Columbo: Complete Series [DVD]
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But what makes Columbo still feel so relevant today is the notion of the crusading little guy. The lieutenant pursued killers regardless of class or status – even going after his own commissioner in one story – and never falters in his belief that, no matter how mighty the murderer, their amassed power won’t stand up to his relentless prodding. As he casually tells a therapist who is trying to get away with strangling his wife: “You take our friend here, the murderer. He’s very smart, but he’s an amateur. I mean, he’s got just one time to learn. Just one. And with us cops, well – it’s a business. We do this a hundred times a year. I’ll tell ya, doc, that’s a lot of practice.” Ray Milland appeared as a murderer in "The Greenhouse Jungle" (1972) and the husband of the victim in "Death Lends a Hand" (1971).
Tyne Daly starred in "A Bird in the Hand" as co-murderer Dolores McCain (1992), and "Undercover" as the supporting character Dorothea McNally (1994). The following is an episode list for the crime fiction television series Columbo. After two pilot episodes, the show originally aired on NBC from 1971 to 1978 as one of the rotating programs of The NBC Mystery Movie. Columbo then aired less frequently on ABC beginning in 1989. The last installment was broadcast in 2003. Robert Culp starred in three episodes as the murderer: "Death Lends a Hand" (1971, filmed at the Marion Davies estate), "The Most Crucial Game" (1972), and "Double Exposure" (1973). He also appeared in one episode as the father of the murderer: "Columbo Goes to College" (1990).Fred Draper appeared as the murderer in "Last Salute to the Commodore" (1976) and appeared in supporting roles in "Lady in Waiting" (1971), "Lovely but Lethal" (1973), "Negative Reaction" (1974), "A Deadly State of Mind" (1975), and "Fade in to Murder" (1976). From its pilot in 1968 to its curtain call in 2003, Columbo ran for 35 years and comprised 69 episodes.
Though not a repeat murderer, Robert Vaughn starred in two episodes: once as the murderer in "Troubled Waters" (1975), and once as the victim in "Last Salute to the Commodore" (1976). The play was adapted to a made-for-TV movie in 1968, with Falk debuting in the role. In this made-for-TV movie, Columbo—rather than making the rumpled presentation that later became the character's trademark—is less shabbily dressed, wearing suits, shorter hair, and heavier stage makeup. He carries a raincoat, which would become a staple. He wears the raincoat in most of the scenes. He also appears somewhat more aggressive when confronting suspects.
There’s a clip somewhere of Falk on Carson, excited about the upcoming 1974 “Exercise in Fatality” episode and “new writer” Peter Fischer. I’ve seen it before, can’t find it today.