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"I'm Detective Bosch. LAPD, Hollywood Division. This is the work I do."

Harry Bosch: I don't believe there's a better world than this one. I think this is the only one we got.
Bosch is a Prime Video original series that was developed as part of the site's second batch of original programming. It is based on the novels of author Michael Connelly, and stars Titus Welliver as Connelly's most frequent protagonist, LAPD homicide detective Harry Bosch, a grizzled warnote  and police veteran. Other stars include Jamie Hector as Bosch's partner Jerry Edgar, Sarah Clarke as Bosch's ex-wife Eleanor Wish, Madison Lintz as his daughter Maddie, and Lance Reddick as Deputy Chief Irvin Irving. Mimi Rogers has a recurring role as Honey Chandler, a defense attorney and regular antagonist to Harry Bosch.
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The pilot was released in 2014 while the series itself was released all at once in 2015. Like all Amazon originals, the decision to make a full series was based on a fan vote after the pilot was made available online.

Season 1 combined plot elements from Connelly novels City of Bones, The Concrete Blonde, and Echo Park. It opens with Bosch facing a civil suit for a shooting in which he gunned down a Serial Killer known as The Dollmaker. While facing this administrative hearing that could end his LAPD career, Bosch still finds the time to investigate a cold case involving the death of a small boy whose bones were found in the woods. Annie Wersching plays beat cop Julia Brasher. Veronica Cartwright appears as the killer's foster mother.

Season 2 was released in March 2016, and adapts plot threads from Connelly novels Trunk Music, The Last Coyote, and The Drop. In the second season Harry Bosch is investigating the murder of Tony Allen, a pornographer who has ties to the Russian Mafia in Las Vegas. Jeri Ryan appears as one of the suspects, Tony's bitter ex-wife Veronica. Matthew Lillard plays Luke "Lucky" Rykov, a Vegas wise guy who also comes into Harry's view as a suspect.

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Season 3 was released in April 2017 and adapts plot threads from the novels A Darkness More Than Night and The Black Echo. Harry is the investigator and an important witness in the murder trial of Andrew Holland, a film director who allegedly strangled his girlfriend to death. The Holland prosecution is threatened when suspicion falls on Harry in the murder of one Edward Gunn, a wino whom Harry suspected years ago of being a Serial Killer. And while that's all going down, Harry is involved in the investigation of Billy Meadows, an Army Special Forces vet (like Harry) who's found shot to death in his RV. There's also a plot thread original to the series involving a serial killer stalking the Koreatown neighborhood.

Season 4 was released April 2018 and adapts major plot threads from Connelly novels Angels Flight and 9 Dragons and tie up some unresolved story arcs from the previous seasons (namely, the Koreatown Killer arc and Marjorie Lowe's murder). Harry is called in to investigate the murder of Howard Elias, a crusading attorney who at the time of his death was suing the LAPD for torturing a criminal suspect during an investigation. Meanwhile, his ex-wife Eleanor is worried about her current husband, Reggie, who has disappeared mysteriously in Hong Kong. And the Koreatown Killer is still on the loose.

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Season 5 was released in April 2019 based on the novel Two Kinds of Truth. Preston Borders, a man Bosch put away for the murder of aspiring actress Danielle Skyler back in the 1990s, is appealing his conviction. He has the support of the DA's office, because of a crucial piece of evidence: DNA found at the scene, tested 20 years later, matches to another man, a deceased serial rapist. Bosch hires former antagonist Honey Chandler to defend him against charges of misconduct. Meanwhile, a second plot line begins with a brutal murder in a pharmacy. This leads Bosch into an investigation of "pill mills" and organized crime trafficking of prescription opioids. Eventually, Harry Bosch goes undercover. A third plot line original to the series has Jerry Edgar investigating the murder of one of his CIs.

Season 6 has been announced for pre-production. It will be based on The Overlook and Dark Sacred Night.


This series provides examples of:

  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: In Episode 1-4 Bosch chases Reynard Waits through some enormous storm drains.
  • Accidental Hero: Crate and Barrel solve the Koreatown Killer case through absolutely no reason other than being in the right place at the right time and following the clues. And they were complaining about being where they were the whole time.
  • Adaptational Heroism:
    • While they occasionally find each other on the same side, for most of the novels Irvin Irving is Harry Bosch's enemy, an ally of Internal Affairs and political schemer who is usually trying to get Cowboy Cop Bosch fired. In Bosch, and especially in Season 2, he becomes something of a Reasonable Authority Figure, especially when he and Bosch are working the Carl Nash investigation together.
    • In The Black Echo, Eleanor Wish is totally guilty of the offenses that got her fired from the FBI (and sent to prison). In Bosch Eleanor was fired from the FBI because she was a Fall Guy for misdeeds she wasn't really responsible for.
