It’s a new year with new challenges for Harry in Bosch season 7 episode 1.
Bosch Season 7 Episode 1: Brazen
Written by Eric Overmyer
Directed by Alex Zakrezwski
Bosch season 7 episode 1 introduces us to a couple of new cases, a multi-victim homicide for Harry and an investment scandal defense for Honey Chandler. Meanwhile, Jerry seems to be struggling with the aftermath of shooting Jacques Avril in the season 6 finale.
Maddie continues to serve as an assistant to Chandler and boyfriend Antonio is still in the picture. Irv and Jun are now parents. Billets is working as hard as ever, and Crate and Barrel are anxious to be asked for homicide help.
A New Year
The season starts 4 months after the end of last season placing our characters on the cusp of a brand-new year. It is New Year’s Even 2019. We find our familiar friends celebrating in different venues across town.
Maddie and Antonio have been invited to Honey Chandler’s high society soiree. We see most of the cops ringing in the new year at Grace’s house where we meet girlfriend of one year, Anne. Tucked away from the big parties are Harry and Donna (aka Judge Sobel) at a jazz performance.
RHD Detective Joan Bennett notices Jerry’s absence from Grace’s party. She gives him a call, but he does not pick up. J. Edgar also dodges ex-wife Latonya’s call while he sits alone smoking and drinking at home.
In East Hollywood, a young girl delivers tamales to upstairs neighbors in her apartment building. As the girl returns home, she sees smoke and begins calling for her mother.
Harry drives Donna home and declines her invitation for a nightcap noting the late hour. Their goodbye is interrupted when he gets a call about a deadly fire at an East Hollywood apartment building, the one where the young girl resides. Donna gives Harry a kiss on the cheek, and he drives away.
East Hollywood Fire
Bosch tries to call Edgar, but as you can guess, he gets no answer from his partner who is passed out on the couch. Bosch arrives on the scene of the fire where he gets briefed by MacVittie from the arson team as well as Pierce and Vega who arrived earlier. The assailants were two men in hoodies riding in a black or gray high end SUV, rather non-descript. One of the men exited the vehicle just long enough to throw a firebomb through one of the apartment windows.
As the first responders do their work, we see a woman in business suit mouth an expletive-filled inquiry to a man several feet away. The man mouths back that the fire is not his doing.
So far, they know of three victims – the young girl’s mother Maria Hernandez, her pregnant friend, and her unborn baby. Harry uses the flu as an excuse to Grace for Jerry’s absence. The pair searches for the young girl, Sonia Hernandez. MacVittie finds her on the floor next to the rooftop exit. The door is locked, and the girl did not make it. That makes four victims. Bosch learns of the fifth victim when he goes to question apartment manager Eduardo Rojas at the hospital. Rojas has died from a stroke.
Get to work
Maddie calls her dad from Antonio’s place. Father and daughter check in with each other.
Bosch scolds Jerry for skipping out on the case last night. He lectures him about his self-destructive behavior, being hungover and smoking. Jerry apologizes and says that he is fine. Bosch brings up the Avril shooting and suggests that he is at fault. Jerry refuses to accept that Harry impacted his actions in the Avril shooting.
The partners check in with Pierce and Vega at the school down the street from the apartment building where survivors are gathered. They learn there is a new landlord, and that the manager has been trying to get rid of local drug dealers. The tenants do not seem comfortable talking about the situation fearing eviction or deportation.
Jerry and Harry notice an older gentleman looking at them. It is Sr. Rulfo, the neighbor that Sonia visited just before her death. The detectives talk to him and try to gather more information. Rulfo mentions someone referred to as La Mayorista. He says the drug dealers in the neighborhood work for her. He also tells Harry that Sonia’s father, Hector, was deported to Mexico a year ago. Harry shows Rulfo the phone number he found in Sonia’s apartment. They believe that is probably Hector’s number.
As the detectives drive away, they see that a memorial of flowers and remembrances for Sonia has already been erected.
We meet Detective Collins with the gang unit. Harry and Jerry look to Collins for any information he may have on who could have started the fire. Collins tells them that the Las Palmas 13 gang is associated with that neighborhood. He tells Harry and Jerry that the leader of Las Palmas has a life sentence at Pelican Bay, but there are two men on the streets trying to take charge, Mickey Pena and Emmanuel Trejo.
