Season 1 Episode 2

Ransom for a Dead Man

Aired Unknown Mar 01, 1971 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (5)

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out of 10
77 votes
  • Columbo started out with a pilot movie. This show started the series. It is cliched and dated, but still a worthy start.

    This show was a black widow story in which the wife kills the husband. They were lawyers together, and she used him for money. Sounds a lot more like a soap opera than a crime drama. Columbo appears, promptly loses his pen, and a star is born. Peter Falk made this series great. What would have been forgotten as a run of the mill crime show becomes a classic worth watching over and over.
    This particuler episode has a few weaknesses. There are some goofy camara tricks and editing that don't really make sense these days. The "thinking" murderer comes up with a great plan to kill her husband, but has no contingency plan for handling her step-daughter. That she is ensnared so easily by this young girl seems unlikely. Still the star of the show is the slightly confused,unpressed, and slow moving detective. It is always a pleasure to watch a pro in action - even when the action is a little subpar.