    • Jerry Edgar gets a significant upgrade in terms of both how good a cop he is and how good a partner he is in the series. In the books, he's a clotheshorse who often pays more attention to his real estate side job than to doing good police work.
    • Howard Elias is much more a Crusading Lawyer in his appearance in season four than he comes across as in the book, where he's very much more an Asshole Victim; in the book, it's explained at length that he files civil lawsuits against the L.A.P.D. regardless of the merits of the case because if he can get the jury to find for his client, even if it's just a judgement of $1, he can bill the city for his work. None of that really figures into his characterization in the series, although it is implied through his history of dealings with Walker.
  • Adaptation Distillation:
    • Season 1 combines elements of three Michael Connelly novels: the long-dead boy found in the woods (novel City of Bones), the civil suit charging Bosch with the wrongful death of a murder suspect (The Concrete Blonde), and the pursuit of serial killer Raynard Waits (Echo Park).
    • The characterization of Maddie Bosch is also based on later novels in the series. Especially her desire to become a police officer.
    • Season 2 goes mostly with Trunk Music (murder of a producer with a connection to Vegas mobsters and strippers), with elements from The Drop (younger man impersonating his father) and The Last Coyote (death of Harry's mother). It also comes up with a plot thread original to the series in which George Irving is on undercover ops trying to ferret out a drug-running operation with the LAPD, and a completely new ending to the Trunk Music plot that includes a different bad guy.
    • Season 3 combines A Darkness More Than Night (film director arranges plot to frame Harry Bosch for murder, so said film director can beat his own murder rap) and The Black Echo (Army vets smuggling from overseas kill Billy Meadows, one of their own).
    • Season 4 combines major elements of Angels Flight (crusading civil-rights attorney murdered right before a big case against the L.A.P.D. is about to begin) and 9 Dragons (Triads and Tongs dealings that result in Eleanor Wish being killed).
  • Adaptation Name Change:
    • Several in Season 2. Tony and Veronica Aliso become Tony and Veronica Allen for the show. And Luke Goshen becomes Luke Rykov. (This is part of the show taking the Mafia plot from Trunk Music and turning into a plot with the Russian Mafiya.) Though it turns out his name really IS Luke Goshen, and "Lucky" Luke Rykov is his cover identity.
    • In Season 3 film director David Storey becomes Andrew Holland.
  • Adapted Out:
    • In Season 3: in the storyline adapted from A Darkness More Than Night, the unofficial investigator of Gunn's murder is Jerry Edgar, who is piggy-backing on fellow LAPD Detectives Robertson and Pierce...Terry McCaleb and LA Sheriff Detective Jaye Winston don't show up. This is probably because Amazon doesn't have the rights to the Terry McCaleb character, Terry having previously appeared in The Film of the Book of Blood Work. And in the storyline adapted from The Black Echo, Bosch has to rely on Luke Goshen to get him info from the Feds, because Eleanor Wish's character is at a completely different place in her personal timeline.
    • In Season 4: Possibly just to reduce the number of characters, the second victim of the Angels Flight murders switches from a housekeeper on her way home to the operator of the controls; the operator character had to be there, the housekeeper didn't, so she gets Adapted Out and he gets Death by Adaptation. Also, there's the entire part of the plot from Angels Flight regarding who really killed the little girl. There, it's easily a third of the book; here, it's a single line of dialogue.
    • In Season 5, the role of Harry Bosch’s legal counsel is played by Honey Chandler instead of Mickey Haller, as Amazon doesn’t have the license for Haller’s character. Also adapted out are all of the characters from the San Fernando PD, as in this storyline Harry is still in the employ of the LAPD.
  • Amazing Freaking Grace: Played on bagpipes at George Irving's funeral.
  • Answer Cut: Near the end of Season 2, Bosch wonders of Layla the loose end, "I wonder where she is with all that money." Cut to Layla, sipping wine on the coast of Spain at a restaurant—where she's tracked down by Joey Marks's lawyer.
  • Anticlimax: The Koreatown Killer plotline ends not with any grand police work Harry Bosch-style but instead with the KTK getting struck by a car and killed. Crate and Barrel simply run down his prints and the gun and cell phone found with his body and solve the case.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: When Bosch, Edgar, and the other cops are storming through the Chinese pool hall in episode 4-10, one of the hoodlums starts spouting faux-Mandarin gibberish. Detective Moy, who does speak Mandarin, calls him out.
  • Bad Santa: The pilot, set around the holiday season, features a Santa Claus vomiting while under arrest at the police station.
    • Another one appears in the same place late in Season 3.
  • Battle in the Rain: Bosch's confrontation with the serial killer, the one that ended up in the shooting that Bosch is later facing charges for, happened in a driving rain.
  • Better to Die than Be Killed: Refuses to surrender when Bosch and Edgar corner him. He's killed when one of his grenades go off.
  • Big Brother Is Watching You: Season 3 reveals that Bosch has been secretly (and illegally) surveilling Gunn.
