The Big Picture
- In Bosch: Legacy, Maddie Bosch’s traumatic experiences have impacted her worldview, but she remains her own character, shaped by her father and late mother.
- Maddie’s empathy is a crucial part of her character, but the realities of her job as a cop may require her to numb it for effective performance.
- The consequences of Maddie’s recent abduction will shape her future and raise questions about what kind of cop she will become in her new role.
Bosch: Legacy has brought Madison Lintz‘s Maddie Bosch to the fore. A recurring character from the start, as the daughter of the title character, Maddie’s maturity and progression from student to legal intern, and now, rookie LAPD cop. But it’s not been an easy road to this stage for Maddie. The victim of kidnapping, witness to her father’s enemies, the murder of her mother, and now abducted by a serial rapist, it would be a fair question to ask — does Maddie still believe in righteousness given the state of the world?
That was the question asked Bosch: Legacy‘s showrunner and writer Tom Bernardo when we spoke in advance of the show’s second season. Bernardo admitted that Maddie’s experiences couldn’t help but inform her world view, which has also been formed by not just her father (Titus Welliver), a retired LAPD detective, but also her late mother, Eleanor (Sarah Clarke), a former FBI agent.
“It’s a good question. It’s definitely going to affect her. What was interesting to us is she’s her own character, but, of course, she carries a lot of who her father is with her, and her mother, and at the same time is her own person and is in the process of discovering who that person is now as a young adult in this world of LAPD, being a rookie patrol cop out on those streets. So it was interesting for us to look into what happens to your empathy as you’re in this world and seeing the realities of things on a daily basis.”
Maddie Bosch’s Empathy Keeps Her on the Right Path
For Bernardo, it was evident that the in-built humanity and empathy Maddie carries with her is a vital component of her character. With the added trauma of the abduction and her subsequent rescue, her recovery from this latest powerful event will send the character in new directions but her upbringing will keep her anchored to the path of righteousness.
“If that empathy matters to you and you have a certain code, what happens when you start to feel it numbing because that’s the only way to cope and get through the job sometimes and to do it effectively because you can’t be undone by your emotions on a daily basis? So, one of the things I’ve said that is important to us as storytellers is, what are the consequences when you put a character into something, and she experiences what she experiences in the first two episodes? How does that affect and inform her for the rest of her life, in these given circumstances coupled with these questions that are interesting to us story-wise in terms of, “What kind of cop am I gonna be as I go into this new world?”
Bosch: Legacy streams on Amazon Freevee every Friday, from October 20 until November 10. Check out our guide to the series here.