Columbo (1971–2003)
28 user 5 critic

Make Me a Perfect Murder 

An Emmy-winning TV executive kills her lover (who is also her boss); Lt. Columbo is on the case.


James Frawley


Robert Blees, Richard Levinson (created by) | 1 more credit »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Falk ... Columbo
Trish Van Devere ... Kay Freestone
Laurence Luckinbill ... Mark McAndrews
James McEachin ... Walter Mearhead (as James Mc Eachin)
Ron Rifkin ... Luther
Lainie Kazan ... Valerie Kirk
Bruce Kirby ... TV Repairman
Kip Gilman ... Jonathan (as Kenneth Gilman)
Patrick O'Neal ... Frank Flanagan
Milt Kogan ... Dubbing Chief
Dee Timberlake Dee Timberlake ... Madge
Don Eitner ... Pete Cockrum
Morgan Upton ... Ames
Joe Warfield Joe Warfield ... Al Staley
George Skaff George Skaff ... The Producer


Kay Freestone is a West Coast TV executive whose boss, Mark McAndrews, is also her secret lover. When he gets promoted to a position in New York, he dumps her - and even denies her the job he's leaving. Her consolation prize is a new Mercedes. She's more interested in the gun he drops on the bed - after he jokingly invites her to shoot him. Joking or not, she takes him up on it. Later, he's found shot to death in his office. Kay seems to have been in the projection room when it happened. She was screening her pet project - a violent TV film called "The Professionals" - for her superiors. When our rumpled, redoubtable Lt. Columbo investigates, he learns this Emmy-winning producer can commit a bloody act just as well as film it. Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

25 February 1978 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Meurtre parfait See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The Playland Arcade scenes at the end of the episode were filmed at the Santa Monica, California Looff Hippodrome. This location was also used as the carousel where Henry Gondorff (Paul Newman's character in The Sting) lived and worked. In The Sting, the carousel was located in Chicago. See more »


About halfway through the show, Kay is being questioned by Columbo in the house she was brought up in. She pulls out a cigarette and leans over the candle to light it. When she stands up, about a third of the cigarette is smudged by the soot from the candle. Moments later the cigarette is pristine. See more »


Kay Freestone: Are you taking anything?
Valerie Kirk: Oh God, I look like a junkie, is that it? I've had NO booze, NO pills, NO sniff, and NO smokes... except for these.
[holds up cigarette]
See more »


Features Bolero (1934) See more »


Yankee Doodle Dandy
(uncredited) (aka "The Yankee Doodle Boy")
Composed by George M. Cohan (1904)
Sung by Peter Falk in opening medley
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

He almost deserved it!
6 July 2015 | by stones78See all my reviews

I'm not saying any person should be killed, but the coldness Mark(Laurence Luckinbill)gives to Kay(Trish Van Devere), after getting a big time job offer, even made ME want to hit him. Let me mention that Van Devere is terrific as the scorned woman, and she was the best among a field of Patrick O'Neal, who was also very good in a cameo or 2, Lainie Kazan, whose New York accent you could chop off with an ax, Ron Rifkin, reliable James McEachin, and Columbo veteran Bruce Kirby. The best scene for me was when Columbo is getting his TV fixed, as the repairman(Kirby)talks to Columbo about his dog, who is also in the shop. Kirby and Peter Falk have good chemistry together, although Kirby's characters usually talk down to Columbo. Look for the rare appearance of a late 70's Mustang, a strange looking model which doesn't get much publicity. Although I sometimes criticize how silly the murderer acts around Columbo, I felt Van Devere gave a somewhat realistic performance as the walls came closing in on her.

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