  • Bland-Name Product: In season four, the Back Story police-brutality crime involves and is generally referred to by the name of a (fictional) "Black Guardian" pencil, whereas in the book it was a (real) Black Warrior pencil. Notable for originally having been averted, then played straight in the adaptation.
  • Bookends: Season 4, episode 4: The episode starts with Harry and Sheehan talking in his living room, overlooking the Valley, and one of the things Sheehan mentions is that regular people don't have any idea what it takes to do their work. The episode ends with Harry standing alone in his living room, overlooking the Valley, listening to voicemails offering condolences for Eleanor's death ... until the last one is an update on a case that, unbeknownst to the cop giving the update, relates to his own mother's murder. The message is harsh but clear: Harry's job isn't something most people could possibly do.
  • Brick Joke: We see an experienced former detective sitting on the same bench previously seen being occupied by some Bad Santas (see above). When he stands up, he's shown to have been sitting on a handkerchief, apparently fully aware of the kinds of things that happen to benches like that.
  • The Bus Came Back: Julia Brasher turns up in one Season 2 episode, still on patrol and still somewhat resentful of how her involvement with Harry Bosch worked out. Honey Chandler pops up again in the last episode of Season 2, and she is still a thorn in Bosch's side. Luke Goshen aka Luke Rykov appears in Season 3 and gives Harry some assistance in the Billy Meadows investigation. Eleanor Wish returns in the last episode of Season 3 after being in Hong Kong for the whole season; something's wrong with her marriage to Reggie. Then Honey Chandler pops back up again in Season 4 as the "special master" overseeing LAPD access to the Howard Elias files.
  • Celebrity Paradox: In-Universe, Bosch's cliff house with a spectacular view is explained by him getting a payment from a film called The Black Echo that was adapted from one of his cases. There is in fact a poster for that movie on the wall. In Season 3, however, plot threads from The Black Echo—Army veterans turning to smuggling and murder, the teenaged graffiti artist who sees the murder happen—are incorporated into the TV show Bosch. So in the Bosch universe, just what is The Black Echo about.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In Season 4, Snyder says off-handedly that she lost her ID. It's later found in the parking lot. This throwaway dialogue later proves crucial to solving the mystery.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: When Bosch goes to the VA clinic in Season 5 as he's beginning his infiltration, he speaks with a Dr. Hansen who gives him some good advice about taking ibuprofen and staying off the opioids. So Bosch is surprised when he goes to the shady clinic a couple episodes later and finds out that Dr. Hansen is the bad guy in charge of the operation there.
  • Closest Thing We Got: Carl Nash is pretty seriously hobbled after getting shot through the thigh. So he goes to an old girlfriend—who is an ex-veterinarian.
  • Coincidental Broadcast: Used multiple times in Season 3. A bulletin about the dead guy found on the beach is playing over Thanksgiving dinner in one episode. In another Dobbs just happens to hear a radio broadcast about the shooting of Jerry Edgar.
  • Comforting Comforter:
    • In case anyone was wondering how much Harry Bosch loves his daughter, he tucks her in during the opening sequence of episode 3-1.
    • Then she does it for him in episode 4-2.
  • Conspicuous CGI:
    • One scene has Bosch speaking to a potential witness in cold weather, with their breath quite obviously added in post production.
    • The CGI when a bad guy falls out of a plane in Season 5 is quite terrible.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Season four ends down in the tunnels that used to be L.A.'s red line, recalling Bosch's military experience as a tunnel rat mentioned in season one.
    • The actor who plays Frank Sheehan, and therefore presumably the character of Frank Sheehan, first appeared in the pilot episode, in the scene following the shooting of Roberto Flores, just over Irving's shoulder as the chief arrives and interacts with Bosch.
    • Officer Powers, the reporting officer who finds Tony Allen's body in Season 2, is also the reporting officer who finds Billy Meadows' body in Season 3. Verges on Mythology Gag as Powers was a much important character in the Trunk Music novel. Powers is also involved in the car crash with Crate and Barrel in Season 5.
    • When Bosch goes to Honey Chandler's office in Season 5 to engage her services, he passes Veronica Allen on her way out. A snarky Veronica says "I still owe you that drink!".
  • Conversational Troping: Andrew Holland and his toadies are talking about Harry Bosch. One suggest the Bosch story—the Son of a Whore seeking to avenge his mother's murder—would make a good movie for Holland. Holland says "It's too trope-y, who would believe it?"
  • Corrupt Politician: The Big Bad of season four (and, arguably, parts of season three). In its simplest terms, he's getting illegally-obtained information from a Dirty Cop and passing it on to Howard Elias, who sues the city, settles big out of court, and kicks back some of his proceeds to the Corrupt Politician. It works great until Elias finds a case that he wants to take to trial, which will expose the source of his information.
