TV Recap: Manifest – It’s All Connected …

Manifest
“Connecting Flights” (Episode 105)
October 22, 2018

If you haven’t caught up on all the episodes of Manifest, you can read the latest review here!

Last week, Saanvi and Michaela had similar visions of a stone angel [Ed Note: This is code for Scary Ass Weeping Angel from Doctor Who].  We also met Bethany and Thomas and learned that he was a stowaway on board the flight.  Let’s add them to the list of passengers that we know.

  •       Michaela Stone: police officer whose fiancé married her best friend while she was missing, Ben’s sister, hearing voices and seeing things  since returning
  •         Ben Stone: Michaela’s brother and father to Cal, hearing music and voices in his head since returning
  •         Cal Stone:  Ben’s son, Leukemia patient – condition hasn’t changed in 5 years due to flight, treatment from Saanvi’s research may cure him
  •         Saanvi Bahl: Doctor, working on cancer research, led to breakthrough on cancer treatment 5 years prior, right before the flight. Now seeing things.
  •         Radd: Went to Jamaica to play for philharmonic, left son behind
  •         Kelly Taylor: Gave interviews with reporters, shot at end of episode 2. Dead.
  •         Bethany Collins: flight attendant, helped Thomas leave Jamaica and come to the US
  •        Thomas: Stowaway on Flight 828, dated Bethany’s cousin

And now for this week’s episode…SPOILERS AHEAD!

The episode starts off on board the flight that Grace and Olive took with Ben’s parents on April 7, 2013.  Olive is sitting with her grandfather, Steve, on one side of the plane.  Being away from Cal this long is upsetting her.  Her grandfather tells her that having a twin is something special and that they will always feel connected.  On the other side of the plane, Grace is sitting with Ben’s mother, Karen.  She asks Grace if the vacation helped fix their relationship.  Grace denies that there is anything wrong at first, but Karen is persistent.  Finally opening up, Grace admits that they are too focused on Cal and being away from the hospital helped.

(Photo by: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC/Warner Brothers)

After they land, Olive wants to wait at the airport for Cal.  Grace brings her over to the flight board and shows her that their plane won’t land for another few hours.  As they are looking at the board, the status of the flight changes to “see agent.”

Cut to Jared and Lourdes together at a bar. Jared thinks he proposed too soon after Evie’s accident and doesn’t think Michaela is ready to say “yes.”  Lourdes disagrees and says that she knows her best friend will say “yes.”  While they are at the bar, Jared gets a call from Grace. From his expression, we can see something is wrong.

Jared and Lourdes arrive at the airport and get past security by flashing his NYPD badge. They find Michaela’s parents distraught and confused.  Steve tells him that Grace is trying to find answers and that maybe Jared’s badge might help.  Addressing a crowd of family members, an airline agent is telling them that a search operation is going on for Flight 828.  Lourdes takes Olive away from the crowd and Grace is explaining to Jared that Ben and Michaela volunteered to take a later flight.  Jared’s take away from hearing this, is that Michaela didn’t want to come back [Ed Note: Man, this reaction turned me off to Jared; get some perspective, pendejo – the love of your life is on a plane that just up and disappeared from sophisticated radar tracking. Dumbass].

(Photo by: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC/Warner Brothers)

Title Card.

Back to the present, Ben is chastising Thomas for being in the states illegally and Bethany for committing a felony bringing him here.  He doesn’t want to go to jail and miss another 5 years with his family.  Michaela feels that she has to help him.  Bethany offers to take him to a cabin that Vance wouldn’t be able to trace her to. Happy with that solution, Ben bids them good luck. Michaela chases after him and tells him not to blow them off.  He feels these callings are dangerous and uses Jared’s career as an example.  (He always uses Jared to get under her skin. [Ed. Note: Siblings, man. They’re awesome!])  Michaela says that she just misunderstood the message, but Ben feels that something might be screwing with them.  Ben feels that she is going to ruin her life and he doesn’t want her to mess up his (he’s doing a good job of that himself.)  He hears a voice, “It’s all connected,” and stops.  Michaela calls him out on it and asks what it said, but he doesn’t tell her.  He doesn’t want to risk his family’s safety and Michaela disagrees.

