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MR. MONK GETS LOTTO FEVER (#703)
EPISODE PREMIERE: August 1, 2008

Logline:

When a television lottery hostess is murdered, Natalie takes her place and becomes a local celebrity, while Monk pursues the killer.

Synopsis:

After a hard day of announcing winning lottery numbers, Marissa Kessler, a television lottery hostess, comes tearing out of a T.V. studio, running for her life!  Shes being chased through a dark parking lot by a shadowy assailant.  She tries to escape, but the attacker catches up with her and kills her.

Monk is called in to investigate, and as soon as he views the scene, he knows it was no random mugging.  The attacker was specifically after Kessler, who was stabbed to death with a pair of scissors, indicating it was a spur of the moment murder.  During the investigation, a T.V. station manager notices Natalie.  He needs an emergency replacement for the dead lottery hostess, and offers Natalie the position until he can hold formal auditions.  Monk grudgingly allows her to take the job.

Soon, Natalie is making her big lottery debut.  After some pre-show jitters, she gives a fantastic performance and is offered the position full-time.  She accepts, vowing that her work with Monk will always come first.  But as time passes and Natalie becomes a local celebrity, she seems increasingly distracted by her newfound fame, much to Monks dismay.

Things only escalate as Natalie becomes a bit of a diva on the lottery set, where she gets into a fight with a sound engineer named Billy Logan.  The station manager overhears the argument and fires Billy on the spot.  Billy apologizes and begs for his job, but its too late.  Hes escorted out of the studio and has his security pass taken away.

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