As Tony Shalhoub indicated in interviews to promote Season 7, this episode and the developments it introduces to "Monk" come at a good time in the series. Though Stanley Kamel and Dr. Kroeger will be missed, it will be interesting dramatically to see how a new therapist will help guide Monk through life. Hector Elizondo made the most of his few short scenes as Dr. Bell, and I can't wait to see the relationship develop.
The mystery front wasn't much of a mystery, but it boasted a strong guest performance from Brad Garrett and some good observational deductions by Monk. All in all, it's great to have the gang back. Stottlemeyer and Disher were funny with the Morse code bit (you knew it was going to save the day when they telegraphed it so much) and Natalie had some nice scenes with Monk in mourning.
It's not perfect, but since the writers were kind of forced into this position due to Kamel's untimely death, I'll cut them some slack. Plus, we got a very sentimental but not maudlin tribute to a good actor and character.