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MonkMonk is an American police procedural comedy-drama mystery television series created by Andy Breckman and starring Tony Shalhoub as the title character, Adrian Monk.  It originally ran from 2002 to 2009 and is primarily a mystery series, although it has dark and comic touches.

The series debuted on July 12, 2002 on USA Network.  It was well received and is viewed as one of the reasons that led to USA Network's increasing popularity.  Its eighth and final season concluded on December 4, 2009.  The series currently holds the record for the most-watched scripted drama episode in cable television history, a record previously held by The Closer.  Monk set the record with "Mr.  Monk and the End – Part II", its series finale, with 9.4 million viewers; 3.2 million of them in the 18–49 demographic.

Adrian Monk was a brilliant detective for the San Francisco Police Department until his wife, Trudy, was killed by a car bomb in a parking garage, which Monk then believed was intended for him.  He later discovers Trudy's death was part of a larger conspiracy that she had uncovered during her time as a journalist.  Trudy's death led Monk to suffer a nervous breakdown.  He was discharged from the force and became a recluse, refusing to leave his house for over three years.  He was finally able to leave the house with the help of his nurse, Sharona Fleming (Bitty Schram).  The breakthrough allowed him to work as a private detective and a consultant for the homicide unit despite retaining limitations rooted in his obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD), which had grown significantly worse after the tragedy.

Monk's compulsive habits are numerous, and a number of phobias compound his situation, such as his fear of germs and cups.  Monk has 312 fears, some of which are milk, ladybugs, harmonicas, heights, imperfection and risk.  The OCD and plethora of phobias inevitably lead to very awkward situations and cause problems for Monk and anyone around him, as he investigates cases.  These same personal struggles, particularly the OCD, are what aid him in solving cases such as his sharp memory, specific mindset and attention to detail.  In one episode entitled "Mr.  Monk and His Biggest Fan", Marci Maven (Sarah Silverman) had compiled a list of all of Adrian's fears and had put icons on her desktop of them.  On another episode, he tried to conquer his fears by doing various activities which involved his phobias.  For example, he tried drinking milk, climbing a ladder, putting a ladybug on his hand, and when things were scattered unorganized across a table, he could not help the compulsion to arrange them neatly.

Captain Leland Stottlemeyer (Ted Levine) and Lieutenant Randall "Randy" Disher (Jason Gray-Stanford) call on Monk when they have trouble with an investigation.  Stottlemeyer is often irritated by Monk's disorder, but respects his friend and former colleague's amazing insight and observational abilities, as does Disher.  Ever since childhood, Monk's obsessive attention to detail allowed him to spot tiny discrepancies, find patterns, and make connections that others often fail to make.  Monk continues to search for information about his wife's death, the one case that he has been unable to solve, and eventually closes it in the series finale.

Sharona decided to re-marry her ex-husband and move back to New Jersey, and Natalie Teeger (Traylor Howard) was hired as Monk's new assistant; a widow and mother of an eleven-year-old daughter (now 17).  Monk has a brother Ambrose (John Turturro), and a half-brother, Jack, Jr.  (Steve Zahn), whose existence Monk discovered in the fifth season.  He later met Jack, Jr.  in season seven, in the episode "Mr.  Monk's Other Brother".

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