Monday, 7 November 2016
So I Watched... Bosch.
When I was growing up, a favorite of mine to watch on television were police series. Anything from TJ Hooker, The Bill, Law and Order, you name it. I loved policemen and women as main characters because I loved to cheer them on as they conducted their investigations, caught the bad guys and were heroes in the end. Nowadays I struggle to find a good cop show to watch, Law and Order was canceled and I've drifted from the other versions of the series, The Bill finished a long time ago and TJ Hooker finished long before both of them. I have Netflix and have enjoyed what the service has to offer but that good cop show still eluded me, but then I saw a small trailer for Bosch as a way of advertising Amazon Video and something caught my attention about it. It wasn't just the fact that who appeared to be the main character was a policeman who looked like an absolute badass, it was in fact because I recognized him from a film I had seen at the cinema a while back with my wife. I recognized Titus Welliver from Transformers: Age of Extinction but had also seen him in Gone Baby Gone and Argo, I watched the trailer for Bosch again and thought "you know what? I'll give this a go" and I signed up for Amazon Video and watched the first series without delay.
Bosch is set in what I like to think of as the dark side of police work, where not all of the stories or cases have a hundred percent happy endings and the journey through them is not a pleasant one, many are left with scars on the inside or out but they have to keep going. One ending in particular ends in a crushing failure and the only way some kind of comfort is found is with a well-placed mouthful of spit and a broken picture on a wall. The series starts off with Bosch in trouble for what is being portrayed as a questionable shooting of a suspect who may not have been armed. With this to deal with, he also has to investigate an awful child murder via the discovery of the child's bones. Season two focuses on a murder investigation where politics rears its ugly head and interferes on many levels, there are other subplots that are woven through the two seasons but to talk of them too much may spoil them so I'll leave that part there. The two series are a reasonable length in episodes but I see this as a good thing, the stories are not padded out to fill up a longer series and you can often tell when this is happening.
True Blood, I'm looking in your direction.
One of the reasons I think Bosch is so awesome is because of it's cast, not only do they fit their roles so well but it is always nice to see faces you remember as opposed to a "star name" as such, it is something I will always find much more pleasing. Titus Welliver is something special as the almost stoic policeman who at times it seems is wearing the perfect poker face but also deadly serious. He has had a tough life but does his job none the less, I do not recall seeing him smile often except near the end of the first season when his daughter (who always calls him Harry) actually calls him Dad. It's a wonderful little moment that glued me to the screen when it happened, but cross him and do so at your own peril as another character finds out also at the season's end. Amy Aquino (ER, Picket Fences) is awesome as Bosch's commanding officer and friend, someone who does not take shit from him or anyone but the level of respect between them is evident and nicely acted, his partner is played by Jamie Hector (The Wire) and the two of them play off of each other nicely, especially with shorthand talk when on the job.
The Chief of police is played by Lance Reddick (Fringe, John Wick) and looks and acts like the one guy you seriously would not want to piss off, his eyes look like they could melt steel alone with some of the expressions he gives. Bosch's ex-wife is played by Sarah Clarke (24, Twilight) and in most stories, the ex-wife is a bitch who does not get along with the ex-husband but their relationship here is a mature and adult one for the sake of their daughter, a confident young lady played well by Madison Lintz (The Walking Dead). What adds to this is the well-chosen supporting characters and who plays them, such as Jason Gedrick (Iron Eagle), Jeri Ryan (Star Trek Voyager), Scott Wilson (The Walking Dead), Mimi Rogers (The Rapture), I could keep going here but I invite you to watch the show and see what I mean.
One thing that I have enjoyed is that the series has a nice fan base and even a fansite too, Titus Welliver is on Twitter and is certainly approachable. I decided to tweet him one night before I turned in to say how much I was enjoying the show, I did not expect an answer because I know from Jimmy Kimmel's Mean Tweets that actors and celebrities often get a lot of abuse on the platform so I expected my tweet to get lost in the traffic, but I was shocked to see he responded by thanking me for what I said. Keeping my head still attached to my shoulders, I again tweeted him in which I thanked him for responding and wished him the best, again he replied with gratitude. Through following him on Twitter I also came into contact with and am getting to know the fansite's "Proud Mayor", Clare Costa, and immediately I became jealous bcause her Twitter profile picture is of her with Welliver, so very jealous, god dammit. Another positive that I found out is that Welliver has also given some of his time to record audiobooks of some of the series, I have not listened to any yet because I have so much to catch up in terms of reading but I certainly intend to as to me it shows an embracing of the character on more than one level and reminds me of when John Ritter narrated 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter before he sadly passed away.
At the time of writing this, season three has been announced and is on the way. A long time ago I had cut my television time down heavily as a lot of what was on really didn't appeal to me. Signing up for the likes of Netflix and Amazon Video have given me something to watch again and that makes me happy as with these services you are guaranteed something new, something original and in an age where remakes and reboots are the in trend, that is brilliant. I will stick with Bosch for the long run and hope for the day when I actually shake Titus Welliver's hand or even get a photo with him, I think the best way to describe his performance in the series would be in the same fashion once used with the late Christopher Reeve and Superman...
Titus Welliver doesn't play Bosch, he is Bosch.