When a sarcastic and unpopular ringmaster is murdered by an acrobat wearing a face mask and a Ninja-like costume, Stottlemeyer suspects an animal trainer who not only has a motive (he's the former lover of the ringmaster's dinner date) but also owns the murder weapon. Monk, however, suspects the ringmaster's ex-wife, a trapeze artist billed as "the Queen of the Sky" who is also a sharpshooter. Unfortunately for Monk's theory, the trapeze artist, Natasia Lovara, has a broken foot, confirmed by X-rays. The mystery, as in "Billionaire Mugger" and "Dale the Whale," is not who did it but how it was done. Meanwhile, the everythingaphobic Monk alienates Sharona by telling her that her fear of elephants is irrational and advising her to "suck it up." Only when the elephant actually crushes its trainer's head in front of both Monk and Sharona does he begin to empathize with her and attempt to offer her the sort of comfort and understanding that she routinely offers him. Having been informed by... Written by
Did You Know?
The subplot of this episode ; Sharona being terrified of the elephant, is very similar to the episode in "Wings" (which Tony Shalhoub starred in) entitled "Oedipus Wrecks". Tim Daly who plays Joe is petrified of an elephant as well. See more
When Sharona lit her cigarette in the hospital, Monk pointed out that you can't smoke in hospitals. As a police officer, shouldn't Stottlemeyer have made her put it out? See more
[Monk, Sharona, Stottlemeyer and Disher arrive at the Dratch & Denby Travelling Circus
Lt. Randall Disher
Oh, wow! Dratch & Denby Circus. Founded in 1947. They do 400 shows a year in 65 different towns. Cool!
[a fireblower freaks Monk, who recoils a bit but then keeps on moving
Lt. Randall Disher
Ha ha ha. Payroll, 240 people.
Captain Leland Stottlemeyer
Yeah and he's using the term "people" very loosely.
[a bearded lady and a weight-lifting woman walk past Stottlemeyer. Just then someone bangs into Sharona
Ooh! You okay?
I'm not really in my comfort zone ...
References The Elephant Man