NBC‘s new drama-mystery series Manifest has everyone trying to figure out what happened to Flight 828.
The series starts with a family, complete with grandparents, a mom and dad, an aunt, and twins. The flight is overbooked, so Ben Stone (Josh Dallas), his sister Michaela Stone (Melissa Roxburgh), and his 11-year-old son, Cal (Jack Messina), among many others get on the plane, to go home, and have a seemingly normal flight. They experience some bad turbulence, but nothing awful. When the plane lands, surrounded by cops and government agents, the passengers and crew of Flight 828 discover that they had been missing for 5 years, none of them aging a day.
Reuniting with their families and getting back to their normal lives isn’t as easy as they would have thought. They start experiencing abnormal side effects, such as hearing voices telling them what to do. They hear themselves telling them things that no one could know to help others. “Slower,” is what Michaela hears just before telling her bus driver to slow down. After her persistence, he does. Just in time to avoid hitting a young boy who ran into the road.
I really liked this pilot because it had a good mix of mystery, and family drama with other little things as well. The characters are all fantastic. All of them have their own stories and messed up pasts. The families of those on the plane had loved ones missing for five years, only for them to come back, exactly as they left them. The passengers of Flight 828, missed five years of the world, with all of their family and friends continuing to grow and eventually move on.
Michaela returns to find her former “fiancee” married to her best friend. Ben and Cal return to Cal’s twin sister, Olive, now 16, and a stranger to him. Saanvi, a medical researcher, finding her transition back into her job at a rocky start. Michaela has to get a mental health evaluation to return to her job at the police station, and Ben is unemployed and looking to start up Cal’s leukemia treatment from right where it left off, seeing that his condition hasn’t advanced a day. Saanvi gets him into a program at her center saying, “Maybe he came back to be saved, and maybe I came back to save him.”
This show has a strong theme of family, with a good mix of drama and mystery as well. Manifest airs Mondays, at 10pm on NBC.