'Columbo' may draw some raves

Detective fans who like their fish out of water should enjoy "Columbo Likes the Nightlife" (7 p.m., ABC), the latest installment in the 35-year-old Peter Falk franchise. In tonight's mystery, the rumpled detective stumbles into the trendy rave dance scene. Who can resist the incongruity of watching the grandfatherly Columbo cavort with stoned ravers?

Fortunately for "Columbo" fans, the Peugeot-driving sleuth doesn't waste his breath condemning the Ecstasy-driven rave subculture. He's got a murder to solve. Make that two. Columbo's seemingly scattered mind begins racing when the apparent suicide of tabloid snoop appears to be linked to the sudden disappearance of a mobbed-up character who is the ex-husband of the washed-up actress (Jennifer Sky) who turns out to be romantically linked to a rave promoter (Matthew Rhys).

"Sopranos" fans should stick around for brief appearance by Steven Schirripa, who appears as a genial ambassador for a New York mob family.

Tonight's other highlights

  • A computer wiz breathes his last on "CSI" (8 p.m., CBS).
  • "Frontline" (8 p.m., PBS) examines the failings of the foster care system with the two-part series "Failure to Protect: The Taking of Logan Marr."
  • A father (Charles S. Dutton) resumes the search for his son, who has been missing for six years, on "Without a Trace" (9 p.m., CBS).
  • Carter plans a trip to Africa while treating a crusty character (Ed Asner) on "ER" (9 p.m., NBC).
  • Scheduled on "PrimeTime" (9 p.m., ABC): Kate Hudson, North Korea, NASCAR wives.

Series notes

Arsenio Hall is host of "Star Search" (7 p.m., CBS) ... Ross looks for romantic revenge on "Friends" (7 p.m., NBC) ... Humans do the darndest things on "Stupid Behavior Caught on Tape" (7 p.m., Fox) ... Elliott is smitten with a stranger (Rick Schroder) on "Scrubs" (7:40 p.m., NBC) ... Demented mentors on "Will & Grace" (8:20 p.m., NBC) ... Improvisation on "Jamie Kennedy Experiment" (8:30 p.m., WB).

Late night

Jerry Seinfeld and Foo Fighters appear on "Late Show with David Letterman" (10:35 p.m., CBS) ... Jay Leno greets Dana Carvey and the Goo Goo Dolls on "The Tonight Show" (10:35 p.m., NBC).

Heather Graham and the Shaolin Monks appear on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" (11:35 p.m., NBC) ... The Doors are booked on "The Late, Late Show with Craig Kilborn" (11:37 p.m., CBS).

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