Wasn't the car the Cordova(sp)? Anyway, I have mixed feelings about this episode, too. I love the locale, the relationship Columbo has with his counterpart, and Ricardo has much potential for the best of all Columbo murderers. Is it possible the cultural differences are such that WASP's--as some of us are--just can't "get" the motive? I can certainly understand honor--but I do have difficulty understanding how killing a close friend would preserve my honor. Was the Ricardo character afraid his friend would tell someone? This seems doubtful given their long friendship. Or did he just not want him around as a reminder that he showed his fear? It seems to me the murderer has to choose between two private "hells." Does he want to be tormented by the fact that someone close to him has seen his fear, or tormented by the fact that he has killed a loyal friend--he chooses the latter. Then again, maybe the writers were going after something else entirely.
I recall that when he got the job to advertise the car called the Chrysler Cordoba he told them that the name "Cordoba" (cities in Spain and Argentina) is pronounced CORdoba (accent on the first syllable) but they insisted he pronounce it "CorDOBa" (accent on the second syllable). I guess for thousands of dollars he was willing to compromise on his Spanish pronunciation!
Pardon my use of an old acronym: WASP stands for White Anglo-Saxon Protestant, often used by us former flower children as a synonym for the Establishment.
I thought I said that already!!!
Right, I think I once knew that but had forgotten
And now you know it again!!!!