I’m depressed as I no longer have A&E and can no longer look forward to seeing Columbo. Any Fans out there care to ease my loss with a discussion on one of the greatest detective series ever to air on Televsion. Anything is game
Was Columbo faking his clumsiness and clownish behaviour?
Who was your favorite guest murderer?
Did you mind when certain Actors would return to kill again as
someone new (Robert Culp etc)?
That car… what the hell was it, an old Peugot, or something like that? It always seemed to be on the verge of collapse, yet it never broke down on him.
Always got a kick out of never seeing Mrs. Columbo, as well. I got all excited during that one movie where (we learn at the end) it’s either his sister, or his SIL, posing as the Mrs., for some reason that escapes me now.
And of course he was faking it… Nobody’s that consistently annoying (and always to the guilty party) with last mintue questions.
[sub]What the hell is the name of that stand up comic who does Columbo so well? He did a Star Trek with Different Actors bit once that made me chuckle, and used Dudley Moore’s drunken lout character as Scotty…[/sub]
I loved his Basset Hound, Dog. That was the only way they could have made a great show greater, add a cute Basset to the cast.
The concept behind the show was neat, too. I always thought it was great that we got to see the killer kill and the rest of the show was Columbo gathering clues. What I could never figure out, though, is why everybody was caught off-guard by his investigation techniques. Most of the episodes took place in L.A., right? So why did word of Columbo and his “Just one more question?” never get around?
I loved Columbo, which is strange because I don’t usually like mysteries. Of course, Columbo wasn’t really a mystery.
I especially loved the “Mrs. Columbo”. THERE IS NO MRS. COLUMBO!! Dumbies even made a series about Mrs. Columbo staring the future captain of a starship. He never wore a wedding ring. You never saw her. Nobody else in the department ever asked how she was doing. He just used it to trip up people.
Of course his clumsiness was planned to get people off guard. When he needed to be, he didn’t act clumsy.
There were so many good guest appearances that I can’t single out one as the best.
Peter Falk was entertaining in every role he played.
It’s but a pale shadow, but am I the only one who gets a bit of a Columbo feeling while watching “Monk”? Monk is surely not faking, but it has the same effect: No one expects him to be able to see the clues and think clearly enough to solve the crime, but there he is, pointing to the bad guy at the end of every episode.
Well, it is if you watch it like I do. See, I almost never catch these flicks from the beginning. 9 times outta 10, I don’t actually see whodunnit, though it’s not like figuring that out is all that tough anyway.
Huh? Can I ask you to run that by me again, with more detail? (I’ve got no clue what you’re referring to here.)
Well, just to pick nits, you’d have to look hard to catch me wearing mine, but it doesn’t make me any less married. And the more I think about it, the more I’m convincing m’self that the episode I referred to earlier (with Mrs. Columbo played by a stand in) in fact she was Mrs. Columbo’s sister, implying that there pretty much has gotta be a real Mrs. Columbo.
Anyone able to shed some light on this? I can’t even remember which bloody movie it was now, where this happened.
I’m completely with ya on Peter Falk, himself. Murder by Death just makes me cackle out loud, with the Sam Spade/Humphrey Bogart send-up by Falk. Priceless.
[sub]“Nobody move! I gotta go to the can again, and I don’t wanna miss nothin’!”[/sub]
Within the last two weeks on A&E they just showed the episode where the murderer was trying to kill Mrs. Columbo. And at the very end, after catching the killer, and after everyone else had left, Columbo picks up the phone and calls his wife to see if her cold was better and to tell her they needed to get a picture taken of her. So yes, there was a Mrs. Columbo, she was real, and IMHO, his clumsiness was real. He used it to good effect to keep people off guard, but it was just as real as his wife.
There was one show where the car did break down on him. That was the running gag for that show, like the one where Mrs. Columbo bought him a new coat and he was uncomfortable wearing it for the entire show. So at the end he went back to his old one.
There was a short lived series in 1979 called Mrs. Columbo starring Kate Mulgrew. The regular Columbo people say she was married to some other LA cop named Columbo and prove it by pointing out that she later divorced him and took back her maiden name. And Columbo is still married to his Mrs. Columbo.
My favorite episode is where the body is hidden and Columbo tears up the foundation of a new skyscraper in order to fool the killer into bringing the body in to dump it into where the new foundation will be poured. I think the title is Blueprint For Murder.
