FOR THE WEEK OF JULY 24, 2006
Our latest Monk Fan of the Week, Julia, is a former high school teacher who used Monk as part of her lesson plan. Her English-as-a-second-language students learned about plot and character development and honed their deduction skills watching Monk's adventures. In addition to its value as a learning tool, she appreciates Monk for its tasteful and clean plots, and picked "Mr. Monk Takes A Vacation" as her favorite episode. Here is Julia's entry:
My name is Julia and I've been watching "Monk" since the show's pre-USA network days on Monday nights!
I fell for this show – hook, line and sinker – since my very first episode – "Mr. Monk and the Billionaire Mugger." I was charmed by the show's snappy dialogue, the San Francisco setting and the TASTEFUL and CLEAN plotlines. In a television era filled with haphazard reality shows and sexed-up teenage dramas, "Monk" is a breath of fresh air!
I am a former high school English as a Second Language Reading teacher. I found great success showing "Monk" episodes in my classes as a way to teach plot and character. Most of my students had tremendous authority issues and had experienced limited success in public school settings. To say the least, "The Great Gatsby" was not going to be "meaningful" to this crowd!
But, I had great success incorporating "Monk" into my reading lessons! Adrian Monk is a character these students could make fun of, relate to, and empathize with too! I would hear students say, "Man, this fool's too clean" or similar teenage expressions in regard to Monk's geekiness. (I'm not sure if they picked up on the OCD.) When I heard that, I KNEW that AT LAST they were paying attention and learning some literary devices!
I believe this language-challenged group of students gained a stronger grasp of character development and increased their inference skills by trying to predict the outcome of Monk's mysteries. Watching and discussing the show was the best, most productive, class time all school year! "Monk" brought us together and was our hero!
My favorite episode is "Mr. Monk Takes a Vacation". I loved Monk's banter with the hotel's female detective in that episode – toothpicks in cellophane only, ha ha! As far as phobias go, I never tire of the handshake followed by the need for a wipe. I especially love it when Captain Stottelmeyer has to get the wipes! Oh, I also love any episode where Lt. Disher sings – fantastic!
Thanks for such a great show. Tony Shalhoub deserves every Emmy he's received! I don't use "Monk" in the classroom anymore because I changed careers and am now a university librarian – will Monk ever solve a library crime? Librarians are also great characters!
Think you deserve the honor of "Monk Fan of the Week"?
Email Webmaster@USANetwork.com your credentials and tell us which Monk phobia or mystery is your favorite. Include your name and a photo of yourself, and we may feature you right here on the official site!