Columbo

The Most Crucial Game - S2-E3

Factual error: Probably an in joke - the wheels of the "airliner" shown landing at LA international airport are those of a B52 bomber. They are very distinctive and look nothing like those on any airliner ever made.

PEDAUNT

The Most Crucial Game - S2-E3

Factual error: In the middle of summer in southern California, water spread thinly on an outdoor ceramic surface would start evaporating immediately and would be gone in about fifteen minutes. The surrounds of the pool would be bone dry by the time Columbo arrived at the scene, nearly an hour after the murderer sprayed the water there.

PEDAUNT

Undercover - S12-E3

Factual error: At the crime scene, the landlady of the dead man is brought into the room in order to identify one of the dead men. This is never, ever done - she could contaminate the crime scene in a dozen different ways. She would be asked to identify the corpse at the morgue after the scene had been cleared by forensic examiners.

Ashes to Ashes - S13-E3

Factual error: An important plot point is that diamonds do not burn and can be recovered from the ashes of a cremated body. This is completely wrong - diamonds would combust freely at cremation temperatures, and since they are pure carbon they don't even leave any residue.

PEDAUNT

Troubled Waters - S4-E4

Factual error: In common with a number of characters in a numerous episodes, Columbo hopelessly contaminates crucial evidence - at the end of the episode he handles the surgical gloves used by the killer with bare hands.

PEDAUNT

Blueprint for Murder - S1-E8

Factual error: When Columbo initially latches onto the radio dilemma (which ultimately solves the case) the dial is tuned all the way to the left. He later tells someone that the radio is set to 'Classical 52', but an AM radio starts at 54, meaning 540KHz. There is no 52.

Joe Brown

Old Fashioned Murder - S6-E2

Factual error: In common with many other episodes, Columbo and all the other police officers at the crime scene hopelessly contaminate it - none of them wear gloves or protective clothing. Not one artifact recovered from the scene would be usable as evidence.

PEDAUNT

It's All in the Game - S12-E1

Factual error: Despite the fact that other officers are doing so, Columbo does not wear gloves while examining the crime scene. He also eats and drinks in the room - both absolutely forbidden - leaving eggshells scattered about the place. The crime scene is now totally compromised and nothing found can be used as evidence.

PEDAUNT

A Trace of Murder - S13-E2

Factual error: In common with many other episodes neither Columbo, the attending police officers or forensic investigators wear gloves or other sterile gear while examining the murder victim's body or the crime scene. Columbo hands out bananas to other people on the scene which they happily eat. The senior crime scene forensics officer, Kingsley, hands out coffee and doughnuts! Eating and drinking are absolutely forbidden on a sterile crime scene, which has been hopelessly contaminated with fingerprints anyway.

A Case of Immunity - S5-E2

Factual error: Rakman Habib's driver's license shows that he lives in "Beverly Hills CA 91605." That is the ZIP code for North Hollywood, not Beverly Hills.

A Friend in Deed - S3-E8

Factual error: Columbo parks across the street from a house where a murder has occurred. The address is given as 1278 Fairfax Drive. Columbo investigates and returns to his car. A house number, 400, is painted on the curb. The house across the street from 1278 would have an odd number, probably 1277 or 1279. It would not be 400.

Death Lends a Hand - S1-E3

Factual error: To make a call, Mr. Bremer enters a seven-digit number on a push-button telephone. The first three keys he punches are 1, 2 and 4. No telephone number in the United States begins with a 1.

Identity Crisis - S5-E3

Factual error: When Columbo arrives at the murder scene at the start, Anderson says that the victim was struck twice. When you see the villain committing the murder, he hits the victim more than twice.

Heather Benton Premium member

A Bird in the Hand... - S11-E3

Factual error: The license plate on the automobile of Stallions football team owner Fred McBain reads STALLION1, but personalized California license plates can not have more than seven characters ( http://www.vanityplatebystate.com/alphabetical-listing-of-states/california/).

Candidate for Crime - S3-E3

Factual error: Near the end of the episode, Jackie Cooper fires a bullet into his hotel room from the balcony using a revolver fitted with a silencer. This is a classic Hollywood error, as silencers do not work on revolvers (unless noticeably modified), due to the gap between the barrel and the cylinder.

mdwalker

Join the mailing list

Separate from membership, this is to get updates about mistakes in recent releases. Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.