Monk needs to stick to murder cases b ecause the entire premise of this episode was so far fetched I found myself groaning repeatedly throughout it.
The criminals in this episode were so unbelievably stupid, I simply could not believe it. They actually kidnap a woman in order to throw the police off the trail of the lesser crime of stealing a chair. Sure the chair is worth 2.5 million bucks, but no one besides th em knows that. The law probably would have valued it at around 40 dollars. They could have broken in and grabbed the chair and been done with it. As antique dealers, they even could have replaced teh antique chair with a look-alike. Nana probably would never have noticed. And if she did, who cares? A 70+ year old woman calling the police to tell them that her living room chair looks a bit different would not exactly have brought the long arm of the law down on their heads.
"Calling all cars...Calling all cars...Be on the lookout for an old bat's living room chair...it is to be considered slightly different than she remembers it..."
So they kidnap her. They KIDNAP her people....KIDNAP!!! And to make it even stupider, they carry her out of the house in the actual chair. Now, you have to remember that later in the episode, they nearly bite Stottlemeyer's head off just for getting to close to it. But it's ok to carry a 120 pound lady out of the house in it. The thing is only 225 years old or so and is only worth 2.5 million dollars.
And then, sigh, they do a Google search or something to find radical groups of the 70's they can pin it on. They find an organization that has been defunct for 25 years and try to blame them for the crime. And to make it thoroughly believable, they make the assinine demand that $500 worth of turkey dinner must be given to some homeless people downtown. Then they let her go. Look out! The hippies are back! Viva le resistance! Why even bother?? If they were going to kidnap the old battleaxe, why not blame it on someone believable? A local gang or the frigging Al Qaeda or something believable?
Then, just to make sure it doesn't get to be too believable or anything, they decide to try to murder Monk in the college library. What the hell the kidnapper was doing in the college library is anybody's guess, but I'll give them the benefit of teh doubt and assume he was following Monk, looking for an opportunity or something. But let's be realistic here. The guy is so overconfident at the end of the show, so damn cocky, I wanted to reach into the tv and strangle him. So why was he so afraid of Monk that he'd bother trying to kill him. Didn't he think that might get the police involved in the case? Attempted murder of a former police officer?
And then we get to see the atheletic ability that Monk has been hiding all these years. He makes a vertical leap from halfway up a ladder to grab a pipe hanging from the ceiling at least 5 or 6 feet out of reach. Go on. Go back and rewatch the episode and look how high above his head the top of the bookshelf is and then consider how much higher the ceiling is above that. he only went a couple steps up the ladder, but when he's hanging from the ceiling, Sharona has to crane her neck upward to see the soles of his feet! Michael Jordan look out! There's a new star in town!
Then we have to consider how easy it was to track down where the criminals were in the first place. How intimately do Monk and Sharona know their town anyway? The old hag smelled bread? So it must be the only bread store in all of San Fransisco. Naturally! They stopped for 5 or 6 minutes? Must be a bridge! The smell of cough drops? Eucalyptus trees...and they even know where those trees are. Now, I know I'm not a detective or anything, but I don't even know what sort of trees I have in my own front yard, let alone where to find any of the Eucalyptus variety in my town. But Monk and Sharona do. Hey, if this detective thing doesn't work out, maybe they can become forest rangers!
Nana has had the chair for 20 years according to her granddaughter, but there is not a single picture of it in all her photo albums? Not even one? Where ahs it been for the past two decades? The attic? The only time they ever took a picture of it in 20 years was right before it gets stolen so they have a Lost Kitty Poster to prove they own it. How convenient. Well, i guess it's the poster's fault it got stolen in the first place. So it's actually kind of a good thing the chair never found its way into any pictures at family get togethers or holiday gatherings or anything like that the past 20 years. If it had, Nana would have been kidnapped a long time ago!
And finally, the last sequence of stupidity in the episode. Let's say you're a master criminal. You want to steal a chair worth a few million buck. You go through this whole idiotic plot to get it and finally it's in your possession. The auction is in a few days. All you have to do is lay low and sell it and then retire to Tijuana. Where do you keep the chair? In a storage warehouse? Hidden in the attic? Somewhere way out of sight where it won't be found?
Keep in mind you committed multiple felonies in order to get it and all its owner has to do is notice that its missing and produce a photo of it in her house at some point during the past 20 years (we're assuming these photos would naturally exist mind you) to prove you stole it and in turn committed all these other horrible crimes thus putting an end to your life of freedom and beginning your new life as a cell mate with a fat guy named Bubba.
Nope. You slap it down smack in the middle of your living room so it's the first thing the cops see when they come knocking on your door. Oh, but at least you have a forged receipt from a dead antique dealer. That's using the old noggin.
Wow. I can't believe they did an episode this incredibly bad. i can't say I'm too disappointed because this show, as much as I like it, always has too many convenient things happen to make it possible for Monk to solve the case of the week. But this was so far-fetched I felt like I was bleeding IQ points through my nose.