the adorable little tyke Jonathan
Lipnicki in the 1996 film Jerry
McGuire (which coincidentally co-starred
Jay Mohr)? Well, he got big. He
plays Rudy Smith, Lieutenant Disher’s
“little buddy” in this
episode. Now he’s a “dope
smoking, chain snatching, little
thug” He does a pretty good
5 – Other Actors
Joseph D. Reitman played Evan Gildea
Jamie Donnelly played Judge Santa
Jonathan Lipnicki played Rudy Smith
Robert Beuth played D.A. Charles
Friedken (as Robert Alan Beuth)
Marisa Chen Moller – Reporter
Andy Hoff played – Reporter
Douglas Nabors – Jury Foreman
Yvonne Huff – Jury Foreman
Shaun Robinson – Talk Show
Garrett Davis – Plain Clothes
Caleb Moody – Sgt. Carney
Marcia Moran – Court Stenographer
Cinda Adams – Mrs. Paddock
Bayani Ison – Baliff
I’m a big courtroom drama
fan: Perry Mason, L.A. Law, Matlock,
Ally McBeal, Boston Legal. Great
stuff. There’s just something
inherently enthralling about it
and it’s exciting to see Monk
take that next logical step into
the courtroom. In pre-season interviews
Tony Shalhoub seemed excited about
it too: “Monk goes up against
a lawyer, a high powered defense
lawyer, these two guys who have
only had wins in their lives, going
head to head. Jay Mohr is the co-star
in that episode. He’s a super,
super strong savvy defense attorney
who’s never lost a case, who
is defending a criminal Monk knows
it’s Adrian Monk. He’s
never lost a case in his life.”
“Well, Neither have I. This’ll
Monk fan waits with bated breath
for the conclusion of each new episode
and the “here’s-what-happened”.
In this topsy-turvy episode that’s
where it starts. Monk is just getting
to the really good part with the
black and white flashback of the
crime committed by sculptor Evan
Gildea (Joseph D. Reitman), when
super defense attorney Harrison
Powell arrives in his slick convertible
and his pin striped suit to drag
his client away before he can say
anything too incriminating. Apparently
Mr. Powell is a little psychic too.
How did he know that Adrian Monk
was about to accuse Evan of murder?
And who’s the chick with him?
His evil minion? She goes everywhere
with him, but she never speaks and
he never acknowledges her presence.
time, probably months, later Monk,
Natalie, Stottlemeyer and Disher
gather on the courthouse steps.
They’re greeted by Charles
Friedken (Robert Alan Beuth), the
D.A. who’s prosecuting Gildea.
He’s worried about going up
against Powell who has never lost
a case. Lt Disher tells him to “Relax,
we’ve testified at a hundred
corrects him. “One hundred
and twelve.” Coincidentally,
or probably not so coincidentally,
this is the 113th episode of Monk.
So that works out just about right.
Harrison Powell shows up with his
client, his minion, and his cocky
attitude. He’s not interested
in the plea deal that the D.A. still
wants to offer. He wants them to
drop the case. “You can keep
the police from looking like chimpanzees
course, Stottlemeyer, Disher and
Monk all know what that looks like.
So do we, because we saw it in “Mr.
Monk and the Panic Room”.
I wonder if Powell knew about that
the courtroom Stottlemeyer gives
his testimony first. Nancy Gildea
had died on October 2nd at “104
Pickens Drive”? Really? What
happened to Vinton Street? “The
housekeeper had discovered the body,”
course she did. If you’re
a maid on Monk you’re either
finding a corpse or being one.
they didn’t want to tax the
viewers with too many black and
white scenes, so all the courtroom
flashbacks to the investigation
are in color. We go back to what
would normally be the first act
of a Monk episode, the crime scene.
Monk admires the pedestal as they
enter Nancy Gildea’s house
which is filled with various sculptures.
Natalie points out the “real”
art. Monk is unimpressed. “Oh,
well, that’s junk.”