  • Creator Cameo: A photo of Michael Connelly is used to depict the man who killed Harry Bosch's mother.
    • Connelly actually shows up in Season 5 for a split second.
  • Cuffs Off, Rub Wrists: Eddie Arceneaux after Bosch cuffs him while conducting a hostile and off-the-books interrogation. Plot relevant when, after Eddie gets murdered the next day, the abrasions on his wrists lead other cops to Bosch.
  • Death by Adaptation:
    • Raynard Waits's foster mother ends the novel Echo Park alive, but is killed in this series.
    • The security guard at Tony and Veronica's compound is a much more important character in Bosch than he is in Connelly novel Trunk Music. This results in him being dead at the end.
    • The Angels Flight control operator is not killed in the novel, but is here because the second victim in the novel was Adapted Out and presumably they still wanted a secondary victim to ensure the killer was still seen as going over a Moral Event Horizon by killing a completely innocent person, but also to have a second bullet for ballistics to test.
  • Death of a Child: In the pilot, Bosch opens a new case, after finding the bones of a ten-year-old murder victim in the woods.
  • Decomposite Character: In the Angels Flight novel, the "special master" lawyer appointed to oversee Bosch's access to the Howard Elias files also turns out to be Elias's mistress. The show breaks that into two different characters: Elias's mistress the jury consultant, and Harry Bosch's old foe Honey Chandler, brought in as the special master.
  • Dirty Cop:
    • One of the IAD cops that Bosch has to take onto his task force in season four is on the take, passing information through an intermediary to Howard Elias and getting a portion of the kickback in return.
    • It turns out that the two vice cops Edgar has been talking to in relation to the murder of his CI in Season 5 are actually bad guys who set up the murder.
  • Down L.A. Drain:
    • Bosch and Irving stroll down the LA River and talk about how the city's spruced it up a little bit, but it's still an ugly concrete ditch. In episode 4, Bosch's pursuit of Reynard Waits through the sewers ends up with Bosch in the concrete ditch, having lost Waits.
    • In episode 4-3 Drake meets Sheehan at the LA River and comments about how much he hates it.
  • Driven to Suicide: Nicholas Trent hangs himself after the investigation of the murdered boy leads to the public exposure of his past child molestation conviction.
  • Expy: Season four introduces Laura Cooke, who functions very much like Keisha Russell does in the books, but for some reason isn't Keisha Russell. This is strange as Russell does show up in 2 episodes in season 2. Perhaps the actress wasn't available.
    • Season 5 has Honey Chandler’s investigator, Hector Bonner, a big Badass Biker who is very clearly an expy of Mickey Haller’s investigator Dennis “Cisco” Wojciechowski.
  • Fake Video Camera View: In Episode 1-4, when the police are taking a confessed serial killer to a location where he claims he buried his first victim, we see him through the viewfinder of a video camera that the district attorney has someone filming what is happening.
  • Famous, Famous, Fictional: At Barrel's retirement party at the end of Season 5, Crate says that Barrel's illustrious career included investigating the Night Stalker case, the Manson murders, and the Koreatown Killer (a Season 4 plotline).note 
  • Fan Disservice: Pasty, unattractive Andrew Holland lounging about his mansion with nothing more than a hand towel over his privates, and Holland then ditching the hand towel to take a swim.
  • The Film of the Book: Every season is, but Season 5 is the only one to stick with a single novel (Two Kinds of Truth) rather than amalgamating plot chunks from multiple Connelly novels.
  • 555
    • The LAPD hotline is 323-555-0172.
    • In Season 3, episode 8, Bosch walks past the Hollywood homicide location whiteboard, all the detectives are listed with their contact phone numbers with 213 or 323 area codes, the phone numbers all start with the invalid code of 0 or 1, e.g. J. Edgar's number is 213-159-0193, Moore's is 323-086-0167, and Pierce's number is 213-189-0172, except Bosch, who has a real number, 323-244-5631.
  • Framing the Guilty Party: It turns out in Season 5 that the seahorse pendant that sent Preston Borders to jail was planted there, not by Bosch but by Irving. A beat cop made a bogus arrest of Borders, they found the pendant in his backpack, and Irving planted it in Borders' apartment so it could be "found" in a legitimate search and be admissible.
  • "Friends" Rent Control: Justified in universe. A movie was made based on one of Bosch's old cases and he used the money from selling the rights to purchase a very fancy house while continuing to work as a detective.
  • Foreshadowing: The KTK is shown repeatedly making very aggressive, unsafe turns on his bicycle, cutting in front of cars. He's eventually struck by a car and killed.
  • Gender Flip: With the IAD cops in the Angels Flight case for season four: at least two are women. None of the IAD cops in the novel are. Combined with Race Lift for at least two characters.
