Manifest Episode 15-Hard Landing: Review and Recap-Burning Finale Questions

Here are all the burning questions with predictions for next week’s finale.

Manifest episode 15 Hard Landing
Courtesy of NBC

 The penultimate episode proves it is all connected even if we still don’t know how.This episode more than any other this season felt urgent.  The urgency to find a bomb and save lives, the urgency to figure out what is going on, and the urgency the 828’ers families feel from the threats coming from all sides.  The Church followers are always a wild card even if we did not see any of them this week.  Cody’s group is mobilizing against the Returned, The Major and her secret lair of well armed and supplied government goons are doing God knows what all while someone is leaving bombs in hot dog carts.  To make matters worse, Zeke has some explaining to do.  What dark secret he is harboring will undoubtedly be one of the mysteries solved next week in the finale. 

Everything has a purpose, and everything happens for a reason.  Sometimes that reason is more obtuse than others, and sometimes the goal is to show that not all “callings” are good.  Mich, Ben, Cal, and Saanvi have been working under the delusion that all those who returned are good people who get “called” to help the greater good.  Despite the fact that Autumn was working for her own self-interest, or at least the interest of her child, and that The Major is out there looking for the 828’ers, they still believe in the power of right and wrong.  That belief was tested this week by James Griffin.  Everything they thought they knew is being questioned.  Just as those with superpowers have the ability to use their powers for good or evil, so to do the returned.  With great power comes great responsibility.  Griffin feels only the power and the opportunity it provides him.
This is the first time we have seen the “callings” used opportunistically.  It is also the first time a truly evil person has exploited them.  We have seen the government agency experimenting on the returnees, we suspect The Major is up to no good, and Autumn ratted everyone out, but none of that was direct exploitation for the purpose of self-preservation alone.  The universe seems to be preparing our group of good guys for the battle with evil.  The understanding that not everyone is concerned with doing the right thing is something they need to learn ASAP.  Sometimes life is unfair, and the bad guys get powers of their own.  This leads us to our first question.

Did the Major and her group create the black lightning event that led to Flight 828, Zeke, and Griffin’s time jump?

If we know anything about her, it is that she is capable of just about anything.  It is likely this is a scenario similar to Dr. Wells particle accelerator mishap in CW’s The Flash that had unintended consequences.  The Major intended on exposing Flight 828, but not necessarily the aftershocks that affected Griffin and Zeke.  We know this because she has a near-Nazi level of disregard for human experimentation, unlimited resources, and more power than the President.  With all the talk of Gemini twins, and what we know historically about medical tests done on twins it stands to reason Cal and Olive were separated on the flights to test their physical and emotional effects.  The rest of the passengers could have been chosen for specific reasons.  They demonstrated the traits or skills needed to further the experiment.  So many coincidences make it implausible that a mathematician, genetic researcher, kid with the disease being researched, a doctor specializing in collective mind theory, and a cop were all on board on a lark.  The Major seems unaware of Griffin and Zeke at the moment, but what if Zeke’s Mom is The Major?  Now that creates a whole new wrinkle in things.

Who is Zeke?

As I mentioned above, he could be The Major’s kid, and that would be fantastic!  A real battle with an inside man.  He is harboring secrets and carries a mammoth amount of guilt on his shoulders, but he seems to genuinely care about Michaela.  This is a concern for Jared as he also cares for Michaela and doesn’t want her to get hurt, but also because he is jealous.  With Lourdes bowing out last week, he is primed and ready to start their relationship back up.  Next week Jared’s DNA testing of Zeke’s cup should reveal who he is.  From the jacket picture and limited details visible in the file, he will probably just be a garden variety drug addict or drunk.  He could be something a lot more interesting like a foster child previously thought dead though.  Maybe a long lost twin?

What’s with all the Constellations?

There has been four highly visible star constellation so far.  Gemini(Twins), Pavo(Peacock), Lupus(Wolf) and Draco(Dragon) have all been highlighted.  The significance of each of these has been discussed in previous posts.  Suspending the symbolism for a moment, the constellations could be important for other reasons.  They could be used to map something as in Stargate, or they may be used for timing purposes.  Gemini is best seen in February, Lupus in June, Draco in July, and Pavo in September.  How these months are significant is unclear yet, but the animals themselves have deep symbology attached.

The Peacock, Star Mythology and Aftershock Theory

Why are all the names so important?

Many of the names are unique on Manifest.  Ezekial or Zeke as we know him is obviously a reference to the bible.  Verse 25:17 reads, “The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of the darkness. For he is truly his brother’s keeper and the finder of lost children.”  This could be interesting for many reasons.  There are so many kids involved in this, I could easily imagine someone getting lost or kidnapped at some point, and Zeke sure acts like a man who wants to be redeemed.  One of the meanings of the name Benjamin is “son of lightning”.  That is very specific.  Michaela means “Gift from God” and Cal is a reference to John Calvin the philosopher and theologian of the early 1500s.  His main beliefs dealt with predestination.  He is known for the Protestant Reformation.  He taught God alone chooses who goes to Heaven or Hell, and it is predetermined.  James is also a biblical name, but our James Griffin is a decidedly unChristain-like fella.  Saanvi is closely linked to the Hindu Goddess Lakshmi who is the protector of wealth and prosperity on the physical and spiritual planes as well as the Hebrews believe she was one of three angels sent to protect mothers and babies from the demon Lilith.  Combined with Ben and Michaela a triumvirate is formed I’m assuming to protect Cal.

How and why do numbers matter on Manifest?

In practically every episode more numbers are introduced.  They are almost always some derivative of 828.  This week Griffin was in the water for eight hours and twenty-eight minutes or 828.  The time on the clock over the Stone’s shoulder read 6:48 pm.  Devon Carrick’s date of death is listed as May 3rd, 2004 another derivation of 828.  The number 828 is an Angel Number and is the biblical passage Mich and Ben’s Mom had on her pillow.  The passage refers to great suffering in the completion of a higher purpose.  For those who persevere their sacrifice will be worth it.  All things are connected for the furtherance of the cosmic greater good.  To bad Griffin did not get the memo as he’s throwing around cryptic platitudes to Mich about not “getting herself in a twist”.  

Everything You Need To Know About The Number 828 And Manifest

As the episode closes our respective heroes and their Scooby Squad are all struggling with their own demons.  Saanvi has a nasty case of PTSD from last week’s kidnapping,  Jared is crazy with jealousy and testing Zeke’s DNA which might reveal some pretty huge secrets about him like he is the Major’s kid or maybe even Devon Carrick who has been living under an assumed name and didn’t die in jail after all.  Michael and Ben are worried about who or what the wolf represents and Cal is making either dragons or gryphons out of Popsicle sticks.  James Griffin’s last name is spelled differently, but it sure seems like an unlikely coincidence on a show where every little detail means something.  With the question of a season two still looming I sincerely hope this is all not building up to more questions that never get answered.  I also want no more talk of this ancient site called MySpace.  I’m going to pretend I’m too young to know what that was.

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