Manifest Unmasked: How Does Zeke's Backstory Connect to Flight 828?

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Despite shaky reviews from critics and fans alike, I've held onto the hope that Manifest would eventually get it right. 

Manifest Season 1 Episode 12 gave us plenty of overdue reveals, but I found Manifest Season 1 Episode 13 a bit stagnant even if it the "world as we know it" changed. 

Why did Zeke and Mic have to spend all of their time in the forest? How lame was the return to the cave?

Things with Ben and his family weren't any better as the series introduced a new enemy -- people who believe the passengers of Flight 828 are terrorists. 

As it stands, Manifest is a mess. 

There are only three episodes left this season which doesn't seem like enough time to figure everything out, so watch Manifest online to find more clues!

Let's deconstruct the episode below, shall we?

 

1. Is Zeke the Key To Everything?

Is Zeke the Key To Everything?
Though Mic just met Zeke and didn't know much about him, she trusted him completely. Some might call that naive, but as she told Ben, he was part of her calling and thus, must be a good guy. Heck, she even trusted him enough to leave him in the cabin alone while she went to the store. As a detective, she should have known better. However, it seems like maybe these two were destined to meet?

2. New Love Interest?

New Love Interest?
Mic had no interest in reconnecting with Jared and while I understand her need for space, I also wonder if it's because she had a hunky new dude to keep her occupied. Mic's intentions were to figure out how Zeke traveled through time, but as their journey progressed, there were definite sparks between them. They even held hands, which sparked some dark lightning. Does that mean these two just experienced yet another time-hopping episode?

3. Black Lightning

Black Lightning
Speaking of black lightning, Saanvi made the connection pretty early on. Black lightning was present when Flight 828 disappeared and also when Zeke's hike took a deadly turn. For now, they don't have any proof, but it's a new angle that explores "aftershock theory," and could potentially lead them to others going through the same phenomenon. And while all of this is fascinating, I don't understand why Ben didn't holler at Mic to let her know about the black lightning ahead of time. It could have saved her and Zeke a whole lot of time.

4. Chloe

Chloe
Instead, Zeke spent most of the time telling Mic about his late sister, Chloe. While his story was heartbreaking, it didn't really give us any useful information, unless we find out later that Chloe is really alive and part of this mystery. Zeke's backstory allowed Mic to relate to him since she understood the weight of his guilt, but personally, it would have made more sense if Chloe's death was the result of Zeke's drunk driving. That's where I thought the writers were going with the storyline when they mentioned Alcoholic's Annonymous. If that happened, it would have explained Mic and Zeke's instant bond.

5. Are They Terrorists? Are They Normal?

Are They Terrorists? Are They Normal?
No, and yes. Ben and his family just cannot seem to catch a break. Even an innocent game of Scrabble was interrupted by a jerk who decided to throw a brick through the window and mark their door with the letter X. What is this 'The Scarlet Letter?' Where did this sudden hatred for the passengers come from? Is it part of a greater storyline, innocent and unimportant like the people who worship the passengers, or a plot device to stir up unnecessary trouble for Ben and keep Jared occupied while Mic is out doing her thing?

6. Even Saanvi Is Targeted

Even Saanvi Is Targeted
About halfway through the episode, I wondered why Ben and his family were the only passengers from the flight experiencing the public's hatred, but alas, by the end of the episode Saanvi was also a target. If I put on my detective hat, I don't think a guy like Cody Webber would be able to stir up so much controversy on his own or have the manpower to target all these passengers. I smell some help from the Major!

7. Hotheaded Ben

Hotheaded Ben
Oh, Ben. You just couldn't leave it alone, could you? For the most part, Ben's decisions are rational because he's got a good head on his shoulders. But when it comes to his family, there's nothing he won't do to protect them. And that's precisely what got him into trouble. Ben played right into Cody's hands by going to his shop and threatening him during a Facebook Live. Did Ben not see the cameras? Could he not trust the police just this once? He unwillingly proved the theory that the passengers of Flight 828 are a dangerous threat! Not a good look.

8. The Reconciliation

The Reconciliation
I am not here for Ben and Grace's kiss-and-make-up moment, as I'm sure plenty of you aren't. Grace doesn't just get to decide when she loves and doesn't love Ben. She's been unbearable, cold-hearted, and judgmental this whole time, but none of that matters now because she's in on the callings. Please. Taking some time apart was the best thing for them and they should have continued it. Plus, Ben was a little too curious about Saanvi's love life leading me to believe that something will happen between them especially now that she's also become a target. Honestly, Saanvi is the brains behind their operation -- they shouldn't leave her unprotected like that.

9. Where Were We?

Where Were We?
Zeke is asking all the hard-hitting questions: 'are we dead' and 'where were we.' Honestly, both are valid questions because I too want to know where they were during that five-year and one-year gap. The passengers clearly don't remember anything nor do they feel any time has passed, but Earth is telling a different story. Which leads us to the ultimate question: what happened to them while they were 'away.'

10. The Callings

The Callings
Contrary to what we were led to believe, people don't die because they find out about the callings. Grace assumes she's going to test the theory, but Olive admits she's known about them for weeks now and she's doing just fine. It's safe to say that whatever is causing the callings doesn't care if anyone knows about them. I'm glad the whole family has been looped in because it will elimate clumsy errors like Grace calling the cops during Cal's disappearance. They can all actively work to protect Cal and stop the Major! Nothing better than a family effort to protect your son from a possible government conspiracy!

11. In Closing...

In Closing...
We know a lot, but we really don't know much at all. That defeat Ben felt when all he could do was wash the X off the door is kind of how I felt after this episode. There are so many tidbits of information floating around but nothing is tying them together. We know that no time has passed since the passengers went missing in their timeline, we know that there are callings, which Cal is most sensitive to.

We know a woman named the Major is after all of them, and that she was conducting experiments on some of the patients. We know that there is at least one other person, Zeke, who has experienced this phenomenon. We know that an electrical storm is at the center of both occurrences. And we know that there Flight 828 haters and worshippers. And we know that there's a guy running a podcast who is also trying to figure this out. So, what are your theories? Share your best guesses with me!

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Manifest
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Manifest Season 1 Episode 13: "Cleared for Approach"
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