I mentioned before that Sharona was my favorite part of the show. Bitty really adds something to the show and her character had such a major role. Don't know if I'll be able to watch it without her, as the gameshow episode was lacking something huge with her not being in it.
As somebody mentioned earlier in this thread it seemed like they were trying a few new possibilities this season. Those being Varla and Kevin as Monk's sidekick. Varla was hilarious, and provided one of my very favorite episodes, but I can't imagine the dynamic she and Monk shared lasting for more than two or three episodes. As for Kevin... They tried making him even zanier than Monk himself, and that would never work in the long run.
I at least hope that they give Sharona a decent send off, maybe having her move to New Jersey (to give her an option to come back). I just hope they don't kill off the character, give the part to a different actress, or just have her disappear with no explanation.