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Headscratchers: Monk
  • The finale was really screwy regarding Craig T. Nelson's judgeship. They go over to his house to have him sign a search warrant, and he mentions that he might not be doing that any more, because he's been nominated for the California Supreme Court. But later on, they talk about his appointment to the Court of Appeals, so he shouldn't be signing search warrants any more. He also says talks about how the Supreme Court appointment might force him to move to Sacramento, but the California Supreme Court is based in San Francisco. And then, he refers to himself as a "federal judge". So even if he became a federal judge after sitting on the Court of Appeals, he wouldn't be signing search warrants for the San Francisco police.
    • On the note of the finale, here's one BIG thing. The police flat out say to TEST EVERYTHING Monk had bought at the store before he was poisoned, then LATER say they basically only tested the thing he'd put in his mouth. Huge plot hole, right there.
  • It really bugs me that in the series finale they retconned Monk's personal history. There was an entire episode about how Monk met Trudy in college and it was a nice sweet episode, but the series finale pretty much erased that with the idea that they met only 15 years prior to Trudy's death. Monk is 50 in the last season, so he must have been 23 when he met Trudy. It doesn't add up.
    • Yes. Because NOBODY has EVER been in college at age 23...
      • Especially given that I doubt that Monk stopped at one bachelor's...though they would have called him Dr. if he'd had a doctorate, so I'm guessing multiple Master's degrees.
      • His disorders could have made attending classes difficult, causing him to spend much longer in college than he would have otherwise.
      • He clearly graduated in 1981. You realize that "Mr. Monk and the Class Reunion" aired and is set at Monk's 25th college reunion in 2006, clearly meaning that Monk graduated in 1981.
  • In the house of Adrian Monk, how does that umbrella ever end up with wrong way round and how do those suits end up out of order? You know, in the titles?
    • Sharona hung up the umbrella when Monk was out of the room. He didn't notice until later.
      • He's Monk; how could he not notice?
      • Sharona hung up the umbrella when Monk was out of the room. He didn't enter until later.
  • Why do the killers seem to taunt Monk with the fact that they did it so often? The point of all their ingenious plans to give themselves a perfect alibi should be to keep them from falling under any sort of suspicion, not to allow them to basically say 'yes, I did it, but you can't prove how'. I realize that probably the entire point of these scenarios is that the killer is so arrogant that they never even consider the possibility of their own failing, but it's still stupid.
    • Sometimes there's no question as to whether or not they did it. Take the episode with the chessmaster, for example. His wife came to Monk and Natalie and said that her husband was going to kill her. Hours later, her husband has killed her through a poisoned wine bottle. Besides which, Monk is pretty well-known within San Francisco. Even when they swear they didn't do it, Monk figures them out. There's no point in lying.
      • For the same reason the coolest, most convincing Magnificent Bastard will always break down and confess in police procedurals or detective programs in the final minutes: because the show's over.
  • Why do the writers think that characters forgoing common sense is "funny". I mean, I like the show, but sometimes I just want to scream at the stupidity of the characters. Mostly, whenever someone "hilariously" takes Monk's quirks the wrong way. For example, in "Mr. Monk and the Marathon Man," when Monk wiped his hands after shaking hands with a black man. For the love of god, just say "He's germophobic!" Don't let people think he's a racist!
    • Come to that, you'd think people would catch that he has a disorder after only a short amount of time watching him.
    • Wouldn't it be great if that happened, and as soon as the guy insinuates that Monk is prejudiced, Sharona/Natalie snaps, "He has OCD and is Germophobic, so don't make judgments about somebody based on the fact that he's different from you!"
      • A great lesson in-character, but this is a comedy.
    • At least twice Natalie or Sharona got this out (once with a black guy and once with a construction worker who hadn't even washed his hands after using the restroom), and they decided that she was just covering for his racism or class-ism, respectively.
      • There's some Truth in Television there. I have a anxious and temperamental border collie who barks at everyone when she's on a leash, but when she barks at black guys about 50% of the time they comment on how my dog is "racist."
      • Actually this "comedic misunderstanding" of Monk's OCD does seem to be a (now) regular Dead Horse Trope for most of the series (has no one in Monkland ever heard of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder before??). But what was funny has gotten a more then a little annoying.
    • If Monk is so germophobic then why doesn't he just wear those gloves that CSIs and the like wear? Surely it would make more sense that going through packets of wipes like candy.
      • Because he's afraid of sweaty palms too, and gloves are hot.
  • In "Mr. Monk Goes to the Bank," Monk, Natalie, Stottlemeyer and Disher are locked into a bank vault and slowly suffocating. That CAN'T HAPPEN; bank vaults have air-locks in them should something like that ever happen, as well as a means of getting food and water inside should it take awhile to get someone out. Once this troper realized how unrealistic that episode was, she started questioning whether ANY of them made sense.
    • At one point, Natalie's standing in front of an air vent and saying, "There's no air. They shut it off." All the employees of the bank were deliberately trying to suffocate them, so they would have sabotaged any such safeguards.
      • Why, exactly, is there apparently a "Suffocate anyone in the vault" button?!
