Monk (2002–2009)
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Mr. Monk vs. the Cobra 

When an author of a book debunking the career of a popular martial-arts movie star is killed, the evidence points to the star himself, despite the fact that he has been dead for years! Monk... See full summary »



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
... Adrian Monk
... Natalie Teeger
... Lt. Randall Disher
... Captain Leland Stottlemeyer
... Master Zi
... Trudy Monk
... John Ricca
... Eddie
... Chris Downey
... Talk Show Host
... Mr. Huang (Disciple)
... Medical Examiner
Sean Foley ... Uniform Cop
Americus Abesamis ... Silent Disciple
... Paramedic


When an author of a book debunking the career of a popular martial-arts movie star is killed, the evidence points to the star himself, despite the fact that he has been dead for years! Monk takes the case and also gets a chance to prove to Natalie that he is not as selfish as he seems. Written by candeux

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Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery


TV-PG | See all certifications »


Release Date:

28 January 2005 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?


The first time of two that Adrian Monk has been buried alive. It happened before in Monk: Mr. Monk and the Buried Treasure (2007)(#3.11). See more »


Monk's hand is covered with wax when they open the coffin in the first shot. In the second shot, his hand is in a different position and clean, and the smile on his face is much smaller. See more »


Master Zi: [blindfolded] A great sorrow has entered this room.
Adrian Monk: That would be me.
See more »


References Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) See more »

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User Reviews

Mr Monk and martial arts
1 August 2017 | by 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.

After "Mr Monk and the Red Herring" introduced Monk's new assistant Natalie Teeger, "Mr Monk vs. The Cobra" proves to be even better and one of the high points of Season 3. Wouldn't have said no myself to more Stottlemeyer and Disher, who are still entertaining and well played by Ted Levine and Jason Gray-Stanford, but reduced to rather stereotyped roles. While her reasons are understandable and it proved useful and important later on, Natalie and Monk arguing over money seemed out of character for the usually down-to-earth and caring Natalie and didn't really offer a chance for the writers to differentiate her from Sharona (of which arguments over money kept popping up).

Natalie does become more interesting and more individual in personality in later appearances, but it is easy to like how sensitive and down to earth she is even if one misses the sharper and more no-nonsense Sharona. Even at this stage there is a preference for how Natalie deals with Monk's quirks and problems, seeming a little more caring and understanding than Sharona, and she and Monk click very well together. She also proves vital in the climactic scenes and is instrumental in Monk's rescue. Traylor Howard does very well and looks comfortable.

As said many times, 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.

Support cast are uniformly strong, no standout performances, apart from an affecting Melora Hardin, but no weak links. The mystery does suffer a little from too few suspects but engages at least, with one of 'Monk's' most brutal murders, great use of the martial arts theme that makes one nostalgic for martial arts icons and such from the past and especially the climactic scenes providing a real sense of danger and one of the show's most touching ever moments with Monk and Trudy (made me cry on first viewing, still does get to me).

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. Oh and a good job is done with the different opening credits sequence to accommodate the changes made.

Overall, excellent, hilarious and poignant. 9/10 Bethany Cox

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