||This article may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia's quality standards. (October 2011)|
|Jason Gray-Stanford as Randy Disher|
|First appearance||"Mr. Monk and the Candidate"|
|Last appearance||"Mr. Monk and the End - Part II"|
|Created by||David Hoberman|
|Portrayed by||Jason Gray-Stanford
|Occupation||Philadelphia Police Department, Police Sergeant (pre-1999)
San Francisco Police Department, Police Lieutenant (1999-2009)
Summit, New Jersey Chief of Police (2009)
(uncle; deceased as of "Mr. Monk Visits a Farm")
Disher is Captain Leland Stottlemeyer's second-in-command and employed at the San Francisco Police Department. He is usually portrayed as loyal and tenacious, but with a comical lack of insight and given to far-fetched theories, which were a running gag of the series. Aside from his truly ridiculous theories, which often involve defying the very laws of physics (like for instance astral projection), he is competent within his own range of abilities.
Another running gag in the series is the rather awkwardly ceremonial way in which he delivers news to Stottlemeyer, asking him to guess what it is or sit down for it (or to in one case put down his coffee cup); this method mostly annoys others who would like him to get to the point. His feelings towards Monk change from the pilot episode of the series. In the pilot, he was not only skeptical of Monk, but he seemed to find Monk a joke. Disher calls Monk "the defective detective" to his captain upon meeting Monk. What appears as his jealousy of Monk in the beginning becomes admiration as their relationship develops.
In the book, Mr. Monk and the Blue Flu, Captain Stottlemeyer, in a covert meeting with Monk and Natalie, reveals that Randy has a high clearance and conviction rate. While teaching Monk how to be a Captain and delegate, he tells them how Randy is a people person, who gets people to say things they wouldn't have said otherwise. They aren't high profile or unusual like the cases Monk gets, but it is how Stottlemeyer delegates cases. The implication is that Stottlemeyer is a good captain for matching staff to cases, and Disher, while incapable of solving a weird case, is good at others, which is his gift.
One of Randy's other gifts is that he is an excellent female impersonator. In "Mr. Monk and the Missing Granny", he dresses up as a homeless woman by wearing a big wig and some "dirt", although Sharona sees through his disguise, and the disguise even fools several cops. And in "Mr. Monk and the Three Julies", Randy is disguised as Matthew Teeger's deceased mother in a trap to lure Matthew out of hiding, which succeeds thanks to Randy's ability to speak falsetto.
In "Mr. Monk Goes to the Dentist", much of the case was solved by Disher. In "Mr. Monk Visits a Farm", Monk feeds Randy the solution of how Jimmy Belmont killed Randy's uncle in his sleep. In "Mr. Monk and the Man Who Shot Santa", it is suggested that Disher thought that Santa Claus did indeed exist. Although it is not known which day Randy's birthday falls on, it is mentioned in the episode "Mr. Monk and the Voodoo Curse" that he is a Pisces.
During the series, Disher loses his entire life savings during a trip to Las Vegas in "Mr. Monk Goes to Vegas", which prompted Monk and Stottlemeyer to come to his rescue, using Monk's abilities to win the money back. He acts as Natalie Teeger's bodyguard in "Mr. Monk and the Election. He helps Monk find clues for the Trudy Monk case by traveling to New York with him in "Mr. Monk Takes Manhattan". Randy is shown to argue regularly with but not-so-secretly be attracted to Monk's first assistant, Sharona Fleming, and he maintains a friendly, professional behavior towards Natalie.
Throughout the series, Randy seems to always harbor crushes on Sharona and Natalie. As well, he wrote a personal ad fitting Sharona in "Mr. Monk and the Paperboy", which he unsuccessfully tries to hide from her. In the season 6 episode "Mr. Monk and the Bad Girlfriend", when Natalie tells Randy that she and Monk have news, he guesses that she wants to say she is in love with him, leaving Natalie in a dumbstruck state while Monk delivers their theory that Linda Fusco killed her former partner. Natalie is shown to be rather annoyed by Randy's theory that she is in love with him (bringing it up again when Monk asks Randy if he has any crazy theories about how to break Linda's alibi).
His lack of luck getting dates is so notorious that when he actually does land a girlfriend, in the episode "Mr. Monk and the Employee of the Month", no one believes him. Throughout that episode, he shows the cast a generic picture of a woman. Sharona confirms that it was included with his wallet. They dismiss Randy's claims that his girlfriend is a wallet model named Crystal Smith (when Randy mentions that her first name is Crystal to Sharona, she asks if Crystal's last name is "Glassware", referring to the box of Crystal Glassware in the loading dock). It is revealed to the viewers but not to the characters that Randy was telling the truth.
