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‘BOSCH’: Investigating episode 501 ‘Two Kinds of Truth’

Bosch is back, but where exactly is Harry?

Our investigation of Bosch season 5 episode 1 begins with a look at the past before skipping forward to a very different time and place. The episode title ‘Two Kinds of Truth’ draws from this season’s source material, Michael Connelly’s novel of the same name.

Directed by: Alex Zakrzewski

Written by: Daniel Pyne

Looking back

Season 5 of the Amazon Prime Original series Bosch returns with some highlights from last season.

We are reminded of the double murder at Angels Flight and Chief Irving’s charge to Bosch to “follow the evidence” as Harry works alongside old nemesis Honey Chandler. Detective Robertson requests a transfer to Newton Division. Let us not forget the tragic death of Harry’s ex and Maddie’s mom, Eleanor, during her assignment with the FBI. Former allies face off against one another with Chief Irving and Mayor Ramos butting heads.

There are some victories as well as Hollywood Homicide perseveres to serve justice and close cases. Pierce (with his mighty murse strapped across his shoulders) finds the missing bullet that killed Lanny Johnson. Crate and Barrel solve the long running mystery of the Koreatown Killer. Finally, after years of persistence, Harry solves his mother’s murder and forces President of the Police Commission Bradley Walker to admit to his horrific crimes.

No camp to write home about

The story picks up fifteen months after season 4’s conclusion. Bosch arrives via a small plane to a dilapidated camp. He is looking ragged and limping with a cane for support. He and the other passengers line up to receive their individual pill allocation. Bosch and a passenger named Trey are only given half after Trey initiates a tussle with Harry for moving too slow.

Harry grabs his food and carefully hides the one pill in his pant leg. He befriends the camp dog and gets a warning from a no-nonsense female. She tells him that Trey will try to attack him while he sleeps but otherwise dismisses any conversation with Harry. Sure enough, Trey tries to sneak up on Bosch, but our favorite detective is ready and gets the upper hand with Trey holding his cane across Trey’s neck. Harry explains in no uncertain terms that Trey is to leave Harry alone.

Meanwhile, we get a glimpse of Maddie back in Los Angeles calling J. Edgar to find out where her dad is. She reminds Jerry that she and her dad have a deal about calling each other if they are going to be late. Jerry is non-specific in his response and Maddie is worried.

Harry leaves the sleeping quarters (smelly cots on an old bus) and goes to snoop on the guys running the camp. Harry listens outside the trailer window as the leader named Walsh talks about moving the camp to another location. It sounds like there is a bigger operation being planned without the use of the pill shills who just arrived on the plane.

Harry is caught outside and hauled into the trailer for interrogation as Walsh and his minions go through Harry’s backpack. Harry claims he was just trying to find the restroom. Walsh is suspicious and looks at Harry’s id, which is clearly a cover. Walsh takes the gun from Harry’s bag, places one bullet in the chamber, spins it and aims at Harry’s head.

The opening credits roll followed by a title card informing us that we are now going back in time two weeks.

Not what the doctor ordered

We then shift back in time two weeks to a pharmacy run by father and son, Farmacia Esquivel. There is obvious tension between father and son as the elder Esquivel tries to appease his son’s frustration with talk of lunch. The son leaves to take a walk.

There are some menacing men waiting outside the pharmacy. Two of them pull on ski masks and head to the entrance. A local bystander sees them enter and presumably calls 911. The masked men are asking for Esquivel’s son. The pharmacist claims that his son has nothing to do with the situation and that they are no longer stocking oxy. The robbers rifle through the pills and take some before executing Mr. Esquivel.

The getaway driver informs the killers that the police are approaching. The masked men leave out the back and dump their masks, but see no sign of the driver who has apparently fled the scene. The two men enter a parking garage and steal an innocent man’s car and put the owner in the trunk. They drive some distance and dump his body in a dumpster and abandon the vehicle. A man in a truck spies the the murderers leaving the car behind.

They phone the getaway driver and meet up with him in a new vehicle.

Back at Hollywood Division

Detectives Espinosa and Conniff brief everyone on a murder case. They describe a signature left by the killer, which Espinosa describes as “a cross scratched on the hallux nail”.