  • Gilligan Cut: When Bosch and Edgar are headed out to the desert in episode 1-4, Edgar the clothes horse pesters Bosch to stop at some outlet stores so he can get a new suit. Bosch says they're not stopping, Edgar keeps pestering, and Bosch says "We are not stopping." Cut to Bosch pulling into the parking lot of the outlet mall.
  • Hero Antagonist: Detective Robertson in Season 3 is this, following the quite reasonable leads towards Bosch. He is actually somewhat like Bosch himself, being a skilled career detective who follows the leads wherever they take him.
  • High-Class Call Girl: Annabelle Crowe is revealed to supplement her acting work with work as a deluxe escort. This complicates things for the Andrew Holland prosecution, since she's an important witness.
  • Hired to Hunt Yourself: Detective Lincoln, one of the two IA cops assigned to the Elias task force, was involved in covering the murderer's tracks and framing Frankie Sheehan.
  • How We Got Here: The first scene of Season 5 shows Harry Bosch, apparently an opioid addict, in a scary looking trailer camp in the middle of nowhere, in the clutches of some violent gangsters. Then we get a "Two Weeks Earlier" title card and the story plays out from there.
  • I'll Tell You When I've Had Enough!: A drunk Edward Gunn says this word for word in the first episode of Season 3, when the bartender tries to cut him off.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: In Season 1, the City of Bones plot is kicked off when Harry Bosch gets a phone call from Sgt. Mankiewicz, the Hollywood Division watch commander, who sends Bosch to check out a bone that was found by a dog. Bosch is immediately skeptical because he's seen this before and it's usually animal bones. Mank assures Bosch that the caller is a doctor and not only identified the bone as human, but specifically a child's upper arm bone, complete with scarring from numerous injuries.
    Mank: The point is, this doctor says it was just a kid, Harry. So could you humor us and go check out this humerus?
    Bosch: .....
    Mank: Oh, come on, that was fucking funny.
    Bosch: Hilarious, Mank.
  • I Never Said It Was Poison: Bosch's slip about the Cadillac at the end of Season 3 leads Edgar to guess his secret, namely, that he basically let the bad guys kill Gunn.
  • The Infiltration: Bosch finds out in Season 2 that his murder suspect Luke Rykov is an undercover FBI agent.
  • Institutional Allegiance Concealment: Harry Bosch goes undercover as an opioid addict solve the pharmacy murders in Season 5. Things go wrong when Bosch is separated from his backup and whisked off to a bad guy lair in the desert. The only reason why he was unmasked was because the bad guys saw a paper from the LA Times and saw Bosch's face and was identified as a police officer.
  • Internal Affairs:
    • In Season 1, Bosch and IA hate each other, and Chastain from IA is excited at the prospect of Bosch getting fired over the lawsuit.
    • A relatively rare sympathetic portrayal of IA in Season 2. Irvin Irving's son George is working with IA to expose some corrupt cops.
    • IA is back to being a bunch of dicks in Season 3 when they're looking to bust Bosch for his confrontation at the restaurant with O'Shea.
    • Bosch gets a Teeth-Clenched Teamwork situation with IA in season 4, when two IAD cops are assigned to his task force on the Angels Flight murders.
    • Sort of with the Conviction Integrity Unit in Season 5, a special investigative task force working with the DA. They think Harry Bosch framed Preston Borders.
  • It Has Been an Honor: A villainous example in Season 3, when two murderers, Dobbs and Xavi, say this to each other upon making their final parting. They later turn on each other, though.
  • Karma Houdini:
    • Season 2 ends with Bosch getting a tip that leads to the man who killed his mother, only to find that the killer died of cancer two years before. Ultimately averted a season later when we find out that Harry was wrong and someone else killed his mother.
    • Season 3 starts by revealing Veronica Allen gets a hung jury in her trial for the murder of the priest. And since everyone who could tie her to the murder of her husband is dead, she gets away clean. (She gets a little tiny bit of karma when Layla steals all of Tony's money.)
  • Left Hanging: The storyline of Layla and the nearly $4 million she escaped to Europe with in Season 2 is never resolved; the last we see is the mob having successfully tracked her down to a seaside resort.
  • Libation for the Dead: Sharkey's little hoodlum buddies in Season 3 pour one out for him after finding out he was murdered.
  • Mafiya: Anthony Allen, who is Armenian, has been using his pornography business to launder money for the Russian mob.
  • Missed Him by That Much: "God Sees" has Bosch catching Woody in the act of surveilling him, and then going off on a high speed chase. Woody successfully manages to ditch his car and steal another one. The chase ends with Bosch at an intersection, desperately trying to figure out where the car went, while Woody passes by in his stolen car maybe four feet behind Bosch's back.
  • Monochrome Past: Combined with Splash of Color. The various flashbacks to the original Danielle Skyler investigation are shown in black and white, except for the stab wounds and blood stains and the crucial seahorse pendant, which are in color.
  • Mythology Gag
    • Episode 1-2 is titled "Lost Light". This is also the title of a Michael Connelly novel, but not one of the ones being adapted for the series.
