Worst & Best Columbo Episodes/List

About the Series

Genre: US Detective Series
Series: 10
Episodes: 68
First Transmission: 1968-2003
Channel: NBC
Dedicated Fansite: ColumboFansite

Columbo is an American television series created by Richard Levinson and William Link.

This show popularized the inverted detective story format, which begins by showing the undertaking of the crime and its perpetrator. The plot thus has no “whodunit” element, and instead revolves around how Columbo will finally catch the criminal.

In 2013, TV Guide included it in its list of The 60 Greatest Dramas of All Time and ranked it at #33 on its list of the 60 Best Series.

Peter Falk: Columbo

Best Episode [ S3 Ep2 ]

Any Old Port in a Storm – A wine connoisseur kills his half- brother to prevent him from selling the family winery to a merchant company so that he can pay off his gambling debts.
7 October 1973

 

 

Worst Episode [ S10 Ep5 ]

No Time to Die – Columbo attends the wedding of his nephew, who is also with the LAPD. Suddenly it turns out that the bride is missing, possibly kidnapped. Columbo sets up the investigation to figure out what happened.
15 March 1992

 

 

Full Episode Guide

Key:-
Blue episodes rated above par.
Brown episodes rated below par.

Pilots

Prescription: Murder (1968) –
Dr Ray Fleming, a psychiatrist, murders his wife and persuades his mistress, and one of his patients, to support his alibi by impersonating her.
Ransom For A Dead Man (1971) –
A brilliant and ruthless lawyer, murders her husband for his money, arranging things to look as if he had been kidnapped and killed by his captors.

Series One

Murder By The Book (1971) –
When one member of a mystery writing team wants to break from his less talented partner, he is murdered.
Death Lends A Hand (1971) –
A private investigator accidentally murders a client’s wife after trying to blackmail her.
Dead Weight (1971) –
A war hero shoots and kills his business partner with a scatty young divorcée as the only witness.
Suitable For Framing (1971) –
A wealthy art collector is murdered, and all signs point to a robbery gone wrong.
Lady In Waiting (1971) –
A heiress murders her brother, pretending that she thought he was a burglar.
Short Fuse (1972) –
A chemical company heir enacts a clever plan to get rid of his blackmailing uncle and take over the family business.
Blueprint For Murder (1972) –
A brilliant architect murders a Texas millionaire and hides his body in order to keep his construction project financed.

Series Two

Etude In Black (1972) –
A ruthless conductor murders the gifted pianist with whom he is having an affair. 
The Greenhouse Jungle (1972) –
A kidnapping case seems connected to a trust fund managed by a man with a love for orchids.
The Most Crucial Game (1972) –
The manager of a football team murders its owner by staging a swimming pool accident.
Dagger Of The Mind (1972) –
A respected Shakespearean acting duo cover up the unintended killing of their producer.
Requiem For A Falling Star (1973) –
A faded movie actress commits murder, but Columbo is on her case.
A Stitch In Crime (1973) –
A surgeon comes up with a diabolical plan for murdering his partner.
The Most Dangerous Match (1973) –
A chess player murders his opponent before a big match. 
Double Shock (1973) –
Identical twin brothers are suspects in the electrocution of their rich uncle.

Series Three

Lovely But Lethal (1973) –
The founder of a cosmetics company, murders for a wrinkle cream formula.
Any Old Port In A Storm (1973) –
A wine connoisseur kills his half- brother to prevent him from selling the family winery to a company that makes cheap wine.
Candidate For Crime (1973) –
A Senatorial murders his domineering campaign manager, staging it to appear that he was the intended victim of a mob hit gone wrong.
Double Exposure (1973) –
A “motivation research specialist” uses subliminal cues to commit a murder.
Publish Or Perish (1974) –
A publisher hires a bomb enthusiast to murder a bestselling author of sex novels.
Mind Over Mayhem (1974) –
The director of a government institute that employs various scientific geniuses commits a fiendish murder. 
Swan Song (1974) –
A gospel singer murders his dominating wife by staging an airplane accident, but Columbo is not fooled.
A Friend In Deed (1974) –
A police commissioner provides a false alibi for a wife killer but then expects an alibi in return.

Series Four

An Exercise In Fatality (1974) –
A health club owner murders the owner of one of his franchises.
Negative Reaction (1974) –
A photographer murders his wife and stages a  kidnapping.
By Dawn’s Early Light (1974) –
The commandant of a military academy murders the chairman of the board, who wants to get rid of him.
Troubled Waters (1975) –
On a cruise ship to Acapulco, Columbo finds himself on a new case when a used car dealer is murdered.
Playback (1975) –
An inventor murders his mother-in-law.
A Deadly State Of Mind (1975) –
A psychiatrist, who specializes in hypnosis, murders the husband of his mistress and convinces her to lie to the police.

