Yeah, the plane thing always bothered me, too. Hassan Salah watches The King board the plane AND watches the plane take off. But then The King says, "You saw the airplane depart, but it departed without me at the suggestion of my friend, Lt. Columbo." Well, what did he do - enlist the help of The Great Santini? How did he get off the plane without Salah seeing him? The only possible explanation is that when Salah turned around to get in the car, they somehow rushed The King off the plane and hid him in the runway somewhere. I guess we'll give them a little liberty here. Always enjoyed this episode.