    • Near the end of season 1, Harry leaves the police station to a standing ovation from his colleagues. This is the same way The Burning Room, the Bosch novel that came out the same year as season 1, ends.
    • When Bosch is in the woods in the first episode, he encounters a coyote. The fourth novel was titled The Last Coyote, and that symbolism was a key plot point.
    • Bosch grew a mustache and beard while on suspension, but in the first episode of Season 2 his daughter insists that he shave it off. In the novels, Harry Bosch wears a mustache.
    • When Bosch and Edgar are pursuing the pill shill lead at the airport in Season 5, someone mentions that the Russian and Ukrainian Mafiya is heavily involved in opioid trafficking. Bosch observes that the names they have for their lead "don't sound Russian." In this show the bad guys are white Americans, but in the novel Two Kinds of Truth they were Ukrainian Mafiya.
    • In Two Kinds of Truth Bosch thinks about the police custom of how to zoom through stoplights—rely on your partner to keep an eye out to your right and yell "clear!" if you can make it through the intersection. In the first episode of Season 5 this goes wrong for Crate and Barrel and they get hit by a black-and-white.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Bosch, for all his faults, is a good and honest cop at the end of the day. He repeatedly warns Brasher against rushing into action but finds himself having no choice but to make a report that could end her career. Brasher doesn't appreciate Bosch's advice or his honesty and ends up throwing her lot in with Captain Pounds and files a false sexual harassment claim against Bosch in order to keep her job.
  • No-Tell Motel: The motel that Waits takes a prostitute to in Episode 1-5 advertises adult movies.
  • Not His Sled: There are several points in which plot points from the books end up being subverted, even though they usually keep to the same general outline.
  • Ominous Owl: Season 3 adapts the plot line from A Darkness More Than Night regarding the spooky owl left in Gunn's room, and its connection to the spooky art of Hieronymus Bosch.
  • Open Heart Dentistry: Nash has a veterinarian friend who fills this role after Nash suffers a serious gunshot wound during the shootout in the Season 2 episode "Follow the Money."
  • Orbital Shot: The camera does a full 360 around Bosch in episode 4-5, as he stands in the parking lot at Du-par's and contemplates the scene of Eleanor's murder.
  • Polyamory: A completely random character moment in Season 5 has Vega telling Pierce that she's polyamorous. She has a husband and a boyfriend, and her husband...also has a boyfriend.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation:
    • The novel A Darkness More Than Night features Bosch and Blood Work protagonist Terry McCaleb. However, as a different production company owned the movie/TV rights to the Terry McCaleb character, McCaleb's role in Season 3 is taken by a new character, Detective Jimmy Robertson.
    • Similarly, Amazon doesn't own the rights to Mickey Haller. So the Season 5 plot line adapted from Two Kinds of Truth has Honey Chandler, not Haller, come to Bosch asking him to help prove the innocence of a client.
    • The long arc about Bosch seeking his mother's murderer is loosely inspired by the Connelly novel The Last Coyote, in which Bosch investigates his mother's murder. But the TV show comes up with a completely different story and a different bad guy.
    • Eleanor Wish's fate is similar to her fate in 9 Dragons and also involves The Triads and the Tongs, but everything else about how she gets to that point is different.
    • The same thing happens with George Irving, who is based on the character of George Irving from The Drop. Like Eleanor, he meets a similar fate to his book counterpart, but in a totally different way.
  • Race Lift: With the IAD cops in the Angels Flight case for season four: at least two are black. None of the IAD cops in the novel are. Combined with Gender Flip for at least two characters.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Bosch's antics get him into a lot of trouble. His shooting a man in the pilot alone forces him to stand on a civil trial for the first half of Season 1.
    • Genuinely smart criminals can and do outsmart the police. Veronica Allen, for the first third of Season 2, is able to manipulate the police into seeing her as a sad, down-on-her-luck grieving widow, when in fact she is one half of the Big Bad Duumvirate of the season. Even after Bosch and co. manage to charge her with a murder, the case remains very shaky in court. Then Season 3 reveals that she beats the rap after her trial ends in a hung jury.
    • Bosch fails to catch the bad guy who murdered his mother. But of course he does; his mother was murdered in 1979. More likely than not the bad guy would die before Bosch even gets to him, and as it turns out, he did. (Later averted when it turns out that guy wasn't the murderer.)
    • Upon learning she is dying, a prostitute colleague of Bosch's mother contacts Bosch to tell him about a lead she has regarding his mother's murder. Rather than thanking her, Bosch chews her ass madly for it; he points out that she waits until she is dying before contacting him, and that she never came forward when the case was being actively investigated.
