IMDb > "Columbo" Lovely But Lethal (1973)
"Columbo: Lovely But Lethal (#3.1)"
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"Columbo" Lovely But Lethal (1973)

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Jackson Gillis (teleplay by)
Myrna Bercovici (story)
View company contact information for Lovely But Lethal on IMDbPro.
TV Series:
Original Air Date:
23 September 1973 (Season 3, Episode 1)
The formula for a miracle wrinkle cream leads the founder of a cosmetics company to murder. Lt. Columbo is on the case. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Lovely but not quite among the best See more (15 total) »


 (Episode Cast) (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Peter Falk ... Columbo

Vera Miles ... Viveca Scott

Martin Sheen ... Karl Lessing
Sian Barbara Allen ... Shirley Blaine

Vincent Price ... David Lang

Gino Conforti ... Ferdy

Colby Chester ... Jerry
Fred Draper ... Murcheson

Bruce Kirby ... Lab Attendant Doug

John Finnegan ... Sergeant
Richard Stahl ... Burton (as Dick Stahl)
Marc Hannibal ... Fingerprint Man
David Toma ... Policeman
Layne Mathess ... Fashion Moderator (as Layne Matthess)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Anne Ramsey ... Rough Masseuse (uncredited)

Dianne Travis ... Blonde Instructor (uncredited)

Episode Crew
Directed by
Jeannot Szwarc 
Writing credits
Jackson Gillis (teleplay by)

Myrna Bercovici (story by)

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

Produced by
Douglas Benton .... producer
Robert F. O'Neill .... associate producer
Richard Levinson .... producer (uncredited)
William Link .... producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Dick DeBenedictis  (as Dick De Benedictis)
Cinematography by
Harry L. Wolf (director of photography) (as Harry Wolf)
Film Editing by
Larry Lester 
Art Direction by
Loyd S. Papez 
Set Decoration by
George Gaines (set decorations)
Production Management
Kenny Williams .... unit manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Jack Doran .... assistant director
Sound Department
Terry Kellum .... sound
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Grady Hunt .... costumes
Editorial Department
Richard Belding .... editorial supervisor
Steve Johnson .... colorist (uncredited)
Music Department
Henry Mancini .... composer: Sunday Mystery Movie theme
Hal Mooney .... music supervisor
Other crew
Wayne Fitzgerald .... main title design
Jackson Gillis .... executive story consultant

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
USA:73 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:PG (video rating) | Finland:K-18 (2005) (DVD) (self applied) | UK:PG (video rating) (2005)

Did You Know?

The uniquely shaped lab at Beauty Mark, with observation windows above, was also used as the operating room in Season 2 "A Stitch in Crime".See more »
Plot holes: The case resolution centers around the fact that the murderer has a rash from poison ivy and that since there is no poison ivy in southern California she could have only gotten it from the victim. While it is true that poison ivy is not found there (the climate is too dry), poison oak is very common, and could have easily have been the source of the rash. This discrepancy was not addressed and he would not have had a probable cause to arrest her.See more »
Viveca Scott:You slimy little snake!
Karl Lessing:Oh, no, Vivi, I'm your hairy little teddy bear. Remember me?
See more »
Movie Connections:
References Frankenstein (1931)See more »
The Girl from IpamnemaSee more »


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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful.
Lovely but not quite among the best, 29 March 2012
Author: TheLittleSongbird from United Kingdom

As a big fan of Columbo, I enjoyed Lovely But Lethal. I think there are better entries in the series, but there are also entries that I deem worse. As always with Columbo, it is well made, slick in the editing and striking in the photography. The music is atmospheric and fitting with the period, Lovely But Lethal is strongly directed, the script has some good lines if a tad basic(there's still the murder but I can think of cleverer and more memorable ones such as with How To Dial a Murder and Swan Song) with the odd contrived moment and the story is well told and intriguing especially with the whole cosmetics industry milieu. The acting is great. Peter Falk is brilliant as always as the iconic Columbo, and while I consider Susan Clark's, Janet Leigh's and Ruth Gordon's female characters a little more interesting, Vera Miles' is credible enough and she gives her all. A young Martin Sheen also makes an impression, as does Vincent Price, part of you does wish there was more of him, but he still delivers with his smarminess and eloquence. Overall, not Columbo's best, but lovely and very watchable. 8/10 Bethany Cox

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