Monk (2002–2009)
8.1/10
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Mr. Monk and the UFO 

Monk finds himself defending his humanity while assisting the sheriff in a remote Nevada town with a murder investigation after he spots what could be a UFO.

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Lt. Randall Disher (credit only)
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Female UFO Enthusiast (as Amanda Macdonald)
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Storyline

Monk finds himself defending his humanity while assisting the sheriff in a remote Nevada town with a murder investigation after he spots what could be a UFO.

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Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery

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TV-PG | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

21 August 2009 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tony Shalhoub starred in Galaxy Quest (1999), a movie about space travel and aliens much like the plot of this episode, as does Jeremy Howard, who plays "Bodysuit-wearing UFO Enthusiast" in this episode. See more »

Goofs

At 11 minutes in as Monk is laying down in the bed the camera is overhead and the box of tissues is on the corner of the bedside table nearest the foot of the bed and next to the phone. When Monk sits up the box is in the corner nearest the wall and next to the lamp. He gets up looks out the window, sees the "alien", gets back into bed, lays down, and the box is back at the front of the bedside table as he gets up again it has returned to the back of the table near the wall. See more »

Connections

References Impostor (2001) See more »

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User Reviews

 
UFOs and murder
27 September 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.

After the decent if lacking season opener "Mr Monk's Favourite Show" and the special previous episode "Mr Monk and the Foreign Man", Season 8 continues with its first misfire, and one of my least favourite 'Monk' episodes, "Mr Monk and the UFO". It has moments and is not unwatchable (no 'Monk' episode falls under that distinction, even the lesser ones), but it just isn't a good representation to me of what makes 'Monk' so good as a show, most of what makes the show work is not in sight here and what there is is not seen enough.

There are things that make it a watch, if mainly to see every episode of the show. Tony Shalhoub gives it everything as Monk and he is a joy to watch. Traylor Howard is down to earth and sympathetic, with a nice loyal rapport between Monk and Natalie that gives the episode a little charm. In fact, the actors overall do a good job with what they're given, Daniel Stern coming off best of the supporting cast.

Visually, the episode is slick and stylish as ever. The music is both understated and quirky. While there is a preference for the theme music for Season 1, Randy Newman's "It's a Jungle Out There" has grown on me overtime, found it annoying at first but appreciate its meaning and what it's trying to say much more now. There is the odd amusing moment here and there and the episode actually starts off well with a promising first 10 minutes.

However, after those first 10 minutes, "Mr Monk and the UFO" goes off the boil. While 'Monk' is a silly show, it is of the endearingly quirky kind usually. Here however, the silliness is replaced by far-fetched stupidity, with the episode getting stupider all the time. People mistaking Monk for an alien and Monk whining in the desert were writing low-points, actually felt embarrassed for Shalhoub with the former.

Very little of the dialogue registers in terms of quality or memorability. And let's not forget Monk and Natalie staying in an all too conveniently clean, new and self-indulgently utilised Sleepy Inn in the middle of nowhere (product placement alert?).

Furthermore, the mystery underwhelms drastically and can be sidelined in favour of Monk being silly and Monk's problems with being social (the latter not being that interesting here). It's far too easy to solve and one of the most far-fetched mysteries of the whole show, the whole stuff with the UFO was not just easily guessable but it also confuses the story and was just idiotic. The killer is one of the show's weakest.

Instead of being one of the arrogant, evil murderers that pit off against Monk so well ("Mr Monk and the Genius", "Mr Monk is on Air", "Mr Monk and the Astronaut" and "Mr Monk Goes to Vegas" for examples) this killer is underused with little personality and something of a bumbling idiot, making chance mistakes that seemed to pad out a too thin mystery.

Monk's deductions and how he solves the case are neither the methodical or baseless conclusion jumping too fast kinds, some of it like with the UFO was heavy on coincidence. 'Monk' is known for balancing humour, quirks/phobias and pathos well, here the second fared strongest and even that was too far and between while the drama/pathos aspects are non-existent (sad because the previous episode executed this aspect brilliantly) and there are far funnier 'Monk' episodes. Really miss Monk, Natalie, Disher (absent) and Stottlemeyer together here.

In summary, see once and then easily skip-able. 4/10 Bethany Cox


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