Harry receives a phone call from Maddie who shares news about one of Harry’s old cases being reopened. Then the call arrives about the armed robbery at the pharmacy. Lt. Billets rallies the team and they all head out with Pierce volunteering to drive.

Crate and Barrel are in the field but in close proximity to the scene, so they, too, respond to the call. As Barrel crosses the intersection, a patrol car t-bones his vehicle. It’s Officers Powers and Rodriguez. Rodriguez ends up in a neck collar and Powers is limping. The crash impedes the ability of police to respond to the robbery. Barrel and Powers face off on who was responsible for the crash with Powers blaming Barrel’s age.

Where’s Jerry?

Jerry is meeting with two detectives investigating a recent drive by shooting that killed two young boys. They suspect gang involvement and know that Jerry has a CI named Gary Wise who has a history with suspect Bo Jonas. Detectives Arias and Marcos are hoping Jerry can get Gary to talk to them.

Jerry explains that Gary has left the life of crime behind and may not want to get involved, but he will see if Gary will meet with them. Arias and Marcos also rib Jerry about the rumor of Hollywood Homicide getting absorbed elsewhere. Jerry brushes it off as a long standing rumor.

Later Jerry arrives to the pharmacy to investigate with Harry. Harry assigns Pierce the job of trying to find out how the murderers fled the scene. Jerry identifies the Oxycodone on the floor and recalls using them after his gunshot wound to the shoulder in season 3. The presence of the pills conflicts with signage indicating Oxycodone is not dispensed there. As they watch the security camera footage, Jerry suspects “some kind of pill scam”, especially when Harry points out a lot of unpaid bills. They are focused on finding Jose Jr.

Outside, we see Jose Esquivel, Jr. approaching the pharmacy. He sees the police on site and flees the scene looking very frightened. We later see him place a call to his cousin for help.

Jerry and Harry head to the Esquivel residence, but Junior is not there.

How did Maddie know?

How did Maddie know about her dad’s case being reopened? Maddie is spending the summer working at the District Attorney’s office. She befriends a young man named Tom who is part of the CIU (Conviction Integrity Unit). He tells her that he is looking into one of her father’s old cases.

Maddie slyly takes photos of Tom’s passwords so she can get more information on the investigation into the Skyler murder case that her dad closed over twenty years ago. Maddie accesses the old interview footage between Harry and the convicted killer Preston Borders. Borders denies all allegations and is very smug about his innocence in the interview. After everyone leaves the interrogation room, Borders stares creepily into the camera.

Maddie talks to her dad over dinner. She inquires about the Skyler case and how Borders claims that Harry set him up. Bosch describes how he caught Borders lying about returning to Danielle Skyler’s apartment. Harry lied and told Borders that his fingerprints were on Danielle’s apartment door to lure Border into a lie of his own. He goes on to tell her about two kinds of truth.

There are two kinds of truth, Mads. Kind that comes from darkness, gets bent and manipulated for someone’s self interest and the kind you carry inside and know is real. – Harry Bosch

Bosch goes on to explain that the pendant that belonged to Danielle was found in Border’s apartment. That clinched the case and they were able to put away someone who was a sociopath, rapist and murderer. Maddie inquires why would they reopen the case if it was solid. Harry claims the new District Attorney is trying to prove her gravitas, but they do not need to worry.

Speaking of the new District Attorney, Chief Irving is investigating an officer involved shooting alongside new District Attorney Hines. There are doubts about the shooting and they are reviewing body cam footage.

Humor highlights

Homicide is most definitely not a funny topic. Thankfully, Bosch gives us some humor now and then to lighten the mood. Here are a couple of my favorites from episode 1.

  • When Powers gives Barrel grief about his driving ability, Barrel fires back telling him he has been driving in Hollywood “before [Powers was] even a sperm cell in his daddy’s nut sack”. Now that’s specific!
  • Harry teases Maddie about the missing ingredient in her enchiladas, paprika, when he doesn’t even know what it is.
  • When Borders asks for a lawyer, a younger Irving tells him “We’ll bring you the Yellow Pages“.

Let’s hope we made good notes on episode 1. We need to keep all the information locked down as we navigate the season. Tell me what I missed – we’re in this together!

Do not forget to check out additional intel on the episode via the X-Ray feature attached to each episode on Amazon Prime.

Stay tuned for the season 5 episode 2 investigation.


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