Frequently Asked Questions
Thank you to IMDB user, "chipe" for composing this information--August 24, 2008.
"In the early seasons they often had episodes with clues and facts about the Trudy murder, but then there were less and less such episodes. Look at what I put together. Note the episode numbers.
We know these things about the Trudy murder. Corrections and additions are appreciated:
1. In "Mr. Monk and the Candidate" (episodes 1 and 2 -- the pilot episodes, original air date, July 2002), when Monk is reviewing the press clippings and file of the Trudy car bomb murder, there is one clipping with the intriguing headline: "No links to other car bombing suspected .. ... .." That has to be significant.
2. In "Mr Monk Meets Dale the Whale," (ep. 4, July 2002), we learn that because Trudy was doing newspaper stories about Dale's finances, Dale sued Trudy and her paper. He knew he couldn't win the law suit, but he pursued it for spite and to cost Trudy and the paper a lot of money in legal bills. This hurt the Monks: they had to sell their home, which Dale bought and turned into a porn storage site.
3. In "Mr. Monk and the Billionaire Mugger," (episode 7, August 2002) we learn two interesting things: (1) the last entry in Trudy's appointment book was "530 Kelly Street, re: Mr. Simon." Monk suddenly realizes it is not an address, but a 5:30 appointment to see a woman named Kelly (Katrina) Street. When he meets her he further learns, from her, that Mr. Simon is her stuffed pet dog. Monk is told that Trudy was probably writing a human interest story about the stuffed dead pet (Trudy was a newspaper columnist); and (2) Monk had been to the Street house about the same thing each year after Trudy was murdered four years ago, he is told! Ms. Street suggests that Monk write it down so he won't forget it. .... ..... ....(Maybe she is lying about all of this.)
4. In "Mr. Monk and the Three Pies" ( 24, Jan 2004) we learn that Monk's brother Ambrose feels "guilty" about Trudy's death and keeps his distance (due to guilt) from Monk because he sent Trudy on the errand [to get medicine] that took her to the guarage where her car blew up, killing her.
5. In "Mr. Monk Goes to Jail" (29, Mar 2004) we learn from Dale the Whale that Warrick Tennyson was in on Trudy's murder. Dale doesn't know (or won't tell) why she was murdered, but he emphatically says the bomb was intended for her and not Monk.
6. In "Mr. Monk Takes Manhattan" (30, Jun 2004) (which is the episode that follows the "Mr Monk Goes to Jail" ep.) Tennyson, as he is dying, reveals to Monk that he built the bomb that killed Trudy, that he was paid $2000 cash, that the car bomb was made of 10 pounds of plastique, magnesium charged, detonated by cell phone.. He doesn't know the name of the man who hired him and never saw his face, but remembers one detail: the man had six fingers on his right hand. (Oddly, in the USA network web site synopsis of the episode, they say the man who hired Tennyson to build the bomb was named "Frank," but in the TV show and DVD, Tennyson just tells Monk that the guy who hired him was a "freak" (because of the six fingers). The name "Frank" is never mentioned. Even the captions give the word "freak.")
7. In "Mr. Monk and the Blackout," (32, Jul 2004) a 90s anti-military radical bomber, Winston Brenner, who was thought dead, but was currently going by an alias, Gene Edelson, planted a bomb similar to the one that killed Trudy (both used plastique and magnesium, but the one in this episode used an egg timer detonator, not a cell phone). Anyway, Monk casually mentioned that he knew of Brenner because Trudy had written an article about him. At the end of the episode, Brenner gets caught and imprisoned.
8. In "Mr. Monk vs. the Cobra," (40, Jan 2005) Natalie finally persuades Monk to close up (stop paying rent on) Trudy's old office. I don't know what might be in the contents and where they are now.
9. In "Mr. Monk and Mrs. Monk," (51, Aug 2005) we learn that Trudy was an investigative reporter for a newspaper. There she worked on a blockbuster story involving union corruption. An anonymous union insider had given her information that put a lot of union officials in jail. The insider then became head of the union, but he became afraid (after Trudy died) that information that she kept in a storage locker of Trudy and writing partner, recently deceased (how?) Janice Ellinghouse, would become public and reveal his part in the story. While trying to destroy this evidence by setting a fire to it, he was killed by the police.
10. In Mr. Monk and the Secret Santa (2005), (2 Dec 2005), Monk is shown with the green present that Trudy had given to him for Christmas just before she died. It isn't clear if this was merely one more example of how Monk hangs on to everything of Trudy's and is simply unwilling to open it because of that, or if it was done deliberately by the writers as a foreshadowing of things to come. As it would eventually turn out, the contents of the package would be critical to solving the case. Given the size of the present, and it just being big enough to hold the vital clue, this would seem to indicate that its contents was already predetermined.
11. In "Mr. Monk and the Man Who Shot Santa" (87, Dec 2007) they again made reference again to the fact that Monk never opened Trudy's Christmas gift to Monk. It was wrapped in holiday paper. Monk has no idea what is inside it. It has been 10 years since Trudy was murdered and the crime has yet to be solved; it haunts Monk. No one at the time could have realized it but it did hold the crucial clue to solving the mystery. The cruel twist to all of this is that if Monk had been willing to open her present, rather that to just hold onto it unopened, the killer could have been found years earlier...
