Amazon released the trailer for the fourth season of Bosch on Tuesday, and it looks like the next season will offer everything fans of the show have come to love: great Los Angeles locations, a dark, noir-y feel, and a very strained link to the current conversation about police violence. The show’s last season featured a subplot in which Bosch’s partner Jerry Edgar (Jamie Hector) shot a suspect and had to face the consequences, including explaining to his children what he’d done, and it wasn’t handled with much skill. It’s all well and good for a police show to address the current zeitgeist, but Bosch addressed it by having a black cop shoot a guilty, white suspect with military training who turned out to be drawing a gun—in other words, the platonic ideal of a justified police shooting, with the racism angle defused to boot. Just a few months after Michael Slager’s trial for the shooting of Walter Scott ended in a mistrial, that felt like stacking the deck, a really shallow way of dealing with a serious problem. The fourth season, as the trailer makes clear, is going to plunge right back into similarly choppy waters: at least one of the plots comes from Angel’s Flight, the 1999 Harry Bosch novel about the murder of a civil rights’ attorney with a record of successfully suing the LAPD for police brutality.
It’s been a while since 1999, and some of the seams show in the trailer—the shots of a protest turning violent look more like 1992 than 2018—but fortunately for the show’s producers, police brutality hasn’t gone away in the interim. The trailer includes a shot of the actual moment a protest becomes violent, though, and it doesn’t look like it’s handled with much nuance: a protestor throws a Molotov cocktail at a police car, seemingly unprovoked. Maybe there’s a scene with a militarized police response that didn’t make the trailer, or maybe this season of Bosch will stay as frustratingly surface-level as the last one. We’ll find out April 13.
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