“You can’t just walk away from this.”

Commercials

In Vance’s office, agents confirm that their John Doe (Thomas) was on the plane, but not on the manifest [Ed Note: Show Title Mention – DRINK!].  Furious that they don’t have answers, Vance wants to know who he is.  Another agent walks in with surveillance footage of Bethany and Saanvi at the hospital.  Vance calls for them to be interviewed.

At the precinct, Jared is meeting with a union rep.  The union rep wants him to blame Michaela, but he won’t let that happen.  Michaela stops by his desk and asks how it went.  Lying, Jared says that it will be a walk in the park.  He tells her to go enjoy her day off.

At home, Ben tells Grace he will spend time with Cal as she is getting ready to leave for work.  He hears the voice again, “It’s all connected.”  He asks Cal if he ever feels like his life is being controlled [Ed. Note: Who the fuck says this to a kid, especially their own kid? I don’t want to know my 10 year-old son’s feeling on this topic. This is why Grace is boning Danny, Ben. Things like this, right here].  When Cal agrees, by his parents and by his doctors, Ben laughs and offers the suggestion to try a little Chaos Theory and not make any decisions.  He flips a coin to decide where they are going.  Grace gets a text message as Ben and Cal are off to Coney Island for the day.  The text is from Danny and he asks to see her.  She lies and tells him she is busy at work.

“We leave it to chance.”

Flashback to six-months after the disappearance of Flight 828.

Grace is laying in what appears to be Cal’s bed.  Olive comes in with soup.  She has band-aids on her hand and Grace asks what happened.  She revealed that she tried to make a ham and cheese sandwich but cut herself on the knife, there was no more bread or ham and the cheese was moldy.  Grace realizes that she has to pull herself together.

Lourdes helped Jared clean out Michaela’s apartment.  While bringing the boxes to Michaela’s parent’s house, Jared drops one of the boxes.  Pictures fall out, and all of them are of Michaela, Evie and Lourdes.  They are reminiscing about some of the pictures and Michaela’s parents come out. Her mother offers for Jared and Michaela to keep the pictures, so they can remember her and laugh and that way, she will live forever.

“Joy is never wrong.”

Grace went to a support group where she meets Danny.  She tells her story and says that everyone keeps telling her how she is keeping it all together, but she just wants someone to tell her that she looks like hell.  Cue Danny, who does just that.

Commercials.

We come back to the present.  At Coney Island, Ben is still flipping coins to determine what to do that day.  He has Cal to flip to see if they should go home. Ben hears the creepy voice again, “It’s all connected.” Cal flips for, stay or take the train home.  The coin’s decision is to take the train.  Ben asks if they should just get a Lyft, but Cal is already running off to the train.

“Come on Dad.  Keep it random.”

Michaela goes to visit Lourdes.  She is in their house and notices a blanket similar to ones that her mother crocheted.  Feeling a bit out of place, Lourdes said that Karen made it for her, but she thinks that Michaela should have it.  Michaela refuses.  Lourdes gives her all the photos she kept and Michaela can’t believe she kept them for so long.

Ending the small talk, Michaela reveals that she came over to tell her about Jared taking the fall for something she did.  She wants Lourdes to make him stop.  Feeling hurt, Lourdes says that he didn’t tell her.  Realizing she made a mistake, Michaela wants to leave but Lourdes asks her to stay.  Lourdes won’t convince him not to take the fall, because he always does the right thing.  Michaela begs her to tell him not to take the fall because being a detective was always his dream. Yeah. Lourdes knows, Michaela …

Flashback to 2 years after the disappearance of Flight 828.

Rushing through the bar, Lourdes meets Jared and apologizes for missing his promotion ceremony.  Being a detective seems surreal to him and he expects them to take it away.  Being a supportive friend, she tells him that he deserves it because he works his ass off and has no life; he needs adventure.  They share a kiss. Jared says he’s sorry, but Lourdes asks, “are you?”  And they kiss again.

“That was out of your comfort zone.”

