'Manifest' Season 1: Grace and Ben's reconciliation in 'Vanishing Point' is exactly what we've been waiting for
The couple has been at odds with each other, but their love never let them give up on their marriage even when times were bad
The voguish couple of 'Manifest', Grace (played by Athena Karkanis) and Ben Stone (played by Josh Dallas), have kept fans on the edges of their seats with their highly turbulent married life, but it seemed Grace finally received some redemption in Episode 12. Coming from creator Jeff Rake, the couple has been subjected to scrutiny several times, especially Grace.
Fans have every now and then claimed that in spite of having a husband as dedicated as Ben, Grace was, for the most part, ungrateful to him. However, in Episode 12 she finally revealed her reservation behind believing what Ben was claiming about the "Callings". The NBC show has been following the aftermath of the sudden re-appearance of Montego Air Flight 828 which went missing in 2013. As the plane returned on 2018, the passengers who hadn't aged a day began hearing voices in their heads, they interpreted as "Callings".
However, those who were not on the plane failed to understand the kind of trauma the passengers were being subjected to as the latter followed the voices. Grace, too, had a similar problem. Although Ben initially tried explaining to her about the voices in Episode 8, she refused to believe it. The two parted in Episode 9 on a rather grim note, as Grace asked Ben to leave the house and Ben, who unexpectedly did not put up a fight, left the family.
As the mystery of the missing plane began to take a whole new turn in Episodes 10 and 11, the conflict between the couple gradually began to fade away. Episode 12 saw the two of them finally confronting each other about the problems in their marriage, something they should have done earlier.
Under the most unusual circumstances, when the couple teamed up for the first time to find their son, Cal, they get a brief moment of reconciliation. Ben finally took the time to explain to Grace about the "Callings" and this time he took the courage to even tell her Cal was probably under the radar of the Major, who has been a looming presence in the series ever since it returned after the fall break.
Cal, who is clairsensitive, was discovered to be missing towards the end of Episode 11, and Ben knew the Major had something to do with it. He does confess to Grace about choosing to keep her in the dark about the Major and Cal's powers solely to protect her, and it is at this very moment when Grace's character comes full circle.
Grace always knew that something was not right with Ben ever since he returned, but at the same time, she found it unsettling that her husband would tip-toe around the house acting like everything was fine. At that moment, she confronts Ben not as a wife or a mother, but for the first time we see Grace being a woman who refuses to remain ignorant of things happening around her.
She comes up with probably what is probably the most memorable dialogue in the series, "The era of you protecting me is over. It is my time." In this single statement, the character seemed to represent the internal war Hollywood is now involved in, the war for equality. While other female characters such as Michaela Stone (played by Melissa Roxburgh), Saanvi Bahl (played by Parveen), and even Olive (played by Luna Blaise), for that matter, were given their own ground to stand upon, Grace was mostly treated as an object of pity.
However, by claiming it was time for her to step in, Grace's character saw a steep evolution from what we saw in Episode 11, where she was a complete wreck. We will probably get to see Ben and Grace team up once again when the show returns January 28, on NBC at 10 pm.