I love to read and write police procedurals, so it makes sense that I’m a fan of Michael Connelly’s books and his flawed homicide detective Harry Bosch. Harry isn’t the usual womanizing alcoholic, he’s just cynical, detached, and a bit of a curmudgeon. The TV show is good too. Although, while watching the TV series Bosch streaming on Amazon Prime, it can be confusing for loyal readers when the scripts mashup plots, settings and characters from Connelly’s many books. Season 6 appears to adapt a recent storyline and mix it with a dirty bomb premise from an older book. This season prominently features the FBI. I would have to issue a spoiler alert if I said any more about the plot, other than that the bomb isn’t the only thing discovered to be dirty.
The tired old cliche that the FBI doesn’t play well with others was on full display. Chief Irving fights with FBI management for control of the initial abduction and murder case, while the relationship between Bosch and the investigating agents doesn’t start of well either. Here’s a bit of dialogue from their first meeting.
Female Agent: “Just make sure you stay in your lane.”
Edgar: “Now they’re traffic cops.”
Bosch: “Stepping up in rank.”
Male agent: “F*ck you both.”
Bosch: “This ain’t my first trip down the federal road. And my lane has no lines.”
There goes the FBI again, demanding that local cops know their place and stay in it. Can’t you just feel the tension and conflict the dialogue is attempting to convey. But not so fast. Here’s a reality check from the FBI website regarding dirty bomb investigations:
The FBI has weapons of mass destruction (WMD) coordinators dedicated to monitoring the use of destructive devices that could cause harm and mayhem on a large scale. Their primary function is to coordinate the assessment of and response to incidents involving the use or threatened use of chemical, biological, and radiological/nuclear materials. Each WMD coordinator is tasked with establishing appropriate liaison with regional, state, and local emergency response personnel as well as with critical facilities within each field office’s jurisdiction in order to facilitate notification and response to WMD incidents.
That means in a real life situation, the agents dealing with Bosch and Edgar would have established counterparts within the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) with whom they would work on the type of radioactive material threat investigation featured on the show. However, referencing this informal interagency WMD task force, established to avoid the disputes often depicted in police dramas, doesn’t make for entertaining TV. I’m not mad at the writers. I get it. I enjoyed watching Bosch Season 6. I just thought you’d want to know how it really works. You can watch the trailer here.