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TV Shows we love: Manifest by Eleni Philippou

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Imagine the airplane your loved ones are in suddenly and mysteriously disappears mid-air. Or perhaps you don’t want to imagine. Now picture that five years later, as you are trying to piece life back together, the plane returns. It appears in the sky out of nowhere with all of its passengers safe and sound who have no idea they have been missing for five years and they haven’t aged one bit.

That is the premise of Manifest, an American series that aired in 2018 but hit Netflix at the end of 2021. All of the 191 passengers of Flight 828 had been presumed dead and suddenly they are back and nobody can explain what happened. Not the government, not the Secret Service, not NASA.

Manifest is full of hidden meanings, messages and symbolism and supernatural powers that confuse even the world’s most powerful scientists. This type of TV is not called mind bending for nothing. Strange things happen to each of the featured 191 passengers that don’t make sense.

Leading the charge into what it all means is Ben Stone (Josh Dallas) and his sister, a cop, Michaela (Melissa Roxburgh). The police involvement proves handy when investigating some premises as does the presence on board of a brilliant doctor.

They have Callings, voices that won’t leave them alone until they do what they are urged, although they usually don’t get it right fist time. But are they are a force for good or evil? Three seasons in and I am still not sure because Manifest has kept me on my feet, unable to guess where the plot is heading. Are the Callings a supernatural power only they are exposed to or is it maybe something we all have innately within us but we haven’t manifested yet? What happened to the passengers, and others not on the plane who find themselves similarly affected? Did they die? Are they set to die?

I hope that the fourth season that comes out in April silences my queries.

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