The gang expert knows of La Mayorista. Her name is Gladys Rodriguez and he describes her as “a female Stringer Bell” (in a nod to actor Jamie Hector’s role on The Wire). This must be the woman wearing the high-end suit in the crowd gathered the night of the fire. Collins says La Mayorista runs the drug trade in that area through purchasing the drugs, paying rent and providing protection to the gang.
They all agree that the fire is the local drug trade’s response to the new management’s efforts to get rid of them. As Jerry enjoys his burrito, Collins also notes that the food trucks pay a bribe to the gangs who in turn pay up to la Eme (Mexican Mafia) at the top.
Jerry and Harry meet with the property management group for the apartment building. Property management confirms that they wanted apartment manager Rojas to eliminate the drug dealers at the property. Jerry suggests intentions of gentrification. Property management denies any knowledge of the locked fire exit door. As the detectives leave, Jerry wonders if the new owners initiated the orders for the fire.
Later at the station, Harry listens to a 911 call from apartment manager Eduardo Rojas. On the call Rojas claims that the drugs are coming from Las Palmas 13. Rojas mentions Mickey Pena and Las Palmas working for La Mayorista.
We learn that the son of Irv and Jun was born prematurely. They visit their little baby in the NICU. While obviously having some anxiety, they seem to be optimistic and supportive of one another.
There is a press conference at the site of memorial for those lost in the fire. New mayor Susanna Lopez makes her remarks and swiftly departs before Chief Irving speaks. Unrelenting LA Times reporter Scott Anderson asks Irving about “the little tamale girl”, the moniker now being used to refer to young Sonia Hernandez. Anderson brings up the locked door to the rooftop where Sonia was found.
Afterward, Chief Irving catches up to his former campaign staffer Jen Kowski who is now working for Mayor Lopez. He asks about the mayor’s dismissive behavior, especially since he endorsed her campaign. Jen reminds Irving that she does not work for him anymore and suggests that his endorsement was not as valuable as he thinks it was.
Later, Irv confides in Jun wondering if Lopez is not wanting him for a second term as Chief of Police. Jun asks about the Police Commissioners and Irv says they appear to be 3 to 2 in favor of Irv.
Jerry gets news
The FID (Force Investigation Division) has completed their investigation into the shooting of Jacques Avril.
Jerry arrives with Harry to hear what they have decided. The board concluded that the shooting was within policy but not the tactical procedures associated with it. Jerry must do some remedial training at the police academy. Jerry is embarrassed about doing that.
As Harry and Jerry leave the FID meeting, Detective Lang confronts Jerry. You may recall that Lang was the investigator who took Jerry’s initial statement about the incident. Lang suggests that Jerry merely got a slap on the hand and calls the shooting an “execution”.
Speaking of performance, Billets has a brief conversation with Jerry about his recent “lackluster performance”. Jerry assumes Harry came to her about him, but she says he did not.
Honey Chandler has a new client. Hedge fund manager Vincent Franzen has swindled millions of people out of their financial investments. He has gone so far as to make fake gold bars using spray paint and balsa wood.
Franzen is worried about spending the night in jail. Honey assures him that he will be in a cell of by himself. Chandler tells him the bail hearing is tomorrow and to expect bail to be around 2 million. She also reminds Franzen that all calls in lockup are recorded. He should not speak to anyone.
Everybody Counts or Nobody Counts
Maddie and Harry share some conversation on their balcony. Harry tells Maddie about the pictures of three murdered young women that he keeps under the glass on his desk. He shares that their murders have gone unsolved and bodies unclaimed. Harry does not even know their actual names.
Maddie asks why her father keeps those photos. Harry replies with the phrase that dictates his work in homicide, “everybody counts, or nobody counts”.
Later we see Harry on the phone to Hector Hernandez, Sonia’s father. Then Harry places the photo of “little tamale girl” under his desk glass.
Cameos and callbacks:
- Actual former LAPD Commander Palka gets a cameo in episode 1 as an attendee at Grace’s New Year’s Eve party.
- Barrel shouts “Eureka” when he and Crate identify the last three digits on the SUV license plate. This harkens back to the same exclamation in season 5 when they figure out the identity of the Koreatown Killer.
- Jun leaves for a shift with the baby at the hospital. Irv offers to join her but she tells him he can stay there and “brood”. Fans have long commented on Chief Irving’s serious nature.
- The jazz club where Harry and Donna spend New Year’s Eve is very reminiscent of, if not the actual Catalina Jazz Club, that Harry went to with Grace in season 2 (to see jazz musician Grace Kelly).