I Could Fool Columbo

I know what you're thinking: no-one could fool Columbo. And you're probably right. The title is just hyperbole designed to attract readers among the murderer demographic, which my statistics indicate I am failing to reach.

I have, however, noticed one mistake that the criminals always make with Columbo. For example, Columbo says to this one guy, isn't it funny that this man shot himself in the head, but there was a drop of blood beneath the gun when we picked it up? And the guy goes, well, maybe he held onto the gun for a while after he died, and then it fell from his fingers once his muscles started to relax.

And the murderers do it again and again. Columbo keeps coming up to them with things from the murder scene that he 'can't quite figure out' and they do gymnastics to try and explain it for him. Don't do that! When Columbo says he doesn't understand, but the car was in neutral, don't say, "I was afraid of this! I think he may have rolled his car off the cliff on purpose! He confessed suicidal feelings to me (and me alone)." No! Instead you say, "That's really interesting lieutenant. What do you think it means?" But they never do. And that's how he knows. Because if you're innocent, you wouldn't go to such lengths to try and explain every little thing away.

Perhaps that's Columbo's strength, though. Seeming simple enough that you don't think he really suspects you're the murderer, so you think, If I can just assuage this one little doubt he has about the case, maybe he'll buy it! And then he has you.


zhoen said...

I think of it as the Encyclopedia Brown syndrome... makes murder investigations so much easier if it is just a tricky puzzle.

Oh, and if you are left handed, don't commit murder. They'll catch you out for sure then.

Jerri said...

Over-explaining is never a good thing, is it? How clever of you to have figured out how to fool Columbo, just in case you end up trapped in one of his reruns.

It's been a long and not terrific day here. Your funny bit here brightened it. Thanks.

tinker said...

I think Columbo would still know. I think he really has a camera in that glass eye of his, that's recording everything, when people think he's not looking. But then I'm willing to think a lot of silly things.

susanna said...

Good observation! Have you ever seen Wings of Desire? What a great film... anyway, Columbo is in it...I can't remember if he's suppose to be a fallen angel...I really should rent that film this week...