Monk (2002–2009)
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Mr. Monk Goes Camping 

In an attempt to woo the lone holdout on the reinstatement committee, Monk accompanies the man's troublesome son and Randy's camping group - where they soon find themselves running afoul of some dangerous armored car robbers.

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, (uncredited)

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(creator), | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Episode cast overview:
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Brian Willis
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Luke Johnston
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Del Johnston
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Winona
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Norman Walters
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Nicky Phillips
David Kronenberg ...
Will Dellman
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Captain Frank Willis
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2nd Panel Member
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1st Panel Member
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Storyline

Monk tries to get reinstated but a committee member, Captain Willis is dead set against reinstating Monk. Monk joins Stollemeyer and Discher who are investigating a robbery. But Monk can't help but brood about Willis' resistance. Discher then reveals that he is going camping with some children one of whom is Willis' son. Monk decides to join hoping it could help him get on Willis' good side. But Monk doesn't exactly adapt to the outdoors. And some men are following them. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

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Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

6 November 2009 (USA)  »

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User Reviews

 
Monk's very bland camping trip
5 October 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.

As truly entertaining 'Monk' is, there are a fair share of classic episodes even in lesser seasons, once in a while it has an episode that disappoint, with likes of "Mr Monk and the Big Reward", "Mr Monk Takes a Punch", "Mr Monk and the UFO", "Mr Monk and the Rapper", "Mr Monk and the Really Really Dead Guy" and "Mr Monk Falls in Love". "Mr Monk Goes Camping" is another disappointment. It is not Season 8 at its worst, that's "Mr Monk and the UFO". To me though, "Mr Monk Goes Camping" is the season at its blandest and one of the blander 'Monk' episodes overall.

It certainly has good points, no 'Monk' episode is without redeeming qualities even the lacking ones. Visually, the episode is slick and stylish as ever with some lovely scenery. 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.

One of the best things about 'Monk' has always been Tony Shalhoub, who was as Monk consistently one of the best things about every episode regardless of what material is thrown at him.. 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, both have been done much better than here but Shalhoub still gives it his all. All the cast do their best with they have to work with, in most cases it's very little. The various artists bit with Monk was really endearing, the one of two character moments to me that stood out, the bear encounter was fun too.

However, the mystery is a big let down. It is far too easy to solve, not just because it is too simple but everything is very obvious, even the very heavy-handed big clue in the unusual interest in fish. The crime-solving and deductions were not focused on enough and were very much forgettable when featured. A lot of the problem is to do with that it's got elements that are very derivative of other episodes, namely "Mr Monk Gets Cabin Fever", and none of the elements have any spark to them. One can argue that "Mr Monk and the Dog" was derivative, it was somewhat but it also had spark and had delightful character moments.

Something that "Mr Monk Goes Camping", uncharacteristically (even when mysteries were lacking, the character moments tended to make up for things, not this time), failed to have. The various artists thing was endearing and very Monk-ish (Monk is in character which is a good thing, but he is the only character of note here), but most of the characters don't have enough to work with (Natalie and Stottlemeyer are underused and the episode missed an opportunity to give Disher properly interesting) and the father-son conflict could have worked but let down by clichéd execution and the resolve being unconvincingly rushed.

Along with a truly weak mystery (that has nothing mysterious to it, or any tension or suspense), only two character moments are memorable (the other being a bear encounter), we are very much short changed when it comes to humour and pathos here and there is little to provoke thought over. The episode also seemed to promise to address an on-going 'Monk' issue (the re-instating) that has been begging for a resolve for a while, considering that Season 8 has been good actually with providing closure and conquering phobias, the way it was executed here one does beg the question what was the point of the episode and why bring about this issue at all only to not do anything with it.

In conclusion, very bland but not awful. 4/10 Bethany Cox


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