Monk (2002–2009)
9.1/10
534
5 user 1 critic

Mr. Monk and the End: Part 1 

An investigation draws Monk back to the place where he first heard about Trudy's murder - but his fate has been unfortunately sealed as he retraces his steps on that fateful day.

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Dr. Matthew Shuler (as D. B. Woodside)
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Dr. Malcolm Nash
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Joe Kazarinsky
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Edie Kazarinski
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Ana Teresa Sosa ...
Housekeeper
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Storyline

An investigation draws Monk back to the place where he first heard about Trudy's murder - but his fate has been unfortunately sealed as he retraces his steps on that fateful day.

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Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery

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TV-PG | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

27 November 2009 (USA)  »

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Goofs

During the flashback, in the first shot of the exterior of the nursing center, a Toyota Prius passes in front of the building. The Prius seen is a 2003 model car, yet the scene is set in 1997. See more »

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User Reviews

 
The beginning of the end
8 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.

Not all of Season 8's episodes have been great, "Mr Monk Goes Camping" and particularly "Mr Monk and the UFO" were especially underwhelming, and the season was a mixed bag overall. There are also some outstanding episodes, of which "Mr Monk and the End Part I" is one of them. Not just one of the best of Season 8 and a clear standout of the increasingly variable later seasons but also one of the best 'Monk' episodes in a while. It is very nearly perfect, other than a couple of sloppy continuity contradictions regarding Trudy's death and the aftermath and Natalie's romantic subplot being rushed and not particularly fitting well.

The mystery is one of the best of the season, Season 8 varied wildly when it came to its mysteries. It starts with a harrowing and tense opening scene and the present murder is reminiscent of 'Monk' in its prime (the first three seasons), it was a brain-teaser and was very eventful with some unexpected jolts. Yes even with the murderer being revealed early on, perhaps a little too early but not enough to bring down the episode or take away from the suspense.

Even more successful are the character moments, especially the dramatic elements. "Mr Monk and the End Part I" is one of the most dramatic 'Monk' episodes, perhaps THE most dramatic, and it is also one of the most emotional. Parts like how Trudy's death affects Monk and how one really sees how Monk and Trudy love each other are so poignant that tears were streaming down my cheeks, no 'Monk' episode of the later seasons affected me in this strong a way. The vomiting and poisoning scenes are also done beautifully, as is the video tape revelation which is one of those "surely not" ones and makes one feel even more sorry for Monk. Cliffhanger endings have rarely been more brutal or shocking, am not easily floored with 'Monk', this floored me.

It's not just Monk who bags great character moments, everybody has plenty to do and are true to character, reminding one of the earlier seasons. The most satisfying non-Monk character moments come from Stottlemeyer, as with prime 'Monk' one really enjoys the seesaw chemistry from frustrated boss to loyal friend between the two that was a large part of the show's charm. He has two particularly great scenes, the chase scene (tense) and the speech (tear-jerking and along with his Natalie and Sharona analogy in "Mr Monk and Sharona" is the most perceptive and truthful he's been in a long time).

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.

Traylor Howard is sassy and sympathetic, while Jason Gray-Stanford and Ted Levine are amusing (Levine also showing Stottlemeyer as a firm, frustrated boss but loyal friend, which is very "classic" 'Monk' Stottlemeyer). The supporting cast are good, including a suitably mysterious Craig T. Nelson.

"Mr Monk and the End Part I" contains the most satisfying writing of the later seasons and of 'Monk' in general, the dramatic pathos really resonates and the chemistry between the characters incredibly believable.

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.

Summing up, outstanding first half of the show finale. 9/10 Bethany Cox


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