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Monk Season 3
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Mr. Monk Takes Manhattan is the third season premiere of Monk.

SynopsisEdit

When Monk travels to New York City to investigate his wife's murder, he gets tangled up in a baffling case involving the shooting of a foreign ambassador.

PlotEdit

After receiving a tip from Dale "The Whale", Adrian Monk flies to New York City, accompanied by Sharona Fleming, Captain Stottlemeyer, and Lieutenant Disher, all with the same mission – to find Warrick Tennyson, who Dale said was “involved” in the murder of Monk’s wife, Trudy. Unfortunately, the taxi ride doesn't go well, since Monk is so busy cleaning all of the cab's instruments, causing the driver to declare that he'll keep driving if he ever sees him again. Monk also momentarily becomes separated from the group outside their hotel in an attempt to give a dropped belonging back to someone. He also admits that, even by San Francisco's standards, New York City was too crowded and noisy.

They then arrive at the hotel (which had been chosen by Monk because it was the cleanest in the city), although the consierge informs them that they only have a three room suite due to being booked. They then get into a minor argument as to who will sleep with who in the third bedroom before eventually distracting Monk to guard the luggage carrier and also noting it's uneven. As this is occurring, the new Latvian ambassador and his two bodyguards come in and makes his way while bumping into Monk, also overhearing him say something. Shortly afterwards, the ambassador and his bodyguard are shot and killed in one of the elevators. The shooter runs out of the hotel covering his face, and bumps into him. Stottlemeyer then asks Monk while helping him up if he can identify the shooter, and Monk confirms he can. Eventually, Monk is at the crime scene, but it's pretty clear that the elements of the city are greatly distracting him (specifically, he could hear the traffic outside, namely the police sirens, despite being far indoors), although he ultimately manages to get back on track when Stottlemeyer and Sharona both remind him that they are there to find Trudy's killer. Monk notices some clues: the ambassador’s coat is damp, but his bodyguards’ are dry, yet Monk remembers that the ambassador's coat was dry just moments before the shooting, and that the ambassador was apparently killed after the bodyguards, because he is on top of them (with Monk and Stottlemeyer pointing out that had the ambassador been the primary target of an assassination, he would have specifically targeted the ambassador alone, and the gun used is the wrong sort to use in an assassination). Although Stottlemeyer says they are there to find Tennyson , NYPD Captain Cage asks for their help in solving the ambassador’s murder, which could have dire political implications. Stottlemeyer explains to the captain that he was in New York City for an unrelated case, although Cage reveals that the District Attorney had cancelled their meet with Tennyson 20 minutes after their arrival. Nonetheless, Stottlemeyer encourages Monk, reminding him that it’s important to make a good impression on the local authorities. Since Monk was the sole witness who could identify the killer, he and the others were brought over to the NYPD. Captain Cage then met with Stottlemeyer in his office and tried to make calls requesting for the DA to let them see Tennyson, but she wouldn't budge. Undeterred, Stottlemeyer suggested he instead contact the DA's superior, the governor, to get in. Cage does this, though when he notices Stottlemeyer about to look at file folders on his desk, he then grabs them and hurriedly puts them in a shelf, arising Stottlemeyer's suspicions about what's in the folder. Meanwhile, Monk, albeit with some difficulty due to Monk's rather perfectionist view on things, ultimately managed to get the sketch artist to successfully draw the suspect's ear. However, Monk then admits that while he can identify the man, he can only do so by the shape of his left ear. During this time, Disher also buys a "Rolex" watch that supposedly tells accurate time, but turns out to be anything but accurate - indicating that Randy is obviously not familiar with the term "street corner salesman" (case in point: when he tells them about its ability to tell the time in various parts of the world, he says that "it's 5:30 here; in Denver, 3:30; in California, 12:17; and in Paris, France... time has stopped." Aside from the obvious that time does not stop anywhere in the world, much less Paris, a real watch that could do this would have 2:30 for California). Shortly afterwards, Stottlemeyer meets with Monk outside the precinct, and tells him they've got bad news and even worse news: Namely, the DA is not willing to let anyone visit Tennyson. They will offer them to visit, but ONLY if they manage to solve the murder case of the Latvian ambassador first. Monk realizes that essentially means that they have no other choice but to solve the case, although a construction worker constantly using a jackhammer for road repair had Monk forced into hesitating to respond to Stottlemeyer's news due to the loud noise of the jackhammer interfering, eventually barely managing to finish his thought as the jackhammer is blaring away.

