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I Was in the Shower Enjoying Myself, Singing

“No Time to Die” is the first of two forays the series made into the world of Ed Mccain’s “87th Precinct” books, so the format’s a little different than your typical episode. There isn’t a murder, but a kidnapping! Columbo carries a gun! You meet one of Columbo’s oft-referenced nephews, who’s also an LAPD cop! And on and on. The nephew’s new bride, who also happens to be a model, is kidnapped from the honeymoon suite on the wedding night by a scalpel-wielding stalker. From there, it’s a race against time, as Columbo and the squad collect van brochures, talk to a dude named Tubby Comfort in a Turkish spa, follow Don Swayze dead ends and show off a gratuitous shirtless Thomas Calabro. It’s not a particularly good episode, but at least we get to talk about Frasier. Author Amanda Reyes (Are You In The House Alone?: A TV Movie Compendium 1964-1999) joins to discuss.


  1. Jim S Jim S

    By a strange coincidence, this episode was playing on April 16 the first day the podcast was available. So I saw the scenes you referenced just a few minutes later. Fascinating. I think Columbo was smiling after the whole gun thing because he was relieved he didn’t have to use the weapon.

    But I could be wrong.

    Keep up the good work.

  2. Chana Masaledar Chana Masaledar

    Is “No Time to Die” a good Columbo? ‘Tisn’t!

    (That means “It isn’t.”)

    But this is a very good JOMT. It just flew by. Great discussion with a great guest.

    “No Time” isn’t a total loss. The actors generally do a good job; in the case of Falk and Thomas Moffat, a very good job. I also liked the procedural elements. But there was a lot that made me cringe. You covered most of those things (the dorky singing in the shower; the sloppy continuity; the bland visuals; the ridiculous glamor-shot modeling photos). As you mentioned, the kidnapper just isn’t an effective villain. I don’t know if that’s the actor’s fault, the script writer’s fault, the director’s fault, or some combination of the above. He simply is not believably scary or threatening. And I was really unimpressed by Melissa’s monologue as she tries to escape. I get that it’s hard to make her reasoning clear to the viewer without some kind of verbal explanation; but there has to be a better way to do it than what they came up with. “Let it soak in, Melissa, don’t rush it.”

    And ultimately, despite some good acting, the episode was just dull. The basic plot elements have been done a million times before and since. As someone remarked in last week’s comments, it’s not just an unrepresentative Columbo, it’s not even good television.

  3. Lisa Stein Lisa Stein

    Loved the podcast and the guest was wonderful. Have to respect anyone who knows who Martin Kove is. Do you think that the opening scene of Columbo sitting with the older woman was a total fake out regarding Mrs. Columbo – like wanting people to think that Columbo was sitting with his wife?
    Also – love the idea of a Columbo/Peanuts blending. My initial thought was that Columbo would be Pig Pen. Then decided no – he is Linus. Smart and understated. Think about it – Linus Blanket = Columbo Raincoat and The Great Pumpkin = Mrs Columbo (a presence that is adored but never seen).

    • I forgot I was supposed to draw that, but I’m glad I waited for your character suggestion…

  4. Joe Joe

    What I don’t understand — and correct me if I misread this — if the kidnapper is planning a murder-suicide, why does he feel the need to go to work? It’s not as though the paycheck will do him any good.

    I’m also not clear on how that front door got kicked in, and why Melissa couldn’t get out that way.

    And why did Columbo confiscate the cologne?

    • RJ RJ

      1) No idea.

      2) I think he bought the murder shack that way and was just lazy.

      3) No idea.

      • Joe Joe

        The McBain novel this is based on — As Long as You Both Shall Live — is at my local library. Think I might give it a read.

  5. Tan hue Tan hue

    I love Colombo, I love your insights, I want to love this podcast but it’s very annoying When one person repeatedly cut everybody off and talks loudly and excitedly over everything. I appreciate your enthusiasm, but at times it just makes Him sound overbearing.

    Please stop I really would like to continue listen to these podcasts. I don’t think you realize how many people you’re turning off by doing this .

    • Actually, we’ve done the research and we know exactly how many people we’re turning off by doing that. We’ll be releasing our findings during the annual review at the Langham Hotel in Chicago on August 21. All shareholders are welcome to attend and may bring a plus-one.

      • tan Hue tan Hue


      • Tan Hue Tan Hue

        Ok you won me over with your Randy Savage drawing. LOL Also I look forward to attending the shareholders meeting. I’ll bring an extravagantly expensive bottle of wine that has been overheated…shhh it will be our secret. 😛

        • I wish we could “Like” comments on this forum. Consider this a “+1”

          • Tan hue Tan hue

            😉 also consider your comment “liked” lol

  6. Allan Mcpherson Allan Mcpherson

    Great show . y’all! A couple of sidebars ;

    1) When Last House on the Left came up, with reference to Martin Kove, my mind lept to David Hess. Maybe if he had played the kidnapper the meta-resonance would have made it work?

    2) The moment you brought up They Live I had images of Roddy Piper as a killer in a 90’s episode. Indy wrestling promoter is about to lose his one star attraction to an unnamed national promotion. He booby traps a turnbuckle and has the talent killed in the ring.

    • I am incredibly bereft at there never having been a wrestling-themed Columbo episode.

  7. Cathy Cathy

    I have never liked this episode, but thought the podcast was good fun. I really enjoyed it.

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