An egotistical but successful star of a TV detective show murders his blackmailing producer and makes it look like a robbery.


(teleplay by), (teleplay by) (as Peter Feibleman) | 3 more credits »

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Episode complete credited cast:
Alan Manson ...
Sid Daley
Clare Daley
Danny Dayton ...
Tony (as Timothy Agoglia Carey)
Sgt. Johnson
Assistant Director (as J.P. Finnegan)
Jimmy Joyce ...
Camera Operator
Frank Emmett Baxter ...
Walter Gray
Fred Draper ...
Joseph (first scene, flubbed line)


Ward Fowler is an actor of a soap opera and his character is Detective Lucerne. His producer is Claire Daley, once his lover and now his blackmailer. Fowler decides to kill Claire and to do in such a way as to accuse her husband. Lt. Columbo begins to investigate and he is helped by Detective Lucerne who at a certain moment suspects the actor Fowler... Written by Baldinotto da Pistoia

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Release Date:

10 October 1976 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:


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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the opening scene showing the filming of a fictional TV show, an actor playing a butler flubs a line and William Shatner's character asks the director to fire the actor. The butler actor is played by Fred Draper who had a vital supporting role in the previous episode, Last Salute to the Commodore. See more »


The crime scene. When Columbo arrives, he's about to light his cigar with a lit match while approaching Tony the deli man. When the scene cuts to camera #2, the lit match is gone, Columbo holds his lit cigar near his mouth with his left hand while keeping his right hand (that previously held the lit match) tucked into his left elbow. When the scene cuts to camera #3, Columbo's cigar is held in his mouth while he holds both hands (with fingertips touching) just above his belt line. When the scene cuts to camera #4, Columbia's continuity is fine but the background officer in the dark blue blazer, who stood taking notes behind Tony all this time, completely disappears (or has become the plainclothesman in the gray jacket standing ten feet away). See more »


Ward Fowler: Lieutenant, you would do me an enormous favor if you stopped calling me "sir."
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References Jaws (1975) See more »


This Old Man
Traditional English children's counting folk song.
[Sung without words by Columbo (Peter Falk) while walking towards Fowler's dressing room.]
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User Reviews

Great Episode
28 December 2000 | by (U.S.) – See all my reviews

I found this to be one of the funniest episodes I've ever seen, even though most of them are funny, anyway. Falk and Shatner work great together. One of the funniest things is when Shatner's character is video taping Columbo and he has no idea how to act on camera. One of the aspects of Columbo that fascinates me is how he is able to almost befriend his suspects; that plays a great part in this episode. Don't miss character actor Timothy Carey's hilarious cameo.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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