IMDb > "Columbo" Short Fuse (1972)

"Columbo" Short Fuse (1972)

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Jackson Gillis (teleplay by)
Lester Pine (story) ...
View company contact information for Short Fuse on IMDbPro.
TV Series:
Original Air Date:
19 January 1972 (Season 1, Episode 6)
A chemical plant's director gets threats, then one of his employees plants a bomb in his car. When the car turns out to be missing, Columbo is called to find out what happened. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
Let's Blow Up Uncle See more (19 total) »


 (Episode Cast) (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Peter Falk ... Columbo

Roddy McDowall ... Roger Stanford

Anne Francis ... Valerie Bishop

James Gregory ... David L. Buckner

Ida Lupino ... Doris Buckner

William Windom ... Everett Logan
Steve Gravers ... Sergeant
Lawrence Cook ... Quincy [Murphy in credits]
Rosalind Miles ... Nancy
Lew Brown ... Farrell
Jason Wingreen ... Policeman
Eddie Quillan ... Ferguson

Stuart Nisbet ... Pinstripe
Annette Molen ... Girl
Jim Neumarker ... Plainclothesman
George Sawaya ... Man
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mike Lally ... Tram Operator (uncredited)

Episode Crew
Directed by
Edward M. Abroms 
Writing credits
Jackson Gillis (teleplay by)

Lester Pine (story by) &
Tina Pine (story by) and
Jackson Gillis (story by)

Richard Levinson (created by) &
William Link (created by)

Produced by
Richard Levinson .... producer
William Link .... producer
Robert F. O'Neill .... associate producer
Everett Chambers .... producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Gil Melle  (as Gil Mellé)
Cinematography by
Harry L. Wolf (director of photography) (as Harry Wolf)
Film Editing by
John Kaufman  (as John Kaufman Jr.)
Art Direction by
Archie J. Bacon  (as Arch Bacon)
Set Decoration by
Charles S. Thompson (set decorations)
Production Management
Henry Kline .... unit manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Kevin Donnelly .... assistant director
Sound Department
Melvin M. Metcalfe Sr. .... sound
Visual Effects by
Albert Whitlock .... special photographic effects
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Burton Miller .... costumes
Editorial Department
Richard Belding .... editorial supervisor
Music Department
Henry Mancini .... composer: Mystery Movie theme
Other crew
Steven Bochco .... story editor
Wayne Fitzgerald .... main title design
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
75 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:PG (video rating) | Finland:K-7 (2004) | UK:U (video rating) (2004)

Did You Know?

Roddy McDowell is the only actor to be arrested by both Columbo and Batman (Bookworm).See more »
Continuity: In the tramcar high above the valley, the cable car guide is lecturing Columbo on the safety of the tramway. When viewed arriving at the top platform, Columbo is clearly visible but the guide is nowhere to be seen in the glass-windowed car, and presumably there was no way to get off before the top.See more »
Lt. Columbo:You don't think that all of these people wanted to kill Mr. Buckner, do you?
Roger Stanford:I did; but, a large corporation is like a jungle, Lieutenant, to coin a phrase.
See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Let's Blow Up Uncle, 2 September 2012
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York

Columbo's adversary here is Roddy McDowall the heir to a chemical company fortune who's a brilliant chemist in his own right. But he's given little to do and therefore indulges in silly behavior. As he is a chemist he's got the knowledge and skill to plant a bomb and rig it so that he's got a perfect alibi, miles away from the scene. And he's even got Anne Francis as an alibi.

Francis is James Gregory's secretary and he's an uncle by marriage to McDowall whose blood aunt is Ida Lupino. He's wanting to sell the company which McDowall thinks should be his. Gregory is the target and McDowall with his knowledge of chemistry and explosives rigs a bomb in a box of cigars which goes off while Gregory and chauffeur Lawrence Cook are in the car miles away.

McDowall is such an arrogant twit you practically stand and cheer when Peter Falk nails him. And he doesn't do it with evidence either. In fact in a somewhat slow moving episode the finale with the confession makes up for it. How Falk exposes McDowall is really something.

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