|Mr. Monk and the End (Part One)|
November 27, 2009
|Monk Season 8|
Monk is called to a crime scene where he first heard the news of his wife's murder. The first part ends while a video of Monk's wife Trudy playing. The video explains what he has been waiting twelve years for.
December 14, 1997Edit
Detective Adrian Monk dresses for work, humming a tune under his breath. His wife, Trudy, apparently twisted his arm into going carol-singing the night before, and he admits to being surprised at how much fun he had. She packs his lunch and gives him a loving embrace. He notices that something is on her mind, but she asks him not to press.
As he is going, he notices a new present for him under the tree. She makes him promise not to open it (or figure out what it is without opening it) until Christmas, and he promises.
Later that morning, Trudy is in a parking garage, not noticing a six-fingered hand on the rail of the stairwell above her. Seeing someone stepping out of the shadows, she asks, "is that you?" But when she gets a good look at the person, she turns around in fear and runs toward her car. Reaching what she thinks is safety, she quickly fits in the key and turns the ignition... and the car explodes.
Across town, Monk and Captain Stottlemeyer are questioning Dr. Malcolm Nash, the director of the Palgrove Birthing Center, about the disappearance of Wendy Stroud, a midwife at the clinic. Dr. Nash claims to not know anything about where Wendy is and admits that she was his first midwife. Stottlemeyer's cell phone rings, and as he listens, his face goes grave...
Twelve years later, Monk's alarm clock goes off. He wakes to see a vision of Trudy, who tells him, "It won't be much longer." She also admonishes him for hanging on to her memory, to the point where he still leaves her side of the bed empty.
Later that day, Monk and Natalie meet Stottlemeyer and Disher at the same birthing center where Monk got the news of Trudy's death. This time, however, Dr. Nash, the same doctor they talked to twelve years earlier during their investigation of Wendy Stroud's disappearance, is the victim. Monk examines the scene and determines that Nash's killer was a professional, and used Nash's computer. The killer's M.O., along with a fingerprint found at the scene, points to a hitman named Joey Kazarinski.
Monk and Co. visit Judge Ethan Rickover at his home during a barbecue, asking him to sign a warrant for Kazarinski's arrest. Rickover obliges cheerfully, and mentions that he is due in Sacramento next week for confirmation hearings, to be appointed to the state Supreme Court.
That evening, Kazarinski gets a phone call from his employer, who says he needs Kazarinski to take out another target: Monk. When Kazarinski asks why, the unseen man responds that Monk is all too likely to "put two and two together" and deduce that Kazarinski's employer is the man who killed Trudy.
Later, Natalie is grocery shopping with her boyfriend, Lt. Steven Albright, when Kazarinski shows up and "accidentally" takes her shopping cart for a few seconds. Natalie doesn't suspect anything and continues her shopping. She is preparing for a dinner party where Albright will be meeting Julie for the first time, so she is naturally a little nervous.
Monk is invited to the party. Conversation is awkward at first, when Monk starts feeling dizzy and his vision blurs. Steven, a medical officer, examines Monk and decides to rush him to the hospital. When examined, a doctor tells Monk that he has been poisoned by a synthetic toxin. They can only create an antidote if they identify the exact source of the poison. Without it, Monk will be dead in the next two or three days.
A hazmat team examines Natalie and Monk's apartments with a fine-toothed comb, but are unable to find the source of the poisoning. But Natalie recognizes a mug shot in Stottlemeyer's hand, and identifies Kazarinski as the man who took her shopping cart.
Without official sanction, Stottlemeyer convenes an impromptu task force to apprehend Kazarinski and/or identify the source of the poison. He creates two teams: one team (under Disher) will try to find out who may have hired Kazarinski to kill Dr. Nash, and another team (under Stottlemeyer) will work to locate Kazarinski to try and identify the poison he used on Monk. Stottlemeyer interrogates his known associates, and cracks (both figuratively and literally, by smashing him with Disher's laptop) a forger who admits to making a set of false papers for him, which allows the police to track him to the train station. Before entering, Stottlemeyer gives strict orders that Kazarinski must be taken alive, so guns are to be holstered. Kazarinski, however, realizes this is a trap when he sees an undercover female officer adjusting her earpiece, and attempts to provide a distraction by going to the control tower. Disher and Stottlemeyer then see the train arrive on schedule, but then realizes that something is wrong when they realize that the train arrived and yet there was no announcement, causing Disher to rush up to the control tower. He finds that Kazarinski has killed the announcer and stolen his uniform. Disher attempts to report to Stottlemeyer about the incident, but he inadvertently also tells the entire group about what happened due to Kazarinski leaving the mic on, causing the passengers at the train station to panic. Stottlemeyer then recognizes Kazarinski and calls out to him, forcing Kazarinski to make a break for it. Stottlemeyer gives chase across the train yard, before he finally runs out of breath. It looks like Kazarinski will get away - before he stumbles straight into the path of an oncoming train, that sends him flying and kills him instantly.
With Kazarinski dead, Monk's last hope is gone. Although they have found the rented motel room Kazarinski used and the ingredients to the poison, they have not able to identify which of the items he laced with the poison. He cancels his remaining appointments with Dr. Bell, and starts putting his affairs in order. Natalie says she won't give up, but he says it's time to open Trudy's present - a last acknowledgment that his time is over.
But inside the box is the last thing Monk expected: a cassette from a video camera. On the tape, he sees Trudy, making a message for him in the event of her death. She confesses that she has kept a terrible secret from him. Years ago, before the two of them met, she begins...
To Be Continued...
- According to "Mr. Monk and the Employee of the Month," Joe Christie was Monk's partner at the time of Trudy's murder, and was present when he got the news. Also, according to "Mr. Monk and the Candidate," Stottlemeyer was Monk's watch commander at some time at or before Monk was suspended from the police department (around the same time as Trudy's murder), and would not have been Monk's partner at the time.
- Casper Van Dien reappears from Season Seven's "Mr. Monk Is Underwater."
- After the camera pans up into the sky, following the flames from Trudy's exploding car, the camera pans down onto the Palgrove Birthing Center. The scene is set in 1997, but as the camera pans onto the center, a 2003 Toyota Prius passes by the clinic.
- At 4 and 1/2 minutes, the opening sequence of this episode is perhaps the longest in the series. It is in fact 2 seconds longer than the opening sequence of the first episode in the series, possibly the second longest.