviously the core of the show, and if Tara ever were to somehow be “fixed,” Toni Collette and company would have to call it a day and go do something else. Still, it’s interesting to see the different ways in which Tara has tried to deal with the problem, here latching on to a man who didn’t even believe DID existed until the previous episode. But given the nature of the condition, and the idea that everyone wants to keep the show going, we have to treat all attempts as a no-win scenario.(*)

(*) Which is basically what Kate gets stuck with in one of her first tests as a flight attendant. To go nerdy for a second, I liked seeing her pull a Captain Kirk on the oversized carry-on equivalent of the Kobayashi Maru test, finding a solution when none seemed apparent. This is easily the first of the “Kate gets a new job” storylines that actually feels like it fits the reality of the rest of the show.

More importantly than what she’s doing with Hatteras right now, though, is seeing how the new monarchy she established at the end of last week is going. And, so far, not too shabby. Charmaine still doesn’t want Tara around Wheels, but then Alice comes out, temporarily solves the crying problem with the vacuum cleaner trick, comes home, starts a snack, and gives Tara parting instructions before she goes. Nice and smooth. And Alice’s help in turn helps break down the barrier between the two sisters.

In this week’s other notable development, Marshall fools around with Noah when Lionel’s not around, and we discover that Lionel’s feelings for Marshall were genuine, and not just about geographic convenience – and that tough, cool Lionel is just as capable of being hurt by a boyfriend who fools around as sensitive Marshall was back when T seduced his jock crush in season one.

What did everybody else think?