(Photo by: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC/Warner Brothers)

Grace is hosting Danny for dinner and Young Olive is not pleased.  When she goes to answer the door, Danny tells her that he will leave if Olive isn’t happy.  Grace wants him to stay and feels that it took a long time for her to be ready for this.  They are sitting down at dinner and Grace offers seconds for the meatloaf. Danny graciously accepts and he is left alone with Olive at the table.  She hasn’t touched anything on her plate and Danny asks if she likes meatloaf.  She says no, and Danny realizes that it is Cal’s favorite not Olive’s.  She storms off saying the Cal is still alive and when she gets older, she is going to find him.  Grace comes back in and apologizes for Olive’s behavior.  Olive looks on and sees her mom laughing with Danny.

Back in the present, Ben is on the subway with Cal.  Ben is hearing the voice again, “It’s all connected’ and some passengers recognize him as one of the Flight 828 passengers.  At a stop, Cal jumps off the subway.  Ben tells him that this isn’t their stop, but Cal says that it’s part of the game, and to follow him.  They go out of one subway station and into another, but this one was chained off.  Way ahead of his father, Cal was able to squeeze through the gates, but Ben wasn’t. As Cal is heading down a flight of stairs, he yells to his father, “It’s all connected.” [Ed. Note: You can literally hear Ben shit his pants right here. It’s fantastic. I actively root for bad things to happen to Ben … because he’s stupid]

Cut to Bethany, who is packing up a car and getting ready to leave.  She is with her wife outside saying goodbye and Director Vance pulls up alongside the vehicle.  He arrests Bethany.

Back to Cal and Ben. Following Cal, Ben sees him go through a vent.  Confused and yelling for Cal to come back, Ben reluctantly follows him.  On the other side of the vent is Thomas in the boiler room.  Cal introduces himself and asks if he is Thomas.

(Photo by: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC/Warner Brothers)

Commercials.

Ben starts to ask Cal several questions about how he knew Thomas’s name and how he knew the place existed, but Cal just said that it just came to him.  Frustrated, Ben snaps at him, and Thomas asks Cal to play chess.  While Cal is setting up the game, Ben talks to Thomas.  He explains how they were on the subway and Cal led them here.  Ben asks about him leaving with Bethany and Thomas explains Bethany left and hasn’t come back.

“Everything’s changed now.”

Michaela goes to her father’s house and brings a pizza.  Sitting on the front porch, Steve tells her to join him and asks what’s on her mind.  She tells him that she saw one of her mother’s afghan’s at Lourdes and Jared’s house and she feels that could have been her life.  He asks if she still loves Jared and she says, yes.  Her father’s advice is to tell Jared how she feels and get him back.

Flashback to 3 years after the disappearance of Flight 828.

On the same porch, Michaela’s mother gives Jared the afghan and she says that Jared and Lourdes are getting married.  Her father seems surprised.  He feels that Jared still loves Michaela.  Karen says that she will be with Michaela soon and she will tell that he’s okay.

Back in the present,  Bethany is in Vance’s office.  Holding a picture of Thomas, Vance asks her who he is.  Not answering his question, he then shows Bethany a photo of herself at the hospital at the same time Thomas escaped.  Still not revealing any information, she asks for a lawyer.  He tells her that the lawyer will explain she is facing jail time, but Vance will cut her a deal if she tells him what she knows.

Cut to Jared at his hearing, telling officials about what happened.  He says he stands by his statement (still protecting Michaela) and the fate of his job is up to the officials now.

Danny goes to visit Grace.  He tells her that 10 days ago, he practically lived there and now he is shut out.  Having lost a loved one before, he feels he can get over losing Grace, but it will be harder for him to lose Olive.  Grace thinks Olive feels the same way.

(Photo by: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC/Warner Brothers)

Back to Jared, the officials come back in and tell him that he is stripped of 10 day’s pay.  He leaves and sees Vance sitting outside the office.  Realizing someone had to save his ass, he asks what Vance wants?  The answer is the same as before, keep an eye on Michaela.

Jared goes to a bar and Michaela comes in to see him.  She expresses her gratitude for him to stand up for her.  He tells her he doesn’t want to talk about the hearing and suggests that it would be best if he left.

Back in the boiler room, Ben gives Thomas money so he can find some place to go.  Cal advises that they leave because someone is coming.  Ben hears the voice again, “It’s all connected.”

