The History and Influence of Columbo – The Quirky Detective Who Won Our Hearts



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33 Comments

  1. I love Monk with all my heart. I have OCD something fierce, and when I was a teen a friend of my mom told her that I reminded him of Monk. Mom didn't know what that was (neither did I), but when told the premise she rented the first season from Blockbuster for us to watch. We were instantly hooked. I don't recall seeing characters with OCD back then, let alone protagonists, so watching Monk felt… I dunno, it was just nice seeing a positive portrayal of someone with OCD (I, at least, consider it a positive portrayal, as he did great things despite the grief it caused him). And maybe it made my having OCD feel not so bad. Yeah… definitely.
    And come on, Obsessive Compulsive DETECTIVE is hilarious! XD

  2. Some say Colombo is always the antagonist of his own series. The killer is the main character, played by a big star, getting all the character development – and as you say, usually being likable.

  3. I used to watch this show with my mom. She got me into a lot of the classic tv shows (Columbo, Murder She Wrote, Happy Days, Mama's Family, WKRP in Cincinnati, M.A.S.H., and many other classics). And I loved watching them all with her. Columbo is what got me liking detective shows, especially Law & Order series.

  4. It was the 80's and divorced women were trendy. Adding controversial subjects to a show arbitrarily was a cheap way to add intrest to shlocky television screenplays and it continues to this day.

  5. Columbo.
    Quantum Leap.
    Dark Justice.
    X Files.
    E.R.
    Perry Mason.
    Errie Indiana.
    Friday 13th Series.
    Cheers.
    Seinfeld.
    Night Court.
    Friends.
    That Seventies Show.
    Are You Being Served.
    Dark Angel.
    V The Final Battle.
    Carmen Sandiego.
    Doll House.
    Buffy.
    Angel.
    Fraisure.
    Police Squad.
    Antique Road Show.
    there is a list of shows I'd like to see return again to television. and yes I'd like to see more of these videos.

  6. A very rare case of a character portrayed by a single actor spanning several decades – something not true of James Bond, Spock, Batman, et al.
    Also, am I one of a very few fans who prefer the latter (ABC) incarnation to the former (NBC) iteration?

  7. Peter Falk will always be a hero to me. My very favorite episode is Try and catch me. Ruth Gordon plays an Agatha Christie like character and nails it. I love watching her and Peter Falk work together. Perfection!

  8. What make Colombo special is the whole package, the realism is probably at zero, but the charm is on 11, excellent actors, excellent camera work, excellent music, how the typical 70'ties atmosphere is so great, and also the lower speed with more time to elaborate on the plot and the characters makes the Colombo a gem

  9. As an 80s kid, the Colombo I saw was genuinely a little bit of a whodunnit. Seeing the 70s version on Netflix as an adult was a revelation. Thank you for covering one of my favorites!

  10. Something I like about Columbo is how it can be quaintly dated. For example In one episode the murder sets up an alibi by showing people his fancy digital watch. Or another where Columbo finds the clue in the ribbon cartridges of an ELECTRIC type writer.

  11. I never read Hercule Poirot as having OCD. He's fussy and likes having everything in order, but he always seemed more like he was just very detail-oriented. In the books he never displays anxiety or difficulty with daily functioning or feelings of dread, or any other symptoms that would qualify as a disorder.

  12. Columbo was not about who done it cuz you already know in the beginning who did it it was about how he solved it and also after Bing Crosby turn them down the next choice was actor Lee J Cobb

  13. In my opinion; the allure of Columbo is not watching him try to figure out how the murderer committed the crime, but the fact that the Columbo is not really a detective. He is an incarnation of the Furies. The Columbo formula is a twist on classical Greek tragedy. The central character has the hubris to believe that they can commit the perfect crime and the Furies, in the unassuming form of Lt. Columbo, arrive on the scene and hound the central character to their destruction.

    Columbo is never cruel? In "Make Me a Perfect Murder", after finding the murder weapon, Columbo places a replica of the weapon where the murderess will see it. This prompts an episode of terror for the murderess, as she believes that she must retrieve the weapon, before anyone else gets on the elevator. In "Strange Bedfellows", Columbo stages a scenario to convince the murderer that if he does not offer up incriminating evidence, Columbo will let a mob boss execute him.

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