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September 3, 2014

Adrian Monk

Mr. Monk and the series ending ratings record

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 7th 2009 10:28AM
monk_natalie_usaTelevision history will show that when USA's obsessive-compulsive detective series Monk ended its eight-season, it went out in a dramatic way. I won't tell you what happened on screen in case it's still in your DVR and you haven't watched it yet. But off screen, Mr. Monk had a happy ending.

The final episode of Monk was seen by approximately 9.4 million total viewers, nearly a third in the all-important 18-49 adult demographic. Obviously, a lot of people cared about how Adrian Monk would say goodbye.

The ratings were not only impressive, there were legendary. The largest number of viewers and demo of any drama series ever on cable. It surpassed TNT's The Closer.

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Monk: Mr. Monk's Favorite Show (season premiere)

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 8th 2009 1:00AM
monk_sweater_usa

(S08E01)
Somewhere Sherwood Schwartz was smiling if he watched this season premiere of Monk. Or else he was calling his attorney to sue for copyright infringement. I think it was more likely the former, because the tribute to The Brady Bunch was sweet. More on that and the rest of Mr. Monk's return -- for his last season -- after the jump.

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USA scores with Monk tribute promo

by Allison Waldman, posted Jul 29th 2009 9:00PM
adrian_monk_tony_shalhoubSometimes when I'm watching USA Network, I'm as tickled with the promotions for the shows as I am the shows themselves. That's saying a lot, because as a rule, networks are not very clever about commercials hawking their shows. However, USA is the exception to the rule. Just yesterday, Kona wrote about the Psych promo that took a shot at The Mentalist -- completely justified, too -- and here's another that caught my eye. It's a tribute to Monk.

This is the last season for Monk, so USA gathered some of the stars -- in character -- from its other programs to give a little tribute to Adrian Monk. What a stroke of genius!

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Sharona returning to Monk

by Danny Gallagher, posted Mar 25th 2009 9:05AM
The final season of the show that made USA famous for something other than playing non-stop reruns of Wings is turning into a reunion special. Or should I say a special reunion?

Bitty Schram, the actress who played Sharona, Adrian Monk's original partner in fighting crime on Monk, will return for an episode sometime during the show's eighth and final season.

This will mark her first appearance on the comedy-mystery since she mysteriously disappeared from the show halfway through the third season. It should also make for an interesting close to a series that has redefined the way the higher channels on the dial create and produce their own series.

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Monk: Mr. Monk and the Bully

by Allison Waldman, posted Feb 7th 2009 10:03AM
monk
(S07E14)
"Rodderick Brody changed my life, maybe as much as Trudy." -- Monk

If I didn't know better, I would have taken this episode of Monk as the drinking game edition because if you took a drink every time someone mentioned the word "swirlie," you were seriously hammered halfway through the show. If that was what you were up to, good for you because you probably didn't care that the last act of the show was a ridiculous plot switch that spoiled an otherwise very good episode. More on the ill-advised plot development after the jump.

By and large, though, there was a lot of good stuff here. The flashback to little Adrian in seventh grade was superb, right down to his tweed jacket and beige shirt and black slacks. A lot of Monk's psychological damage occurred in that junior high school bathroom thanks to the bully in question, Rodderick Brody.

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Monk: Mr. Monk and the Lady Next Door

by Allison Waldman, posted Jan 24th 2009 11:03AM
Gena
(S07E12)
"Be a pirate. It's fun to be a pirate." -- Marge to Monk

For a short time in this episode, you saw a glimpse of what Adrian Monk's life might have been when he was happy and with Trudy. A woman came into his life, not a romantic figure, but one who nurtured Adrian, admired him, gave him confidence in himself and gently eased him out of the shell of phobias and obsessions that dictate so many aspects of his life. The woman, Marge, appeared as the lady next door, and in the gifted hands of actress Gena Rowlands, she showed us another kind of Monk. For that reason alone, this was a superb episode.

Because this show is essentially not about the crimes but mostly about Monk, it was overall an emotional and sad hour. What it showed, ultimately, I'm afraid, is that Adrian is still so damaged by his childhood and Trudy's death that he may never find true peace ever again.

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Monk: Mr. Monk on Wheels

by Allison Waldman, posted Jan 17th 2009 2:20PM
monk

(S07E11) "Come back here. I command you." -- Monk to Natalie

Exactly what is the relationship between Adrian Monk and Natalie Teeger? Boss/employee? Colleagues? Friends? Family? For a nice change of pace, this episode was less about whodunit and why and more, about how Monk and Natalie make whatever it is between them work. It was also a strange show in terms of physical humor, sort of in the A Fish Called Wanda tradition, where pain equals laughs. For me, a little of that goes a long way.

However, the more important business was Monk and Natalie. She really proved her loyalty, integrity and grit. In an odd way, I think we saw qualities in her that Sharona wouldn't have displayed. I think she would have smacked Monk during this adventure, but more on that and the trip to the hospital and a very good guest turn by Bradley Whitford after the jump.

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Monk: Mr. Monk and the Other Brother (winter premiere)

by Allison Waldman, posted Jan 10th 2009 10:25AM
(S07E10) The case of who killed Lindsay Bishop wasn't the primary plot line for this episode of Monk, and in many ways it was a nice change of pace. For one thing, any time we get more insight into the complicated Monk family history, it's a good thing.

