Columbo (1971–2003)
33 user 4 critic

Try and Catch Me 

A mystery writer suspects her niece's husband of murdering her, and she exacts revenge by asphyxiating him in her house safe.



(teleplay by), (teleplay by) | 3 more credits »

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Episode complete credited cast:
Abigail Mitchell
Martin Hammond
Charles Frank ...
Edmund Galvin
Mary Jackson ...
Jerome Guardino ...
Marie Silva-Alexander ...
Dance Instructor


An aging but successful and wealthy crime fiction writer blames the death of her niece on the girl's husband. One night she invites him up to the house to sign their wills before getting him to leave and return within a few minutes so she can spring a trap (locking him in her soundproof safe). Detective Columbo arrives and suspects the writer of murder but clues are few and far between. Written by Scott Dawson <>

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Plot Keywords:

writer | safe | revenge | death | detective | See All (59) »


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Release Date:

21 November 1977 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The ship shown as Abigail Mitchell and Veronica prepare to depart on their cruise is the American President Lines vessel SS President Wilson. Sold to CY Tung's Orient Overseas Line in mid-1973, some four years before this episode aired, she was renamed Oriental Empress and given a brand-new livery. The fact that her much earlier American President Lines livery is seen in this episode indicates that this was actually stock footage. See more »


When Abigail locked her nephew in the safe, she looked at the alarm switch, which was turned off, hesitated, then closed the door. Later, Columbo tells Abigail that the alarm was turned on. See more »


Lt. Columbo: You know, I can remember the only new car my father ever bought. How proud he was. The way it smelled. Kind of like the inside of a Pullman car. It wasn't like this though, I'll tell you that.
Abigail Mitchell: My father never owned a car. Not until I bought him one. I was 20; I'd just sold my first book. Shall we compare poverty stories, Lieutenant?
Lt. Columbo: Not in a Rolls Royce, ma'am.
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References Gone with the Wind (1939) See more »


This Old Man
Traditional English children's marching song
[First two lines played by Peter Falk on piano. Later he whistles it.]
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User Reviews

Staggeringly Entertaining Made For TV Movie
3 July 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Don't waste time reading my review. Go out and see this astonishingly good episode, which may very well be the best Columbo ever written! Ruth Gordon is perfectly cast as the scheming yet charming mystery writer who murders her son-in-law to avenge his murder of her daughter. Columbo is his usual rumpled, befuddled and far-cleverer-than-he-seems self, and this particular installment features fantastic chemistry between Gordon and Falk. Ironically, this was not written by heralded creators Levinson or Link yet is possibly the densest, most thoroughly original and twist-laden Columbo plot ever. Utterly satisfying in nearly every department and overflowing with droll and witty dialogue and thinking. Truly unexpected and inventive climax tops all. 10/ this one out on Netflix!

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