Series Five

Forgotten Lady (1975) –
A faded dance star of film and stage murders her husband and stages it to look like a suicide.
A Case Of Immunity (1975) –
The first secretary to the Suarian king has immunity from the consequences of committing murder, but he hasn’t reckoned on Columbo.
Identity Crisis (1975) –
A top CIA operative commits murder but unfortunately, Columbo is on the case.
A Matter Of Honor (1976) –
When a famous bullfighter’s bookkeeper turns up dead in a bullring, Columbo suspects murder.
Now You See Him (1976) –
A stage illusionist kills his employer and makes it look like a contract killing, but Columbo has a few tricks up his sleeve.
Last Salute To The Commodore (1976) –
Charlie Clay kills his father-in-law, Commodore Swanson.

Series Six

Fade In To Murder (1976) –
A successful star of a TV detective show murders his blackmailing producer and makes it look like a robbery.
Old Fashioned Murder (1976) –
The spinster head of a museum murders her brother when he threatens to liquidate the financially strapped institution.
The Bye Bye Sky-High I.Q. Murder Case (1977) –
Oliver Brandt, a member of a high I.Q. society, murders his business partner when he threatens to expose his embezzlement and concocts a seemingly perfect alibi.

Series Seven

Try And Catch Me (1977) –
An acclaimed mystery writer murders the man she suspects of killing her niece by asphyxiating him in a vault.
Murder Under Glass (1978) –
A food critic who has been extorting money, resort to murder when threatened with exposure.
Make Me A Perfect Murder (1978) –
An Emmy-winning TV executive kills her boss (who is also her lover).
How To Dial A Murder (1978) –
A man trains his dog to kill on command using a telephone.
The Conspirators (1978) –
An IRA terrorist executes an arms dealer he considers a traitor to the cause.

Series Eight

Columbo Goes To The Guillotine (1989) –
A psychic fraud murders his old mentor, a magician, with his own trick.
Murder, Smoke, And Shadows (1989) –
A director murders his childhood friend when he threatens to expose something about his past.
Sex And The Married Detective (1989) –
A sex therapist kills her lover when she finds out about his infidelity.
Grand Deceptions (1989) –
The head of a paramilitary think tank is embezzling funds, so he kills his blackmailer.

Series Nine

Murder, A Self Portrait (1989) –
Columbo investigates the apparent drowning of a famous painter’s first wife.
Columbo Cries Wolf (1990) –
Dian Hunter wants to sell her stock in a men’s magazine, but her partner objects. Miss Hunter then disappears and Columbo investigates.
Agenda For Murder (1990) –
Columbo is on a murder made to look like suicide.
Rest In Peace, Mrs Columbo (1990) –
A woman who blames Columbo for the loss of her husband is set on revenge.
Uneasy Lies The Crown (1990) –
A dentist kills a man by implanting a poison in his tooth.
Murder In Malibu (1990) –
A successful writer of romance novels who is involved with a young, ambitious womanizer, is found shot to death in her Malibu home.

Series Ten

Columbo Goes To College (1990) –
Two college students decide to murder their professor during a class that Columbo is teaching.
Caution: Murder Can Be Hazardous To Your Health (1991) –
Columbo investigates a security expert turned crime show host for the murder of a rival who has a copy of the porn film he starred in.
Columbo And The Murder Of A Rock Star (1991) –
Columbo matches wits with a defense lawyer who has never lost a case in his career.
Death Hits The Jackpot (1991) –
Uncle Leon Lamarr kills his nephew for a lottery ticket.
No Time To Die (1992) –
Columbo investigates the missing bride of his nephew.
A Bird In The Hand … (1992) –
Gambling addict Harold kills his uncle, the owner of a football team, by using a pipe bomb under his car.
It’s All In The Game (1993) –
A mother and daughter kill their two-timing lover.
Butterfly In Shades Of Gray (1994) –
Fielding Chase kills Gerry Winters but has a perfect alibi: Winters was shot dead while speaking to him on the phone. 
Undercover (1994) –
Columbo investigates men and women who are being killed over pieces of a photo they possess, showing where 4 million dollars in stolen money is hidden.
Strange Bedfellows (1995) –
Graham McVeigh kills his brother and frames a mob bookie for the crime and then kills the bookie and claims self-defence.
A Trace of Murder (1997) –
A beautiful woman and her forensic expert boyfriend try to frame her very rich husband for murder.
Ashes to Ashes (1998) –
When a Hollywood gossip columnist is murdered by her ex-lover, Columbo is suspicious.
Murder With Too Many Notes (2001) –
A Hollywood film composer murders a talented musician who has been ghostwriting most of his work.
Columbo Likes the Nightlife (2003) –
Columbo enters the Los Angeles rave scene as he investigates the apparent suicide of a tabloid reporter.