Monk (2002–2009)
8.5/10
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Mr. Monk and the Candidate: Part 1 

A former San Francisco police detective suffering from an extreme case of obsessive-compulsive disorder is called in to investigate an apparent assassination attempt of a mayoral candidate in which one of his bodyguards is killed.

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Kane Ritchotte ...
Benjy Fleming (as Kane Richotte)
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Sheldon Burger
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Jesse Goodman
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Jake
Shawn Reis ...
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Lieutenant Gitomer
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Carl (as Chris Shyer)
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Storyline

A former San Francisco police detective suffering from an extreme case of obsessive-compulsive disorder is called in to investigate an apparent assassination attempt of a mayoral candidate in which one of his bodyguards is killed.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

12 July 2002 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

In this pilot episode, the character played by Jason Gray-Stanford is listed as "Lt. Deacon". Throughout the rest of the show's run, his name is Lt. Randy Disher. See more »

Goofs

After the funeral, when Adrian is in the captain's office, it is clearly heard that Stottlemyer says "She was shot. He was stabbed." when really, it was the exact opposite See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Adrian Monk: [surveying a crime scene] The stove.
Lt. Gitomer: Over here. It's in the kitchen.
Adrian Monk: No... I mean *my* stove. I-I think I left it on.
Sharona Fleming: It's okay. I, uh, checked it as we were leaving.
Adrian Monk: Are you sure? Did you turn the knob?
Sharona Fleming: Yeah.
Adrian Monk: The little knob, though?
Sharona Fleming: I turned all the knobs. The stove is off, Adrian.
Lt. Gitomer: We believe it was a burglary gone sour. She walked in, she surprised him, he panicked, he left there from the kitchen.
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Monk: Mr. Monk and the End: Part 2 (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

It's A Jungle Out There
Written and Performed by Randy Newman
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User Reviews

 
Introducing Adrian Monk
8 July 2017 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

'Monk' has always been one of my most watched shows when needing comfort, to relax after a hard day, a good laugh or a way to spend a lazy weekend. "Mr Monk and the Candidate", in a way a two part pilot episode, kicks off 'Monk' and introduces us to lead character Adrian Monk.

To this day, "Mr Monk and the Candidate" (both parts) is to me among the best episodes of 'Monk'. While some 'Monk' episodes are better than others, which is true of most shows (very few shows are a case where every episode is great on a consistent level, not even other personal favourites like 'Agatha Christie's: Poirot', Granada's 'Sherlock Holmes', 'Midsomer Murders', 'Law and Order', 'Criminal Minds', 'A Touch of Frost' and even 'Inspector Morse', if we are talking about detective shows for a moment), misfires are fairly few.

One of the best things about 'Monk' has always been the acting of Tony Shalhoub in the title role, it was essential for him to work and be the glue of the show, and Shalhoub not only is that but also at his very best he IS the show. Have always loved the balance of the humour, which is often hilarious, and pathos, which is sincere and touching. It is remarkable here that for an episode that only introduces him that one likes him straight away, even with his quirks and deficiencies that could easily have been overplayed, and also that he is better developed than most titular characters of other shows at this particular stage. Who can't help love Monk's brilliant mind too?

He is very well supported by a sharp and no-nonsense but also sympathetic Bitty Schram, whose Sharona makes for a worthy and entertaining partner for Monk's sleuthing. There is always a debate at who's better between Sharona and Natalie, personally like both in their own way and consider them both attractive though as of now leaning towards Natalie as the better acted and more attentive of the two.

Also by a very amusing, and sometimes even funnier than that, Ted Levine, what a difference from his Buffalo Bill in 'The Silence of the Lambs'. Jason Gray-Stanford is not quite as entertaining, with not quite as memorable lines (only because the other three are so good that's all) but shows great chemistry with everyone and is appealing enough. The supporting cast work well.

It's not just the cast though. Another star is the writing, which is also essential to whether the show would be successful or not and succeed it does here. The mix of hilarious wry humour and tender easy-to-relate-to drama is delicately done but extremely deft, which elevates what could have been just a conventional and formulaic story to a greater level. On paper, the story may have been conventional, but even in the first half there are enough twists and turns to keep one guessing and never in a way that feels rushed that you need to rewind or bog things down that the pace becomes slow.

"Mr Monk and the Candidate" is shot in a slick and stylish way, and the music is both understated and quirky. Much prefer the jazzy Season 1 theme tune to the later "It's a Jungle Out There", which always struck me before as one of my least favourite assets of 'Monk' but has since grown on me, which should have been kept. It's all very capably directed throughout.

Overall, brilliant introduction to 'Monk'. 10/10 Bethany Cox


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