Commercials.

With knocking on the door, Thomas suggests for Ben to get his son to safety.  Cal stops them and says that he thinks she’s a friend.  It’s Georgia (Eva Kaminsky), Bethany’s wife.  She wants to take Thomas to the cabin because Bethany would want it this way.  Thomas says goodbye and leaves with Georgia. Ben asked Cal how he knew she was a friend, he says it was just a feeling.

“Keep practicing your end game little man.”

(Photo by: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC/Warner Brothers)

Jared goes home.  Lourdes tells him that Michaela stopped by and she said he was in trouble at work.  Jared brushes it off as if it was minor but Lourdes is upset he hid this from her.  She wants to know if there was more to him sticking up for Michaela, but he just feels bad for Michaela since the plane landed.

Flashback to the day Flight 828 returned.

Lourdes comes home and Jared tells her the plane came back. Cut to Danny coming down the stairs of Grace’s house with a bag.  He is leaving and hugs Grace and Olive goodbye.

 (Photo by: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC/Warner Brothers)

Back to present day.

Olive comes down the stairs of the house and finds her mom at the table.  Grace realizes she made a mistake about cutting Danny out of their lives.  Olive is happy her father is back, but Danny is her dad too.  Grace tells her that’s okay.

(Photo by: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC/Warner Brothers)

Montage starts of Lourdes looking at pictures of her and Jared.  Cut to Michaela looking at pictures of her and Jared.  Cut to Olive and Grace looking at pictures of Jared Danny with Olive.

Michaela goes to see Ben and he has the plane mapped out with where passengers were sitting.  Michaela thought he was done with it and he says that Cal brought him back.  Michaela wonders if Cal’s having callings too? Ben explains that Cal is different from even them, he knows things he shouldn’t and can sense things before they happen.

“I can’t walk away now.”

Flashback to Flight 828.

While Ben and Michaela are sleeping, a bright light flashes outside the window.  Cal gets up to look out the window and stares at the tremendously bright light.  He whispers to himself, “It’s all connected.”

And scene.

Thoughts.

One of the things I enjoyed most about this episode was visiting the past with flashbacks.  This was a really effective way to give the audience a glimpse of what happened while the passengers were in limbo for five years.  It was more effective using flashbacks intertwined with present day, rather than having a full episode dedicated to the past. It kept the present day story moving which allowed us to, among other things, learn more about Bethany.

I was surprised to hear the mention of a character that we haven’t met before.  In the flashback of the day the plane landed, Grace was listening to a news report that mentioned Dr. Fiona Clarke.  The report said she was a renowned professor.  Will we get to learn about her story soon?

I find it difficult to root for Ben’s character.  He (very rudely) brushes off Thomas at the beginning of the episode, even when Michaela feels that there is something bigger going on.  However, I was pleased to see his math brain trying to figure out more about the mysteries of the plane.  Maybe with his math brain and Saanvi’s science brain, they can solve the mystery. [Ed. Note: And have some sweet sweet nerd love]

Michaela really needs to hone in on these callings.  She has to figure out what exactly it is that she is trying to help with.  She was wrong about the dogs in the first episode and she was wrong about the undercover agent in the last episode.  I can understand where Ben is coming from when he tells her that she’s going to ruin her life … and other people’s lives too.

When we see Danny’s character in the past, the first time Grace meets him is at the support group … and he is hitting on her.  Even worse, she flirts back.  She is recently widowed and he is coming on to her.  That is a major creep moment right there.  Her smile that she gave him is not making the situation better and the little respect that I had for these characters has been completely diminished.

Finally, with the end of the episode, I’m wondering if Cal was the only one that could see the light or if it was visible to any of the other passengers.  I’m curious how long it will take for the show to go back to that moment and reveal what that was all about. [Ed. Note: That was a really bright fucking light – if that wasn’t only visible to Cal, then someone else had to have seen it or else, I call bullshit on the premise.]

Episode Score:  I give this episode a 2.5 out of 5 Casey’s.  The flashbacks were a nice touch, but the best part of the show (Saanvi) wasn’t around in this episode and the characters are becoming less appealing to me.

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