      • Why wouldn't you have a "Suffocate anyone in the vault" button? I know if I ever owned a bank, that'd be the first button installed (almost like what's used on Vault 713 at Gringotts).
      • The "button" in question is presumably the on/off switch for a fan in the ventilation duct.
    • That, and one of the employees specifically states that he shut the air off.
    • Also, according to the Rule of Cool, this vault lacks some other general safety features seen in vaults, like phones and panic alarms.
  • I had this problem in "Mr. Monk Gets Jury Duty," where he was on a jury. One, as a suspended detective Monk cannot sit on a jury; and two, his actions in solving another crime whilst on that jury would have caused a mistrial.
    • Natalie notices that, too; she assures him in the beginning that he won't get chosen because he's a detective. As for the second part, there was no indication the initial case wasn't declared a mistrial. We never see a verdict or anything for that case.
      • The judge in question was a total Jerkass, and basically put Monk on the jury in a fit of pique. Me, I'd like to know why the defense didn't raise holy hell about that. Maybe the (innocent) defendant had heard of Monk, and whispered to his lawyer not to object to the illegal pick because he (correctly) assumed Monk would prove him innocent?
      • More likely the attorney had crossed paths with Monk before, and believed his client to be innocent, so he had zero reason to protest. That sounds more likely than a random dude who have never been to trial should know about Monk.
  • How has Monk not fired Natalie? It seems like at least every other week, she forces him into a situation that he's not comfortable in or screws something up because of a mistake that she makes.
    • Because no one else will put up with him.
    • If Monk rejected anyone who'd ever put him in a situation that he was uncomfortable with, he'd never talk to anyone ever.
      • Yeah, but she does it on a biweekly basis, and he pays her.
      • What situation is Monk comfortable in? Plus, OCD just gets worse if you start listening to someone describe it. I'm pretty sure that Monk and Natalie have had a number of experiences where this has happened.
      • Also he doesn't pay her very well, as has been documented a few times (for instance, in the first scene of "Mr. Monk and the Genius," Natalie screams when Monk refuses to give her $1,800 in backpay). This is probably part of why.
    • If Natalie, or Sharona for that matter, never pushed Monk to be uncomfortable, they would be enablers of his OCD. Despite Monk's fondness for routine and sameness, this troper doesn't believe he wants to be rendered helpless by the disorder, so even if he gets mad at his assistants for pushing him, he still keeps them around. Besides which, without uncomfortable situations, his character would never grow.
  • On a related note to the previous item, why does it seem like everyone decides that bit part characters' small quirks override the importance of Monk's OCD? For example, "Mr. Monk and the Three Pies", during the scene where Adrian and Sharona are at the bingo game: The bingo addict refuses to stop pestering Adrian until he pets the grimy troll doll with its hair - all greasy with the dirt and oils from his hands. Sharona tells him to just pet the troll so that the guy will leave them alone, and when Adrian does so using his sleeve, the guy starts screaming that he pet the troll too hard. And this isn't even the worst example, just the first one I thought of. It would be understandable if it were a neurotic witness or a hostage situation Monk was dealing with, but really? Every bit part character that wants him to do something disgusting for no valid reason gets their way when Natalie, Sharona, or Stottlemeyer bully him into doing so.
    • Possibly Dr. Kroger told Stottlemeyer and Sharona which parts of his disorder were okay to indulge him in and which weren't, and maybe Sharona left instructions when she left.
  • Conversely with that. Actually this should be a pretty big Headscratcher here: Why is Monk basically forced to do what even by mentally healthy standards are pretty unclean or dangerous. In the pilot episode Monk must face his mysophobia by climbing down into an open sewer to chase and attempt to apprehend a suspect. In another the before mentioned troll petting. With "Mr. Monk and the Astronaut," Monk is considered a "coward" for not physically confronting Steve Wagner, who has an unbreakable alibi, however is considered brave after stopping Wagner from taking off by standing in front of a Still moving SUPERSONIC JET FIGHTER and not even flinching despite all the dots from the laser scopes on soldiers' guns appearing on him.
    • A similar situation again when (while investigating the death of a martial arts star) Monk is (again) perceived as "crippled by his own fear" even when the possible suspects have years of lethal martial arts training and experience which Monk doesn't have. While Monk's Super OCD is undeniable it appears that the requirement for Monk to receive a bill of "full mental health" is unconceivable for anyone to truly accomplish. Is Monk in a universe of Chuck Norris's or something were tasks like this are required and commonplace?? Can anyone really answer this?
    • Those are the incidents that almost get him reinstated. These are then followed by incidents where Monk does something like accidentally wipe out ten years of case files by accident, or let a suspect get away because he can't follow down a certain path. Also, at the moment, he is paralyzed by even basic decisions. While he is able to overcome his compulsions, it takes extreme events to do so, and that is not something you want for a police officer. In "Mr. Monk and the Missing Granny," the test he took when the law students found him a loophole is a good example...he spent all his time on one question despite the fact that he probably knew all the answers on the test immediately, probably because he wanted to do things the right way.
