1x1Mr. Monk Meets the Candidate (1) Episode Summary Aired: Friday July 12, 2002
Three years after losing his job with the San Francisco Police Department because of his obsessive/compulsive disorder, Monk is working as a private consultant investigating the murder of a young woman named Nicole Vasquez. Shortly after determining that the murderer was at least 6'3", smoked menthol cigarettes, and wore slippers, Monk receives a call from his former boss, Captain Stottlemeyer, who reluctantly requests his aid in discovering the would-be assassin of mayoral candidate Warren St. Claire. While at least three people (including Mrs. St. Claire) seem to have sufficient motive to kill the candidate, the Vasquez murder seems to be unmotivated. Despite the captain's skepticism, Monk is certain that the cases are related. The police get a lead on the would-be assassin, but he manages to escape, in part because of Monk's fear of heights. Sharona convinces the deputy mayor to let Monk continue his investigation despite Captain Stottlemeyer's objections. After Monk has gathered the suspects together to recreate the crime scene, the hitman takes a shot at his accomplice and Sharona, playing Lois Lane, follows him into a sewer. Overcoming his revulsion, Monk goes in after them, placing Kleenex on the rungs of the ladder to protect his hands and feet on the way down. But Kleenex won't protect his shoes or the cuffs of his pants from the filthy, six-inch deep water. This novel act of courage moves Monk one step closer to recovering his emotional stability – and getting his old job back.