Bosch season 6: Julie Ann Emery makes excellent foil to Bosch

Bosch season 6. Image Courtesy Saeed Adyani/Amazon Prime Video
Bosch season 6. Image Courtesy Saeed Adyani/Amazon Prime Video /

Bosch season 6 introduces Julie Ann Emery as FBI agent Sylvia Reece, and the Preacher star makes a fine foil to the show’s title character.

If you’ve watched Bosch season 6 since it premiered on Friday, you’ve noticed Julie Ann Emery leaving her mark on the Amazon Prime Video crime drama.

Emery joins the cast this season as Sylvia Reece, one of the FBI agents assigned to work with Harry Bosch (the always pitch-perfect Titus Welliver) when a murder case looks like it could be terrorism.

She’s miles away from her deliciously over-the-top performance as Lara Featherstone in the recently concluded Preacher, but she’s still stealing a scene or two.

SPOILER ALERT: This article contains mild discussion of Bosch season 6, which is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

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Reece flies under the radar when she’s initially introduced; the beginning of this season includes plenty of the stereotypical animosity between LAPD detectives and the FBI agents, who look down their nose at the local law enforcement.

That’s what TV crime drama fans have seen dozens of times before, and at first, Emery’s character appears to be just another rank-and-file Bureau agent whose job within the story is to get in the hero’s way. But once the second hour winds down, it’s clear that there’s more to her, and more opportunities for the talented actress who plays her to shine.

There’s not only friction between Reece and the cops, but also Reece and her teammate Cliff Maxwell (Carter MacIntyre, Undercovers), and Emery does a wonderful job of subtly hinting that there’s more that her character is holding back for one reason or another, whether it’s the wheels turning in her head as she’s trying to figure something out or what she’s actually feeling.

She strikes the perfect balance between keeping things close to the vest, as a professional like Reece would, and fleshing out the character beyond the stereotype of another federal interloper. By the time things begin to unravel, and Reece has more scenes, Emery has given the character a full personality and a real emotional journey that you typically do not see from FBI agents on TV crime dramas that aren’t about the FBI.

In addition to her individual character development, Julie Ann Emery works wonderfully with Titus Welliver (who, it should be said, deserves an Emmy Award nomination or some kind of accolade for his consistent excellence as Harry Bosch). While part of that is down to the show’s incredible writing, Emery and Welliver also deserve credit for their chemistry.

There’s a distinct “point-counterpoint” relationship between Bosch and Reece, in that not only are their characters from opposing agencies, but the two performers balance each other out well, too. Emery displays a certain vulnerability that complements Bosch’s battle-hardened cynicism, but is also able to hold her own in scenes with Welliver, and the two develop a natural give-and-take over the season.

You leave their scenes wanting to see more of them working together, which again, is not typical of a cop and agent dynamic in a TV crime drama.

This isn’t the first time Julie Ann Emery has played a federal agent, but it’s her best such role since she starred as Jennifer Sampson in ABC’s terribly underrated Line of Fire. The writing and the cast of Bosch gives her so much to work with, and she takes full advantage to create a character who truly comes to life over the ten episodes.

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Emery has great screen presence while fitting seamlessly into the moody, gritty world of Bosch, and hopefully the producers will take notice and find a way to invite her back for the seventh and final season.

Bosch season 6 is now available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.