  • In the episode "Mr Monk and The Wrong Man" DNA testing shows that the blood on the victims' fingernails does not belong to the guy who was put away. But that evidence does not an acquittal make! They must have had other evidence, right?
    • A moonbat did it?
    • Maybe the case rested on that physical evidence.
    • It's an acquittal if the jury believes it's good enough for an acquittal. And most juries tend to regard DNA evidence as nigh-unquestionable unless it's explained away somehow. Clearly the prosecution failed to do so.
  • In the episode "Mr. Monk Gets Fired" Monk identifies the dismembered body as the body of Larysa Zereyva, a woman born before 1978 in one of the Baltic states (Estonia, Latvia or Lithuania), because the corpse has a smallpox vaccination scar and they stopped vaccinating in the Baltic states in 1978. In Poland the routine vaccination of babies continued until 1980, as my own scar bears witness. I could not find any data on it, but I guess in a few other countries the vaccination programme lasted longer than in the USA.
    • Couldn't find the data either, but since smallpox was proclaimed eradicated only in 1980, and USSR (which the present Baltic states were part of at the time) was one of the proponents of the Smallpox Eradication Programme, it's likely that they continued there until at least 1980 as well.
    • If the vaccine wasn't administered before the age of 2, the timeline works.
  • How does Ambrose write a manual for a gun? Either he has never fired it (just the person I want with writing my manuals) or he has a shooting range in his house (seeing as how he is obsessed with keeping everything how it was, unlikely.)
    • He was probably just given all of the relevant information and asked to put it in the form of a manual. And possibly to translate it. After all, that's how it's probably done in real life - they would use experts in the field of writing things like manuals and instruction guides, rather than experts in, say, guns.
    • As someone who has written manuals they provide you with the information from whoever designed and how it works and you put it in Captain Dummy Talk. I'd say at least half the time I didn't have the actual product available, just rough instructions, pictures, and sometimes videos. It's cheaper to mail (or e-mail nowadays) the information than it is to ship something like a vacuum cleaner.
    • Agreeing with the troper immediately above me. I've written manuals for software without having used it — sometimes before it even exists. With the right specs, a little research, and someone doing the actual QA going over it later, it's easy.
  • Episode 2x04. Monk tells Sharona to 'suck it up' in regards to her elephant phobia. Sharona gets all pissy about it and it seems justified - it's a hypocrisy of staggering magnitude. But sorry, Sharona, you're not in an equal relationship. He's your boss. So, yes, you either suck it up or you find another job.
    • Of course, cause authority figures have all right to be abusive and can never be countested. Puff...
    • That's just the kind of character she is. As the first episode with Natalie instead of Sharona suggests, he figured no one else would take the job. And she probably realized the same thing.
    • Well, yes, technically Monk is her boss, but part of her job description is helping Monk learn to manage his OCD and function in normal society. So in the long run what she did was probably a good thing for Monk. It taught him a lesson about life in the real world that he obviously needed.
  • How is it that everyone was opposed to Monk gambling? He's got virtually perfect eidetic memory. He could be earning hundreds of thousands on blackjack tables. What is especially mind boggling is that Natalie was the most avid supporter of the "don't gamble" idea. She was complaining an episode or two before that Monk doesn't pay her enough money, how is that supposed to make sense?
    • Because Natalie was an ex-gambling addict and so, she knew better. The problem wasn't the fact that Monk could cheat his way onto millions, but the fact that (if I recall correctly) his OCD causes him to display traits of a life-time gambling addict while he was still only trying to pay-up Randy's pathetically low (in comparison to the money Monk could make) debt of $30,000.
      • That and I'm sure Monk has numerous tells.
      • Which would be relevant if Monk was playing poker...
      • It's even mentioned in Mr. Monk in Outer Space that Monk is not a good person about hiding his feelings in his body language.
    • Well, Monk does have a little something called Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Maybe they feel combining gambling with his OCD is a bad idea?
      • This does make sense. The ideal number to get in Blackjack is 21, an odd number. Monk hates odd numbers.
      • There's also the fact that getting caught counting cards in a casino is a good way to get kicked out. Which in a way, happens.
  • In "Mr. Monk and the Red Herring" how come the security guards were searching people if they weren't supposed to realize the moon rock was missing? And the bad guy worked there, so he shouldn't have been surprised about the guards if it was a routine thing.
    • It slipped his mind maybe? Or perhaps the people in charge had changed their minds?
    • What museum do you go to that frisks you as you leave?
  • For that matter, medical examiners in San Fransisco must really suck if they've examined a woman supposedly bitten to death by a dog but don't notice anything weird about the lack of dog saliva or scratch marks or fur.
    • The guy did kidnap her dog for a while, he probably took fur and saliva from it then.
    • It never says he did. It only said he made that mold out of the dog's jaws.