Monk and Co. retrace the ambassador's movements that day; his last stop before arriving at the hotel was at a small bar/restaurant near Central Park. They then question Vladimir Kazinsky, one of his aides, about whether the late ambassador felt anything off. Kazinsky denied it, and pointed out that, if anything, the ambassador had been in very high spirits during the meeting in the bar. Monk, after checking his ear lobe to see if he was the assassin, also remembers the ambassador say something that sounded like, "she’s now gone meatless," and asks the aide what it means, only for the man to not recognize it even with Monk's various attempts at altering the pronunciation. While Stottlemeyer and Disher head back to the station, Monk and Sharona depart for Brooklyn to question some Latvian exiles (namely because one of them had made threatening letters to him) in Brooklyn who might have had a motive (as they apparently had severe distaste for the ambassador and his policies, with the main suspect making no secret about his disgust by saying that he didn't assassinate him as "only great men are worthy of being called assassinated."). None of them know anything about the murder, but one of them recognizes the ambassador’s words as "Šis nav mans mētelis," which means "this is not my coat," in an obscure Latvian dialect. After analyzing one of the Latvian exiles' ear (after he throws off his hat in frustration at losing a chess game), they consider them free to go.

Meanwhile, Stottlemeyer is suspicious of Cage’s continued dancing around the subject of Tennyson. He breaks into Cage’s office and examines his records, with Randy watching out for whether Cage is coming near, although the watch ends up setting off an alarm. They are forced to let it ring and potentially blow their cover due to the watch's instructions being written only in Korean, although not without finding out that Tennyson is dying in hospital and has only a few days left to live. Because he’s being questioned in connection with a Federal racketeering case, the District Attorney is not giving anyone the location of the hospital. Stottlemeyer confronts Cage, who admits the truth, but says that they can still interview Tennyson if they solve the ambassador's murder. Leland visibly snaps at this point and shouts at Cage that the only case he gives a damn about is Trudy's murder ("My friend's wife got blown up! You understand? And it killed him, too!") Reluctantly, Cage reasons that they need "juice" to get access to Tennyson, which is what they will have if they crack the ambassador's murder. ("Captain, it's not just your best shot. It's your only shot.")

While Monk and Sharona are making their way back to the station, Monk reluctantly rides on the subway, despite his terror of crowds, germs, and closed spaces. Sharona says she is proud of him, and Monk also agrees, with him also noting that, thanks to the hint provided by the exiles earlier, he knows that it was clear the murder had something to do with the ambassador's coat. But when they stop at the next station to change lines, However, Monk reels at the sight of a man casually urinating in a corner. He is so horror-stricken that he stumbles back onto the very train that he just got off. He stumbles on 49th Street, where he ends up playing a "Find the Queen" game, although despite winning twice in a row, the player accuses him of cheating. Monk also questions whether the gamer has a gaming license, causing the gamer to wisely try to subtly flee the scene by claiming it's at his apartment.

Lost in New York, Monk gradually goes to pieces. When Sharona, Stottlemeyer, and Disher finally track him down in Times Square, he has been “converted” by one of the street preachers (namely because he has misinterpreted the term "cleansing" to mean that God would clean up all the problems in the world by vaccuming or scrubbing, not the Rapture) and is yelling loudly about the impending Apocalypse. Sharona comes up to take hold of him, and is severely embarrassed when Monk calls her a "fornicator" in a loud voice.

Slowly regaining control of himself, he also informs Stottlemeyer about the suspected rigged game on 49th street. However, as Monk regains control of himself, he looks up at one of the big TV screens and sees a man, Steven Leight, being interviewed on the news about the recent murder of his wife, Beverly, in an apparent mugging. Monk insists that Leight is "the guy," whom he recognizes by his ear. They then try to schedule a meeting, although Leight proceeded to evade them before arrival with the excuse that he was running errands.

