Last Friday the USA Network aired the season premiere of Monk Titled “Mr. Monk and the Other Detective” (with guest star Jason Alexander). I have been a big fan of this show for awhile and last Friday’s episode provided a welcome break from summer reruns. In my opinion Tony Shalhoub is one of the best actors on television playing one of the best characters on television. It takes a special talent to make Adrian Monk’s obsessive compulsive behavior (caused by the tragic murder of his wife) funny. Can you imagine what the pitch meeting was like? Still the episode was missing something I had always enjoyed Monk’s sidekick/nurse Sharona Fleming (Bitty Schram). I feel that it is too early in the show’s run for it to Jump the Shark. Early on I had feared that the show might Jump the Shark by exploring a romantic relationship between Sharona and Adrian, or Sharona and Lieutenant Randy Disher (Jason Gray-Stanford). I know I am not the only one who wants Sharona to return, in fact I found an online petition to Bring Sharona Back To “Monk!” And people say that I have too much free time.
I know, “People who live in glass houses”.
I have a great affection for characters who say what you are thinking or have the guts to say what you want to say but can’t. The best part is that these characters can get away with it like we wish we could. We tend to forget that there is a team of talented writers who spend many hours creating these spontaneous lines for them to say. I wrote a spec script for Monk last year and my favorite part was writing Sharona’s wisecracks. My wife told me that it was because I am Sharona. I think she meant to say, “I am a wisecracking sidekick trapped in a leading man’s body”
Finally my singing Bitty Sharam’s praises is in no way shape or form is an attack on Traylor Howard who recently joined the show as Adrian’s new girl Friday Natalie Teeger. When someone deserves the Dick Sergeant award I will say so. It can be a very risky career move to replace a beloved character on a show, especially a character with very big pumps to fill.
To quote Monk & Sharona,
MONK:Do you register to vote?
SHARONA: I never vote. It only encourages them.
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