Now fans of "Monk
" have seen the obsessive compulsive detective solve over a hundred cases now, but rarely has anyone questioned his methods during a court procedure. The show usually ends once Monk solves the case and the murderer gets taken away, and then we completely miss the next stage of the legal system with the judge and the jury and the verdict. Now it seems that Monk would have to regularly testify in court to his findings, but last week's episode was the first time we saw it happen. It is just as awful as you might expect, so you have to wonder ... how did Monk put away all those killers before? Is this really the first time things have gone badly in court, and a lawyer ripped apart Monk's theoretical methods? Hmmm.
The episode starts with Monk explaining what happened in a murder case, and he is accusing artist Evan Gildea of killing his wife. The story is told backwards in this episode, and we're starting at the end. However, as Monk starts to explain, an attorney appears at the scene and stops them. Harrison Powell is played by Jay Mohr, and he politely tells them his client won't talk until they are in court. Powell has never lost a case.
Then the murder case is explained in the court as Stottlemeyer talks about how they found Nancy Gildea's body and Monk broke down the crime scene. However, when he explains the unconventional ways Monk observes the scene, Powell basically tears it apart and points out how most of it is just conjecture and guessing. We all know that Monk is always right, but to a more skeptical eye it does seem like a lot of 'this is what probably happened.' Then again, that's the job of the police! They look at the evidence and try to piece together the truth until they get proof. Monk just does it in a faster, less obvious way. Still, no one seems ready for Powell's attack, which indicates they've never gone up against a semi-decent attorney before.
At the same time, Disher is upset because a teenager he used to mentor as a Big Buddy is taken in for robbery and murder. The teenager, Rudy, swears he didn't kill anyone but that he did rob the place.
It is Monk's time on the stand as he explains more of the story and how he realized that Evan was the murderer. It involves a giant statue of a naked woman (which Monk hilariously can't even say), and a tight alibi. Monk realized that he bought marble to make it look like he was working on the statue all night, but it was already made and instead broke the marble into pieces and used it as gravel on the driveway. Ooo that is smart. Powell basically tortures Monk by verbally attacking him and making him look like a crazy person (not very hard) to the court. This is how the case is won, and Evan is acquitted. Oh no! Monk has lost!
But we're only halfway through. Powell is gloating about being undefeated and apparently even has a book titled "Undefeated." Now the only way to defeat Monk is to hire Powell; this could be bad for victims everywhere. Monk talks to Dr. Bell about quitting and he's horrified the murderer got away with it. Dr. Bell encourages him to fight back by making a baseball metaphor. Monk is typically unimpressed. Natalie convinces Monk to help out Disher with his Little Buddy.
Image © NBC Universal, Inc.
This is what Monk needs, however, because it turns out Rudy's case is tied to Nancy's murder too! The clerk that Rudy apparently killed died the same way as the artist's wife. It turns out Evan killed them both; his tail light was out, which Monk pointed out earlier, and he stopped to get it fixed. Rudy was robbing the place right then, and he thought they'd see the security tape and place him there when he was supposed to be sculpting. So he killed the clerk and stole the tape, which Monk can now prove. Huzzah!
Everyone encourages Monk to fight back against Powell and that he can do it. This time, he does succeed and Powell finally is defeated thanks to Adrian Monk. Monk was the expert witness and now he'll be able to put all those men behind bars. It was actually interesting for them to acknowledge the other part of these cases, and that it doesn't really end when Monk says 'here's what happened.' A little more of this couldn't hurt, and hey, most people love court and crime dramas!
"Monk" is on USA Friday nights a 9 PM EST.
Monk cast: Tony Shalhoub
/ Bitty Schram
/ Ted Levine
/ Jason Gray-Stanford
Story by Chelsea Doyle
Starpulse contributing writer
Follow Chelsea on twitter at http://twitter.com/mustbethursday