My least favorite is No Time To Diewhere Columbo’s nephew, also a cop, is getting married and his bride is kidnapped right before the ceremony. It was a very good 87th Precinct novel by Ed McBain, but it made a poor Columbo episode.
Martin Landau guest stars as twins. I love the beginning of this episode, where Columbo is so gleefully putting together his case against one Martin Landau and, just when he thinks he’s got it nailed, the other Martin Landau walks in. Which one is guilty? The look of complete bewilderment on Columbo’s face is marvelous.
Leonard Nimoy guests as a cool-as-a-cucumber heart surgeon. What I love about this one is that he makes Columbo lose his temper; for a minute, it’s “masks off,” and we see the serious cop behind the bumbling facade.
The original series was great, IMO, but I never cared much for the later made-for-TV-movies. The murders never seemed as well-constructed, and Columbo’s solutions were rarely as clever.
I think the show is great, and still watch all the reruns. Monk is definitely using the Columbo style, but it’s not quite as good IMHO.
Did you ever notice though, that his cases always involved the rich and famous, and were never titled “The Case of the Trailer Park Killer,” or “Murder at Bowl-o-rama”?
That, and he had an infinite amount of time to dedicate to each case!
Who appeared as a killer the most times? (no internet searches!)
I think one of my favorites was Ruth Gordon playing Abigail Mitchell, a mystery writer who blames her nephew-in-law for the death of her niece, and locks him in a vault to die.
She was convinced that the nephew-in-law killed her niece, and when Columbo unmasks her, she sadly says, “You know… if only you had been the invesitgator handling my niece’s death, all of this would never had had to happen.”
Agreed, that show’s Mysteries are lame, the only thing that saves it is the quirkiness of Monk himself. They need better writing.
Shatner was in 2 that I remember
Culp was in 2
Cassidy I believe was in 3.
One as a writer, one as a Nazi Magician and one as a Publisher.
I’d say the Quirks were not a facade in that when he was by himself he still had the same problems, and phobias.
My favorite Villian, was the Russian Chess master. He was so arrogent, and so sure of himself and he gets caught by a defective battery. Classic.
The Show was a Mystery in that you had to figure out how Columbo was going to solve the case. It was never a cheat in the early episodes and that what differenciates it from Monk.
“Blueprint for Murder” if it was the skyscraper one was great. The Russian chess master was fine also
There were some episodes where he zones in on the killer right away out of many people like the one where this military man plans the murder so carefully and comes back to his barracks later feeling secure and there is mud on his boots. He tries to clean it up and Columbo walks in and the guy is in a panic. Turns out Columbo planted the mud and it didn’t help his case but Columbo knew who to concentrate on
I didn’t see the one about the murderer wanting to kill Mrs. Columbo but these shows were directed by so many people that this one didn’t know there was no Mrs. Columbo. I’m still sticking to the no Mrs. Columbo theory!
As for always rich and famous, I’ve seen episodes that didn’t involve them, like “Columbo goes to College” and others but they are mostly rich and/or famous because that is why they are killed in the first place. Thst is, for money and/or status gain.
Wasn’t that the episode where the kids use a gun mounted on a radio controlled car to kill a professor who caught them cheating? If so, the kids came from extremely wealthy families. I think Columbo worked in the Robin Leech division of homicide.
I’m just nitpicking. It would be hard to fill 2 hours with “The Case of the Missing Used Car Salesman.”
Patrick Magoohan (sp?) has the record with 4, count them, 4 appearances as a killer! Robert Kulp and Jack Cassidy tie for second with 3, but Robert Kulp wins for a non-killer 4th appearance.
Bad news for that theory. Check out The Ultimate Lieutenant Columbo Site. They have a very large listing of the many times Mrs. Columbo was talked to and/or almost seen on the show. And the people in the show are all clear that Mrs. Columbo does exist.
Columbo used to be shown on Saturday evenings when I was younger, and I have fond memories of eating supper with my Mum and Dad in front of it. And I’m afraid to say I found the lieutenant rather sexy. Anyone else feel the same, or is it just me?
Oh and apparently Columbo’s character came originally from the policeman character in Crime and Punishment. Is that right?
Mrs Columbo has to exist. The episode where Columbo is on a Boat cruise there was several times when the pursers and captain claimed to have talked to her. Why would they fake that when Columbo was only on Vacation and not on duty?