Friday, October 20, 2023

REVIEW: 'Bosch: Legacy' - Bosch Grows Desperate as the Search for Maddie Reaches Its Dire Conclusion in 'Zzyzx'

Freevee's Bosch: Legacy - Episode 2.02 "Zzyzx"

The Screen Cutter attempts to bargain with Bosch and Chandler, who go to extremes to locate Maddie before it's too late.

"Zzyzx" was written by Chris Downey and directed by Sharat Raju

Time is running out to save Maddie. Dockweiler is hoping to use her as leverage to negotiate a better plea deal. He doesn't want to be convicted of sex crimes. He raped several women. He doesn't want to be punished with the severe consequences of those crimes. He would rather be known as the criminal who abducted a cop. He won't have to spend the rest of his life in prison. He believes he operates with all the power. A deal has to be made before he shares Maddie's location in the desert. Everything depends on her staying alive long enough. The gravity of the situation is felt by all involved. It's more personal for Bosch because family ultimately matters more than everything else. A deal ultimately doesn't have to be made with Dockweiler. The criminal will face punishment for every crime he committed. He thought he outsmarted law enforcement. Bosch works beyond the bounds of those rules. He's fighting to save his family. Nothing will stand in his way.

A perilous moment still occurs where Bosch is once again willing to torture someone to extract information. Again, it's a lazy trope meant to convey the effectiveness of the technique. Bosch's love for Maddie has to be stronger than his hatred for Dockweiler. Edgar has to remind him of that. Bosch has all the tools readily available to get in a room alone with Dockweiler. It doesn't require letting anyone in on the plan so they too would be complicit in whatever he does. He just knows how the system operates in Hollywood station. He spent a lot of time there. Moreover, everyone is willing to look the other way because Bosch didn't cross the line. He's lucky in that regard. He doesn't burn these bridges. So many are willing to drop everything to help him with a case. Crate and Barrel follow Dockweiler's attorney, James Rafferty, for the possibility of any clue he might have. That proves fruitful. Uncovering the secrets of Dockweiler's past helps Bosch realize the personal connection he has to a specific spot in the desert. That still leaves a lot of ground to cover. However, all the clues quickly add up. When Dockweiler feels generous in sharing a small detail, it immediately seals his fate because everything else is already in motion.

Maddie wields power too. Dockweiler continually kept her drugged so she never had an opportunity to disrupt his master plan. And yet, she still got a glimpse of the outside world when the drugs wore off for a brief moment. Fortunately, she was already at the final destination Dockweiler had planned. He didn't just pull over to keep her quiet. He had to drug her one last time to position her into the box and bury her alive. He believes the air and water he provides are sufficient to ensure a healthy outcome. He doesn't want her to die. He isn't exacting revenge because she caught him. He is ready to accept his fate according to his own terms. He's so accustomed to dictating control of the world. He doesn't have that power. He surrendered it when he turned himself in. It just takes awhile longer to realize how much he has lost. It's the totality of his actions too. It's not solely what he does to Maddie. The entire city is watching the live feed. They believe she's alive and fighting to be saved. She etches a clue into the wood to deliver a message. Bosch knows exactly what it means. That bond between father and daughter remains strong. It means he's the only one who could possibly save her.

Bosch is aided by Mo's technical expertise and Chandler's vast resources. It would take hours to drive to the desert. Chandler cuts that time down significantly by bringing in a helicopter. It's very impressive. It shows how influential she remains. She has her own connections too. She's willing to use them to protect the people she cares about. She's motivated to find Maddie as well. She won't let Bosch go off on this rescue mission by himself. He needs help in order to cover all the ground. Dockweiler believed he was smart by setting up this system that couldn't be broken. He laid out just enough clues to offer hope. He wanted to be found. Maddie's fate was determined by those searching for her not the person who took her. He keeps the actual crime at a distance. He's accepted what comes next believing it will be what defines him. His story is much more complex. He was abused as a child because his mother fell under the sway of a cult. In turn, he became an abuser as well. He deserves no sympathy. No one is advocating on his behalf. No one is trying to excuse or justify what he's done. Understanding his past is entirely in service to finding Maddie. Bosch needs to be there to see the ground moving when Maddie is calling out for help one last time.

The extent of Maddie's injuries are relatively tame. She is dehydrated. She has a couple of cuts and bruises. She will recover quickly. The characters often do in this universe. That's inevitable. This part of the story is completely resolved. This episode provides that satisfaction. However, the effects of this trauma will linger. Maddie's co-workers rally around her. They hate that this happened. They blame her for obsessing over the screen cutter case. She didn't deserve this. No one should feel powerless in this case. They can all help in some way. That remains the overall message. Maddie's life matters and deserves the full support of the police. It's easy for the institution to respond appropriately because she is one of them. In cases where it isn't a person with a badge and gun, it becomes much more cynical and dysfunctional. Maddie joined the police believing she could fight on behalf of those often overlooked by the system. This abduction has the potential to radically alter her perspective. She can't lose sight of why she enrolled in this job in the first place. Moreover, the fact that she was taken shouldn't be held against her. She is deserving of all the love and support people are capable of giving. Bosch goes above and beyond in this case. He prevails as only he could. Maddie is safe. Everyone worked as a team to ensure that outcome without compromising their values. It just shows the power of action when people in this public service are properly motivated and collaborative.