Robert Culp shows up again, this time as Doctor Kepple, a specialist in motivational research. Kepple has been blackmailing a man called Vic Norris but now, inevitably, he has to kill him.
He sets up a research screening with live narration given by himself. Just before the screening he gives Vic some extra salty caviar. Kepple is actually playing a recording of his voice rather than narrating it live. When Vic obviously goes for a glass of water Kepple sneaks out and shoots him.
Columbo appears at 13 minutes and 5 seconds. He missed his dinner and is really hungry so just starts snacking on whatever is lying around.
As well as the salty caviar Kepple used subliminal cuts in the film and a hot cinema to make sure Vic left for a glass of water. Fool proof. Columbo uses his own trick against him in a subliminal cut columboid which utilises ‘Bill’, a mute photography cop.
Things we learn about Columbo: he has an uncle that made a killing in real estate in San Dimas, this uncle used to be a bus driver and now sends embossed Christmas cards, Columbo’s wife has no head for crime and always guesses the wrong murderer in whodunits, Columbo does the shopping in his family, he is not a golfer but does bowl a little.
During this episode I drank bitter shandy.