Season 1 Episode 5

Mr. Monk Goes to the Carnival

Aired Friday 9:00 PM Aug 02, 2002 on USA
out of 10
User Rating
271 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

A police officer and friend of Stottlemeyer is framed for a crime he didn't commit involving a ferris wheel. Meanwhile Monk tries to convince Stottlemeyer to get him reinstated.

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  • Enter the frustrations, disappointments, and anguish established in the 'Monk' series.

    This story centers around Stottlemeyer having to make the decision of whether or not to have Monk reinstated to the San Francisco Police Department, which ultimately falls through. Adrian Monk is hopeful until Stottlemeyer gives his silence confirming that he didn't recommend him. His assistant Sharona rightly defends Monk by muttering behind Leland's back "At least Gitomer had the decency of stabbing people in the front"

    "Mr. Monk Goes to A Carnival" also introduces for the first time that during a heartbreak or struggle, the way Monk recovers and redeems himself is by doing what he does best: solving murders. Stottlemeyer's friend Officer Adam Kirk acknowledges Monk's hand in the case, and Stottlemeyer tells him in a moment of silence "Don't give up.

    Certainly not the best, but probably best looked at as another introduction episode - an introduction to the emotional struggles Monk deals with.moreless
  • i like this ep

    in this ep monk must figure out if the friend of the captains a old officer really commited the crime on the ferris wheel where all the evidence points to the old officer him going on the rid and him coming off were the kid is dead. i think this was a good ep and even though monk thought the guy was sorta bad he still helped him anyway which made it a good ep and i thought it showed alot of how smart and cleaver and well thinking monk really is . that is why i rated it a 7.5moreless
  • 105

    I became a fan of Monk pretty late into the show's run so I did not catch many early episodes, but thanks to the great cable channel Sleuth (which shows many classic dramas) I have the opportunity to see a plethora of great programs, this one included.

    The viewer immediately notices the differences between the two (newer vs. older episodes). They did not go for humor every 5 seconds, and Randy Disher was not a complete joke, like he became in later episodes. But the new ones had their own special appeal as the cases were better done, the villains were more evil, and the show was funnier as a whole.

    But you have to love the quirks, and how original Adrian Monk was at the time. The broken blinds, littered paper and water on the desk would have irritated me too.moreless
Stephen McHattie

Stephen McHattie

Officer Adam Kirk

Guest Star

Alan Van Sprang

Alan Van Sprang

Leonard Stokes

Guest Star

Rob Stefaniuk

Rob Stefaniuk

John Gitomer

Guest Star

Max Morrow

Max Morrow

Benjy Fleming

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (13)

    • When Benjy says "8, 385" again, his lips aren't moving at all.

    • Monk is seen making a turn in Sharona's car but in "Mr Monk Meets the Playboy" he states then he had mental problems turning.

    • Trivia: According to Stottlemeyer, Monk has helped the SFPD solve six cases (since his departure from the force) as of the start of this episode. Since this is the fifth episode of the series, we have seen four of them at this point.

    • Trivia: This is the first episode where Monk utters the line "It's a blessing/gift and a curse".

    • The girlfriend was not wearing anything to cover her fingers during the murder. Couldn't the police have run fingerprint tests and identify the killer, or at least who had held the knife?

    • During the scene where Stokes and Sharona are shown in the same shot while on the Ferris Wheel, Stokes' audio is not synched with his lips, while Sharona's is.

    • How was Stokes a member of the same chapter of AA (or whatever sobriety organization they used for the show) as his ferris wheel girlfriend when he had been confined to prison for the past 14 months? Even if they met at meetings before he went to prison, he would have attended meetings and gotten his 3-year pin in prison while his girlfriend got her color-coded pin from the chapter in the outside world.

    • Considering he was able to concoct such an elaborate plan to escape from prison, Stokes must have been at least somewhat intelligent. Why then did he wait until he had been in prison for 14 months to carry out his plan? And why was he dumb enough to hide in the ferris wheel after killing his girlfriend?

    • Monk, of course, is an excellent detective, but is he the only person able to conduct a rudimentary search of a crime scene? Wouldn't the ferris wheel have been thoroughly searched by the police during their initial investigation? It seems, if anything, that they would have been extra-thorough since the accused is a cop. However, they were unable to find the oddly-cut tarot card wedged in the ferris wheel's seat.

    • When Monk is in officer Adam Kirk's house cleaning the kitchen, he holds the last plate with his bare hand rather than the hand with the dishcloth. He doesn't even clean the hand with a wipe afterwards. The obsessively clean Monk would not have touched a stranger's dirty plate without protection from the germs.

    • Why didn't Monk point out that the victim died too quickly after being stabbed to have time to bruise?

    • In the beginning of the episode, Captain Stottlemeyer supposedly drives away. However, it is easy to see his car's antenna still there.

    • How did the perp get into his cab on the ferris wheel? Watch the sequence carefully. Sharona gets in and Monk rotates the ferris wheel so Sharona's cab goes about three to four positions up from the ground. Then the perp climbs out of the cab directly across the wheel from her. That means his cab was straight up at the top of the wheel when Sharona got in. The ferris wheel isn't running when he makes his escape. So how'd he get to the cab on the top of the ferris wheel without anyone seeing him before Monk started the wheel?

  • QUOTES (14)

  • NOTES (3)

    • Music: "Rejection" and "Have Fun" by Jeff Beal

    • Hrant Alianak, who plays the unnamed judge at the Stokes hearing, also appeared in "Dale the Whale."

    • The first victim in this episode was John Gitomer; a cop in the first episode was also named Gitomer. John Gitomer was played by Rob Stefaniuk; a murder victim in the pilot was played by Fred Stefaniuk. Coincidence? Probably not. My guess is that the two Stefaniuks are brothers. But two Gitomers?