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You Have Got To Be Kidding, 'Manifest'

By Dustin Rowles | TV | March 3, 2020 |

By Dustin Rowles | TV | March 3, 2020 |


When Olive Stone was around 12-years-old, she developed a crush on an 18-year-old named TJ whom she met at the airport. Fortunately for Olive, TJ was a passenger on Flight 828, so when he returned from his flight, Olive was 5 years older and TJ hadn’t aged a day, transforming that inappropriate crush into an appropriate relationship.

In last week’s episode, TJ and Olive went to a nightclub on the invite of Isaiah, a deranged cult-leader, who asked a lot of the passengers of Flight 828 to hang out at da club. He then set fire to da club and locked everyone inside. Several passengers died. Ben managed to save Olive. He could not, however, save TJ, who died when the club exploded.

Or did he?

This week, Ben had a calling that sounded like Gregorian chants. He followed the Gregorian chanting in his head until it brought him to a meditation center, where he surmised that his calling was demanding that he and Olive pay their respects to TJ, whose mother was Buddhist, as evidenced by the charm bracelet TJ gave Olive before he died.

So, Olive and Ben go to the meditation center with the big Buddha statue to pay their respects to TJ, but while they are there, Ben starts hearing those Gregorian chants in his head again. Ben and Olive start following those sounds through the tunnels under the city until they’re somehow out in the NYC sewer or subway system where they find … TJ. It must be at least two days since the nightclub fire, and he’s badly burned, but TJ is still alive because for GOD’S SAKE, this show cannot even kill off an insignificant character. TJ is exactly the kind of character who should be killed off: Meaningless to the storyline, but just barely significant enough to give the illusion of real stakes. It’s like killing off Jerry Gergich, but then bringing him back in the next episode. Like, ugh, JERRY? WHY?

In the B-plot this week, the brother of Jared’s new girlfriend is a major Xer (these are the people who hate Flight 828 passengers), and Jared attends an Xer meeting with him. For some reason, all the Xers look like racist rednecks. Michaela, however, figures out that Jared is cavorting with Xers and rats him out to their captain at the precinct. The captain calls Jared in and the two give each other a look that says, “Damnit. Michaela is onto our undercover operation! Curse her meddling!” I do not think, however, that Jared is in cahoots with the Xers.

Finally, Zeke — who time-holed six months while inside a freezing cave — is experiencing severe frostbite, indicating that his death date is arriving. However, he thinks that Saanvi is on the verge of discovering a cure that will save him. Saanvi claims that she removed the callings and the death date from her own DNA, and is prepared to remove it from Zeke’s DNA, too.* However, Saanvi also couldn’t remember making out with Alex, her ex-girlfriend, when Alex confronted her. “I don’t remember kissing you. I don’t remember anything from this morning.”

I guess removing part of your own DNA sequence has its downsides.

*I have no idea how to explain this storyline. The 828 passengers got on a plane that basically went through a five-year wormhole. When they returned, they not only had callings — or visions — but a “death date” (If you timehole for five years, you will die five years after your return. If you timehole for six months, you die six months after your return, etc., etc.) The death date and the callings become part of the DNA, and that DNA can be passed on genetically. In other words, the passengers genetically inherited something from flying on a plane that can be passed on to the next generation. The solution — according to Saanvi — is simply to remove all of this from the DNA. I am not an expert on DNA, but none of this makes a damn lick of sense.

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.

Header Image Source: NBC