When they interview Leight outside the ice rink at Rockefeller Center, he claims to have no idea what they're talking about and that he had told the NYPD his story about how his wife died several times before. But Monk (after being distracted by a little girl ice skating with only one glove, and then directly interfering with the ice rink, causing chaos on the rink, to try to put the girl's sole glove into her pocket to ensure things were "even" due to his irritation at uneven things) deduces that he was cheating on his wife - though what that has to do with the ambassador's murder, no one can guess. Leight, obviously getting angered at Monk's insinuations that he was committing adultry takes a mint and other tokens out of his pocket as they are talking to bribe them for his silence; the mint in particular is one Monk recognizes as coming from the bar that the ambassador visited before the shooting. They then return to the bar, and upon questioning the staff, realize neither he nor the ambassador have met before. However, upon witnessing the coatcheck being informed by one of the patrons that she gave her the wrong belongings (with the coatcheck admitting she had misread the tickets while trying to find the actual one), Monk and Disher smile, now realizing what had happened.

Here’s What HappenedEdit

Leight is brought to the bar by Captain Cage, and, after he denies remembering being at the bar, Monk gives the summation.

Monk explains that Leight killed his wife in Central Park, making sure there was no one nearby after luring her to a secluded area of the park, then took her jewelry to make it look like a routine robbery. Afterwards, he had a drink to steady his nerves before calling the police. The ambassador happened to be in the same bar, and received Leight’s overcoat by mistake from the bar's cloakroom (according to Monk, this happened all the time).

When Leight got his coat to leave, he realized what had happened. His wife’s jewelry was still in the pocket of his coat, and he had to get it back. So he ran to the hotel just as it was starting to rain (knowing which specific hotel he was staying at because he found the key card to his room in "his" coat), followed the ambassador into the elevator, and killed all three men, switching the ambassador's (now wet) coat with his own.

Midway through the summation, Monk becomes distracted when he recognizes one of the bar’s busboys as "The Urinator" from the subway. Monk, upon being reminded of his speech, just barely manages to finish up the summation before cursing at the busboy again. A ballistics report arrives, confirming that Leight's wife and the ambassador were shot with the same weapon. Leight is arrested for four counts of premeditated murder. Monk attempted to borrow the handcuffs to arrest the busboy, but ultimately let him go free after reluctantly agreeing with Sharona that only the murderer should be arrested.

Having cracked the case, Monk and Co. are allowed to visit Tennyson on his deathbed. Tennyson remembers being hired to build and plant the bomb that killed Trudy. When asked who hired him, Tennyson says he never knew the man's name, or what he looked like, since they met in a dark garage. It looks like Tennyson is a dead end, until he remembers one vital clue: the man had six fingers on his right hand.

Monk asks for a few moments alone with Tennyson. When the others are gone, Tennyson asks for forgiveness, but Monk cannot bring himself to give it. Instead, he says, "This is me, turning off your morphine," and does, ensuring that Tennyson will spend his last few days in agonizing pain. But a few tense moments later, he says, "...and this is Trudy, the woman you killed, turning it back on," and does.

The gang prepare to leave New York, having gotten at least one step further in solving Monk’s most important case. Around the same time, Disher ends up getting another watch from a street vendor: this time, it's one that tells Swiss time with their accuracy. Unfortunately, this one catches fire, revealing that it is another fake watch. Also, due to them being picked up by the rude cabbie from earlier, Stottlemeyer is forced to handcuff Monk and force him in the back seat to allow the cabbie to take him.

ContinuityEdit

  • Three seasons later, in "Mr. Monk Is On The Run," Monk comes face to face with the six-fingered man, who admits that Tennyson built the bomb, but he detonated it. Dale "The Whale"'s reasons for sharing part of the truth with Monk also become clear.
  • In the novel Mr. Monk Goes to Hawaii, Monk mentions to Natalie that Tennyson died from kidney failure two days after the meeting seen in the episode.

Background Information and NotesEdit

  • Adrian Monk's age is said to be 45.
  • Both Monk and Stottlemeyer are visibly sickened to hear that Tennyson was only paid a paltry $2,000 to end Trudy's life.
  • Ted Levine and Mykelti Williamson play cops who have friction trying to liaise together, Williamson playing Captain Cage. Ironically, Williamson and Levine starred as two of Vincent Hanna's homicide detectives, Sgt. Drucker (Williamson) and Detective Bosko (Levine) in the 1995 film Heat.

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