(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.
-- 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.
On Friday, July 18th, the seventh season of Monk will premiere on the USA network. For some this is incredibly good news, particularly since the show will be celebrating its 100th episode come September. For others, season seven is three or four seasons too many. It's these people who think Adrian Monk should retire to a Feung Shui-styled, completely dust-free room to live out his remaining days lamenting about his lost love Trudy.
Fortunately, Tony Shalhoub doesn't want Monk to retire. In a recent interview the actor who plays the obsessive-compulsive Mr. Monk said that there is plenty more to explore about the character and the people around him. This is especially true thanks to the revelations of the season six finale, which opened up a whole new avenue for Monk to find the killer of his wife. That, and the introduction of a new therapist into Monk's life (due to the sudden death of Stanley Kamel), have the seventh season looking interesting.