Manifest, NBC series about a plane that disappears and reappers 6 months later

I watched, online, the Pilot for "Manifest", the science fiction drama created by Jeff Rake for NBC, which had premiered Sept. 24 while I was in California. 

The premise is that in April 2013, a flight from Jamaica for NYC dematerializes in the air and reappears and lands in November 2018. The passengers experience severe turbulence and the lights go off, and laptops fall to the floor – and then it all returns to normal.  The first sign of “trouble” is that air traffic control sends them to Newburgh, and the people are met by security on the tarmac.
Much of the story is seen through police officer Michaela Stone (Melissa Roxburgh), who volunteered to accept denied boarding. In the meantime, her fiancé married someone else. She was traveling with her brother Ben (Josh Dallas).

Michaela learns that her mother has died. But soon she starts hearing voices that lead her to prevent a child from being struck by a bus, and later to rescue two abducted kids.
Michaela’s nephew Cal (Jack Messina) will be eligible for a new treatment for cancer, yet the researchers are reluctant to start because his time period is “out of protocol” because of the “abduction”.
At the end, the plane blows itself up.  It doesn’t want to release its secrets.  The premise of the show does remind me of "The 4400". 

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Well, I wanted to make a note about the last few episodes of “Manifest” on NBC.

It seems as though the people on the flight had been invented in someone’s mind and then came into being.  There seems to be some mathematical set of relationships among the minds of the people, that crosses time.  Is the Singularity Project about matching people up across different periods of time? 
Imagine if you could be a few decades younger for a day and have someone you want.

Maybe they were taken by aliens for those 5 years and spent them living in an O’Neill cylinder on Titan, the moon of Saturn.  If that’s what happens in the next set of episodes, then you have my own “Do Ask, Do Tell: Epiphany” screenplay.  Maybe I’ve given away too many ideas for free in my own blogs.

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The recent episodes of NBC’s “Manifest” are certainly interesting.  (No connection to Jack Conte’s idea of 'manifest observable behavior' (or John Fish and 'mind, brain and behavior'), or maybe there is?)

In episode 11, “Contrails” (Jan. 14), Bill flies a stolen plane in circumstances similar to the original disappearance, and this one disappears with dark lightning, too.

A hiker gets lost and returns one year later without realizing it.

A getaway robbery truck is pulled out of the East River and the driver (Griffin) comes back to life, from drowning. He then has a “calling” that helps prevent a terror bombing in Times Square.

But in the season finale, “Estimated Time of Departure” it gets weird.  Griffin, outdoors, suddenly starts vomiting water and finally collapses, dead.  Ben and Olive calculate that Griffin died exactly as long after his “rescue” as he was under water.  Using inductive reason, Ben (Josh Dallas) wonders if that means that the flight 828 passengers will live exactly 5-1/2 years, until June 2, 2024.   

The underlying concept seems to be that everyone who came back with a “calling” would have died otherwise, and has as many years given as they were kept in “detention” by whatever agent held them. They all have “expiration dates”.

I have wondered about a “Matrix” type of solution.  That is, in my own novel, the major characters have been found as characters in a unpublished book by one of them, by a brilliant college-age hacker. The novel projects the idea of a pandemic which makes some people very gifted so that they can escape Earth (with the “angels”) and start a new world, while the “leftovers” all have futures severely compromised by the epidemic.  In the novel, a CIA asset has befriended the hacker (because the asset is a closeted gay and attracted to the hacker) and starts to track whether the unpublished novel is coming true.  

So maybe the characters who get “abducted” and have “callings” will all be found in someone’s fictitious unpublished novel.
We don’t know what NBC plans for season 2.

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Season 2 resumed tonight.

The episode tonight was called “Fasten Your Seatbelts”.

The “expiration date” in June 2024, where the characters expire when their away time elapses, encroaches.  The characters have more visions and a verse in Revelations (12:14) is said to explain the visions.
The characters start to re-live the moments right after the plane evaporated and start to realize they were abducted. They seem to have been taken through a wormhole to another universe and then returned.

You can keep track of the plot details per episode on Wikipedia here

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The NBC sci-fi series “Manifest” resumed with season 3 on April Fools Day with an episode called “Taukfin”.

Ben (Josh Dallas)is beckoned to Cuba (not Guantanamo) where the tailfin of the Flight 828 has surfaced.

At first, it seems to repel him electrostatically. 

But the implication is that the plane that exploded at the end of the Pilot as a reconstruction or a “resurrection”.

The episode ends with a scene on a watery super Earth where the passengers float and are regrowing their faces.

Back on earth, they seem to have “expiration dates” of 5-1/2 years after their returns.  Like something bad will happen (maybe the pandemic).

Is this a “shiny idea”?

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NBC has canceled the remaining seasons of “Manifest”. 

Season 3 finished June 10 with a two-part finale, as explained by Margarita Rances on EpicStream, leak. 

Essentially, remember, the various characters seem to have individualized 'callings', and Ben (Josh Dallas) is finding out that he may have the role of 'Noah'.

It sounds like there could be a mission to rescue humanity from Earth and select two of every, well, what?  Because the other side of the puzzle suggests that the returned characters are themselves doubles or “actors” (using the terminology from my own screenplay “Second Epiphany”).

We’re having a hard time explaining the cancellation by NBC, as reported by Variety.  Maybe Studios don’t have faith in stories this complicated.   Let’s hope Netflix or Hulu picks it up (or maybe a science fiction channel). 

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