Peter Falk would have been 89 years old on September 16th. To honor him here are my top 10 Columbo episodes. * In case you are not familiar with this series, viewers are shown the crime and who did it at the beginning of each episode and then watch as Lt. Columbo solves the crime and gets the confession using old school detective work.
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    "Murder by the Number" Season 1 Episode 1
    I mentioned this on my TOP FIVE SPIELBERG (as director) list. Staring Jack Cassidy and directed by Steven Spielberg, it is one of the best in season one although they are all quite good. Jack Cassidy makes an excellent jerk/bad guy and makes a repeat appearance in another episode in season 5.
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    "Etude in Black" Season 2 Episode 1
    Three stands outs from this episode. John Cassavetes as the bad guy, Blythe Danner plays his long suffering wealthy wife ( she is truly an exquisite beauty) and finally the introduction of Columbo's Basset Hound affectionately named "Dog".
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    "Double Shock" Season 2 Episode 8
    A young Martin Landau ( RIP πŸ’”) plays twins! Who are both suspected of killing their uncle for the inheritance. Julie Newmar plays the uncle's much younger bride. Columbo cooks with one of the twins who plays a TV show chef. One of many episodes where Peter Falk shows off his cooking skills.
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    "Double Exposure" Season 3 Episode 4.
    Robert Culp. He is the ultimate asshole. He actually appears in episodes from season 1 & 2 using the same obnoxious personality (but different characters) in all of them. Perfection. Also how wild is this yellow motorcycle jacket. πŸ’›
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    "Swan Song" Season 3 Episode 7
    Johnny Cash plays a popular gospel singer with a fondness for young girls. When his wife threatens to cut him off he finds a way to fake her death. While not one of my favorites it is definitely a stand out episode worth mentioning.
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    "Playback" Season 4 Episode 5.
    Guest staring the beautiful Gena Rowlands as a wealthy wife whose husband kills her mother in order to take control of their family business. Best moment -Gena enjoys playing with "Dog" when Columbo brings him along to talk to her.
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    "Forgotten Lady" Season 5 Episode 1
    Staring Janet Leigh, as an aging former movie star desperate to restart her career. She is really the star here and owns the episode. Scenes from Leigh's actual movie "Walking My Baby Back Home" are used to show her former career as a singer/dancer and actress.
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    "Fade into Murder" Season 6 Episode 1
    William Shatner plays an egotistical actor who portrays a popular TV show detective. He almost enjoys playing detective with Columbo. Shatner's over the top acting plays very well.
  9. β€’
    "Old Fashion Murder" Season 6 Episode 2
    Joyce Van Patten plays a curator of her family's museum. She has devoted her life to the museum and will do whatever it takes to keep it from closing. Her cold demeanor is clearly her "tell" as if she wants to get caught.
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    "Try and Catch Me" Season 7 Episode 1
    Ruth Gordon steals the episode away from Peter Falk as a popular mystery writer. She is an adorable murderer. She makes it very difficult to want to see her caught.
  11. β€’
    "Murder Under Glass" Season 7 Episode 2
    Columbo investigates the mysterious death of a restaurant owner. Focusing on a popular food critic who was extorting money from restaurant owners in exchange for favorable reviews. Directed by the talented Jonathan Demme RIP πŸ’”
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    There are many more great episodes with guest stars and cameos including Leonard Nimoy, Dick Van Dyke, George Hamilton, Jamie Lee Curtis and Kim Catrall.
    If you appreciate 70's style and sensibility seasons 1-4 are the best in my opinion.
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    "He answers to Dog so I call him Dog." -Lt. Columbo
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    Adding a special note here RIP πŸ’”Martin Landau as seen here playing twins in a classic episode of Columbo "Double Shock"