In the midst of making perfectly square pancakes -- about two inch squares, piled neatly on a plate -- Monk's world was thrown into flux by the unlikely appearance of Joe Endicott. That's just an alias, of course, because the man in question is actually Jack Monk, Jr., Adrian's half brother.

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Modern-day Felix Ungers: Seven TV neat-freaks - VIDEOS

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 16th 2008 3:02PM
Tony RandallDo you think when Neil Simon created the character of Felix Unger in The Odd Couple he knew that he was spawning a generation or two (maybe more) of Felix Unger wannabes? Today, over 40 years since Felix became part of our movie/TV collective conscience, there are lots of people and characters that bring to mind Tony Randall's alter ego.

It's Tony's Felix that I think is etched in our minds. He made Felix all he could be, and week in and week out -- opposite Jack Klugman's Oscar Madison -- he typified the ultimate neat freak, persnickety, hypochondriacally, impossible-to-live-with, supercilious know-it-all that made us cackle with laughter.

So, as I was watching TV -- an occupational requirement -- recently, it occurred to me that there are quite a few Felix Ungers on screen right now. Most are fictional, like Two and a Half Men's Alan Harper and, most obviously, Adrian Monk. But there are a couple of Felixes in real life on TV, too, like MSNBC's Keith Olbermann and ESPN's Mike Greenberg.

By my count, there are seven "Felix Ungers" currently on TV.

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I'll miss you, Mr. Monk!

by Jane Boursaw, posted Nov 15th 2008 2:03PM
Monk to end after season eightIt's been a gift ... and a curse. But the brilliant, obsessive-compulsive detective known as Mr. Monk will be solving his last crime at the end of the eighth season next summer. With ratings still high on the USA Network, he's going out at the top of his game.

Monk
is one of those shows that struck a chord with viewers, because we saw a little of ourselves in the phobic detective played brilliantly by Tony Shalhoub. Ok, so maybe we don't all iron our shoelaces and avoid doorknobs like ... well, like the plague. But like Monk, we've all got issues.

And like Monk, some of us have trouble getting out of our own way. For him, that meant losing his detective job with the San Francisco Police Department.

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Monk: Mr. Monk Gets Hypnotized (season finale)

by Allison Waldman, posted Sep 13th 2008 10:06AM
Monk with frog(S07E08) Monk should have wrapped the season with last week's episode, ending on a high point, because this show was in many ways a downer. The case, such as it was, was pretty flimsy. The clues were presented so early and rather ungracefully that unless you were really unfamiliar with the Monk formula, it was a cinch to guess who was really the "guy."

The real novelty was Monk's getting in touch with his inner child. That and Tim Bagley returning as Harold Krenshaw. It's always fun when Monk's nemesis shows up, but this was a reborn Harold. Thanks to his new shrink, Dr. Kleinman, Harold wasn't interested in competing with Monk. He just wanted to embrace the wonders of life.

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Monk: Mr. Monk's 100th Case

by Allison Waldman, posted Sep 6th 2008 12:39PM
Eric McCormack on Monk(S07E07) Too often when a show reaches an anniversary, like say 100 episodes, the producers feel the need to mark the occasion with an extraordinary entry. That was what happened with Monk.

To commemorate the 100th episode, they created Mr. Monk's 100th Case, and using a show within a show format, celebrated Adrian Monk, a modern day Sherlock Holmes. San Francisco's defective detective

Thank goodness it all worked! I was afraid we were going to get a clip-laden, down-memory-lane type of show with nothing remotely intriguing. No, writer Tom Scharpling and company were more clever than that.

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Monk: Mr. Monk Falls in Love

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 23rd 2008 9:44AM
Mr Monk falls in love(S07E06) This was a rarity in the Monk canon. It was not only a serious episode, but one in which Monk seemed capable of touching another person and falling in love again. The title of the episode, in fact, suggests that he does fall in love.

There were other differences in tonight's show. The murder of the taxi driver brought Stottlemeyer and Disher to the case, and Natalie and Adrian, but also a San Francisco Homicide task force -- i.e. two other detectives.

Have we ever seen these guys before? I don't remember them. They were there for one reason basically, to contradict Monk's assertion that the prime suspect -- Layla with a Z, a beautiful social worker -- is not the "guy." In the face of mounting evidence, Monk refused to believe she did it.

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Monk: Mr. Monk is Underwater

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 16th 2008 10:21AM
Monk and Dr. Bell"It's funny how the mind works."
-- Monk to Dr. Bell


(S07E05) You kind of knew when you put together the words Monk and submarine you were going to get an unusual episode, didn't you? As a longtime Monk watcher, you know that enclosed places are not Adrian-friendly environs, so when an old friend of Natalie's -- hottie Casper Van Dien (Starship Troopers) as her late husband Mitch's buddy, Lt. Steve Albright -- asked Monk to investigate a suspicious death on the U.S.S. Seattle, trouble would ensue. Was it a contrived situation to get Monk trapped on board? You bet, but you accept that and move on.

What made this episode unique was how Monk reacted. Initially, he ran for the hatch like a crazed three-year-old. But then Adrian concocted a coping mechanism. This was a Monk first. To deal with claustrophia, he envisioned Dr. Bell by his side.

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Monk: Mr. Monk Bumps His Head

by Adam Finley, posted Jan 21st 2006 10:43AM
MonkOkay, this is actually the second episode of the season. The first episode guest starred Malcolm McDowell as an unscrupulous fashion guru. That episode was decent, save for a rather lackluster performance from McDowell. Let's move on.

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