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Camila Colombo vs Claudia Steinbacher
"Mrs. Colombo" (game of the day Jun-25-2011)
Dresden Olympiad (Women) (2008), Dresden GER, rd 2, Nov-14
Semi-Slav Defense: Marshall Gambit (D31)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jun-25-11  Dr. J: <Eggman> I remember it differently: when demonstrating the winning combo, which was pretty but not complicated, the Russian said " but of course you saw that". In fact I think this was the only time I ever saw a realistic portrayal of a master chess game on TV - as opposed to the usual "surprise" mate-in-one (always with a capture!)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eggman: <<Dr. J: In fact I think this was the only time I ever saw a realistic portrayal of a master chess game on TV - as opposed to the usual "surprise" mate-in-one (always with a capture!)>>

Yes, my memory could be deceiving me; it's been years.

As for the for realism of the portrayal: yes, it's nice to see an actual combo, but this was hardly something a GM could miss. For me, the only perfectly realistic depiction of two people (master or otherwise) playing chess remains an episode of The Rockford Files, where Jim Rockford, playing his father, looks at his hopeless position, he and his dad smile at each other, and then Rockford tips his king in resignation (a ritual of capitualization that seems to have gone out of style, incidentally).

Jun-25-11  TheBish: This episode was from 1973, called "The Most Dangerous Match". From IMDb: (

"The final combination of the chess game played between Dudek and Clayton in the restaurant and finished in Dudek's hotel room was actually played in game Wolthuis-Alexander, Maastricht 1946. In the movie Dudek demonstrated the line leading to mate, in the actual game black resigned after the first move of combination, Qxb4. Also, Columbo, when reading from Dudek's notation, says that Black resigned on the 41st move. In the actual game from 1946, the sequence takes place earlier in the game (Black resigned on the 25th move)." This is under the section Trivia under "Did You Know?" (scroll down for this). Pretty interesting stuff, also talking about a Frank Marshall simul which Clayton discusses, and Clayton amusingly falling for Fool's Mate during his own simul!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eggman: Apparently Falk was a chess enthusiast. Nice pic of him with Seirawan here:
Jun-25-11  formichiere gigante: I was not aware Peter Falk was a chess player; was already a fan of him anyway..

RIP Peter

Jun-25-11  Caissanist: Are there any games of Falk's that have been published. I always enjoy the celebrity games that get posted here.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: I remember Falk showing up at the 1983 US Open in Pasadena, the one in which Korchnoi played after his match with Kasparov was cancelled. However, it was mostly a celebrity photo-op situation. He seemed interested enough, but certainly didn't play on that occasion.

I have a memory of William Windom playing in a few USCF-rated tournaments, but no documentation.

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  kevin86: I always loved Columbo. His ability to have the killers almost go screamung into the night made the show comedic as well as dramatic.

Oh,one more thing...

Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <Phony Benoni> About 30 years ago, I directed a few tournaments at the Chicago Chess Center. The author Cleveland Amory played in one of them. He was rated about 1550.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eggman: Anyone remember the Neil Simon movie "Murder by Death", with Peter Sellers, Truman Capote, and (I think) David Niven? Falk played a character very much like Columbo (if I recall correctly), and was just hilarious.
Jun-25-11  scormus: Impressive win by Ms. Columbo aganist a higher rated player. I really liked the 2-piece sac demolition of the B Kside defenses to set it up for the W major pieces.

Only just learned about the death of Peter Falk, very sorry. He wasnt just an actor, he was an institution. Thanks CG for putting this one up.

Jun-25-11  erniecohen: 26...♖f7 wins; 30...♕g4 draws.
Jun-25-11  castilho: Rest in piece, Peter Falk, you will be missed.
As for real chess games, there is a real one in For Russia with Love, the movie. A classic game, for all that matters.
Jun-25-11  abuzic: Miss Colombo could continue her slaughter with 27. Bxg7+!! and not caught, as in the game: 27. Bxe8 gxh5 28. Qg6 Rdxe3 or (28...Bf5!) and the self slaughter stops.

If the late Peter Folk "Colombo" could analyze chess games as he did with crimes, that would be fun. I remember him as a nice human with enjoyable entertainment by all family, almost never missed any of his Colombo series.

Jun-25-11  Bonifratz: Nice tribute by CG to our beloved Peter Falk!
Jun-25-11  Colonel Mortimer: Columbo's understated ability to invite the criminal masterminds to unravel their own sinister schemes was the height of ironic comedy.