Disher says they believe it was
a break in and Nancy was killed
with a single blow to her medulla
oblongata. Monk doesn’t think
that the hole in the glass door
is sufficiently large to have allowed
an intruder to reach in and unlock
the door. Disher runs a “field
test” to be sure. “Ow,
ow, ow, ow.”
judge interrupts Stottlemeyer’s
testimony. She saw that Disher had
both hands bandaged. Stottlemeyer
gamely answers, “He’s
“You a lawyer now?
A little Doogie Howser thing going
Natalie and Monk are waiting outside
the courtroom. Natalie has the hiccups,
which irritates Monk. She suggest
Randy do something to scare her,
but Monk pick up the slack. “Natalie,
if you hiccup again I’m going
to take Randy’s gun and shoot
you.” Dang. He’s still
channeling Frankie a bit. That does
recognizes a young man across from
them. It’s Rudy Smith a boy
he used to mentor in the “Big
Buddy” program. He goes over
to chat with Rudy, but they’re
interrupted by a plains clothes
detective who moves Rudy jacket
and reveals that Disher’s
little buddy is handcuffed. He tells
Disher that Rudy “robbed a
store and killed a clerk.“
He takes the boy away.
the courtroom Stottlemeyer’s
testimony continues and he describes
how Monk discovered the first clue.
Gildea used someone else’s
sculpture to whack his wife with
rather than his own which was closer
to where the fight started.
Powell easily undermines his testimony.
Getting Captain Stottlemeyer to
admit they don’t know for
sure where the fight started or
if Gildea would in fact avoid using
his own sculpture as a murder weapon.
Stottlemeyer says it was just a
theory which led them to more evidence.
Powell promises to get that “evidence”
(accompanied by his air quotes)
later. He repeats “Captain
Stottlemeyer” in a mockingly
respectful way each time he asks
him a question and Stottlemeyer
starts to get rattled.
in the hall, Randy’s upset
that Rudy has gotten into so much
trouble. He had promised the boy’s
grandmother that he would look out
for him. Stottlemeyer emerges from
the court room angry and sweating.
Natalie asks what happened. “He’s
tough. That’s what happened.
He kept coming at me like Muhammad
is next to testify. He goes in confidently.
“Evan Gildea is the guy. We
both know he’s the guy and
in twenty minutes the jury’s
going to know it too.”
“Wipes. Plural. Plural
confidence is soon shaken. Powell
wants to review Monk’s testimony
“All of it… every syllable,
describes how they drove down to
Santa Barbara to interview Gildea
the next morning.
may have a bit of a timeline problem.
Gildea received the marble at 5:00pm
on October 1st in Santa Barbara,
but he was in San Francisco at the
auto parts store at 10:00pm and
he had already killed his wife.
It’s a five hour drive from
Santa Barbara to San Francisco at
least. Assuming you don’t
hit any traffic. I don’t see
how he could have done it. He then
killed a clerk in SF and got back
to Santa Barbara in time to chop
up a two ton slab of marble and
spread it around his driveway and
dispose of a jackhammer all by himself,
before Sgt. Carney arrived at 9:00am
on the 2nd. No wonder the D.A. was
worried about his case.
Gildea reveals his alibi: a large
nude statue that he had been sculpting
all night. Monk is unnerved the
statue. Unconsciously, he emits
a constant high pitched squeak “Eeeeeeeeee
the incident he makes the same noise
in the courtroom. When he denies
it, the judge has the court stenographer
(Marcia Moran) read it back, in
possibly the funniest one line performance
ever. Even in the court room Monk
avoids looking at the statue, but
Powell is insistent. It’s
his clients alibi.
Monk is being dismantled on the
stand Randy talks with Rudy. He’s
feeling guilty that he wasn’t
a better influence. “I should
have said, ‘Rudy, don’t
says he did rob the store, stealing
thirty dollars and a gold chain
from clerk’s neck, but he
didn’t kill her. The clerk
was alive when he left. When he
swears to this while wearing their
old friendship bracelet Randy has
brought, Randy believes him.
in the courtroom a flustered Monk
is trying to fix the microphone
at the witness as everyone in the
court waits. “You’ll
thank me later.”
tells Monk that the art experts
say it would take at least twelve
hours to sculpt a statue like that.
