Columbo: Season 1, Episode 6

Short Fuse (19 Jan. 1972)

TV Episode  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 1,277 users  
Reviews: 21 user | 5 critic

Pressured to give up his birthright, a chemical company heir enacts a clever plan to get rid of his blackmailing uncle and take over the family business. But Lt. Columbo suspects the man's death was not just a tragic accident.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Roger Stanford
Valerie Bishop
David L. Buckner
Doris Buckner
Everett Logan
Steve Gravers ...
Lawrence Cook ...
Quincy [Murphy in credits]
Rosalind Miles ...
Lew Brown ...
Jason Wingreen ...
Eddie Quillan ...
Annette Molen ...
Jim Neumarker ...


Stanford Chemicals CEO David Buckner wants to sell the business, but he is overruled by several people: his wife Doris, company lawyer Everett Logan, and his nephew Roger, the lighthearted young genius whose late father founded the company. But he has a plan: he has uncovered some very embarrassing and illegal past activities on the part of Roger. He demands that his nephew change his aunt Doris's mind about the sale, or he'll tell Doris about all the nasty things her precious Roger has done. But Roger is one step ahead of him, and initiates a plan to murder his uncle with dangerous explosives. Unfortunately for him, he didn't count on Lieutenant Columbo investigating Buckner's "car accident." The Lieutenant quickly suspects Roger, and puts together a web of evidence to trap the young scientist in his own lies. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

19 January 1972 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Roger's car is a Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona. See more »


In the limousine as David Buckner is opening the cigar box, he removes the piece of tape on the left side. As he removes the piece on the right side, the piece that was on the left side reappears. See more »


Roger Stanford: [annoyed] Lieutenant, you take an inordinate length of time to come to the point.
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User Reviews

It should have been Sir Roddy McDowall!
18 May 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

It should have been Sir Roddy McDowall in my opinion. Why he never got knighted for his contributions to acting and drama, I will never know. This episode also feature Ida Lupino, another legendary actress, writer and director herself. Sir Roddy as I will call him plays a genius character who wants too much from his stepfather who played the evil Vice Presidential candidate in the original Manchurian Candidate. His plan is ingenious but there are exceptions being that Sir Roddy's character is still no match for Lieutenant COlumbo's genius. You have to laugh with him at the end of the film. Like most COlumbo episodes, you have to pay attention. We know who kills the character but how does Columbo catch him or her in some cases is just as fascinating as the episodes themselves.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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