Bosch Season 4: Amazon’s Dark Crime Drama Explores Topical Themes, but is Anticlimactic

3.5 out of 5 stars (above average)

Bosch Season 4 poster
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I entered Bosch’s 4th season totally cold.  While TV crime dramas don’t usually interest me, this season of Bosch enthralled with its grounded narrative, flawed characters, and intelligent writing.  I spent the first 9 episodes on the edge of my couch, but was sadly let down by an underwhelming finale that, while emotionally satisfying, lacked the urgency of what came before.  Bosch’s 4th season is thrilling, atmospheric, and refreshingly unpredictable in an overcrowded landscape of generic crime shows.

This season sees Det. Harry Bosch (an exceptional Titus Welliver) oversee a task force to solve the murder of an important civil rights lawyer.  As this is LA on television in 2018, the African-American community instantly believes a cop is to blame and forms a Black Lives Matter-esque group that incites further tension between the LAPD and the citizens it is sworn to protect.  Oh yeah, Bosch also has some family drama to tangle with.  Because who wouldn’t want to focus on Bosch’s angst-ridden teenage daughter (An acceptable Madison Lintz) when there’s a murder case to be solved?

This show almost strikes gold.  Rather than politicize its theme, Bosch takes the time to intelligently explore both sides of the racial argument rather than oversimplify it.  The reliance on complex characters and storytelling over bombastic violence was a breath of fresh air.  Unfortunately, the season finale leaves all of that interesting commentary on the back burner, drowning in set up for next year and leaving those big questions hanging.  I was ready to give this 4 out of 5 stars, but the bungled ending forced me to lower my score.

Despite an underwhelming ending, I would still highly recommend Bosch for people who want a different kind of crime drama.  The entire cast is brilliant, the writing smart, and the overall narrative thrilling.  Stream it on Amazon Prime.

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