• Publication date: December 17, 2010

The Final Season A Decade of Laughs Comes to a Close

Lebanese-American Tony Shalhoub is Adrian Monk, an obsessive-compulsive detective whose mental disorder provides him with extraordinary insight and crime solving skills; at the same time it hinders his ability to function independently, requiring the assistance of Sharona Fleming (Bitty Schram), his nurse. He�s deathly afraid of germs, heights, traveling too far from his apartment, and last but not least � an ordinary glass of milk. Yet despite his flaws he is a top-notch investigator with remarkable intuition.

Lebanese-American Tony Shalhoub is Adrian Monk, an obsessive-compulsive detective whose mental disorder provides him with extraordinary insight and crime solving skills; at the same time it hinders his ability to function independently, requiring the assistance of Sharona Fleming (Bitty Schram), his nurse. He�s deathly afraid of germs, heights, traveling too far from his apartment, and last but not least � an ordinary glass of milk. Yet despite his flaws he is a top-notch investigator with remarkable intuition.

Ordinarily a television program with a mentally ill lead character would be anything but humorous; yet Monk makes light of an unfortunate situation, and often exemplifies how a psychiatric condition can, in some ways, be equally a blessing and a curse rather than just one or the other. Monk is first and foremost a comedy, but it is a comedy with intelligent plots that require the viewer to utilize his or her own deductive abilities, reminiscent of a Sherlock Holmes novel.

While Adrian has been obsessive-compulsive for all of his life, the traumatic death of his wife, Trudy (Stellina Rusich) triggered the detective�s severe psychotic break, transforming him from a well-respected, yet eccentric detective into a man living in seclusion, afraid to leave his home for nearly three years. Trudy�s death was the result of a car bomb that Adrian believes was intended for him. With the help of his nurse turned assistant, Sharona, the sleuth slowly recovers from his wife�s death, partially driven by the possibility of finding her killer coupled with a hope that he can once again work as a detective for the San Francisco Police Department. Until then, he labors as a freelance detective, often assisting his former colleagues Captain Leland Stottlemeyer (Ted Levine) and Lieutenant Randy Disher (Jason Gray-Stanford) in unraveling murder mysteries.

In the season premiere Adrian's newest client is a former child actress who gained notoriety while starring in a campy 70s family sitcom reminiscent of The Brady Bunch. This is not just another B-list celebrity however, but a girl Adrian fantasized about as a boy. He anticipates meeting the same sweet actress that graced his television screen as a kid; instead he encounters someone entirely different. After a decades-long hiatus she has released a tell-all book, describing her sexual encounters with numerous men in Hollywood. Apparently she has angered the wrong person, however, and after receiving numerous death threats Monk steps in to help.

Later on the FBI summons Monk to enter the world of organized crime, informing him that he is a dead hit man's doppelganger. Adrian will take on the assassin's identity, mingle with mobsters, and try to intercept a murder before it occurs. After losing Dr. Kroger last season and searching for a replacement, the detective encounters a new medical dilemma: his insurance company refuses to pay for private therapy with Dr. Bell. Adrian hesitantly adjusts to group therapy, a less expensive alternative. Visits to a psychiatrist may soon become unnecessary though, as the widower at last uncovers clues regarding his wife's homicide. With the most painful chapter of Adrian's life closed can he finally live in peace?

Monk has won a number of awards, including 5 Emmys and a Golden Globe. Season 8 was Monk's last and featured guest appearances by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Oz), Craig T. Nelson (Coach), comedian Jay Mohr, and singer Meat Loaf � just to name a few. The season finale, which originally aired in December of 2009, garnered the largest audience of any cable drama to date, attracting close to 10 million viewers.

Year: 2009

Duration: 60 minutes

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Mystery, Crime

Starring:

Tony Shalhoub

Traylor Howard

Ted Levine

Jason Gray-Stanford

Created By: Andy Breckman

Rating: TV-PG