Monk (2002–2009)
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Mr. Monk and the Employee of the Month 

Monk goes undercover at a department store to investigate the mysterious death of a popular store employee. In the process he also gains valuable insights into the life of his former partner, who happens to be the store's head of security.


Scott Foley


Andy Breckman (creator), Ross Abrash

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Tony Shalhoub ... Adrian Monk
Bitty Schram ... Sharona Fleming
Jason Gray-Stanford ... Lt. Randall Disher
Ted Levine ... Captain Leland Stottlemeyer
Enrico Colantoni ... Joe Christie
Alanna Ubach ... Jennie Silverman
Kane Ritchotte ... Benjy Fleming
Maree Cheatham ... Edna Coruthers
Michael Weston ... Morris
Kyle Davis ... Ronnie
Esther Scott ... Delores
Patrick Thomas O'Brien ... Brent Donovan
Stanley Kamel ... Dr. Charles Kroger
Sharon Johnston ... Clara
Jill Wagner ... Crystal


An outlet store's highly industrious employee is killed when a TV falls on her. Monk and the police show up, they learn that they were called by the store's head of security, who was once Monk's partner on the force who was fired because he was suspected of stealing evidence which led to a criminal's release who would later kill some cops. He claims he didn't do it. He tells them that the woman had been getting death threats which he shows them. Monk decides not to pursue it any further. But some time later Monk takes another look at the letters and notices something odd about so he decides that his partner might be right so he gives Monk a job at the store. But Monk still doesn't believe his claim of his innocence. When Monk gets in line to be the store's employee of the month, he is attacked. He learns that the victim was the previous constant employee of the month. He thinks her death might have to do someone wanting to be the employee of the month. Written by

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Plot Keywords:

pay phone | See All (1) »


Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery


TV-PG | See all certifications »


Release Date:

6 August 2004 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


The episode reunites Tony Shalhoub with Galaxy Quest (1999) co-star Enrico Colantoni. See more »


Monk notices everything, yet he doesn't notice that the wrappings of his lunch had been tampered with or that the bag wasn't sitting in the exact position he left it. See more »


Joe Christie: [motions to the coffee mug] What do you think?
Adrian Monk: I think Edna was obviously killed for this mug.
Joe Christie: Really?
Adrian Monk: No.
Joe Christie: Well, maybe it's made out of gold and painted over.
Adrian Monk: Joe...
[Monk taps the mug. It's obviously ceramic]
Joe Christie: Hey, you said to try three hundred theories until one fits.
Adrian Monk: I said that?
Joe Christie: Yeah. I remember everything you ever said, God help me.
See more »


References The Brady Bunch: The Not-So-Ugly Duckling (1970) See more »

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User Reviews

Mr Monk in the department store
29 July 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee 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.

"Mr Monk and the Employee of the Month" to me is one of the highlights of Season 3 and among the better 'Monk' episodes and very, very close to the top. The gun and particularly dog scenes don't really add very much and could have been excised and one wouldn't miss them and wouldn't have said no to more Sharona, considering that it is one of her last appearances before being replaced by Natalie. Otherwise it is one of those episodes that is hard to fault.

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. It is remarkable here that right from the first episode to when the show ended that one likes him straight away, even with his quirks and deficiencies that could easily have been overplayed, and also that he is better developed than most titular characters of other shows at this particular stage. Who can't help love Monk's brilliant mind too?

Bitty Schram is sharp, no-nonsense, loyal and sympathetic as Sharona, would have loved to have seen more of her as aforementioned but the scene in the café is a great one. Jason Gray-Stanford makes the most of Randy's amusing and sweet subplot, which sees a more sympathetic side to him rather than just being comic relief. Ted Levine is his usual reliable self, meaning very good and amusing, shining particularly in the bubble wrap and apology scenes.

In support, Patrick Thomas O'Brien effectively plays a deceptive character straight, bringing the right amount of sincerity and not-so-sincere under the surface. Even better is Enrico Colantoni, playing a very well-rounded and pretty complex character and giving one of the season's, and show's, best guest star performances. His rapport with Shalhoub's Monk is truly special, sometimes hilarious (when they were talking about the rewards for Employee of the Month), sometimes untrustworthy and sometimes poignant, also showing great insight into what Monk's life was like when Trudy was alive. Having Monk characterised as more normal with quirks rather than a nutcase that he could have been in this sort of situation was not just a good move but the right move.

The mystery is a good one, who is responsible is obvious but the motive is not and comes over plausibly and doesn't feel far fetched. There is another mystery too, involving drugs, that was very interesting and does a lot for Monk's character.

It's not just the cast or story though. Another star is the writing, which is also essential to whether the show would be successful or not and succeed it does here. The mix of hilarious wry humour, lovable quirkiness and tender easy-to-relate-to drama is delicately done. The quirks are sympathetically done and never exploited or overdone.

Visually, the episode is shot in a slick and stylish way, and 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.

All in all, terrific episode and one of Season 3's best. 9/10 Bethany Cox

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