Titus Welliver has played Harry Bosch on television for nearly a decade, starting with Amazon’s seven-season crime series “Bosch.” A grizzled cop who once squinted into the harsh Los Angeles sun and uncovered ugly truths hiding in dark cracks has since retired from the force. “Bosh: Legacy,” This episode, in its second season on Freevee, is proof that Harry’s story, as a private investigator teams up with shrewd and poised defense attorney Honey Chandler, played by Mimi Rogers, is more interesting and closer to the noir sensibility hinted at in the original.
At first glance, they are opposites. Gruff and hardened by life, he’s happy to do his job in jeans and a T-shirt. It turned out methodically, strategically and flawlessly. They share a world-weary cynicism that has yet to diminish their common interest in righting a few wrongs. And their mutual respect remains untainted by sexual tension. Together, they are a formidable brainpower that thinks from all angles. If the show were just about them, I’d give it four stars without hesitation. Welliver and Rogers have such an easy chemistry playing this pair of professional puzzle solvers.
But their efforts are only half the story.
The other half focuses on Harry’s daughter Maddie. The young cop is eager and serious and never believable as played by Madison Lintz. Being drawn into a role that one does not have the skills to play; This is a performance that means first looking, then looking. More strong – neither the writing nor the community surrounding it comes close to the subtleties achieved in the Harry and Honey episodes. By switching back and forth, the show only invites this comparison, not to its benefit.
Despite their dual need to maintain a tough exterior, Harry and Maddie have enough trauma between them to sustain a team of psychiatrists. They claim otherwise (are they in therapy? Like!) and it makes sense for the characters. However, the series often falls into this trap. “Worrying about you has become a full-time distraction,” he tells his father. “Okay okay” she replies angrily, “so don’t worry about me.” If someone had taken the time to take Maddie’s career seriously (you’ll never get your father’s approval!) or not sighed and shook their heads exasperatingly at Harry’s reckless savior complex, this would have been It might have been the most dysfunctional relationship on television, with a slash-and-death desire.
The first two episodes of the season follow a grisly kidnapping for which Harry is in rescue mode. I prefer him as the hero of a gruff, thinking man, and he returns to his old form for the remaining episodes, which continue four months later when Honey recruits him to work on another case. A woman was killed. Honey believes his client did not do this. So she and Harry try to piece together what’s really going on, often skating around the law – mostly getting their palms greasy – while Honey gnashes her teeth the entire time. They soon realize that a pair of corrupt and extremely dangerous deputy cops are also involved.
The FBI is also investigating one of Honey’s old cases involving the pipeline explosion, some murders, and the Russians. The feds think he and Harry are involved, or at least connected. “The FBI wants you here,” says one of his colleagues. “I?” His shrug is so perfect. “Send them in.” This eventually traps Harry’s hacker-for-hire. Played by Stephen A. Chang, his overconfidence and desire to impress a pretty face can get him into trouble. Or not. Results are rarely long-lasting with this series.
This is actually preferable when it comes to Honey. He thinks five steps ahead, steely but with a light touch. The picture of the class, he doesn’t raise his voice or lose his cool. He is also very experienced organized For this. This is a great late-career role for Rogers, and one that Emmy voters overlooked. With so many TV series currently vying for attention, it’s becoming more difficult for top-notch but understated performances to stand out. Still, the character’s masterful talent is riveting in the hands of a veteran like Rogers.
The finale sets up a storyline that could put Honey and Harry on opposing sides going forward. If so, it would be a shame. Their partnership is the main appeal of the series.
The other highlight, as always, is Harry’s house, with its floor-to-ceiling windows stretching over the Hollywood hills. At night the city shines from afar. Despite his Bosch stories being in Los Angeles, he was never interested in Hollywood. Harry’s house is a nod to the grandeur of the show’s setting.
“Bosch: Legacy” Season 2 – 2.5 stars (out of 4)
Where to watch: Free
Nina Metz is a Tribune critic.