'Manifest' finale preview: There are way too many questions left unanswered for the NBC show to end with 'Estimated Time of Departure'
The finale might give us a different perspective on the "Callings" but that cannot be the conclusion to the show, which has left so many questions unanswered
Creator Jeff Rake's mystery thriller, 'Manifest', has barely one more episode to go and the mystery surrounding Montego Air Flight 828 is not even close to being solved. Starring Josh Dallas as Ben Stone, Melissa Roxburgh as Michaela Stone, Parveen Kaur as Saanvi Bahl, Jack Messina as Cal Stone, Athena Karkanis as Grace, and Matt Long as Zeke, the story follows the sudden re-appearance of the plane, which went missing almost five and a half years ago. It was discovered the passengers who hadn't aged a day were now hearing strange voices in their heads, that they refer to as "Callings".
The promo trailer for the final episode suggests the show will wrap up the mystery within one episode, but that seems quite unlikely. The penultimate episode introduced us to a new character, James Griffin (played by Marc Menchaca), who, unlike the previous acquaintances of the passengers, such as Zeke, is a villain.
Griffin's entry into the show sort of changed that basic concept of the "Callings". Ever since the passengers returned, the "Callings" have been acting as prophecies, sometimes showing them the future and sometimes leading them to their required destinations. What remained common was that the "Callings" came to people who were suffering, and they took it as a chance to fix things for the better.
However, that was not the case with Griffin. Unlike the passengers, who are almost treating the "Callings" as some kind of divine message for the betterment of their lives, Griffin is more attracted to the power the "Callings" give him. He is able to see the future, and predict what is coming, which basically means he can get away with acting God.
Episode 15 revealed to us Griffin is a noted criminal whose van drowned in the water when he was fleeing with millions of dollars after robbing a bank. It is quite expected that for a person like Griffin, the "Callings" could be used for self-serving purposes.
The "Callings" have already shown its power through Cal who not only sees the future but is also clairsensitive. Cal sees the future and he can sense the presence of surrounding energies and others' consciousnesses, which helps him identify any person he is predicted to meet. However, Cal is scared of the fact that every time he sees something and draws it, it comes true.
Hence, for Cal, the "Callings" could be more of a curse, since they let him see things a 10-year-old boy is not supposed to see. Being a child that young, unlike Michaela and Ben, Cal does not question his "Callings" but he is also aware the very voices which lead him to save lives, could also make him end lives.
It can be expected that the finale will see the "Callings" being treated from very different perspectives by Griffin and Cal. The promo trailer shows Griffin is about to take his "Calling" public, while, on the other hand, it shows Cal gets increasingly worried about what is going to happen.
One character who has been equally intrigued by the "Callings" is the Major, who we did not see after Episode 13. The Major's intentions are extremely vague. Even after her introduction, there was not a single instance on the show that gave us an into the character and why she is after the Holy Grail, which is Cal.
We don't expect that we will see much of the Major in Episode 16, which is the finale. Episode 16 will mostly look into the accounts of Griffin and Cal, while the Stone family begin to discover an uncomfortable truth about the plane. So, where does the Major fit in? What are her intentions? But most importantly, how did she get to know about the "Callings"? Was she disguised as a passenger on the plane? If so, then what was her intention behind boarding the plane in the first place? It is almost impossible to answer so many questions within a single episode since, even without the Major, there are some significant gaps left in the story.
The "Callings" do occupy a major part of the mystery and we do expect that there will be some explanation provided about the "Callings" by the end of the next episode. However, that does not mean that the show can possibly wrap up with the mystery, giving it due justice. We still do not why the plane was delayed by five years, and how was it possible that the passengers hadn't aged a day?
We are yet to find out if Fiona and Captain Daly who flew the plane in dark lightning in Episode 11, actually skipped forward in time or were shot down by the Air Force. However, the biggest question still remains to be answered: What's with the number 828? Unless 'Manifest' Episode 16, which is set to air February 18, answers all these questions with the clarity it deserves, it is impossible for the show to draw a conclusion without a second season.