The Reel: “Manifest” is worth the suspense 

A screen grab from the trailer of the series "Manifest". 

Photo credit: Courtesy

What you need to know:

  • It starts with passengers aboard Montego Air flight 828 that takes off from Jamaica destined to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, USA.
  • A flight that is supposed to take a few hours takes five years to land.
  • And that is just the beginning of the suspenseful moments in the series currently airing on Netflix and ranked top 10 in Kenya.

I am a sucker for mystery films. And that is what made me stay awake to watch the series Manifest. It starts with passengers aboard Montego Air flight 828 that takes off from Jamaica destined to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, USA.

A flight that is supposed to take a few hours takes five years to land.

And that is just the beginning of the suspenseful moments in the series currently airing on Netflix and ranked top 10 in Kenya. 

While watching the pilot episode, I instantly became glued as it went on.

The show immediately conjured memories of the 4400 series where a group of 4400 marginalised people who mysteriously went missing and presumed dead for years reappear en masse, not having aged at all and all have subtle supernatural powers.


Not aged one bit 

 So is the case with Manifest; all the 191 passengers haven’t aged one bit five years later and can hear and see things before they happen-what they refer to as ‘callings’.

No one understands what happened to them and why they are getting the so-called ‘callings’ as they race to understand what caused the phenomenon.

 The entry point here is detective Michaela (Melissa Roxburgh), one of the 191 passengers who is processing some tedious personal trauma after landing.

 Michaela, her brother Ben (Josh Dallas) and her younger nephew Cal (Jack Messina), who has cancer, had agreed to be bumped from their original flight and ended up on flight 828.

 Her parents, sister in law and niece, all of whom were together in Jamaica for the vacation, took the earlier flight.

 Post-flight, Michaela finds out her fiancée detective Jared Vasquez married her best friend. We all thought you were dead; it has been five years now. Life had to move on. 

 She also learns that her mother is already dead. Meanwhile, Cal’s twin sister (Luna Blaise) is a teenager while he is still a little child.

 At this juncture, the supernatural stuff kicks in. Michaela starts hearing a persistent voice urging her to do things. 


They hear voices

 She is in a bus, hears a voice and insists the driver slow down, and that saves a child who was about to be run over while crossing the road. Michaela also rescues girls locked up in some garage by following the voice callings.

 And hey, a cancer doctor on the flight to Saanvi is tirelessly working on research to manipulate her DNA and stop the callings so that she can eventually save the rest of the passengers and resort back to living their normal lives life they once had.

 But things aren’t working out well as some rogue government officials have taken note of these mysterious groups of people able to see the future and are now working on secretive and dangerous research to see how they could tap and manipulate their callings for their gain.

Manifest has its fair share of plot holes, unnecessarily dragging episodes and fillers. For some reason, it’s pretty entertaining, and the fact that many choose to watch it, even when other interesting choices are available out there, speaks lengths in its favour.

Welcome!

You're all set to enjoy unlimited Prime content.