Columbo

I remember Columbo well when I was a kid but I never watched it much…until the lockdown that we all are going through. Now I know why this show was popular. A detective show that shows you “who done it” before you are into it for 10 minutes. You get enjoyment out of seeing how Columbo can find the killer. Back in the early seventies…Columbo was one of the most popular characters on television.

Peter Falk played Columbo for 35 years and in five different decades (1968-2003) counting the pilots. He looked like a walking unmade bed but was brilliant at solving cases. He would pester his suspect to death…very polite with “I’m sorry” and the main phrase as he was walking away…”There’s just one more thing.” that is followed by “There’s something that bothers me” and so on.

The killer would end up confessing or probably wanting to beg for jail simply to escape him.

The show lasted for 69 episodes. Each episode was over an hour long. It was part of The NBC Mystery Movie program that worked on a rotating basis – one per month from each of its shows. The shows were McMillian and Wife, McCloud, Hec Ramsey, and Columbo. Columbo was taken off the air in the late seventies but came back on the air in the eighties.

Falk had to wear a glass eye because his eye was taken out because of a tumor when he was 3 years old. That made Columbo’s trademark squint. He wore his raincoat and later on had a basset hound. Stories of his wife were always at hand all the while studying his suspect to see if they would slip.

Falk really made that role. If you get a chance to see it…try it. The stories are interesting and you will see some stars you might have forgotten about.

Falk died on June 23, 2011, aged 83.

 

Author: badfinger20 (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

28 thoughts on “Columbo”

  1. Never really watched it, though I remember it and think i’ts possible my Dad liked it back then. I did watch MacLeod back then and thought that one was quite neat.

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  2. Mary and I still watch it every Saturday (on Cozi TV, currently running the 2-hour episides) and Sunday (on MeTV, currently running the 90-minute episodes) nights. We’ve seen them so many times we need only hear the name of the “bad guy” (in the cases of Jack Cassidy, Robert Culp, or Patrick McGoohan, a word or two about the plot, because they were in so many) and we know the whole story. There are a couple that Mary doesn’t like (the ones with Susan Clark and Ruth Gordon), so we don’t watch those, and we spend half the time with the sound off during the episode with Martin Landau because of the bitchy housekeeper. Personally I’m a little sick of them, because we’ve seen them so many times, but we’ve gotten to where we don’t even watch, just leave it on as background noise.

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    1. I saw the one with the bitchy house cleaner… she was a piece of work. Cassidy and Culp were great at bad guys…Cassidy was more obvious but some good actors passed through that show.
      They are new to me right now…I’m on the 3rd season…just got to the Johnny Cash episode.
      I’ve alternated this show with Barney Miller. This will be the 3rd time through with Barney Miller

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  3. The first run of shows in the 70s is magnificent. All of his dozens of idiosyncrasies, wearing a raincoat in sunny LA, the no name dog, the death trap Peugeot, the love of eating chile, the inability to find his notes & mini pencil….
    Living here in LA, its fun to spot the locations where the filming was done.
    My favorite episode features guest star Ruth Gordon who turns the table on Columbo using his trademark lines on him. You could see that Peter was tickled pink working scenes with Ruth.
    Unfortunately, the series reboots from the 80s and after really suffered from terrible writing and self parody. Plus the sterile look of video tape is distracting.
    But that original run of shows is hard to beat.

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    1. I haven’t got to the 80s yet…I was afraid of that. I’m looking forward to the Ruth Gordon episode.

      I like how he just keeps coming and doesn’t stop. I’m on the Johnny Cash episode now in the 3rd season. He hardly ever loses his cool but when he does it works…like with Leonard Nimoy.

      You do see a lot of LA at that time.
      Adam 12 is another….I have seen Now and Then shots of Adam 12…I was amazed that a few things were still close.

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    1. I just saw Etude in Black…it was really good. I’m on the Johnny Cash episode now.
      This is the first time for me really watching it…I love it. I’m alternating this and Barney Miller.
      Pam it is 1975 in my house!

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  4. I enjoyed Columbo in the 70’s but preferred McMillan & Wife at the time – they had a switcharound in 1973 I think with the Wednesday Mystery Movie on NBC which had a round of new shows in the same format that didnt click except for The Snoop Sisters, they were great. Veteran actresses politely sniping in an Agatha Christie style. 🙂

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    1. It went off the air in 78 and stayed off until 88 I believe or something like that…

      No I don’t…they look really cool. I will look for some of them

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      1. Yes…they were well written!!! lol.
        I’m watching them new…which is cool because I haven’t seen most of them

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