“BOSCH” CAN’T LET GO SOLVING HORRIFIC CRIMES ON TV
A TV Review by Tim Riley
“BOSCH” ON AMAZON PRIME
Adhering to the stay at home orders, notwithstanding some loosening on restrictions, has hindered our ability to enjoy such things as patronizing movie theaters, attending baseball games and enjoying concerts and live stage productions.
Of course, this is stating the obvious, but for available entertainment some of the best options require access to streaming services, with Netflix and Amazon Prime featured most prominently. The plethora of choices on these streaming services would probably allow someone to stay in the basement at least until the next decade, but that’s not a scenario holding any allure for anyone who’s not a hermit or in a witness protection program.
Time now permits discoveries of programs that were somehow overlooked. A long-running success story on Amazon Prime, the “Bosch” police procedural aired its first episode in 2014 and is now on its sixth season. How did I miss a cop show this good from the beginning? In the titular role, Titus Welliver is outstanding as LAPD detective Hieronymous “Harry” Bosch, a veteran in the Robbery Homicide Division at the Hollywood precinct.
From personal experience this past week, “Bosch” is binge-worthy entertainment, and I am determined to see it through to the end. Though with the seventh and final season announced, the wait for final closure might be taxing on my patience.
Titus Welliver carries the weight of the series, and he makes Harry Bosch a fascinatingly gritty character in so many ways. A hard-boiled detective, Bosch’s style brings to mind the type of no-nonsense officer found in a vintage film noir story.
Struggling with his own demons, Bosch once served in the Special Forces with tours in the Gulf War and later Afghanistan. With his military background and hardcore attitude, Bosch understands what needs to be done for effective policing. Unafraid to take action when necessary, we come to grasp his tenacity at the beginning of the first season when he engages in a foot chase with a suspect that ends in a fatal shooting in a darkened alley.
Accused of planting a gun on the suspect that would allow Bosch to discharge his service weapon in self-defense, Bosch faces the heat in a wrongful death lawsuit where the plaintiff’s lawyer Honey Chandler (Mimi Rogers) proves to be a tough adversary.
By the way, it won’t be the last time that Bosch has to deal with his attorney nemesis, as he will cross paths with Chandler in a later season and even under circumstances that requires mutual cooperation on a volatile murder case. A sign on Bosch’s work space that sums up his credo reads “Get off your ass and go knock on doors.” That’s exactly what he has to do in the hunt for serial killer Raymond Waits (Jason Gedrick).
Between court appearances and waiting for a verdict in the wrongful death case, Bosch works with his steady, younger partner Jerry Edgar (Jamie Hector) to unravel the mystery of the cold case death of an adolescent boy whose bones were found buried in Laurel Canyon.
A disturbing cat-and-mouse game ensues with the serial killer whose claims of having murdered the boy as one of his victims is not deemed credible by Bosch, when evidence shows the boy had suffered a history of brutal beatings.
A psychopath of the first order, Waits has learned enough about Bosch’s background to know that the detective grew up in horrible institutional conditions from a young age after his prostitute mother was killed at a motel and dumped in an alley.Frequently troubled by his own past and the death of his mother, Bosch will get entangled in cold case investigations that cause worry for Deputy Chief of Police Irvin Irving (Lance Reddick).
“Bosch” has great supporting characters in the work place, from veteran detectives Moore (Gregory Scott Cummins) and Johnson (Troy Evans), longtime partners known as Crate and Barrel, to Lieutenant Grace Billets (Amy Aquino), who is Bosch’s immediate superior.
As a friend, Lieutenant Billets often has Bosch’s back as his disdain for authority puts him at odds with the career bureaucrats in the department and the Internal Affairs officers probing his moves.
While Bosch is famously taciturn to the point of exasperation for his colleagues, Crate and Barrel are humorously cantankerous and bring welcome levity to the squad room.Divorced though still cordial with his ex-wife Eleanor (Sarah Clarke), Bosch’s personal life is messy when he gets involved in a romantic relationship with rookie cop Julia Brasher (Annie Wersching).
Nevertheless, Bosch is devoted to his teenage daughter Maddie (Madison Lintz), who lives with her mom in Las Vegas, but later spends more time in Los Angeles and takes on a bigger role.Bosch occasionally bends the rules, whether conducting searches without a warrant or roughing up a suspect, and he’s willing to vent his frustrations with authority figures, such as the annoyingly ambitious District Attorney (Steven Culp) who seeks higher office.“Bosch” is addictive and now is a good time to jump into the series from the first episode.