    • Jerry Edgar gets shot in the shoulder, and it's NOT Only a Flesh Wound. He almost loses the arm, and his shoulder blade gets shattered by the bullet, requiring extensive surgery to repairnote . If he's lucky and follows his rehab program religiously, he may be back to duty in about six months.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Season 5 introduces Christina Henry, formerly a detective and now working for the CIU. She had a relationship with Bosch at some point in the unspecified past, blames him for ruining her career, and is set on ruining his career in return.
  • The Reveal: If you know the novels, hearing that Eleanor Wish is now living in Hong Kong definitely serves as an ominous one.
    • This actually gets averted, as Eleanor comes back from Hong Kong safe and sound and gets gunned down in L.A. instead.
  • Rewatch Bonus: As with most crime stories, there are several, but the prize has to go to season four and that quarter Elias is playing around with in episode one. Turns out, that's where his key evidence is hidden.
  • Russian Roulette: Walsh the crime boss does this with an undercover Harry Bosch after catching Harry snooping around the drug camp in the first episode of Season 5.
  • Sequel Hook:
    • Two from Season 3. The Koreatown Killer is never caught: a scene near the end of the last episode shows him idly biking past a smoking Harry Bosch. At the end of the season Bosch realizes that he got his mother's death wrong, and that Walker the city councilman is the actual killer of his mother. Sure enough, Season 4 has Bosch still going after Walker while the Koreatown Killer is still active.
    • And while both the KTK and the murder of Bosch's mother are tied up in Season 4, Eleanor Wish's killer is still free, setting up Season 5.
    • Season 5 ends with several. Pierce and Vega are tracking a serial killer who chops his victims up into parts. Bosch, having failed to save Elizabeth Clayton from drug addiction, is dedicating himself to investigating her daughter's unsolved murder. Edgar has come to the realization that his CI was murdered on the orders of two Dirty Cops. Irvin Irving declares his candidacy for mayor of Los Angeles. And for that matter Eleanor's murder is still roaming free.
  • Serial Killer:
    • DNA from seven victims is found in Raynard Waits's van.
    • The Koreatown Killer—"KTK"—in Season 3 and 4, a black man on a bicycle who goes around Koreatown shooting random strangers. He shows up at a police town hall, in the guise of a concerned citizen, to taunt Irvin Irving for not catching the KTK.
  • Setting Update: When the Harry Bosch character debuted in The Black Echo in 1992, he was a Vietnam veteran. The series has been moved up 20 years, and Harry is a Gulf War veteran who re-enlisted after 9/11. In both versions, Bosch is a Tunnel Rat.
  • Shot in the Ass: A non-comedic example. The last shot the killer delivered to Howard Elias went straight up Elias's rectum. This leads Bosch and Santiago to assume that the killer knew and disliked Elias.
  • Shout-Out:
    • A tough-minded but flawed detective protagonist; an antagonist whose depraved past actions include raping his own daughter; theme music featuring the mournful, plaintive sound of an unmuted trumpet; key scenes taking place on the concrete banks of the Los Angeles River; a supporting character named Lou Escobar; hmm, where have we seen this before?
    • The first Bosch novel (The Black Echo) is, in-universe, a movie based on one of Bosch's cases. Its movie poster is even almost identical to the cover of one of the mass-market paperback editions of the book.
    • Bosch mentions to Jerry that the "addicts" going to a clinic could be like zombies from Night of the Living Dead (1968).
  • Single Mom Stripper: Thomas "Sharkey" Niese's mother runs some kind of webcam dominatrix site out of her own home.
  • Son of a Whore: Harry Bosch, whose prostitute mother was murdered when he was 12. Harry remembers being called this word-for-word when he was an inmate at McLaren Youth Hall. Andrew Holland also uses this phrase word-for-word when musing on how to ruin Bosch as a witness.
  • Spared by the Adaptation:
    • Two characters in Season 1. Julia Brasher's pulling her gun on a suspect in the novel City of Bones results in her getting fatally wounded, while in this series she's saved by her vest. Honey Chandler is killed by the Jack the Ripoff character in The Concrete Blonde, while here she survives, the Jack the Ripoff plot not being included.
    • Officer Powers, who is a much more important character in Trunk Music, is spared by the adaptation via being Demoted to Extra.
    • The character of Veronica is killed in the climax to Trunk Music but ends season 2 of Bosch alive and facing trial.
    • In season 3, Jesse Tafero lives to be arrested for his role in Gunn's murder, whereas in A Darkness More Than Night, he dies when the Tafero brothers try to take out Terry McCaleb.
    • In season 4, a great deal of Frankie Sheehan's story plays out straight from the book, but he appears to live through it this time around.
    • John Chastain appears in Season 1 as one of the IAD cops trying to take Bosch down. But while he was the bad guy in Angels Flight and gets killed in the end of the book, the Angels Flight-Howard Elias plot in Season 4 ends differently with a different bad guy, and Chastain does not appear.
