Monk (2002–2009)
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Mr. Monk Takes the Stand 

After Stottlemeyer, Disher and Monk are shredded on the stand in a murder case, causing the accused to go free, Monk loses his confidence. Meanwhile, Disher tries to help a boy he used to mentor who is accused of another murder.

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Reporter #2
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Bailiff
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Douglas Nabors ...
Jury Foreman #1
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Storyline

After Stottlemeyer, Disher and Monk are shredded on the stand in a murder case, causing the accused to go free, Monk loses his confidence. Meanwhile, Disher tries to help a boy he used to mentor who is accused of another murder.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

TV-PG
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Release Date:

11 September 2009 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The judge is named Santa Croce, after producer and unit production manager Anthony Santa Croce. See more »

Goofs

In Mr. Monk and the Foreign Man (8:2) Trudy has been dead twelve years, but on the witness stand Monk says he had a nervous breakdown when his wife died 10 years ago. See more »

Connections

References Monk: Mr. Monk and the Panic Room (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Overstuffed and under-cooked prosecution
29 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.

Don't agree respectfully that "Mr Monk Takes the Stand" is the worst 'Monk' episode. It's not even the worst of Season 8. A contender for that's "Mr Monk and the UFO", which along with "Mr Monk and the Big Reward" and "Mr Monk Takes a Punch", "Mr Monk and the Rapper" and "Mr Monk and the Really Really Dead Guy" are lesser efforts too, is one of the worst 'Monk' episodes to me. However, it was an episode of great potential that has its moments but comes up short, how it could have easily solved what made the episode lacking was doing more with less material.

There are certainly good things. The courtroom scenes are fun and tense, with a wonderfully arrogant attorney in Harrison Powell that pits off against Monk and his friends in as satisfying a way as the best 'Monk' killers. There are good moments here, such as Monk's poignant feelings in how he was ripped apart on the stand and one of the best supporting character lines in the history of 'Monk' in Powell's reaction to Natalie's "how do you sleep at night?".

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.

As ever, Traylor Howard, Jason Gray-Stanford and Ted Levine give great support, while Jay Mohr enjoys himself thoroughly as Powell, a different role for him. Former child star Jonathan Lipnicki does fine, and it was refreshing to have a serious Disher subplot that gave the episode heart.

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.

On the other hand, "Mr Monk Takes the Stand" is primarily let down by that it tries to do too much and doesn't do enough with its content. This is especially true in having not one but two cases, both of which could have been more compelling, one of which has an alibi that is in the top 5 flimsiest alibis on the whole of 'Monk', something that even the less observant of people would notice. Neither case are hard to figure out either (likewise with the killer's identity), the second case is very uninspired.

It disappoints too that the latter parts of the episode don't satisfy very much. The episode was crying out for a face off for Monk to get deserved satisfaction and for Powell given a taste of his own medicine, that it doesn't materialise gives an anti-climactic feel, while the conclusion is one of the show's most tacked on and predictable.

Powell mostly is devious and brilliant on top of his arrogance, but he is not without the odd sloppy moment in the writing. Primarily the thing with the gravel (again another thing that even the less observant would pick up as sloppy), someone as brilliant as he would have the common sense to say the complete opposite of what he actually says. The writing has its moments, but not enough. The humour, pathos and quirks come more in spurts than as a consistent whole.

Overall, watchable but unsatisfying. 5/10 Bethany Cox


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