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Come Back In Time With Me to When Women Were Women…

... and men wore rumpled raincoats. 10 Weeks of Guilty Pleasures, #3: Columbo

by
Sarah Hoyt

Bio

August 3, 2013 - 7:00 am

Threatened with the prospect of  a Clinton-Lewinsky sex tape – I thought the nightmare was over! And besides, where has it been all this time?  – I’m feeling a strong need to de-stress. I mean I can feel the asthma starting up just at the thought of a Clinton anything, much less a Clinton sex tape.

So, for Guilty Pleasure Number Three, let’s bring on Columbo.

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It’s ALL about his wife!

I remember watching it with my parents, but that is not particularly important – we watched particularly every mystery show on TV back then. But it only became truly important when I got married – 28 years ago this month, thank you – and Columbo was one of the things we both liked.  At the time, bridging the cultures was pretty difficult, but we both agreed that crime, justice and rumpled raincoats were important.

So this month we’re watching a Columbo an evening.  I catch a lot of jokes I didn’t catch either in Portugal or back when I had first come here.

Just one more little thing!

Sarah Hoyt lives in Colorado with her husband, two sons and too many cats. She has published Darkship Thieves and 16 other novels, and over 100 short stories. Writing non-fiction is a new, daunting endeavor. For more on Sarah and samples of her writing, look around at Sarah A. Hoyt.com or check out her writing and life blog at According to Hoyt.com.

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All Comments   (8)
All Comments   (8)
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My wife and I re-discovered Columbo on Netflix about a year ago, and watched the entire series, one episode per night. Wonderful stuff...only one episode that was absolutely unwatchable (and everyone that knows the series knows which one that was!)

Columbo was always talking about his wife and extensive family, but none of them are ever shown on-camera. I had come up with a theory: he was never actually married. It was just another psychological mind-game he used. They were all in his imagination, and at the end of the day, he drove his beat-up Peugeot to his dingy one-room apartment and ate warmed-over chili, alone in a kitchen with a bare bulb hanging from the ceiling.

(My wife HATES my theory, because it makes Columbo such a sad and tragic character. I agree with her...I prefer to think of him with a loving wife and family.)
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
There was actually a shoe, Mrs Columbo. Kate Mulgrew played his wife solving mysteries. Pretty bad.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Should read "show".
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
My children really liked Monk and I thought they would watch Columbo, but the pace killed it for them. I really think story pacing has changed dramatically in the last 40 years.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
"MeTV", one of the cable stations offered by COMCAST shows a Columbo episode every Sunday evening.

The hi-tech elements are great. Columbo waiting while government office provides a computer printout. Columbo using a programmable turntable.

The use of violence is held to a minimum.

I suppose there has been legislation passed since then banning such well crafted television shows from being made. Else we wouldn't need to look at 40-year-old programs.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
I've been watching the Dick Van Dyck Show on Amazon Prime. What a beautifully made show that was. And the fact that Mary Tyler Moore was young and svelte and sweet and beautiful has nothing to do with it. :)
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
I know what you mean about Mary Tyler Moore. What I wouldn't give to have a wife like that...

Oh, wait, I HAVE one! And I'm [ARMY LANGUAGE HERE] lucky to have her too! They don't make them like that very often.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Recently our guilty pleasure is the French tv series Maigret. I had read some books of Simeon in translation and even one in French decades ago when I still had a bit left. But the tv series with Bruner Cremer has a bit of that Columbo feel but a detective who moves among the aristocracy and the streetwalkers with equal facility.

The show is run on MHZ an obscure subchannel over the air here, but also on some cable systems. It is subtitled, 90 minute episodes, and the production values vary but Cremer is always good.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
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