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{Television}Manifest Episode 5 Connecting Flights Recap and Review Love Hurts and There May Be A Worm Hole

Manifest episode 5 was heavy on drama this week as we learned where all the other passengers might be and get one step closer to heaven or maybe just a wormhole.

Manifest Episode 5 Connecting Flights Lourdes and Jared
Courtesy of NBC

 “It’s all connected” was the calling this week, and she wasn’t kidding.  A complete episode that delivered one heck of an emotional punch allowed us to view each of the individual relationships before and after the flight in all their painful glory.  Each of these people has been struggling.  The returnees all feel they have been left behind and those not on flight 828 have had to move on with their lives in the five and a half year-long absence.  Each of the side characters was allowed a little room to grieve this week and it was painful to watch.  Jared, Lourdes, Ben and Michaela’s Mom and Dad and Danny all got the flashback treatment to view their genesis story within the Manifest world.  The elder Stone’s got a proper send-off for Mom and continued to highlight her obvious spirituality.  Danny and Lourdes, in particular, were finally given a chance to show they are not the monsters they were made out to be.  These were normal people with their own problems and grief and were just looking to make connections.  Unfortunately, for all involved, those connections were made with people who came home looking to pick up right where they left off.

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You have to feel for Danny and Lourdes, they give every appearance of being very nice kind people who wanted to find love and companionship just like the rest of us.  These two just got caught up in the overall unfairness of the event.  Danny met Grace in a support group and Lourdes loved and missed Michaela in her own right.  The real travesty is both of these characters have been living and competing with ghosts who just gained corporeal form.  It’s not fair to anyone.  Danny found love with Grace and a parent-child bond with Olive, and Lourdes and Jared found solace in the loss of their best friend with each other.  Through no fault of anyone’s, everyone’s life has become a Greek tragedy.  How these characters will be involved moving forward remains to be seen.  Danny is needed by Olive and it hardly seems fair to rip yet another parent away from her and Lourdes is Michaela’s best friend even if Jared has some serious boundary issues to work through with Mich.  The very real conflict they represent forms a tangible thread from which to weave the more esoteric mystery of the flight, the shady government agency and who is compelling them to help each other and those around them.

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Ben is desperate to deny the juju that has followed him from the flight.  All of the whispered instructions in his head and his sister’s insistence in diving headlong into trouble is too much for this man of numbers.    He sets out to prove he is the “master of his own destiny” by making a series of random decisions based solely on coin flips.  For Ben, he needs to prove his life is his own and he can control what happens to him and his family.  By the end of a full day with Cal that would exhaust anyone even without cancer, he is forced to face the fact that they are indeed special, and are all very much connected.  Ben left Michaela and Bethany earlier in the episode when they were hiding and helping Thomas escape.  He declared protecting Cal was his top priority and I get it, but the fact that Cal led him right back to Thomas by the end of the episode using nothing but intuition forced him to realize in the world of Manifest there is nothing random.  Further complicating matters is Cal’s clairvoyance.  How he knew he could trust who was behind the door is unknown and more than a little worrisome for Ben.

Clearly, Ben’s chosen field will become important to the storyline.  I’m assuming his math skills will be utilized in some way other than calculating compounding interest.  The fact that we have been dropped bread crumbs all throughout the season, including this week from a reporter in the background detailing the passengers on board missing flight 828 feels very important.  If it was just about making him a more rigid thinker he could have been an accountant or computer programmer.  Who is the eminent scholar Dr. Fiona Clark and what is she a scholar of?   This plane was filled to the brim with super smart, top of their field scientists.  That hardly seems coincidental.  Where are all the poor schlubs who wore cargo shorts and fanny packs?  Instead, we have brilliant mathematicians, cutting-edge medical scientists and now well-known scholars of something.  Aside from the occasional famous theoretical physicist like Stephen Hawking, is there such a thing as a famous scholar?  It is this hard science angle that leads me to believe things may not be as spiritual as we have been led to believe.  Regardless of all the Weeping Angels, throw pillows and numerology there is one mother of a wormhole blocking our path.

By the end Cal and Ben have successfully saved Thomas, Bethany is in the clutches of the NSA, Jared has avoided harsh punishment for Mich’s blunder last week but found himself again being propositioned by Agent Vance and Ben is making a connections board with pushpins, string, glue sticks and plane seating charts.  Manifest may have given us the biggest clue with its simple name.  Yes, the word means to appear as in a ghost out of thin air and yes it also references the people on board a plane but maybe it’s not just the concept of the list but who specifically made up that list.  Each person connected to one another by circumstance or need.  If that’s the case than Cal must be at the center of it all.  We will have to wait two weeks before we get any additional answers.  Thank God for Channel Zero starting Friday.  To get caught up on all our Manifest footage click here.

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