So who is Bosch?
Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch (Titus Welliver) is an LA detective who (almost) always gets his man.
However, in his relentless pursuit of the many demons haunting the city of angels, Bosch frequently runs into trouble with his higher-ups in the (possibly corrupt) Los Angeles Police Department.
What's his story?
When we first meet Bosch, what’s most memorable about him is his belief that “everybody counts or nobody counts” – no case is too small or big for Bosch; he doesn’t care how lowly the victims are, nor how rich or famous the murderers may be.
He’s even had complaints lodged against him with the Department of Internal Affairs but has always managed to survive because firstly, he’s good at what he does and secondly, because he has a few friends (or, at least, defenders) in high places.
Like every quintessential anti-hero, Bosch also harbours childhood trauma: what drives him as a detective is seeking justice for his mother, who was murdered when he was a young boy.
What have I missed?
Fast-forward to season three: Bosch has discovered evidence that pointed to a new – and very powerful – suspect. Determined to solve the case once and for all, is he prepared to do anything, even if it means crossing the line?
As tough and driven as he is, Bosch has always abided by the law. However, three seasons in, he illegally sets up surveillance on a man he suspected of murder.
When this man was eventually murdered (in an attempt to frame Bosch), he kept information from the lead detective on that case, Detective Robertson (played by Paul Calderon) and from his own long-time partner, Jerry Edgar (Jamie Hector). Edgar, who was recovering from gunshot wounds at the time, was devastated by his mentor’s betrayal, while Bosch’s slipperiness means Robertson doesn’t trust him either.
As season four begins, Bosch and Robertson are thrown together to solve a new murder. Will they be able to work together?
How’s Bosch’s personal life going?
Bosch’s tunnel vision for solving cases also means he doesn’t prioritise his personal relationships.
He’s had numerous girlfriends throughout the series so far, but none have stuck around. Unfortunately, when it comes down to solving the case vs winning over the woman, the latter always loses.
He does, however, try to maintain a relationship with his teenage step-daughter, Maddie (Madison Lintz), although she’s resigned to often eating a lonely dinner at the house, albeit one that Bosch bought when he sold the movie rights to one of his old cases, boasting spectacular views over the Hollywood Hills.
Bosch’s ex-wife (and Maddie’s mother) Eleanor Wish (Sarah Clarke), a former FBI agent-turned professional poker player is also back in season four. She and her husband had moved to Hong Kong, but now she’s returned to LA and trying to get back into the Bureau. Her husband, meanwhile, is... incommunicado, which leaves his step-daughter very worried…
Hey, where do I know that guy from…?
Plenty of great actors pop up in Bosch. In fact, at least once an episode you’ll probably say, “I know that guy from somewhere...” and end up playing IMDb detective for the night. But let’s save you the time and trouble – chances are you know them from The Wire.
When it came to casting, Bosch showrunner Eric Overmyer, who previously worked on The Wire, simply scrolled through his phone and managed to get both Jamie Hector (who played ice-cold drug dealer Marlo Stanfield) and Lance Reddick (who played Lieutenant Cedric Daniels) to come on board.
On Bosch, Reddick plays Chief of Police Irvin Irving, a cool and ambitious customer who lost his marriage and almost gave up his career when his only son was killed while working undercover. In season four, however, he’s getting back into the swing of things but, when Bosch comes along and confronts Reddick by implying that his boss was responsible for the murder of Bosch’s mother, it puts Irving in a rather awkward position…
Also appearing in season four is Clark Johnson, who The Wire fans will remember as Baltimore Sun city editor Augustus “Gus” Haynes from season five. In Bosch, Johnson plays a lawyer suing the LAPD – a dangerous thing to do in a city with these many murders…
Isn’t the show based on a book?
Yes. 21, in fact. And they’ve been in translated into 39 languages and sold over 60 million copies. The author, former crime reporter Michael Connelly, is doing OK for himself.
Connelly began writing about Vietnam Vet Hieronymus Bosch (named after the artist whose painting of hell reminded him of LA) back in 1992 so that, when it came time to update him for the TV series, he became a Gulf War vet.
Anything else I need to know?
Though many actors wanted the title role, it eventually went to Welliver because, Connelly said, “he had behind the eyes what I wanted in Bosch.” Connelly also said he’d like to “get 60 hours, which would be five or six years” out of the character and, with season five due to air in 2019, it looks like he’ll get his wish.
Until then, both newcomers and fans alike can dig into season four of Bosch, airing Wednesdays at 10:45pm on SBS. All of season four is currently streaming at SBS On Demand: