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Columbo (NBC 1971-1996, Peter Falk)



Columbo was a pretty intelligent detective drama initially broadcast as part of the NBC Mystery Movie series about disheveled, raincoat wearing, go it alone Lt Columbo. Columbo had an unusual premise for a tec show, we (the viewers) saw who committed the murder right from the beginning with Lt Columbo somehow always knowing who the guilty partty was but somehow having to use his skills and persistence to work out how the deed was done.

Columbo was married to Kate but she was never seen (although there was a cheeky spin off called Kate Loves A Mystery using this character). Columbo drove a run down Peugeot and had a basset hound called Dog.

Bing Crosby and Lee J. Cobb were both offered the chance to play the role but the character was actually first seen on screen played by Arthur Freed in a 1961 edition of Sunday Mystery Hour. Directors on the early editions included both Steven Spielberg and Jonathan Demme. Apparently the inspiration for the character was Petrovich from Feodor Dostoyevsky’s mammoth novel Crime and Punishment

production details
USA / NBC – Universal – ABC ‘Mystery Movie’ / x90/120 minute episodes / Broadcast 1971-1977 and 1989-1990 and 1996


Creators: Richard Levinson, William Link / Executive Producers: Richard Levinson, William Link, Roland Kibbee, Dean Hargrove, Richard Alan Simmons

PETER FALK as Lt Columbo

Alastair James is the editor in chief for Memorable TV. He has been involved in media since his university days. Alastair is passionate about television, and some of his favourite shows include Line of Duty, Luther and Traitors. He is always on the lookout for hot new shows, and is always keen to share his knowledge with others.

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