A top CIA operative commits murder the way only a brilliant spy can, never guessing he'll have to contend with a man like Lt. Columbo.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Otis Young ...
Lawrence Melville
Geronimo / "A.J. Henderson"
Phil Corrigan
Salvatore Defonte
William Mims ...
Gallery Attendant
Coroner Anderson
Cliff Carnell ...
Photo Shop Man
Edward Bach ...
Angela May ...


The deceptively absent-minded police lieutenant, Columbo, investigates a complex murder case, pitting his wits against a wily secret agent working for a covert government organisation. Written by <mhockley@cableinet.co.uk>

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Plot Keywords:

agent | cia | spy | murder | mansion | See All (92) »


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Release Date:

2 November 1975 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Director and co-star Patrick Mcgoohan's first turn at directing an episode of Columbo. He also directed episode 6 of the same season and stared in another episode, 1974's "By Dawn's Early Light", directed by Harvey Hart. This epidode co-stars Bruce Kirby; "By Dawn's Early Light" co-stars Kirby's son Bruno. See more »


Columbo and Brenner are conversing across the garden table and Brenner pours some juice from pitcher into glass filling glass about 1/3 full before he takes a sip. When the camera cuts to face Brenner the glass is shown almost full before the camera cuts again to show Columbo and glass is now less full again. Last camera cut again shows glass less full, but more full than after only sip taken by Brenner. Clearly editing shows different filming of sane scene. See more »


Nelson Brenner: Lieutenant, I think that I should warn you that I am not an unworldly man. I have powerful and important friends, even in the police department. I respectfully request... that you do not... harass me.
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References The Prisoner (1967) See more »


Un bel di vedremo
from Madama Butterfly
Composed by Giacomo Puccini
Heard over the End Credits
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User Reviews

Great episode
13 January 2009 | by (France) – See all my reviews

This is one of my favorite of the series : a sharp and refined villain (my favorite), a convincing plot which slowly unfolds, along with numerous sudden developments, leaving Columbo with very little leverage. Yet the great detective clings onto the "tiny loose ends" and it pays off.

Comparing this episode with the others I've seen, I really appreciated the efficiency with which the episode was conducted and played out. Dialogues are short and efficient, there are hardly any cumbersome Columbo gags (which tend to kill the rhythm and tension for me), many scenes take place outdoors in nice places or in the beautiful mansion of the villain, and the evidence is very subtle and remarkably exploited.

One tiny criticism : I do regret that the murderer gave up so easily at the end, on a detail for which (I guess) he could have used the "I know important people you don't know who told me" excuse, which he had used previously. Other than that, one of the best episodes I've seen yet!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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