  • In the last-season episode where Monk impersonates an asassin, why was he not detained for implicitly threatening a police officer? If any other officer had gone too deep, Stottlemeyer would most likely have decked them right there, or the FBI agent (and Disher, if he was there) would have called for backup if he resisted. But Stottlemeyer sees the best detective on the west coast, a man with (usually) severe psyhological problems, and most importantly his best friend walk into a dangerous and situation where he'll almost definitely have to kill in cold blood or be killed himself, against police orders, and just lets him go because he's ticked. And what really bugs me, since Stottlemeyer's not the most competent choice for authority by a long shot (both where Monk is concerned and in general since his divorce), is that the others let Monk go, and nobody (not even the frickin' FBI agent) calls him (Stottlemeyer) on it!
    • Speaking of that episode, there are a lot of times Monk has been in the news (enough for at least a few of the cases he takes to be brought to him because of it.). How does that plot even work.
    • Well, the guy Monk was impersonating was an alleged hit man (keep in mind the FBI agent states clearly that they've linked this hit man to 17 murders, but they have no solid evidence against him), and he tried to keep his stuff undercover. Monk is a well known detective, so it must have been easy for the mobster to just say "Hey, we look the same, but we're different people. Imagine that." Monk might've just done the same, like he tried to in that episode when he was recognized. The other mobsters might've done a search on this "Adrian Monk" and figured, "Hey, what a coincidence." Then again, why they couldn't show that...or why they wouldn't be even more suspicious that he was acting different around the time they discovered he has a doppelganger...well...
    • That episode took place in LA; the show only ever implies he's famous in San Francisco.
  • In the one where Monk has to hide out in the woods because he sees a Chinese mob killing, the woman who lives nearby drops a radio into her husband's bath to kill him, then tries to make it look like he was struck by lightning. After The Summation, the deputy says "we'll do an autopsy on your husband. They'll be able to tell us if the cause of death is lightning or electrocution". But if you die from being hit by lightning, then you die due to electrocution, surely?
    • True. But there is a technical distinction. The word "electrocution" is actually a portmanteau for "electric execution" and properly refers to a deliberate execution by electric shock. Doctors and forensic techs use distinctions like this in order to provide greater clarity. Since a lightning bolt is several thousand times more powerful than anything human beings are capable of generating, an autopsy would easily reveal the difference.
  • In "Mr Monk Gets Cabin Fever" Disher says that he doesn't have any uncles. In "Mr Monk Visits a Farm" or whatever it's called, which I'm pretty sure takes place later, Disher's uncle is killed. Had Randy had a falling out with his uncle prior to "Mr Monk Gets Cabin Fever", or something?
    • I noticed that, too. I just figured that maybe one of his Aunts got married, but if the Uncle's last name in "Visits a Farm" was Disher, that's highly unlikely. More than probable it's just one of those little snafu's they didn't catch.
    • It's possible that the events of "Visits a Farm" took place before "Cabin Fever" In-Universe, and the episodes were just the wrong way around, if you know what I mean.
      • I disagree. "Mr. Monk Visits a Farm" could not take place before "Mr. Monk Gets Cabin Fever" because in "Cabin Fever," Natalie is accusing Monk of having bad karma for causing deaths to happen everywhere he goes, yet by the time episodes that aired immediately before "Visits a Farm" came around, she was perfectly content with Monk finding bodies everywhere he went. I figure maybe he was lying to the girl he was talking to just to impress her.
  • How biased was the judge in Mr. Monk Takes The Stand? I would have overruled the "undefeated" lawyer for badgering the witness and intentionally causing disorder ("Does this piece fit with this piece? How about this piece? This piece?!"), as well as bringing in "evidence" through the front door of the trial instead of following proper procedures, regardless of whether I had been following Monk's show for several years or were allowed to tell him off specifically for using such a stupidly blatant Chewbacca Defense.
    • This troper was thinking the exact same thing. Whatever happened to "Badgering the Witness"?
    • It wasn't just the judge's fault, there's plenty more blame to go around. For instance: the prosecutor. Why didn't the prosecutor object to the obvious badgering by the "undefeated" lawyer? For that matter, why didn't Monk receive any sort of preparation before he took the stand? You'd think with Monk's rather fragile mental state some pre-trial preparation would have been a top priority. And while we're on the subject, why would Monk have that much trouble in the first place? As a former police officer and now independent investigator who contracts with the police department, he must've been called to testify in court many times in the past. Are we to believe that in all that time he's never met an aggressive, badgering attorney before?
      • He was prepped (we see part of it onscreen), it just didn't go very well for a guy who obviously knows what the [1] is. I think he's only been called to testify once since the show started, and therefore since Trudy died, but more importantly he hasn't gone up against an "undefeated" guy.
      • It probably doesn't need to happen that often. Keep in mind, most people confess after Monk explains why it was only possible that they did it, and a lot of those that don't have left behind some kind of incontrovertible evidence that convinces the captain to begin with.
  • The evil paramedic in the voodoo episode. How are you going to hide that the person you brought in for swallowing a (possibly) poisonous substance just go decapitated, that there is blood on your scalpel and what not.
    • How about mailing it to her in the first place? It worked on the other ones because they were already dead and she didn't need to worry about screwing them up, but Natalie was supposed to be decapitated. How on earth was that supposed to be ensured? Natalie getting sent to the hospital was pretty much entirely chance.