In later seasons, Randy's success with women significantly increases. In "Mr. Monk Falls in Love", he's dating an attractive girl as shown by the opening scene, when he and his date climb into the back of a cab, only to find that their driver is dead, having been stabbed with a hat pin earlier. In "Mr. Monk's 100th Case", Randy is dating Jillian, the actress who plays the reenactment of Kate Kindel's murder in James Novak's documentary. She is described as being used for reenactments on a number of crime shows (as Randy notes that she was bludgeoned to death on Dateline).
Disher was born in San Diego. He attended Temple University and lived in Philadelphia briefly, where he was a sergeant in that city's police. This is mentioned in the season 4 episode "Mr. Monk Goes to a Wedding". In Philadelphia, one of Randy's cases was that of Darlene Coolidge, a black widow who murders her husbands. In "Mr. Monk Goes to a Wedding", someone attempts to run Randy down in the parking lot. Monk reveals that the new wife of Natalie's brother, Jonathan Davenport, Theresa Scott, is really Coolidge. As Randy was the chief investigator into the death of her husband, he would have recognized her, so Theresa tried to kill him by running him over in a car. Randy's injuries land him in a wheelchair but he manages to identify Coolidge/Scott.
In the season 5 episode "Mr. Monk and the Leper", Monk and Natalie find a picture of Randy on the wall of Dr. Aaron Polanski's office. Polanski mentions that Randy as a teenager had incredibly bad acne, although when Natalie asks Randy about this later, Randy says that he was undercover and posing as a teenager with acne problems. He attempts to steal that picture later, ending up ripping out a small portion of the wall and knocking off a large number of other photos in the process. He joined the police force three years before the start of the series. In the season 2 episode "Mr. Monk Gets Married", Randy has Monk and Sharona pretend to be married in order to rescue his mother Maria from Dalton Padron, a killer with a very ulterior motive. While at the marriage counseling institute, Maria mentions Randy several times to Monk and Sharona, but they pretend not to know Randy.
Randy later claimed to have an uncle Harvey. In the season 5 episode "Mr. Monk Visits a Farm", Randy inherits his supposed uncle's farm after Harvey Disher supposedly commits suicide. Soon after he arrives, Randy claims to get the chilling suspicion that nearby farmer Jimmy Belmont (Ricardo Chavira) murdered his supposed uncle, and he brings Monk in to prove that there has been foul play. However, it is unknown if Harvey was really his uncle, due to the fact that in the season three episode "Mr. Monk Gets Cabin Fever," he clearly states that he has no uncles in reply to a fortune cookie stating he'd get money from an uncle. The fortune cookie came true when he received a tax return from "Uncle Sam." Randy never explained the circumstances of how he could have gained an uncle that he claims to have known since childhood.
The Randy Disher Project
In high school, he was part of a rock band, The Randy Disher Project, which he resurrects with his bandmates in "Mr. Monk Goes to the Dentist" after he quits because no one believes his claim that Dr. Oliver Bloom and Terri killed a man in the dentist's office during his operation. The band creates a music video entitled "I Don't Need a Badge", which tries to justify Randy's leaving the police force. The band breaks up when Randy realizes what the man his dentist killed was arguing with him about, and returns to the SFPD shortly afterwards.
The song was reprised in the season 5 episode "Mr. Monk and the Really, Really Dead Guy". Disher is placed as a decoy to try to attract the attention of the perpetrator, playing the erstwhile rock song off-key while constantly forgetting most of the lyrics, with the instruments of a one-man band. However, when another man believed to be the perp comes up with an instrument, he is tackled by undercover agents, and turns out to be a harmless man wanting to accompany Randy.
In the novel Mr. Monk is Miserable, Monk, Natalie and Stottlemeyer are shocked to find that "I Don't Need a Badge" has become a cult phenomenon in Paris. It is revealed that Paris police Inspector Guy Gadois knows the lyrics and music of the song by heart (though Natalie notes that he has done slight modifications to the lyrics, e.g. replacing "Captain" with "Inspector", and "mustache" with "goatee").
Further, in "Mr. Monk and the Rapper", Randy boards the stage in a rap club, shouting: "If you enjoyed that, check out therandydisherproject.com!". However, his rapping abilities are questionable and he gets offended when Murderuss (Snoop Dogg) calls him the "whitest white guy" after Randy attempts to rap out part of Murderuss's song Car Bomb (specifically, the part of "Ch, ch, ch, I put the bomb in your limo, that's what the surprise is / Under your seat like Oprah giving prizes"). The song is also featured in the season 8 episode "Mr. Monk Goes Camping" as the ringtone on Randy's phone.
In "Mr. Monk's 100th Case," Randy pulls out the Randy Disher Project CD while riding with Stottlemeyer and James Novak's camera crew to a SWAT team raid on Douglas Thurman's photo studio. He describes the music style as "a sort of a jazz, fusion, punk kind of a rap, kind of a folk" music.
- Mr. Monk and the Dirty Cop
- "Mr. Monk Goes to the Office"
- "Mr. Monk and the Genius"
- "Mr. Monk and His Biggest Fan"