A typical sequence would be...

"Of course, why didn't I think of that? Thanks for the explaination, I apologise for taking up your time."

and then..

"Oh sir, just one more thing"

Great stuff.

Jun-25-11  Oceanlake: 13. .. p c5 may be the start of Black's big troubles. (Maybe p e5 is better plan.) White has queen-side majority, better QB, and more things old masters prized.

Later, Black should have remembered Lasker:

<His attitude to chess is well exemplified by a game which I played against him in the Nottingham International Tournament of 1936. After over half an hour's thought I placed a Knight on a square on which it could be taken by a pawn. Lasker replied instantaneously with a quiet defensive move and I soon found that all I had gained by my "brilliancy" was the loss of valuable thinking time.

After the game was over a spectator asked him what would have happened had he taken the Knight. "I do not know," he replied. "I was playing a strong master and if a strong master thinks for half an hour and then plays a where I can take it, I think that it will not be healthy for me to take, and I let it alone."> (William Winter, Kings of Chess) who was white 1936

Jun-25-11  ColeTrane: ". . . just one more question . . ."
Jun-25-11  WhiteRook48: R.I.P. Peter Falk
Jun-25-11  gprice: I remember an old star trek episode
where Spock says to Kirk, I have just
beaten the computer 3 times in a row.
Kirk replies very good.
Spock retorts: That's impossible, the
computer plays perfect chess.
I think at that point they realized something was up with the computer and the fun began.
(I know the details aren't accurate but that is the gist of what happened)
Jun-25-11  bundet111: 28...Bxe8?
i think if black played Rfxe8 black would have survived, the Re8 would be guarding the e-file, and if white plays Rf3? black can respond Re3!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Infohunter: <Eggman: Anyone remember the Neil Simon movie "Murder by Death", with Peter Sellers, Truman Capote, and (I think) David Niven? Falk played a character very much like Columbo (if I recall correctly), and was just hilarious.>

I saw that movie in a theater when it came out in 1976. Falk's character (private detective Sam Diamond) wasn't really Columbo-like; he acted more like Bogey in that role. Very funny picture, and yes, David Niven was in it too, as were Alec Guiness and Shelley Winters.

<Phony Benoni: I remember Falk showing up at the 1983 US Open in Pasadena, the one in which Korchnoi played after his match with Kasparov was cancelled. However, it was mostly a celebrity photo-op situation. He seemed interested enough, but certainly didn't play on that occasion.>

I also remember Falk being there, though I didn't see him play.

And yes, "Columbo" is one of my favorite shows of all time. To mention one of his traits that hasn't already been pointed out here, I like the way he would be baffled by some detail of a case until something totally unrelated to it would make a light go on inside the Lieutenant's head. Often when arresting the culprit he would recount the incident by saying, "And THAT's when it hit me!" To this day whenever I'm having a problem-solving discussion with my old school friend and something hits me in similar fashion I will say something to the effect of "Well, what do you know--our old friend the Lieutenant just walked in!"

R.I.P. Peter Falk.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: RIP, Peter Falk.

Your understated style in 'Columbo' would be a valuable lesson to much of television as I understand the medium today.

<Phony Benoni> In the post-Fischer era, I recall a photo in Chess Life & Review, where Falk is kibitzing the game of an unnamed player.

What was curious about the photo was that the player was Dennis Waterman, already one of the strongest in USA.

We met, long after Dennis had retired from chess, at a poker tournament in Tunica, Mississippi.

That was a tough day, as Dennis plays poker very well(, but luck wasn't on his side, or that of this formidable player, either:

Outlasting both of them wasn't any consolation, let me tell you.

Jun-27-11  Caissanist: <Eggman> Haha, <Murder by Death> was a very funny movie! The characters were based on famous fictional detectives of the forties and fifties; Falk's "Sam Diamond" was a takeoff on Sam Spade, the character Humphrey Bogart played in <The Maltese Falcon>. He later starred as the same character in <The Cheap Detective>, which I also enjoyed.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <FSR> Speaking of Cleveland Amory, I'm working on the 1964 US Open in Boston at the moment and he played there. He only had time for the first week, but still had an interesting result: Loss, Win, Loss, Win, Loss, Win.

Hmm, perhaps not that interesting. With the rating you mention, he was probably paired up in the first round, and alternated down-an-up after that. Unfortunately, there does not seem to be a crosstable available, though I'm still looking.

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