Riley Greenleaf is a publisher and Alan Mallory, a successful writer, is his principal asset. But Alan Mallory has decided to change publishers. Riley threatens to kill Alan. Then he hires Eddie Kane, a Vietnam veteran, to murder Alan and to leave evidence that the killer is Riley himself, who has an excellent alibi. But a key will betray him. Written by
Baldinotto da Pistoia
Columbo mentions a colleague who was a bestselling author. This is probably a reference to Joseph Wambaugh, a LAPD detective sergeant who rose to fame in the 1970's for his realistic police novels. See more »
Eddie Kane mentions a "Bouncing Betty" to Riley Greenleaf, but when asked what it is, he describes an ordinary landmine. See more »
Jack Cassidy is a perennial veteran of Columbo episodes especially as the chief suspect in murdering his prize writer, a mystery writer, who would be stolen by Mariette Hartley's character. I never really liked Mariette Hartley's acting or personally and I don't know why but she has been in a few episodes of Columbo. Mickey Spillane plays the victim writer. Anyway unlike Murder by the Book which features Jack Cassidy as a writer who offs his partner, he gets somebody else to do the crime because the writer wants to go legitimate and break his contract but to Jack's character, he's the star writer and makes him a lot of money and he would go broke. Rather than do the murder himself, his character gets drunk and involved in a car accident and arrested by the police and spends the night in a drunk tank. Anyway, Columbo always gets his guy or gal so he gets him in the end. It's how that's the question.
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