Columbo (1971–2003)
20 user 5 critic

A Deadly State of Mind 

A psychiatrist, who specializes in hypnosis, murders the husband of his mistress and convinces her to lie to the police; it's up to Lt. Columbo to discover the truth.


Harvey Hart


Peter S. Fischer, Richard Levinson (created by) | 1 more credit »


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Falk ... Columbo
George Hamilton ... Dr. Mark Collier
Lesley Ann Warren ... Nadia Donner (as Lesley Warren)
Stephen Elliott Stephen Elliott ... Carl Donner
Karen Machon ... Dr. Anita Borden
Bruce Kirby ... Sergeant George Kramer
William Wintersole ... Dr. Hunt
Ryan MacDonald Ryan MacDonald ... Charles Whelan
Jack Manning Jack Manning ... Daniel Morris
Fred Draper ... David Morris
Glorie Kaufman Glorie Kaufman ... Brenda
Redmond Gleeson Redmond Gleeson ... Arnold
Vance Davis ... Officer Hendryx
Danny Wells Danny Wells ... Gary Keppler
Morris Buchanan ... Lab Man


A clinical hypnotist kills the husband of one of his patients during a violent confrontation after the victim uncovers his wife's affair with the hypnotist. The patient, who witnessed the event, is convinced by the hypnotist to lie to the police but when she eventually becomes a liability, he kills her by encouraging her to take a 'swan dive' off her hotel balcony.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

27 April 1975 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der Schlaf, der nie endet See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This is the first of George Hamilton's two appearances. In this episode, he portrays a murderer with a great tan. 16 years later in Columbo: Caution: Murder Can Be Hazardous to Your Health (1991), he portrays a murderer with a... (you know). See more »


Dr Borden explains to a visitor that laboratory mice are being tested to learn a new route in a maze. This requires that the mouse be able to distinguish between a red line and a green line. Mice are not able to distinguish red from green. See more »


Sergeant George Kramer: You got a European car?
Columbo: That's a French car. Yeah, my car's a French car.
See more »


Mazurka No.6 in A Minor, Op.7 No.2
Composed by Frédéric Chopin
From the audio unit which Columbo switches on
See more »

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User Reviews

Top-Notch Columbo TV Thriller
8 May 2005 | by ShootingSharkSee all my reviews

A brilliant psychotherapist kills his lover's husband at her home and tries to make it look like a robbery, but when she fails to convince the police with their story he uses hypnotic suggestion to murder her too. However, he has not reckoned with Lieutenant Columbo's tenacity in exposing the conspiracy and getting his man.

One of the best of ABC's classic Columbo mysteries, expertly written by Peter S. Fischer, and beautifully played by the cast. Hamilton is ideal as the suave, amoral research psychologist, seducing his patient purely for her literary worth to him. A very young Warren is fabulous as the flaky, child-like rich man's wife, unable to make the cover story stick despite her best efforts. And Falk is simply unforgettable as Columbo - affable, idiosyncratic, painstaking and brilliant. As with the best of these mysteries, it is the details of the investigation that make viewing so pleasurable - the broken flint, the thin tyre track, the jewellry in the stocking and the final masterstroke with the blind man. A fine example of some of the best TV crime drama ever made.

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