(S08E15) If you were thinking that the penultimate episode of Monk, the next to last show, would be a gag fest filled with sight gags and spit takes, you were wrong. I can't remember a more serious Monk episode in eight seasons. Also, for those of you who have wondered about Monk's mourning of Trudy, here was a show that would address the issue head on. For that and other matters of life or death, read on and remember, this is only part one of the two part finale so spoilers will be shared... after the jump.
(S08E11) All the people involved in Monk know that this is the last season. They've promoted it as such, and clearly they've planned it that way. That could explain why Monk is evolving in these last episodes. I was truly encouraged by last week's Sharona episode, which was one of the best Monks I've seen in a long time.
Could the next episode possibly be that good? Well, not quite, but it was wonderful. I'm giving anything away -- it's in the title -- but this was all about Mr. Monk and a dog. Yes, Adrian and a dog. More after the jump.
(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.
There have been little football reminders in most of its programming, like the NFL-themed cuisine on Bravo's Top Chef. This Sunday there'll be an all-day USA Network Super Bowl Promotion including the characters from Psych, Law and Order: CI, Burn Notice, In Plain Sight, The Starter Wife, and Monk. Yeah, Monk.
And yet, probably because of some "rights" thing, this episode of Monk had to build the mystery at a playoff game around a fictional football team and that made this whole show pretty flimsy.
For starters, there was no star murderer. It was an interesting case for a change, especially since the killer was a professional hit man. The planting of the bomb in the heavy bag was clever, although wouldn't a real pro make sure that the target would be hit? The set up was so random. And if you don't care about killing, why not leave a bomb big enough to destroy the gym and everyone in it? Just wondering...
When it comes to program scheduling the cable networks don't need no stinkin' badges to do what they normally do. That's why there are Law & Order marathons on TNT during every federal holiday and episodes of Dog, The Bounty Hunter on A&E. It is also the reason why we see new holiday episodes from shows like The Closer in December when their seasons end in September.
So, it should be no surprise that new holiday-themed episodes of Monk and Psych are airing this Friday on the USA Network. Actually, it should be no surprise that Monk is offering a holiday tale since it has done so for the last three years. This is Psych's first entry into the holiday episode universe. And, regardless if it is their first or third holiday entry, both shows look like interesting viewing.
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