Sunday, June 27, 2021

REVIEW: 'Bosch' - An Arson Case on New Year's Eve Sets the Stage for Bosch and Edgar's Latest Murder Investigation in 'Brazen'

Amazon's Bosch - Episode 7.01 "Brazen"

New Year's Eve 2019. While Los Angeles celebrates, a fire breaks out in an East Hollywood apartment building killing several residents including a 10-year-old girl. When it's determined to be arson, Detective Harry Bosch arrives on the scene but his partner, Detective Jerry Edgar, is noticeably absent.

In 2020, the television industry aired 493 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the season premiere of Amazon's Bosch.

"Brazen" was written by Eric Overmyer and directed by Alex Zakrzewski

Every season premiere of Bosch follows the same basic structure. It opens with a time jump from the events of the previous season. Here, it has only been four months since the courthouse bombing and Edgar shooting Jacques Avril. Sometimes the jump in time allows the characters to address the events that previously happened. That's not the case here as Edgar remains haunted about the dark decision he made. It still lingers in ambiguity as well. Bosch remains convinced that his partner went to Avril's home intending to kill him. He saw the error of his ways only to be pulled into a precarious situation regardless. He is cleared of his actions that night. His only punishment from the department is having to attend a tactical course. Of course, Edgar doesn't like that prospect. He has three months to do so. He has plenty of time to get his head on straight. That seems unlikely though. His friends and loved ones are concerned about him. He and Bosch are called to a murder scene. He doesn't show up. Bennett expects him at Billets' New Year's Eve party. He doesn't show up. Latonya believes he will be spending time with his kids. He's not there either. Instead, he's at home getting drunk and smoking. It's a significant change of pace for him. It's a corruption of the soul. Bosch believes he led his partner down this dark path. Edgar had choices every step of the way. He was loyal to the department and the rules that dictate how to behave. It still didn't produce anything resembling justice. Edgar has killed before. This experience feels different. It's concerning. And yet, he and Bosch still have a murder to investigate. That too is part of the pattern of each premiere. Bosch and Edgar are called in for a murder. The audience sometimes gets more insight into the crime than the detectives do. That doesn't place us at an unfair advantage though. We don't yet have all the pieces for it all to fit into place with meaning and purpose. As such, Bosch and Edgar are necessary as they are the ones investigating potential motives and trying their best to know exactly what happened. It's clear right away that this building has been targeted by arson. People are eyewitnesses to the crime. Three people were killed. That includes a 10-year-old girl who quickly becomes idolized in the press. Now, this show hasn't always done a great job in depicting the press in relation to the police and the politicians. Scott Anderson isn't someone with tactics worth admiring. Here, he essentially dehumanizes Sonia by giving her a moniker. She is the "Little Tamale Girl." That will apparently make people care because it's a distinction worth remembering. It's not the whole of her being though. This family was making tamales to welcome good fortune in the new year. That wasn't the fate awaiting them. They were collateral damage in a vicious war being fought for control of this neighborhood. In some ways, it's cyclical in nature. It's the same issue over and over again with vulnerable people being susceptible to the drug trade while fearing law enforcement due to their immigration statuses. Pierce and Vega produce few meaningful leads. This community is scared. Bosch leads with empathy. That may not be enough. He too remains haunted by a young girl's body. And finally, each premiere introduces various storylines that seem tangential but always come together in the end somehow. That includes Irving experiencing growing pains with the new mayor while also fearing for his newborn son who arrived prematurely and requires significant medical intervention to stay alive. The show also features Chandler taking on a new client, a man indicted for running a Ponzi scheme the DA is hoping to use as an example for her tough on white collar crime stance. This will all provide valuable insight into these characters. This is also the end for the show. As such, anything truly could happen this year. That's exciting while also extremely ominous. Of course, that note was struck the moment everyone celebrated the beginning of 2020. It's unclear if the show plans on addressing the real-life pandemic. It doesn't seem all that necessary. Moreover, it's unlikely for any particular story to be dragged out across several months. But again, anything is possible. That's daunting while mostly being the baggage that the audience probably brings to the proceedings this year.