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Monk faces a homicidal astronaut in MR. MONK AND THE ASTRONAUT. Jeff Donovan of BURN NOTICE and CROSSING JORDAN plays a hugely egotistical astronaut who murders an old flame in a truly bizarre fashion. It is up to Monk to figure out how the guy did it, since he was in orbit around the Earth at the time of the murder. Donovan steals every scene he is in, although after goading the shy Monk in a school hallway confrontation, it is plain the preening flyboy has sealed his fate. Monk does a fair amount of running around in this episode. And his run-in with the condescending astronaut is right out of an older episode where Monk confronts a homicidal doctor who thinks of himself as bulletproof and Monk as a mental midget. The ending is far-fetched, but watching Monk run all over creation in an attempt to expose the astronaut was different, I must say.
What I like about Monk is his humanity. The juxtaposition of his human frailties, shortcomings, and weakness with his strong talents in other ways and his resilience. This was explored in this show by his interaction with the astronaut who has an over abundance of self confidence to the point of arrogance that he plays against Monk to make him feel inferior. Some of the plot details here are stretched a bit far in terms of plausibility though. Most irritating to me though is the classroom speech scene. I have worked as a teacher and never would myself or any of the other teachers I worked with have allowed those students to behave like that without intervening in some way. We certainly would never leave students unattended with invited guest speakers so to think a teacher just let that go on was ridiculous to me. Nit picky maybe but this is Monk where the central character's obsession with details is both a strength and weakness. It makes the inconsistencies in characters actions, details and reality in the stories seem to stand out more harshly sometimes. Still loved Monk! :)
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
It's funny really as I make my way through season four of Monk, I was just thinking boy I wonder how many cool guest starts there will be between now, and the end of the series. Then up came Monk and the Astronaut, featuring Jeffery Donovan of course now so famous for his killer roll on Burn Notice. Spoiler city.. he did it..lol. It was great fun to watch the interplay between his self assured character, and Mr. Monk who is the complete opposite. Yet another well written episode. As another reviewer mentioned the end is a bit off, but the idea was great. Monk staring down a bad guy as brave as any man alive. weeee I'm off to watch me some Monk!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
To be honest, I rarely write reviews. But upon reading the other ones submitted for this episode, I decided that I needed to write another. This episode was excellent. The supporting actors were, as stated in other reviews, fantastic, and the episode flowed well. The episode deals with Monk's inferiority, especially in relation to the Steve Wagner, the astronaut. But the final scene, where Monk stands up to Wagner and stops him from destroying the only evidence that would incriminate him, is incredibly moving. Monk, who was considered by all to be a coward, stands up for what he knows is right. The method of the murder was a little far-fetched, and Monk's epiphany was perhaps a little too quick for my taste, but it really showed off Monk's true character.
An astronaut, nearing a mission, is at a girlfriend's place where she
reveals to him that he's in chapter five of her new book. Apparently,
it's a sexy book. Since the astronaut may also be running for political
soon, he obviously don't want this book published. I say "obviously"
because he is shown putting poison in her drink.
Five days later, a maid comes in and sees the dead woman hanging. It didn't take a genius to see this wasn't a suicide. Even Capt. Stottlemeyer deduces this in a hurry. So, how do they find out it's the astronaut who killed the woman?
A so-so episode that started off very promising but wound up with a bunch of unrealistic and stupid scenes, such as the classroom scene, the exaggerated character of the astronaut (played well, however, by Jeffrey Donovan) throughout and the ending - none of which were very credible.
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