    • I was wondering why not just let it be assumed (or even show up at the reverend's office and offer her condolences, then drop an offhand "well, at least...") that it broke the curse, and she just happened to be poisoned by drinking an unguent instead of waiting for instructions? (aside from being totally insane, of course.)
    • She wasn't necessarily going to kill Natalie before she got her in the ambulance. She overheard Monk talking about his superstitious assistant and set her up to distract him. If it worked long enough for her to get away with the crime, then it wouldn't have mattered much. But when she had her there and Natalie figured her out, she figured she might as well kill her. The real question is, what are the odds that that particular ambulance showed up to Monk's house? How many hospitals must there be in San Francisco?
      • A police safe house. Same question though. And what is the driver doing in all this?
      • I figured she just sent the doll as a distraction, and when Natalie fell into her lap, tried to kill her because, as Monk pointed out, she's nuts.
  • It's not so much that it bugs me, but I wondering if it should bug me. Several times during the show, Monk's OCD has put him in a deadly situation or lessened his chances of survival. I'm wondering whether that actually happens - can OCD so casually override your survival instincts?
    • Yes.
    • Absolutely it can. That's why it's called "Obsessive Compulsive Disorder" not "Obsessive Compulsive Minor Inconvenience".
    • My sister has stated she refuses to watch the show or the ads for fear of picking up Monk's behaviors. One of mine is reading. It took me years to force myself from "have to finish the chapter" to "have to finish the paragraph" to "have to finish the sentence". This isn't all that major when reading a book where I'm enjoying the story. But I also often have to finish reading signs if I started and I still have slowed down in traffic, taken a route out of my way to turn around or even just stopped to finish reading something I started to read on a sign. Neither of us is diagnosed so I doubt either of us is more than mild. So, yes, I can absolutely imagine that situation.
  • The penultimate episode's ending. It makes Monk seem... weak to just resign like that because of something that has happened in at least every other episode and painfully reeked of Status Quo Is God in what was otherwise a season of growth (and the stats quo really shouldn't matter in the penultimate episode).
    • He realized that he wasn't ready to be a policeman. The life or death situation was just the final push.
    • He didn't resign because of that. He was unhappy with the kind of work he was assigned to do. C'mon, that point received ample treatment in the episode. He talked about it with Natalie and with Dr Bell.
  • Wasn't Trudy getting something for Ambrose something Monk didn't know? That flashback doesn't make sense.
    • The solution to that one is simple: Ambrose didn't know that Adrian knew.
  • In Mr. Monk and the Naked Man, why was the doctor hitting just-birthed Monk if he was already crying?
    • The doctor was a jerk who enjoyed hitting babies?
    • Actually, sometimes when babies are born, doctors need to spank the babies to make them breathe.
      • Yes, but if they couldn't breathe, there wouldn't be any air in the lungs that they could use to cry. If Monk was crying, he was breathing.
  • So what did Dale the Whale have to do with Trudy's death?
    • He knew whodunit. It was never stated explicitly that he had any importance other than knowledge, but I expect that he would have been revealed as more closely related to the crime or the perpetrator(s) had the writing team been given the time they probably wanted to wrap up the series.
      • Actually, he knew one name...the man who built the bomb for the "six-fingered freak". Dale the Whale didn't know just how deep it went or how many people were involved.
      • In "Mr. Monk Is On The Run", he used the "six-fingered man" to commit a crime and frame Monk. When he learned this man's identity is still not known.
  • Randy is my favourite character on the show, and I always thought his crush on Sharona was adorable. That said, the man is incompetent. Sharona seemed to view him as an annoying little brother figure more than anything. His becoming a chief and ending up in a relationship with Sharona just didn't work for those reasons. And Leland's line bugged me. He's fond of Randy, but he's definitely aware of how incompetent Randy can be. The Sharona thing can be attributed to people changing, etc. But Randy is not and likely will not ever be ready for the rank of chief, and I want the name of the idiot or sabotaging mastermind who decided to promote him.
    • Heck, in the finale episodes Randy caused a mass panic that got tipped off the assassin who was the only person who knew what poison was used on Monk, which ended with said vital information source killed. That alone should have cancelled his promotion immediately and probably got him sanctioned in some way.
    • His Relationship Upgrade with Sharona happened offscreen, so there's no way to tell how her feelings toward him evolved since she left the show. Agreed completely on the improbability of him making Chief, though.
      • It didn't happen exactly offscreen. He picks her up, grabs her by the hip and kisses her in the mouth at the end of Mr Monk and Sharona. So, yes, we know how her feelings evolved.
    • Do you know what bugs me? This idea that Randy is completely incompetent. True, he does say and do some odd things. But he is a great cop. For most of the time we see him on screen, he's the wacky comedy relief, but whenever the situation calls for it, Randy goes into cop mode and he gets the job done. He's made several arrests during the series, and even made several Monk-like observations and conclusions. In one episode, Randy and Monk have a summation scene together, each summing up their own solved mysteries. And it can be assumed that there have been several moments off-screen on cases Monk has not worked on, that Randy has done some great detective work. And in one episode, when Leland joins a monastery, Randy certainly stepped up and proved that he can fill his shoes at the station. I certainly would believe he'd make a great chief.
