Guest Author - Lizzie Flynn
Stanley Kamel played the long-suffering, deeply-caring Dr. Charlie Kroger on the hit television series “Monk”. He was a fan favorite and what some called “Monk’s rock” on the show. Dr. Kroger was indispensable to Monk, who would almost cling to him in times of crisis. Mr. Kamel died suddenly of a heart attack on Tuesday April 8, 2008.
Kamel’s acting career began off Broadway, but he soon found himself playing Eric Peters (#2) on the soap “Days of Our Lives” in 1965. After that role, Kamel spent the majority of his career as a character actor in many different television shows and movies. His roles varied from the sinister to the mundane. He was incredibly versatile. It wasn’t until he landed the role of Dr. Kroger in 2002 that he finally became generally recognized.
After his initial appearance Kamel appeared as Dr. Kroger in a recurrent role in the hit television show “Monk”. He was usually featured in his office having a session with Monk. He is always very patient with Adrian, very observant, and very understanding. When Monk finds himself in a situation that could cause some kind of emotional setback, Dr. Kroger is the first one called- and he is generally the only one that can get through to Adrian. Adrian’s dependence on Dr. Kroger is highlighted in the episode “Mr. Monk Gets a New Shrink” when Dr. Kroger announces he’s retiring. In that episode, Kroger is hounded by Monk and his rival, Harold Krenshaw, as they attempt to convince him to come back to work. Kroger finally agrees to go back to work after it’s discovered that his cleaning lady wasn’t murdered by one of his patients.
USA Network hasn’t determined how they will address Mr. Kamel’s death in future episodes of “Monk”. However, the fans in the official “Monk” forums have been discussing possibilities since Kamel’s death was announced. The most popular possibility seems to be that Dr. Kroger die suddenly and possibly for the producers to tie that death in with the Trudy mystery. This could make the mystery even more involved and create a situation that would set Adrian Monk back some years. Of course, there are a number of fans that simply want Mr. Kamel’s death recognized on the show, but not by having Dr. Kroger meet his end. It’s a complex situation and so far USA Network hasn’t let on how they’re going to address the loss of this after his initial appearance vital member of the cast.
The first half of season 7 premieres July 18, 2008 and it’s unclear if Mr. Kamel will appear in those initial episodes. The “Monk” season is split in half, so there is a possibility that Stanley Kamel’s death will be taken on in the latter half. The second part of season 7 will begin airing in January 2009.
Stanley was 65 when he died and is survived by two brothers- Stephen and Robert Kamel.