A Beloved 2000s Detective TV Series Is Sitting High On Netflix’s Top Charts

A Beloved 2000s Detective TV Series Is Sitting High On Netflix's Top Charts

 

The record-breaking "Suits" phenomenon at Netflix wasn't just a one-time thing. Another classic USA Network series has hit it big with a second life on the streamer. This time, it's "Monk," the comedy series starring Tony Shalhoub that ran for eight seasons on the network between 2002 and 2009.

"Monk," named after the detective played by Shalhoub, was a big hit in its day, earning numerous accolades including eight Primetime Emmy Awards. Shalhoub was nominated every single year of the show's run for outstanding lead actor in a comedy series, winning thrice in 2003, 2005, and 2006. The show joined Netflix's active library in the United States in February, and it currently sits at the number eight spot on the streamer's global top 10, according to streaming data aggregator FlixPatrol. The rest of the list is comprised entirely of Netflix Originals, including "3 Body Problem," "The Gentlemen," and the live-action "Avatar: The Last Airbender" adaptation, which has shown an impressive longevity since its February 22 release.

The show's newfound streaming success comes hot on the heels of "Mr. Monk's Last Case: A Monk Movie," which premiered on Peacock in December 2023. The film reunited Shalhoub with former co-stars like Traylor Howard and Jason Gray-Stanford, earning a 95% critical score on Rotten Tomatoes and a, 80% audience score. Clearly, interest in the series is still high, though the recent success of "Monk" on Netflix may have more to do with the current state of streaming.

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First Suits, now Monk

A Beloved 2000s Detective TV Series Is Sitting High On Netflix's Top Charts

 

Much has been made of the second life that "Suits" got on Netflix in 2023. The legal drama had been off the air for years when it became a smash streaming hit, and though it ran for nine seasons at USA, it was never exactly the biggest show on television. "Suits" was well-received, but it was no critical darling. It never won an Emmy, nor was it even nominated. In so many ways, it was the platonic network drama of its era — pretty, decently written, and popular enough to earn a long life, but nothing that would shake the foundations of the entertainment industry. It was no "Sopranos," no "Mad Men," no "Breaking Bad." Eventually, "Suits" was canceled, and the world moved on.

And then, suddenly, it was the biggest show in the world, years after it had never been. "Monk" isn't having quite that same level of cultural impact, but its similar success on Netflix suggests the same ideas. As streaming platforms keep competing to produce original content and TV budgets balloon, things have gotten top-heavy. Where in the past you got 16 or 22 episodes of a show every year, you now might get eight episodes every two years. The binging model that propelled Netflix to success struggles against the company's own lofty production model. But a procedural series that's easy to watch and already has over 100 episodes from a decade ago? That's a cheap hit.

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It remains to be seen if this change in perspective will have any lasting effects, other than the upcoming "Suits" spin-off series. For now, the eight-episode streaming season remains the norm, but all things inevitably come to an end.

 

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