The Lt. Columbo Forum

An area where fans from all over can ask each other questions and voice their own ideas and opinions on anything Columbo.

This Forum is fondly dedicated in memory of  "cassavetes45"  (Carleen Zink),
Columbo's greatest fan and a great friend to us all.
The Lt. Columbo Forum
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Re: Butterfly in Shades of Grey

I agree, the murder was pretty lame, but Shatner did play his villain to the hammy max (all politics aside, cause I'm politically non-denominational, but his performance perfectly fit the hamhanded radio buffoon he was spoofing), and it was cool to have a '90s climax with an actual sense of menace and suspense, rather than Columbo walking the witnesses up to the killer at the conclusion, as if they were picking up fast food orders, a la Murder With Too Many Notes and Ashes to Ashes.

If anything, that ending pointed up the problem with the '90s episode -- no creative imagination or theatrical grandeur. The best Columbos wrapped up on a crescendo: Columbo's manic office confrontation with Nimoy; the cliffside conclusion with Pleasance; the emotionally powerful ending of Forgotten Lady. The only modern Columbos that came close to that kind of smash ending were Murder, Smoke, and Shadows and Columbo Cries Wolf (easily the best "new" Columbo and maybe with Murder: A Self-Portrait, the only one that can stand up with the classics).