“Obsessive. Compulsive. Detective.”
That’s the tag line on the cover of the Monk season 4 DVD set sitting on my shelf. If you don’t follow Monk, it may be hard for you to understand why the show is so addicting. It’s about a former police officer that was discharged for having a mental breakdown after his wife’s untimely murder. The show follows Adrian Monk (played by actor Tony Shaloub) as he solves crime as a private consultant with obsessive compulsive disorder. His need for everything to be perfect is usually the very thing that helps him find what the police miss and ultimately solve the crime.
“You’ll thank me later” is a classic Monk line. He says it right as he is wasting your time straighting you pencils or clipping your roses so they are all even in the vase. He’s portrayed as a brilliant freak. A man with a problem…well, several problems. They paint a picture of a broken man in need of fixing.
The show is supposed to be humorous, the crimes committed in each episodes sway back and forth from cheesy and impossible to well thought out and prime time drama worthy. The dark foundation of the show (Monk’s wife’s murder) is dealt with in a light-hearted way that brings the viewer into an understanding of exactly why Monk acts and thinks the way he does.
It makes you wonder if he is the only one thinking correctly.
Which brings me to my point.
In the show, everyone is trying to help Monk get over his problems and deal with the tragedy he has endured, from the police captain to his nurse/assistant as well as his psychiatrist.
One thing randomly hit me driving down the road the other day. The police captain has problems of his, his assistant is constantly talking about a lack of funds and a marital/relationship problems and there are times when problems are expressed from within the psychiatrist’s own home.
Monk’s not the only person with the problem. I found that in a show, the character, fictional as he may be, can teach us a lot about life ourselves.
We are all broken. We are all dealing with stuff. We all have different motivations for what we do. Some people drown themselves in work so they don’t have to focus on everything else. They create drama so they don’t have time to look in the mirror because they know they won’t like what they see. We spend every spare moment with friends, where’s it busy and loud and fast because when it gets slow and quiet, we have to look inside ourselves and we may not like what we see.
In Monk, Adrian Monk is the one that has problems he is trying to get help for…everyone else is waiting for the answer to find them.
Monk, although afraid of everything, could very well be the bravest person in the show. Precisely because he is looking for help.
Back to reality, it’s just a show.
But it makes me think…do I try and drown myself in things to keep me occupied from look at…myself. Do I turn up the music so I can’t hear my own thoughts, or fill my calendar with busy fun things to do so I don’t have time to be by myself because I may or may not like what I feel when I am…alone.
We are created to need people and to be in relationships with God and with other people. But if you can’t find peace when you sit and look at yourself and you fill your time with “distractions” it might not be a bad idea to take a page out of ‘ol Adrian Monk’s book.
Face the fear.
Look in the mirror. The person looking back might not be as startling as you anticipate.