Columbo: Season 5, Episode 4

A Matter of Honor (1 Feb. 1976)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 737 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 3 critic

When a famous bullfighter's trusted bookkeeper turns up dead in a bullring, Lt. Columbo suspects murder--with a bull as the murder weapon.



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Title: A Matter of Honor (01 Feb 1976)

A Matter of Honor (01 Feb 1976) on IMDb 6.8/10

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Episode complete credited cast:
Commandante Sanchez (as Pedro Armendariz Jr.)
Curro Rangel
Jorge Rivero ...
Miguel (as Emilio Fernandez)
Enrique Lucero ...
Jaime Delgado
Chambermaid (as Evita Munoz Chachita)
Robert Carricart ...
Hector Rangel
Nina Montoya


Famed matador Luis Montoya is a national hero in Mexico. His ego cannot countenance any blemish on his reputation; so, when one of his best friends witnesses an event that could shatter that reputation and tries to leave Montoya's sphere of influence, the bullfighter acts quickly and decisively with a clever murder. Unfortunately for him, Lieutenant Columbo finds himself stuck in Mexico, and local police ask him to assist in the investigation. Columbo quickly finds that he must take the bull by the horns if he wants to take down a legend like Montoya. Written by Leaper

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Release Date:

1 February 1976 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the beginning of the episode, Ricardo Montalban who plays Louis Montoya is watching what is supposed to be an old clip of himself as a young matador. The clip he is watching is actually from the movie Santa (1943) in which Montalban plays a bullfighter. See more »


After the accident, when Lt. Columbo hands the Mexican policeman his ID wallet (where you can see Columbo's first name is Frank), the badge says "Lieutenant", but the badge on the ID card says "Sergeant". See more »


Miguel: You know, my name is Miguel Hernandez, very well known to everybody, even to the bulls.
See more »


Features The Hour of Truth (1945) See more »

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User Reviews

Solid Columbo story set in Mexico
8 July 2005 | by (Port Talbot, South Wales,UK) – See all my reviews

A well-paced, well-thought-out adventure for Columbo whose penchant for spotting seemingly trivial and unrelated clues at an "accident" scene is highlighted in enjoyable fashion here.

The fact that Columbo is cajoled into helping the Mexican police with their investigations whilst he is on holiday provides an alternative platform for Columbo to exploit his careful, crafty and meticulous style of detective work, which increasingly irritates the renowned (murdering) bull-fighter in this story who is considered to be totally above reproach; this structure works particularly well.

Another asset to this adventure is that the clues are inserted into the script at well-chosen moments, and coupled with the fact that Columbo struggles to discover a motive to underpin the murder, it all leads to a fascinating conclusion.

The main drawback, on reflection, appears to be the rather stiff performance of Ricardo Montalban in the murderer's role; the fractious on-screen chemistry between Columbo and adversary is plentifully evident in many of the best Columbo episodes, but it never really seems to consistently ignite here.

Nevertheless, a good standard outing for the scruffy detective, which is certainly well worth watching, although it would not quite reach the vintage description.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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