Television

Manifest Season 2 Episode 1

Manifest Season 2 Episode 1: Fasten Your Seat Belts-Recap and Review-NDE’s and Revelations 20:14

There are more mystery and more “callings” as the 828er’s attempt to save each other and themselves from Elizabeth Marvel’s The Major.

Our questions are answered and as predicted no one died. Michaela was shot during the scuffle between Jared and Zeke, but those eyebrows won’t quit and neither will she. Love triangles, particularly messy ones that get people shot are usually not a good fit for science fiction series. Genre lovers tend to get bored with silly rom-com plot lines. Through clever writing, by Jeff Rake and his team, the sci-fi landscape is being redefined. Manifest is a sudsy drama filled to the brim with mythology and hard science. There is something for the evening soap fans and the hard-core genre lovers alike. Season one ended with a bang and season two begin with heart.

Michaela lies bleeding and hurt but not dead. Jared pins all the blame on Zeke, but Michaela encourages him to run while he could. In the hospital, she is still smarting from Jared’s behavior and is shutting him out. Rake has set up a “good guy”/”bad guy” scenario between Zeke and Jared all but guaranteeing Jared will be vilified. Some of the Jared hatred is unwarranted.

He should not have been intimate with Michaela while married to Lourdes, however, he’s basically a decent guy who has been placed in an impossible situation. He never stopped loving Michaela and tried to move on with his second choice Lourdes. It’s not fair to anyone, but it is reality. Michaela does not have any easy choices. Neither Jared or Zeke is perfect. Zeke draws Michaela like a moth to a flame yet he is not without fault either and in the coming weeks, his backstory will be revealed.

Mich’s recovery raises some questions. If those who are returned have death dates does that mean they are all but indestructible before that? It might be very interesting to find they are immortal heroes with an expiration date. Cal has seen visions of the date June 2, 2024. This is the date he believes all aboard Flight 828 will die. Zeke’s death day is just one year away. Additionally, the visions and callings have changed too. They are stronger and more chaotic. Cal, Mich, and Zeke are all aware of what is going on and all are now on the plane in the visions. If they can circumvent Zeke’s death day they can save themselves?

Ben has thrown himself entirely into his job of protector and collector. He has always viewed himself as the knight in shining armor of the family. A role Josh Dallas(Ben) does so well having formerly been Prince Charming on Once Upon A Time. That same paternal goodness is put to good use as a concerned but obsessed father. He continues to show Grace unconditional love despite one obstacle after another.

Grace may be pregnant with another man’s baby, and not for the first time. After all the news and everything, Grace has thrown at him Ben is still the doting husband and father. Grace, on the other hand, is selfish and manipulative. She has elected to not have a DNA test effectively keeping Danny from an experience he should be part of if he is the father. As Olive points out nothing can be easy in their family. Even if Ben is the father, the conflict doesn’t stop there. If Ben is the father, does the baby share his death date?

Saanvi and Ben ultimately have decided to keep the death date to themselves. He has not stopped searching for passengers though. His search has led him to more passengers who are all having visions of their own. Paranoia has swept the country and fear has created dangerous factions of terrorists. It also has made some of the passengers terrified of the visions they see.

The Vasik’s, who Ben and Mich have been tasked with helping this week think their visions are from God predicting the end of the world. If they commit suicide they think they can save their children from a fiery death. Cal, Zeke, Mich, and Ben help them understand the pain stops if you listen and actively pursue the message. Luckily Zeke, Ben, and Mich are able to show the Vasik’s their visions were divine and they were able to save a family who had driven off the cliff.

As much progress as the Stone’s have made with others, they have not been able to convince Zeke he is part of the solution. As a former drug addict, he has screwed up plenty in the past but is now trying to do the right thing. Zeke has a martyr complex that continually puts him in dangerous situations because he secretly believes he isn’t worth anything. Matt Long’s portrayal of the tortured Zeke is what makes the love triangle work. His bad boy turned good is the stuff of many a girl’s fantasies. Cal knows time is running out for him, I hope Jared finds a way to come to terms with Zeke before the clock runs out.

The brilliant and beautiful Saanvi has become a liability. The deception has gotten to her. She lived a solitary and staid life before the trip to Jamaica that put her on Flight 828. The constant stress of Cal’s illness, predatory government agencies, and the need for secrecy have caused her to seek out a therapist. Unfortunately, as was revealed last week that the therapist is none other than The Major.

Elizabeth Marvel has quickly become one of the most fun to watch Big Bads of all time. She is clearly operating on a level the others don’t even know exists. By episodes end, Saanvi has caved to The Major’s first-rate gaslighting and begins to spill her secrets. Who knows how much she will end of revealing to the woman pulling all the strings.

Finally, a piece of good news comes in the form of a twist ending. The white vans who have been stalking the passengers aren’t part of The Major’s group, they belong to NSA Agent Director Vance who is not dead. Daryl Edwards is too interesting an actor to leave the show so quickly. Netflix’s Daredevil devotees recognize him as Detective Hoffman. He has had a long career playing the quiet, strong authoritarian. His Agent Vance, operating in the shadows, levels the playing field some. he has resources and the juice to use them. he will be a powerful ally for the group as the season progresses.

The first episode of the second season set the tone for the season. The Stones are no longer alone and are finally beginning to learn along with everyone else that they are stronger together. With the addition of friends and foe we are in for an exciting season. We better fasten our seatbelts. If the first season of Manifest was all about the Lost parallels, this season Heroes is the touchstone. Save the passengers, save the world. Catch up on all our coverage here.

Stray Thoughts:

  • Best line of the night goes to Ben who declares he doesn’t want to “rearrange chairs on the Titanic”.
  • Grace continues to be the worst. Why would you ever teach your daughter to lie about a pregnancy to the potential father? This is not the sort of decision making anyone should promote.
  • Revelations 20:14 reads: And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. The Vasik’s were wrong about their second death. Here’s hoping the 828er’s don’t have a lake of fire to contend with. The Book of Revelations foretells the End of Days. All those who rebuke the Devil and are holy will avoid the lake of fire which is where the faithless will die for the second time. There have already been people who should have died but did not who later died anyway. The thief who drowned for example. Maybe if The Stone’s and Zeke can do enough good they can avoid their fate. Sort of a reverse Final Destination concept.
  • What are NDE’s. Near Death Experiences or NDE’s are phenomena some people have reported having when they were dying. Typically as a patient is being revived they experience something they can not explain. Some describe hallucinations that are heaven-like and others hellish. Some see a white light and others see hellscapes full of nightmarish demons and imagery. There have been best selling books and movies about the subject. The science behind it points to oxygen deprivation or the last synapses of an ailing nervous system. Regardless of your belief, it is very intriguing. The one thing I can say for certain, I do not want to find all the 828er’s are in purgatory.
  • The religious 828 cult has been strangely quiet. They could be as compelling an addition to Manifest as the Cult of Blue Flowers on The Purge. We need more of them moving forward.

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