12. In "Mr. Monk Is On the Run, Parts I and II) (92 and 93, Feb 2008) Monk learns from letters found in Frank Nunn's (the 6-fingered man's) apartment that someone called just "The Judge" had hired Nunn to plant the bomb that killed Trudy. These two episodes had two Dale the Whale plots going on at the same time: (1) Dale hired Nunn to plant a bomb intended to kill the Governor (who turned down Dale's prison pardon request) so the Lieutenant Governor would become Governor and pardon Dale; and (2) Dale had Nunn killed, and at the same time arranged to have Monk framed for Nunn's murder, thus sending Monk to prison (revenge for Dale who had been put in prison due to Monk's detective work). ... ... .... To refresh everyone's memory at this point: The Judge (whoever he is) hired Frank Nunn (the 6-fingered man) to plant the bomb which killed Trudy after Nunn had hired Warrick Tennyson to make the bomb. Both Nunn and Tennyson are now dead.
13. In "Mr. Monk and the Genius (July 2008 - Season 7, Episode 2), Monk mentions that he barely made it to Trudy's side before she died. She could not speak, but held on to both of his hands until she died. The victim, the wife of the Genius, hired Monk to solve her murder. He swears to do so, as she holds both of his hands the same way Trudy did. Monk gives this reason to Stottlemeyer for not walking away from the case.
The case was finally solved in the 2 part series finale Mr. Monk and the End
(Incidentally, be sure to see this great site (I have no connection to it) devoted solely to Trudy: http://www.eviltwinltd.com/trudy.htm )"
The information in quotations has been gleaned from the Answers.com Website: http://www.answers.com/topic/obsessive-compulsive-disorder and http://www.answers.com/topic/obsessive-compulsive-disorder-treatment
"Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a type of anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorder is the experience of prolonged, excessive worry about circumstances in one's life. OCD is characterized by distressing repetitive thoughts, impulses or images that are intense, frightening, absurd, or unusual. These thoughts are followed by ritualized actions that are usually bizarre and irrational. These ritual actions, known as compulsions, help reduce anxiety caused by the individual's obsessive thoughts. Often described as the "disease of doubt, " the sufferer usually knows the obsessive thoughts and compulsions are irrational but, on another level, fears they may be true."
"Obsessions are intrusive, irrational thoughts that keep popping up in a person's mind, such as "my hands are dirty, I must wash them again." Typical obsessions include fears of dirt, germs, contamination, and violent or aggressive impulses. Other obsessions include feeling responsible for others' safety, or an irrational fear of hitting a pedestrian with a car. Additional obsessions can involve excessive religious feelings or intrusive sexual thoughts. The patient may need to confess frequently to a religious counselor or may fear acting out the strong sexual thoughts in a hostile way. People with obsessive-compulsive disorder may have an intense preoccupation with order and symmetry, or be unable to throw anything out."
"Compulsions usually involve repetitive rituals such as excessive washing (especially handwashing or bathing), cleaning, checking and touching, counting, arranging or hoarding. As the person performs these acts, he may feel temporarily better, but there is no long-lasting sense of satisfaction or completion after the act is performed. Often, a person with obsessive-compulsive disorder believes that if the ritual isn't performed, something dreadful will happen. While these compulsions may temporarily ease stress, short-term comfort is purchased at a heavy pricetime spent repeating compulsive actions and a long-term interference with life."
Treatment for OCD is usually a combination of medication and CBT or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy:
"Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) teaches patients how to confront their fears and obsessive thoughts by making the effort to endure or wait out the activities that usually cause anxiety without compulsively performing the calming rituals. Eventually their anxiety decreases. People who are able to alter their thought patterns in this way can lessen their preoccupation with the compulsive rituals. At the same time, the patient is encouraged to refocus attention elsewhere, such as on a hobby."
For more information and help for the OCD sufferer and their families please visit: The Obsessive Compulsive Foundation--http://www.ocfoundation.org/ and The Anxiety Disorders Association of America--http://www.adaa.org/
The USA channel website also has an excellent section in the Monk heading on "Understanding OCD": http://www.usanetwork.com/series/monk/community/ocd/index.html
Reason she left in the world of the show: In Season 3, Episode 10, "Mr. Monk and the Red Herring" at the beginning of the episode, Monk and Dr. Kroger are discussing that, although Adrian is in denial about it; Sharona has sold her house, re-married her ex-husband, Trevor, and moved back to New Jersey, that there was no way she would be coming back and even Dr. Kroger couldn't "order" her to return.
Reason Bitty Schram left in real life: Info from article found at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5875714/ "No Sharona--Bitty Schram leaves Monk" "Sources say contract disputes may have led to her departure." By Andrew Wallenstein, Hollywood Reporter updated 8:14 a.m. ET, Tues., Aug. 31, 2004 "Schram will not return as Sharona, nurse and assistant to Shalhoub's obsessive-compulsive detective, when the show resumes the second half of its third season in January. Monk has decided to go in a different creative direction with some of its characters, a USA spokesman said. Bitty will not continue with the cast and we thank her for her notable contributions and wish her the very best.. . . . . .Bitty Schram and USA Network have amicably decided to go their own separate ways. . . . . .She wishes everyone connected with the show continued success and looks forward to pursuing the various opportunities before her, Schram's management firm, "Untitled Entertainment", said in a statement. . . . . .While both USA and Schram's management characterized Schram's exit as a change in creative direction, there were rumblings in recent weeks that some members of the series. . . . . .attempted to renegotiate the terms of their contract. . . . . .Television networks are increasingly willing to take a hard line against raise-seeking actors who aren't absolutely essential to the show. "
"Also, in the April 3-9, 2006 print edition of TV Guide, Bitty reveals that she didnt want to leave Monk, but she suspected that she was being "paid less than many people who got raises", and she "couldnt work out a new contract." She went on to call Monk "the best experience of my career."http://television.gearlive.com/index.php/tvenvy/article/bitty-schram-catches-thief-speaks-out-4351343/
So, basically, she left because she disagreed with them on the creative direction of the character and because there was a contract dispute.