(I say it would probably take a
heck of a lot longer than that,
but whatever.) Gildea claims that
the marble the statue was carved
from had been delivered the day
before at 5:00pm and he has a receipt
to prove it. He seems to have the
perfect alibi, but Monk suggests
he could have carved the statue
at any time and hidden the marble
delivered that day. Gildea points
out that it’s hard to hide
two tons of marble.
investigation of Gildea’s
dusty kitchen reveals a melted popsicle,
a slow clock, and a dust free extension
cord. Monk figures it out. Gildea
used a jackhammer to turn the marble
into gravel and spread it across
his driveway. (I think that would
take a heck of a lot longer than
an hour to do, for me anyway.) Monk
thinks he blew a fuse while using
the jackhammer. Which is why the
popsicle melted and why the clock
ridicule’s the theory, asking
Monk if he’s a science fiction
writer. He brings in a “sample”
of the gravel stating that if Monk
is correct all the pieces should
fit back together “Like a
giant jigsaw puzzle.” Of course,
that’s absolutely ludicrous.
First of all, it’s only a
sample so the pieces that fit with
pieces in the wheel barrow may well
still be in Gildea’s driveway.
Some of the marble would have been
reduced to dust and the pieces would
never fit together. It’s nothing,
but a theatrical stunt which the
D.A. should have objected to, but
instead Natalie does. When the judge
wants to know who she is, Powell
claims she’s Monk nurse.
is my assistant,” Monk tells
the judge. “My nurse left
five years ago.”
bit of information gives Powell
the opening he needs to impeach
Monk as a witness, bringing to light
his psychiatric discharge from the
force and his efforts to regain
his badge. Calling him “Former
Detective Monk, isn’t it true
that the only way you can get reinstated
is to be appearing to be solving
a high profile case, a high profile
case just like this one.”
if Monk hasn’t solved dozens
of high profile cases. In fact,
he did just that in the pilot episode.
In any case, Monk loses it, jumps
out of the witness box and tries
to put the gravel back together.
The cut to the end of the trial
and the jury foreman (Doug Nabors)
reads the verdict. “Not guilty.”
Nabors is a co-producer on Monk
and Tony Shalhoub’s right
I still hate you”
the front steps of the courthouse
Evan Gildea tells reporters how
much he loves the justice system.
As Natalie wonders what they can
do now. “Nothing,” Harrison
Powell says as he stops by to gloat.
Stottlemeyer explains that double
jeopardy has attached “How
do you sleep at night?” Natalie
a baby in a really expensive bed.
Thanks for asking though.”
Gildea drives away Monk notes that
one of his headlights is brighter
than the other. “Give it up,
buddy, “Stottlemeyer tells
him. It’s over. They beat
the win is pretty good publicity
for Powell. He‘s schmoozing
with a talk show host (Shaun Ronbinson)
and promoting his book, modestly
The following day Monk is in a session
with Dr. Bell. He announces that
he’s quitting. He says all
any criminal has to do is hire Powell
to off scot free. The Doctor tells
him a long story… no, a parable…
no, an allegory… a baseball
allegory. In college Dr. Bell baseball
and there was pitcher, Scottie Hunt,
who always struck him out. 15 times
in a row. He didn’t give up.
He studied his opponent carefully.
Eventually he learned his curve
ball “tell” and hit
a home run.
is not inspired. “I don’t
want to be rude. Is that the end
of the allegory?”
and Randy find him in his apartment
later organizing files so that he
can burn them. He tells them he’s
quitting. Natalie won’t hear
of it. Randy has a case for him.
Rudy is being tried for murder as
an adult. Randy believes he’s
innocent and wants Monk to prove.
Monk thinks it’s a bad idea.
