'United States of Tara,' 'Nurse Jackie': Notes from press tour

toni-collette-us-of-tara-320.jpgThe "United States of Tara" is getting a new alter in the coming season.

The character was revealed, sort of, at Showtime's press tour sessions Saturday (Jan. 9). A critic noticed that the "Tara" poster to the side of the stage featured an alter that didn't look like one of Tara's (Toni Collette) previously revealed alters. Creator Diablo Cody says the new alter's name is Shoshanna, and she'll be a "mentor" of sorts to Tara's family.

The character makes her first appearance in the season's fourth episode, Cody says.

Cody also says the new season will feature something called "co-consciousness" -- in which Tara can communicate with an alter -- and Tara moving in and out of her personalities more fluidly than she did last year.

"Tara" and "Nurse Jackie" are both set to premiere March 22.

- Speaking of "Nurse Jackie": It will be starting its second season with a slightly smaller staff.

Haaz Sleiman, who played Jackie's (Edie Falco) friend and fellow nurse Mo-Mo on the Showtime series last season, has left the show. Creators Linda Wallem and Lix Brixius praised Sleiman Saturday, but they said his character became marginalized during the show's first season.

Mo-Mo, they explained, had been set up as Jackie's best friend in an early draft of the pilot episode. In the finished show and over the course of the first season, though, the best friend role was assumed more by Eve Best's character, Dr. Eleanor O'Hara.

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Showtime unites 'Tara' and 'Jackie'

Photo credit: Showtime
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