    • In The Last Coyote Bosch's hijinks in investigating his mother's murder wind up getting his supervisor, Lt. Harvey Pounds, killed by mistake. Pounds appears as a character in the show but doesn't get killed, mostly because the murder investigation is totally different than how it plays out in the novel.
    • In Two Kinds of Truth pharmacists Jose Esquivela Sr. and Jr. are murdered together by the bad guys. In Season 5 Junior steps out for coffee moments before the killers show up, and panics when he comes back and finds the cops. One of the plot threads for the season involves the LAPD racing to find Jose Jr. before the bad guys do.
  • Streetwalker:
    • A rare example of a male Streetwalker in the person of the gay prostitute Reynard Waits picks up in episode 1-5.
    • And a second rare male Streetwalker in Season 3, Sharkey—although it's subverted in this instance as Sharkey's real racket is working with his buddies to rob the men who pick Sharkey up.
  • Sword Cane: The cop who gives Harry a cane for his undercover assignment as a drug addict in Season 5 shows him that there's a knife blade concealed in the handle.
  • Technology Marches On: In universe. When Bosch goes to visit his daughter in Las Vegas, she asks him if they can talk on Skype when he gets back home. He replies: "What's that, like Hulu?" He does know what Uber is, however.
    • Eleanor notes that Bosch's phone is an extremely old model so she buys him a new one. It's still a flip-phone though.
    • Harry upgrades to a smartphone by Season 2 so that he can Skype more regularly with Maddie.
    • The opening to the series, in which Bosch shoots a man who turns out to be unarmed, also has this issue. In the original version, from the novel The Concrete Blonde, Bosch was in that situation because cell phones didn't really exist yet and he was stuck without a radio to call for backup. In the series, he was in that situation after following the suspect on foot without backup in a slightly more reckless action.
    • Getting evidence of the facts of the Black Guardian case in season four hinges on finding a microSD card Elias had concealed very cleverly in plain sight. Needless to say, microSD cards did not figure into the plot of the 1999 source novel at all.note 
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Harry is not pleased when he's given two Internal Affairs cops, Snyder and Lincoln, to help with the Howard Elias investigation. He particularly resents Sgt. Snyder because she pursued a case against him once and tried to get him suspended. Snyder eventually wins his respect. Lincoln, not so much.
  • Thanksgiving Episode: "Birdland" in season 3, in which Barrel botches the turkey and Holland's people push the story about Bosch onto the internet.
  • Those Two Guys: Crate and Barrel, who sometimes solve cases but seem mainly to exist to provide the department with two Deadpan Snarkers.
  • Three-Way Sex: When Luke Rykov is arrested in Season 2 he's in bed with two hot strippers.
  • Title Drop: Most of the episode titles show up in dialogue.
  • The Triads and the Tongs: Eleanor Wish gets back in with the FBI in Season 4, using her poker-playing skills to gather intel on poker-playing Chinese mobsters. It turns out her second husband Reggie Woo is from a Chinese Mobster family.
  • Three Lines, Some Waiting: Season 3 has three plotlines that don't intersect. The Andrew Holland trial and the frame-up of Bosch proceed independently from the other plot, the one about Army Special Forces goons smuggling money back from Afghanistan, and the Koreatown Killer lurks in the background. Season 4 does this again, with the Howard Elias murder, Eleanor Wish's investigation of the Chinese mafia that eventually ensnares Bosch, and the Koreatown Killer returning.
  • Vanity Plate: A particularly obnoxious one from Dr. Rohan, the oxy peddler. His license plate reads "DOCYOX."
  • Very Loosely Based on a True Story: In-Universe, Bosch says that The Black Echo is a movie "based loosely...very loosely" on one of his cases.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Used for comic relief in Episode 1-5 when Sam Delacroix vomits all over the back of the squad car, much to Edgar's discomfort (it's his turn to clean up, as Bosch gleefully reminds him).
  • Vorpal Pillow: How Reynard Waits, aka "David", disposes of his mother.
  • Weapon of Choice: Uses a Kimber Custom TLE II, implying that he's SWAT-qualified.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Edgar delivers one to Bosch at the end of Season 3 after figuring out from Bosch's slip about the Cadillac that Bosch watched the Edward Gunn murder happen over his cameras.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Combined with They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character. In the book Angels Flight, Elias's mistress gets appointed special master and figures significantly in the plot. In the series, she only exists to be momentary eye candy in the opening scene, then later to complain that her name has been leaked to the press. Mrs. Elias doesn't even bother to be angry about her husband cheating. Then she's just never mentioned again. It would have made more sense if they'd just left her out altogether.
  • Working the Same Case: Happens when Bosch's murder investigation and George Irving's undercover investigation have the same Big Bad running the show of both events.
  • You Just Told Me: Bosch follows his hunch and uses this technique to get the LA Times reporter to reveal that Honey Chandler was the one who leaked the unflattering story. (Although it won the case, it also nearly got Bosch killed when his cover was blown.)
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