Season 1 Episode 7

Lady in Waiting

Aired Unknown Dec 15, 1971 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
67 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Lady in Waiting
Beth Chadwick is tired of her brother Bryce running her life. The last straw is when he threatens to break up her romance with Peter Hamilton, a company lawyer. Beth lays a trap for Bryce and shoots him, claiming that she thought he was a prowler. By stealing his house key, she plans for him to try to enter through her bedroom French doors. But when Bryce shows up after using a spare key, she is forced to improvise. The coroner's inquest backs up her story, but for Columbo, too many little things do not add up. If Bryce had to walk around the house to get to the doors, why are there no grass stains on his shoes? If Beth never went out the day of the murder, how did a late edition of the newspaper end up in the front hall? But when a witness remembers hearing gunshots before an alarm, Columbo figures it all out.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • Columbo and the Lady

    The Columbo murder mystery Lady in Waiting is an entertaining and clever thriller. In order to break free of her overbearing brother Beth Chadwick kills him and attempts to make it look like an accident, but while tying up loose ends Lt. Columbo starts to suspect that the accident was actually a murder. Susan Clark and Leslie Nielsen lead the cast and deliver strong performances; Clark in particular has a lot of charisma and plays well off of Peter Falk. However, there are some odd directing choices that detract from the storytelling. Despite and few weaknesses, Lady in Waiting is an engaging crime drama.moreless
  • Spoilers

    Susan Clark plays an excellent murderess in this movie, stifled and controlled by her brother who manages the family business and the money. Her plan to break free of his control and take over the business herself is well worked out and seems foolproof, but one miscalculation leaves her having to improvise her way out one problem after another. Leslie Nielsen, as her lawyer boyfriend, turns in a fine performance, as he plays a sensible, serious role with humour but without the manic quality that has come to be his trademark. Peter Falk's Columbo does a good job worrying and nibbling at the truth, forcing the killer to come up with more lies and explanations, until the contradictions close in on her and she is caught. The viewer finds himself sympathizing with the murderer at the beginning, but her growing confidence and arrogance as she reaps the fruits of her crime succeed in making her downfall a satisfying one.moreless
Jessie Royce Landis

Jessie Royce Landis

Mother Chadwick

Guest Star

Richard Anderson

Richard Anderson

Bryce Chadwick

Guest Star

Leslie Nielsen

Leslie Nielsen

Peter Hamilton

Guest Star

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Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • As Beth is waiting for Bryce to enter the room, she opens a box of chocolates. She picks up one chocolate, the camera pans away and when it comes back there are five wrappers on the bed beside the box.

  • QUOTES (2)

    • Columbo: Ma'am, about that eleven dollars...
      Mrs. Chadwick: Of course. Leave one of your business cards and I'll send you a check.
      Columbo: I'm all out of cards...
      (Mrs. Chadwick looks at him for a moment, then hands him $11 from her purse)
      Columbo: Thank you, ma'am.

    • Mrs. Chadwick: You! Bring in my bags and pay the cab.
      Cab Driver: There's ten fifty on that meter.
      (Columbo fumbles in his pockets and comes up with his wallet)
      Columbo: All I have is eleven dollars...go ahead and keep it all.
      Cab Driver: (sarcastic) You're a sport.

  • NOTES (2)