“If I go with you and I see
something then I might have to testify
about it and if I accuse someone
they could hire this Powell guy.
They probably will.”
he got that right.
go to the auto parts store where
the Rudy’s robbery occurred.
Natalie encourages him to focus
and do the hand thing, but Monk
is still distracted by his failure
in court and for each clue he finds
he imagines and impersonates Powell
questioning him about it. “Objection!
Natalie says. “Badgering…
reads the file aloud and mentions
that the victim was killed by a
blow to the medulla oblongata in
exactly the same way as Nancy Gildea.
“When did it happen,”
10:00pm?” He’s right.
Monk has it figured out and when
they retrieve a burnt out tail light
from the front of the store, they
have enough evidence to pull in
Evan Gildea for questioning once
seen your curve ball. I can hit
and Monk have Evan Gildea in an
interrogation room and The Captain
is showing him the tail light. Evan
reminds him that he’s been
acquitted of killing his wife, but
Stottlemeyer tells him he’s
been questioned about a different
murder, the murder of Sara Paddock,
the auto parts store clerk murdered
the same night. Monk is delighted
to deliver the “heres-what-happened”.
feels good to say that again…
especially to him.”
explains (in a genuine black and
white flashback) that immediately
after Gildea killed his wife, he
discovered he had a burnt out tail
light. Not wanting to be stopped
by the police for it on his long
drive back to Santa Barbara, he
went to the nearest auto parts store
to replace it. Unfortunately for
him he was there at the same time
as Disher’s little buddy Rudy
who was robbing the store. Once
Rudy was gone the clerk told Gildea
that there was a camera and the
whole thing was on video. Knowing
that the police would see him on
that tape and know that he killed
Nancy, he grabbed a tire iron, killed
the clerk and took the tape.
Gildea wants to wait for his attorney.
Powell arrives. When Monk’s
sees him in the mirror he’s
a little thrown. “Leland,
he’s in my head again.”
Monk,” Stottlemeyer reassures
him. ”Actually he’s
starts in right away with his bull
dozer tactics, mocking Monk and
his methods. As he’s shepherding
his client out the door, it seems
like he may just get away with it
again. That is until his client
makes a stupid mistake. Seeing Rudy
in the squad room Gildea calls him
a “dope smoking, chain snatching,
explains that since that information
about Rudy wasn’t in the police
report or in the papers the only
way Gildea could have known about
was if he had been there. They’ve
still trying to intimidate Monk,
says he’s looking forward
to going up against him in court
again. “No, you’re not,”
Monk tells him confidently.
Powell’s gone he’s not
so confident. “He’s
going to rip me apart” Monk
says. The rest of the gang reassure
him and helpfully advise him on
his courtroom conduct.
“Just a thought, maybe
work on not crying… I mean,
quite so much… in front of
in the courtroom once again, a new
jury foreman reads the verdict,
is convicted. Powell is humiliated.
The dope smoking, chain snatching,
little thug gets community service
and Monk is vindicated. “I’m
proud of you,” Natalie tells
him. “You were the best witness
ever.” She offers him a ride
home. They walk out together, but
after a moment he comes back alone
to straighten the microphone at
the witness stand. As he does so
a beautiful, slow piano variation
or the original theme song plays
in the background.
eight years, you’d think there
weren’t many Monk stories
left to tell, but they really shook
things up with this one and yet
still delivered a nice little mystery
and some good character development
for both Monk and Disher.
writer and co-creator Andy Breckman
recently explained about the stories
they have left to tell. “We’re
sitting in the writers’ room
and there are bulletin boards on
all the walls with ideas that we’ve
been throwing up there for eight
years. For the last season we did
go through those bulletin boards
one last time to see if there were
any great ideas that we’re
forgetting, just like you go through
your hotel room one last time before
you check out to see if there’s
anything in the drawers or in the
bathroom that you’re forgetting.
So we tried to make sure that all
the good ideas were shoe-horned
into these episodes.”