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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Overview

User Rating:
7.1/10   911 votes »
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View company contact information for Lovely But Lethal on IMDbPro.
TV Series:
Original Air Date:
23 September 1973 (Season 3, Episode 1)
Genre:
Plot:
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:
Vera Miles makes this otherwise tepid "Columbo" mystery enjoyable See more (14 total) »

Cast

 (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

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)

Myrna Bercovici (story)

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: Mystery Movie theme
Hal Mooney .... music supervisor
 
Other crew
Wayne Fitzgerald .... main title design
Jackson Gillis .... executive story consultant
 

Series Crew
These people are regular crew members. Were they in this episode?
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Richard Levinson  creator
William Link  creator

Production Companies
  • Universal TV (from Universal City, California) (as Universal® Studios)
DistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

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

Did You Know?

Trivia:
In the film Psycho (1960) in which Vera Miles co-starred, the character Norman Bates gives the famous line "Why, she wouldn't even harm a fly". In this episode, the character Viveca Scott played by Ms. Miles gives the line to the ever inquisitive Detective Columbo "I didn't kill Karl Lessing. I couldn't kill a fly."See more »
Goofs:
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 »
Quotes:
Karl Lessing:Just think how many years Dr. Frankenstein must have spent on his research.
Dr. Murchison:Yes, heh, but he only made one little monster.
See more »
Movie Connections:
References Frankenstein (1931)See more »
Soundtrack:
The Girl from IpamnemaSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
6 out of 10 people found the following review useful.
Vera Miles makes this otherwise tepid "Columbo" mystery enjoyable, 9 January 2007
Author: J. Spurlin from United States

"Imagine, a harmless cream that can actually make wrinkles disappear! It's like alchemy! It's the dream of the centuries! It's what women have longed for since ancient Egypt!"

That clunky exposition gives you a good idea of what you can expect from this episode. Viveca Scott (Vera Miles) runs Beauty Mark, the cosmetics company whose products are in every woman's home. But sales are dropping, and she's counting on the miraculous new beauty cream created by her chief chemist (Fred Draper) to boost sales and overtake her rival David Lang (Vincent Price). Too bad the chemist's assistant (Martin Sheen) steals the formula. Scott attempts to negotiate with him, but in a rage knocks him over the head with a heavy microscope, killing him. Her rival's secretary (Sian Barbara Allen, in an engagingly quirky performance) finds out and attempts to blackmail her. What's the cosmetic queen's worst news? Our rumpled but brilliant detective, Lt. Columbo (Peter Falk), is on the case.

Jeannot Szwarc directs a contrived but entertaining script by Jackson Gillis based on a story by Myrna Bercovici. Szwarc does a workmanlike job, but I didn't care for the opening scene, unaccountably made to look and sound like a cheesy horror film. (Is this because Vincent Price is in the cast?) What makes this lesser "Columbo" episode enjoyable for any fan is Vera Miles, whose Viveca Scott is beautiful, chic, self-confident, imperious and condescending. She's the perfect foil for our cigar-chomping Columbo. Their scenes together are a hoot.

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