13 seasons, 69 episodes in 35 years… the last of which dates from 2003. The American series Colombo has taken a few wrinkles (very seventies atmosphere!) and yet continues to find its audience. During the first confinement, in March 2020, the legendary lieutenant played by Peter Falk broke records on TMC. In two months, until the end of the isolation, the series gained around 200,000 new viewers, reports The Parisian.
“The best detective series of all time”
Two years after this surge, Colombo continues to squat the Saturday night time slot on TMC. Each week, audiences are around 800,000 viewers, even ahead of programs that are sometimes much more promising. “There is the best detective series of all time on TMC. Columbo is timeless, without a doubt the most charismatic policeman in television history, ”explains a user on the social network Twitter. Some even speak of “Columbo Day”: “As far as I’m concerned, every Saturday on TMC is a Columbo Day that I look forward to,” writes another.
So much so that, when TMC decided to remove Columbo in favor of episodes of Arsène Lupine with Georges Descrières, in June 2021, fans cried foul. They put pressure on the channel on social networks, in particular via their Facebook group (13,400 subscribers), to obtain the return of their favorite investigator. At the end of July, they won their case: TMC interrupted the broadcast of the last episodes of Arsène Lupine planned to put the inspector in the worn raincoat, who often evokes his wife, back on the air…
Colombo would have attracted more than two billion viewers worldwide.
Why Colombo interested
So, in the midst of the many police series broadcast on our screens, why Colombo still like? Its originality lies in the fact that the spectator knows the assassin from the start of the episode. He therefore feels he is the keeper of a secret. The interest of the plot consists in discovering how the investigator will manage to unmask the criminal.
And what an investigator… Lieutenant Columbo is apparently a little simple, messy and clumsy. “Appearances” are deceiving… In reality, he turns out to be very intelligent, obstinate and shrewd because no detail escapes him to carry out his investigations.
Peter Falk, who died on June 23, 2011 in Beverly Hills (California), spent a large part of his life in the skin of this lieutenant: he played the character from 1968 to 2003, winning many Emmy Awards and Golden Globes in passing. For all of his work, he even got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame… posthumously, in 2013. For many of his fans, Columbo remains immortal.
Colombo, every Saturday from 9:05 p.m. on TMC.