      • I don't think he's completely incompetent; however, the man once tried to get a drowning woman to say the word 'aunt' to see whether she pronounced it in an American or English accent. To paraphrase the captain, 'Let's assume the woman who was just being killed in premeditation isn't the evil twin'. (Of course, if it was me, I would have yelled at him to help save the civilian and sort out whether she was a killer or not later, but the captain did have a point.) I'm aware Randy did occasionally have his day in the limelight, but someone who is trying to get a person in need of immediate medical attention to pronounce a word in no way relevant to his or her medical needs should not, in my opinion, be made chief of police.
      • It looked like Natalie and Stotllmeyer were already administering whatever first aid the woman needed and he'd just get in the way if he tried to help. That was very mean of him, but nowhere near as dangerous as it might have been if he was alone at the time. He tried to help, in his eager, easily excitable way.
    • I totally agree with the point. At the end of the day Flanderization made Randy stupid to the point it is totally unbelievable that he would be an even slightly competent captain. Had the authors been more carefull, this end would've been more believable. But instead they just went the path to make him a total Buttmonkey instead of a wacky but otherwise competent cop. I guess this was supposed to be funny. It is not.
    • Though the canonicity of it is unlikely, one of the books has Stottlemeyer mention that Randy actually has the highest closure rate out of all of his men (Not counting Monk, of course.). He's a complete Bunny-Ears Lawyer, that's the thing.
  • Stottlemeyer tells TK he's never felt 'this way', which I'm assuming he meant love/attraction-wise. I think it's great he finally got a love interest who wasn't a murderer. I firmly believe a person can be in love, split, and then, fall in love with another person. But it bugs the ever-loving crap out of me when a character disregards their previous partner in such a way. He knew Karen since childhood, had two children with her, was on the verge of a nervous breakdown when there was a possibly she'd die, was willing to forgive her for having a (fictional) affair because he so badly wanted to make the marriage work, and was married to her for two decades. At one point, he was in love with her and did feel 'this way'.
    • Knowing someone since childhood is different from a whirlwind romance. Just because he married both of them doesn't mean his feelings for them were exactly the same.
      • I don't think his feelings for both could or should be exactly the same. But he was in love with Karen; she was a for a long time a huge part of his world. For him to simply disregard all that bugged me.
      • Stottlemeyer loved his wife, but they'd been having problems for years—going all the way back to the very first episode. Spend that long unhappy, it's going to sour your view of the relationship.
    • That, and "I've never felt this way before" sounds more romantic than "I've only felt this way when I was around my first wife, who I am currently divorced to due to complications that strained our marriage. Let's just hope second time's the charm, eh?"
    • "I've never felt this way before" isn't synonomous with "I instantaneously love you more than anyone I've ever met." It's not that he feels his brief time with TK is the best relationship he's ever been in, he just finds the nature of it new and exciting.
  • Alex Wolff in the episode "Monk Goes Camping". That is all.
  • Why is Monk (and indeed most people with OCD) portrayed as comical and quirky. I have OCD, I'm not a germaphobe(as most shows would have us believe is the sole symptom of OCD) but i have other symptoms. OCD is not funny in ANY way whatsoever. It's is not symonomous with being neurotic and Woody Allen like. I can hide it pretty easily. I'm not trying to say you cannot have comedy shows with people with OCD, but why do we have to be so misrepresented?
    • Misrepresentation implies that Monk is being held up as a representative of all individuals with OCD. I don't think this is the case. In fact the show has gone out of its way several times to state that Monk's particular form of OCD is extremely severe and unusual. To my mind this is the opposite of misrepresentation.
      • But it is still a representation of a person suffering from OCD. When all the people with OCD are represented in a certain way on TV, even if they explain it away, gradually you will develop a picture of OCD in your head. I don't think I've ever seen OCD represented realistically on tv. That said, you do have a very valid point. My criticism was maybe a little too general when this is just focusing on one show.
      • Are all people with OCD represented a certain way, though? I can't even think of another tv presentation of OCD aside from Monk.
      • What about Michael J. Fox's character on Scrubs? Based on the five or six people I know with severe OCD, and my own fairly mild condition, his portrayal was very realistic.
      • Well the thing is that OCD cases differ, and we almost only get to see the "obsessed with cleaning/bugs" type and they act really strangely. I have OCD-thoughs 24/7 and I don't act like that. I don't sweat profusely and rattle on nervously around people. I act normally. Maybe it's just my predujice, but it still annoys me.
      • Wolf on CSI Miami admits to having OCD when he's first recruited to work with the team; in fact, his meticulousness in maintaining his weapon helped land him the job, since the man he replaced got killed due to a poorly-kept weapon's misfire.
    • According to the Other Wiki, Monk's OCD is at least partly based on co-creator David Hoberman's own struggles with OCD. "Like Monk, I couldn't walk on cracks and had to touch poles. I have no idea why but if I didn't do these things, something terrible would happen."
  • I'm not sure this counts as a Headscratchers, but did anyone else find the show rather offensive? I mean, 99% of the humor is basically "Haha, look at how silly mentally ill people are!"
