Bosch-Season 6

If this were on Netflix, everybody would be talking about it.

Once again, distribution is king. You might get paid a lot of money to make a show for Apple, but odds are almost no one is gonna see it. It’s kinda like records. You can go with a major and they can promote it, give you visibility, or you can slug it out yourself. Sure, you can keep all the money, but getting notice is a bitch.

Kinda like the astroturfing employed to get governments to open up for business. These entities know how to stir the pot to get some people to act, which generates a certain amount of publicity, such that the issue becomes front and center. Come on, without the protests, without Trump telling people to liberate states, would we all be busy talking about when to open for business?

The dream was the internet would flatten distribution, everybody would start from the same place, all voices could be heard.

And that actually happened for a while, but the barrier to entry was so low that now anybody without money and a megaphone is ignored. The dirty little secret is when you hype your track, implore people to listen to it, they don’t, because they’ve been bitten too many times, by clicking on lame tracks, and they only have so much time to begin with.

So, being part of a giant corporation, Amazon’s TV offering looks like an afterthought. You get it for free. To the point where even a breakout hit doesn’t change perception of the service. “Mrs. Maisel” got all that ink, but who else is watching Amazon television? I don’t know a single person watching Apple TV+, and now they’ve got some new shows that have actually gotten good reviews, but they’re starting behind the 8-ball, especially after the mishandling of “The Morning Show.” By time it was done, those who hung in there actually liked it. But since they dribbled out episodes week by week, the publicity machine, the focus, was long gone. And you supersede the paradigm, you don’t try to change it. You don’t try to convince everybody to get a stick shift in an era of automatics, and you don’t drop episodes week by week when Netflix releases them all at once. Furthermore, I only binge, I don’t want to make an appointment for TV, I don’t want to think about scheduling it, how important do these outlets think these shows are to us anyway?

And now you’ve got HBO Max.

Stick shifts were killed by Formula 1. At the elite level of auto-racing it’s now automatic transmissions, with paddle shifters and no pedal clutch. Turns out the computer can shift faster than the person. So, car racing transmissions are superior to what you can buy off the lot, and the only people who still buy manuals are the same people who buy vinyl records recorded digitally. It’s nostalgia, it makes no sense. Especially when automatics get better mileage than stick shifts!

You see, Formula 1 superseded the paradigm.

So, to compete with Netflix, the new entrants to streaming are underpricing the streaming giant. So, what does HBO do? CHARGE MORE! That’s a recipe for disaster, it makes no sense. But, HBO wants to protect its cable partners, the same way record companies were so busy protecting their physical retail partners that Napster and other internet services undercut them. We heard all this hogwash about the value of music…yeah, but what are people willing to pay? Turns out they’re willing to pay ten bucks a month, ad infinitum, for everything, but not fifteen bucks occasionally for a CD with only one good track.

So, “Bosch” is on Amazon.

“Mozart in the Jungle”… It won all of those awards, almost no one saw it.

The first year of “Goliath,” great genre television, but almost no traction, and the following seasons have gotten worse.

But “Bosch”? “Bosch” keeps getting better!

Let’s start with Titus Welliver. He’s not quite James Gandolfini as Tony Soprano, but Welliver has now truly become the character. He’s three-dimensional, he marches to the beat of his own drummer, he’s got his own code of ethics and nothing can persuade him to deviate from them. And he’s intense and he cares and despite people chafing at his methods and his success, he doesn’t change a whit. And he wants to go home and listen to jazz and he doesn’t hit on everything that moves…he’s a cop, and that’s good enough for him.

But the surrounding cast is nearly as good. “Bosch” is now a well-oiled machine. And even Crate and Barrel area no longer cartoon characters.

This is not “The Wire,” “Bosch” is not trying to recreate crime television. But it’s a great leap forward compared to the competition. It’s seamless and nuanced and you cannot turn it off, it cuts like butter.

That’s right, watch episode one and you roll right into episode two. You see the season disappearing in front of your very eyes. You want it to last, but you can’t hold back.

There is no deeper meaning. This is just about crime work. What happens in the police station, the politics, the government.

And it makes you yearn for L.A. in the summer, that’s when it was shot, into the fall, when it’s always bright and it never rains and… L.A. is not like New York, it’s not gritty, it’s suburban, but that does not mean there’s no crime. Everybody’s got a lawn, even if they’ve got bars on the windows. And you’ve got the loonies, the anti-government ones who don’t want to pay taxes and…

There’s this belief that Florida has superseded California when it comes to craziness.

That may be factually true, but all Florida has is craziness.

California is on the bleeding edge of innovation. To this day, it starts in California and spreads east. What you think is wackadoodle suddenly becomes a trend. As for the homeless problem…the homeless finally got smart, they’ve gone where the weather suits their clothes!

All of this is in “Bosch.”

But it’s Titus Welliver who glues it all together. He’s a force of nature without the braggadocio.

That’s the world we now live in, everybody’s boasting, trying to pull themselves up the socioeconomic ladder. It’s all about lifestyle baby!

But not Bosch. Harry Bosch is a cop. He can’t let the cold cases slip his mind. He wants the perps to pay. He’ll push the limits, but he won’t go past them. He’s on a mission, he wants to nail people. And not only the destitute and poor, but the rich who believe they’re above the law.

Don’t start with season 6, there are threads in this show that go all the way back to the first season. But on network TV, every season gets worse. Whereas with Bosch, each season supersedes the one before.

“Bosch” is made for bingeing, for how we watch television today.

And if you’re looking for a diversion from Covid-19…THIS IS IT!

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