An infamous 'psychic' abandons his public persona, outing himself as a fake, to focus on his work as a consultant for the California Bureau of Investigation in order to find "Red John," the madman who killed his wife and daughter.
The show follows a crime, usually adapted from current headlines, from two separate vantage points. The first half of the show concentrates on the investigation of the crime by the police, the second half follows the prosecution of the crime in court.
S. Epatha Merkerson,
Jesse L. Martin
Hugh Caldwell kills his wife Janice and in despair asks for the help of his friend and neighbor Mark Halperin. And Mark helps a friend in deed, of course. So the murder appears to be the job of a thief, but Lt. Columbo has some doubts. There is not a single finger-print of the deceased in her house and he begins to suspect Halperin. Unfortunately for Lt. Columbo Halperin is the chief of the police. Written by
Baldinotto da Pistoia
Richard Kiley and Rosemary Murphy had not met before shooting their first scene, where Kiley's character Mark Halperin dives into a swimming pool to pull out his drowned wife, played by Murphy, and attempt to give her mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Upon finishing the scene, Kiley held out his hand to Murphy and said, "How do you do? I'm Richard Kiley." See more »
When Commissioner Halperin peruses Artie Jessup's police file, Jessup's home address is listed in its entirety as "874 South Central Ave. L.A." Halperin goes to that address - an apartment building - intending to plant evidence to frame Jessup. Halperin walks through the front door, heads up the stairs and goes to unit 13 - even though the report didn't list Jessup's room number. (Halperin doesn't even bother to check the mailboxes.) See more »
[to his wife]
Darling, if you're embarrassed by all your millions, why don't you just sign them over to me?
See more »
"Jesus, Joy of Man's Desiring"
Composed by Johann Sebasitan Bach
Played at funeral See more »
Peter Falk really put himself on the line to get his man in this Columbo episode. One of two perpetrators is one of the civilian police commissioners of the LAPD so he'd better get this one right.
There are two murders in this episode, one a crime of passion, the other a crime of opportunity. Michael McGuire kills his wife right at the beginning of the episode. He runs to the house of his neighbor Commissioner Richard Kiley, maybe Kiley will get him a lawyer, maybe a fix will be put in for leniency.
But Kiley has another scheme in mind. In their Bel Air neighborhood there have been a series burglaries and it could easily be made to look like this was the work of the burglar. And maybe another murder could fit the pattern as well, that of Kiley's wife Rosemary Murphy who apparently he's been contemplating murder for some time about.
So Murphy is done away with and the police are looking to pin this on a burglar. That is every cop except Columbo who has his own ideas.
Kudos have to go to Val Avery who plays a professional burglar who Columbo gets for some professional advice. The two make quite a team in taking down Kiley and McGuire.
Avery in his own way is a mirror image of Columbo, a working guy who happens to be on the other side of the law. One of the best performances from that under-appreciated character actor.
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