    • Well at the risk of sounding blunt or insensitive, sometimes mental disorders are funny. If you think about it the symptoms of OCD can be and often are pretty silly. Also, I personally believe that being able to laugh about your own problems is one of the key ingredients in resolving them. I don't mean to belittle those who suffer from genuine mental disorders like OCD, but taking things seriously all the time can't be healthy.
      • This Aspie troper would like to point out that the show was IMMENSELY popular among people suffering from certain mental disorders, including ASD-related disorders, OCD, savants, and social phobics. Can you really call it offensive when, in reality, the people that are notionally supposed to be offended by it tend to love the show? Additionally, it's worth noting that the show got less realistic in portrayal over time. Watch a season 7- or 8 episode and then watch the first scene in the pilot. It's rather stark.
      • No, actually, this obsessive-compulsive troper doesn't think the fact that it's popular makes it any less offensive. It's kind of difficult not to find it offensive when everyone you divulge your condition to immediately believes that you're a germophobic maniac because that's how it looks on Monk.
      • Well, you're in the minority. The majority of people suffering from various related mental illnesses happen to love the show. This OCD troper thought it was hilarious and honestly doesn't think anybody of any reasonable intelligence would assume all people afflicted with OCD are like Monk.
    • Doesn't the series make it abundantly clear on numerous occasions that Monk also has a bucketload of issues on top of being OCD? Not saying that it can't be found offensive, but if memory serves they did at least try to make it abundantly clear that Monk is a special case and shouldn't be taken as a completely accurate representation of OCD sufferers.
  • The pilot tells us that Monk developed OCD after Trudy was murdered. So why does he always show obvious symptoms in flashbacks of before the murder, back to and including his grade school years?
    • All series deviate someway after the pilot. They didnt think they would have time to show it so they just kinda made it self-explanatory.
    • Alternatively, Monk has always had OCD, and managed to control it to some extent as a kid. When he met Trudy her influence helped him to control his OCD even better appearing to most people to have beaten it and any new acquaintances wouldn't have noticed. With the trauma of Trudy's death though, the OCD came roaring back (having taken several levels in badass) to it's current overpowering level.
      • The pilot says the extremity of Monk's case is related to his trauma.
  • In "Mr. Monk vs. the Cobra", I thought of Natalie as a bitch. I mean, yes, Natalie, I know Monk wasn't really paying you fairly, but it's a goddamn annoying thing to do if you bring it up while he's trying to question someone about a homicide! And storming out on Monk in the morgue in a huff right when he was about to tell her he solved the case is kinda rude!
    • You're right that Natalie was being unfair, but you do need to remember that this was her second episode. She had just started a new job on top of the stress of being a single parent. Being Monk's assistant likely came with requirements she didn't see coming (this IS Monk we're talking about). Then BAM - her expenses aren't covered...over an empty office. She just blew up (this happens, even on the job; I'm sure Monk and Natalie have had a lot of incidents where this has happened to them or to someone they're talking to) and stormed away. Remember that Monk was only noticed missing when she came back to apologize and he wasn't there. It was part plot device and part character development, though I think mostly the former.

  • Early on when Monk was given the opportunity to return to active duty and Stottlemeyer spoke against him, were we supposed to side against Stottlemeyer? Based on Monk's prior and later behavior, it seems to me that his disorder does render him unable to fulfill many of the requirements of an active duty police officer. As brilliant as he is, if he can't deal with the daily responsibilities that other officers have to do, he shouldn't be doing the job.
    • I don't think it's that one character was right and one was wrong. It's Monk's show, so the viewer is supposed to be sympathetic towards him, but that doesn't necessarily mean that you shouldn't have been sympathetic towards Stottlemeyer as well; he made the call he felt he had to make, and feels like he betrayed his friend, and has to live with it.
    • I agree, I don't think we're supposed to side wholly against either of them. As I saw it, both sides had their good points. Stottlemeyer had a duty to tell the truth at the hearing, which he did. On the other hand, Monk is rightly feeling betrayed that his own close friend personally torpedoed his chance to get back on the force. I guess Monk felt that Stottlemeyer should have refused to testify at all because of their prior relationship (can police officers do that in hearings like this? I dunno) so that, if Monk does get rejected anyway, at least his best friend wasn't the one who did it to him. But IIRC the results of the hearing weren't shown until near the end of the episode and it's tough to show that both sides have their good points when you've only got 5-10 minutes left to show it.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Monk's phobia of milk seems silly when you hear it, but it makes sense knowing that he's a germophobic and he most likely relates milking a cow to a cow peeing out milk or the whole process of milking very unsanitary.
    • I always thought he was afraid of it because of how easy it is for even ultra pasteurized milk to go bad.
  • A black guy gets upset at Monk for being "one of those white guys" or Mexican maids call him a "rich white man." Is he not conspicuously middle-eastern to everyone else's eyes?
    • Tony Shalhoub is Lebanese, but I think that Monk himself is supposed to be white. He actually passes for white pretty easily.
    • I agree, I originally thought Tony was of Italian descent until I did my research.
  • When Natalie becomes Monk's new assistant, she keeps bugging him that he doesn't give her enough money. But then in Mr. Monk Goes to a Wedding, we find out that she's from a rich family. That doesn't make any sense as to why she needed the money then.
    • It seems to be because she doesn't get along with her family.
    • She also states in the wedding episode that they haven't offered her financial support, and she wouldn't accept it if they did. She married her late husband against their wishes because she loved him, and even after he died it appears they continued to express their dislike of him to her. Thus, she is distant from her family and has a very tense relationship with her parents. The only one in the family she seems to have a good relationship with is her brother, who is not the head of the family and probably can't influence them to give her money.
  • Okay, the cult leader from "Mr. Monk Joins A Cult" is definitely a charlatan. But Monk clears his name of murder, and he didn't seem like he had committed any crimes. Why his he in jail in the 100th episode?
    • He's labeled as being in there for fraud; I assume that happened shortly after the episode he was in, what with Monk proving that he wasn't as perfectly healthy as he claimed. Everything else is obviously just a Noodle Incident and we are left to fill in the blanks.
  • In the episode where Monk's dad gets arrested - why do all of his friends/colleagues think that he should reunite and bond with his dad? The man has been missing for forty years, he abandoned their family when Monk was 8 years old! He shows no interest in staying in town to spend time with Adrian or Ambrose, and is overall an unpleasant and unapologetic person. It seems totally out of character for Adrian's friends to suggest he go on a road trip with his father, since they all know what he did and have seen the psychological ramifications of Jack's choices on both Adrian and Ambrose. Possibly his psychologist would suggest it (so that Adrian can get over his own issues regarding his father), but the everyman would NOT side with the dad in this case, much less suggest someone as emotionally fragile as Mr. Monk go on what is obviously going to be a stressful and possibly traumatic trip.
    • Although it's definitely true the trip would obviously be stressful, Jack Monk had to be in his seventies, and wouldn't live forever. Now Monk has met the guy, imagine how dissatisfied he'd feel years down the track when he finally reads his father's obituary, knowing he never had a chance to personally forgive the man. Usually in Real Life people don't get the chance to forgive the people that have screwed them over - and it's a pretty priceless thing, not to get all sappy...

  • In the Halloween episode "Mr. Monk Goes Home Again" the killer wants to kill his wife by poisoning a candy bar she is fond of, but he also poisons several other candy bars and puts them back into circulation so it looks like a serial killer has done the crime instead. The problem is that the poison he uses is a synthetic one from a lab that works in that it hasn't been released yet. if his plan had actually succeeded wouldn't he be the only person connected to the crime anyway? Especially since the rest of the candy bars could have been traced back to the grocery store close to his house. Also how does Ambrose identify the poison as being in insecticides if it hadn't been released yet?
    • Yes, but the idea is that it would take a while for the police to have traced the crime back to him. It's never explained if he did plant a few poison bars at other stores.
  • In "Mr. Monk's 100th Case," I do think that James Novak had a brilliant strategy with killing his girlfriend - strangle her and pass her death off as that of an active serial killer. However, wouldn't framing said killer only work if the guy were dead? It's bugging me a little bit, but I almost wonder if the original serial killer would have to be found and killed in order for him to be easier to frame for the fourth victim, as he would have been able to prove himself innocent of that murder if taken alive. It just makes me wonder whether Douglas Thurman really shot himself or he was shot by Novak before the SWAT team could break in, allowing a Deceased Fall-Guy Gambit to happen. Although yes it wouldn't make any sense if the guy hadn't left San Francisco and was still at the scene of his crime when Thurman was first sighted.

  • So in "Mr. Monk and the Cobra" Monk says he pays Natalie exactly what he paid Sharona. He eventually decides to raise her pay to cover expenses, which would imply Natalie makes more than Sharona did. But then in Sharona's The Bus Came Back episode, she says how much Monk paid her and it's apparently more than what Natalie gets. Continuity error? I guess it's possible Monk just lied to Natalie, but given how terrible he generally is why bother? Is he really that cheap?

  • "Mr. Monk Gets Hypnotized" is a good episode, no doubt. The Faked Kidnapping MO Sally Larkin uses to kill her husband is very clever. Except for one glaring thing about geography: when Randy gets the call at Monk's apartment about Sally turning up alive, we find that the cabin she was hiding at is in Sonoma County, yet she disappears in San Francisco. Sonoma County is 70 miles north of San Francisco, way outside the SFPD jurisdiction. What isn't explained is: if Sally abandoned her car at the strip mall as part of the faked kidnapping, how did she go 70 miles overnight? She couldn't hitchhike because that would have blown her story open if the motorist remembered her and called the police. And we don't know if she somehow made it back to her house and stole one of her husband's cars, but then wouldn't he have realized one of his cars had been stolen?
  • In "Mr. Monk Takes a Punch," I can get that Stottlemeyer and Disher use lethal force on the Iceman because they have no choice. But why are they seen when the guy who had hired the Iceman is being arrested? Unless I'm wrong, I'm fairly certain the two would have been immediately placed on temporary administrative leave in real life so they could receive counseling.

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