'Manifest's Latest Calling Makes a Major Connection to the Past (RECAP)
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 2, Episode 9 of Manifest, "Airplane Bottles."]
"It's all connected," Cal (Jack Messina) says, and by the end of Monday's episode of Manifest, the Stones figure out just how true that statement is.
The big question of the series revolves, of course, around what happened to Flight 828, and it looks like we're one step closer to getting answers. The Stone family and TJ (Garrett Wareing) spend "Airplane Bottles" inside as a storm rages around them, trying to figure out a Calling — and realizing just how important (and major) this one is.
Meanwhile, Michaela (Melissa Roxburgh) and Zeke (Matt Long) begin to plan for their future with the hope of Saanvi's (Parveen Kaur) research, only for that to hit a snag in more ways than one. Michaela faces off with Internal Affairs at work, while Zeke sees . just what the serum has done to Saanvi.
A Spider Web and a Silver Dragon
Ben (Josh Dallas) and Grace (Athena Karkanis) try to help Cal, who insists he has to build something. Furthermore, he was there when 828 disappeared. It's supposed to look like a spider web, and the plane was trapped in it.
Meanwhile, Olive (Luna Blaise) insists she and TJ read through Al-Zuras' journal. (It's a good thing TJ knows Latin.) For the men on the ship, it was like no time had passed, even though they returned a decade later, he translates. They heard "the word of God" — the Callings — and thought it was a curse. (They also had their own death dates.) According to Al-Zuras' journal, "for every blessing, a price must be paid. ... For every good that comes from the voice, a trial must follow." Al-Zuras and his men thought they could cheat death again and get rid of the Callings, and maybe if they figure out what happened to them, the 828ers and Zeke have a chance.
Al-Zuras had a recurring vision of a "silver dragon," and on its wings came "despair and the makings of our demise," his journal reads. Cal becomes more and more frustrated as he can't figure out what he needs to build. "It's getting worse," he tells his family, and "it won't stop until we build it." Ben and Grace assure him it's just a storm, and it's outside, but Olive's confused. It's sunny out. The storm isn't real, they realize. It's a Calling.
Al-Zuras wrote of electrical storms, and TJ shows Ben a drawing of the ship, a silver dragon, and lightning. While Ben's trying to figure out how it's all connected, TJ's stuck on the "price [that] must be paid." He thinks he was supposed to die in the fire and everyone is suffering because he didn't. Meanwhile, poor Grace is sick and sees the room rocking back and forth.
Ben has TJ translate another page of the journal, and they learn that some of Al-Zuras' men tried to get rid of the Callings. They went mad and some threw themselves overboard. Soon, they realize that Grace is seasick, Cal is losing his temper, and TJ is so upset he's off-balance. The storm — and therefore what they're going through — is what happened to the men on the boat.
TJ thinks if he leaves that it will all stop, but Ben reminds him he can't run out on a Calling. They need to solve it, together. What's going on inside and out is all connected, Ben realizes, and when he opens the front door, he sees the same lightning bolt in the journal. And as he stares at the drawing, he realizes what Cal is trying to build: the ship's mast.
As they put it together, TJ reads that in the end, there was no way for the men to be rid of the voice. The only way to survive is to accept. Accept what? Then when the mast is finished, Ben, Cal, TJ, and Grace find themselves on the ship during the storm — and in the sky is the "silver dragon": the plane. With that, the Calling ends. Is it possible that Al-Zuras' ship and 828 were in the same place, at the same time, in the same storm? How?
They may not have that answer, but Ben thinks they learned how to beat the death date: "The only way to survive is to accept." He thinks that means, "following the Callings is the only way we have a chance."
If that is true, however, we should be very worried about Saanvi (and not just because one of the faces in a drawing in the journal looks sort of similar to hers): "All other paths lead to disaster," TJ reads. So, Saanvi's research may be putting her in danger.
So Much for Anywhere But Jamaica?
After Zeke passes the preliminary testing for Saanvi's serum, he and Michaela begin to plan for the future. They can escape and see the world (but not go anywhere near Jamaica). And so Zeke's in a good mood — "Ready to save my life?" he asks as he walks into Saanvi's lab — until he sees the doctor.
"You seem really wired," he notes, and she admits to minor impulse control issues. The Callings changed their brain chemistry, and it will just take their bodies time to get back to normal, she insists. But he sees she's repeating herself and forgetting things and convinces her to let him bring in a doctor she trusts: Alex.
Saanvi's dopamine levels are off the charts, her ex-girlfriend says, and gives her a dopamine antagonist to stabilize her. While this potential treatment is off the table for Zeke, for now, Saanvi refuses to stop her research.
Trust No One?
Michaela sits down with two officers from IA and thinks it'll be an investigation into Jared (J.R. Ramirez) about his Xer friends, but they quickly turn on her. She faces accusations of a "vendetta" against her ex-fiancé and even about manufacturing crimes to help her career. Those files that Jared stole? Simon gave them to IA because he has people everywhere. As she's accused of working with Isaiah to set the fire in the club, she asks for her union rep.
Meanwhile, Jared visits Simon with his concerns about how this will affect him. But Simon assures him that he has friends in the NYPD who have his back and will take her out. Among those friends, as Jared soon learns, is Michaela's union rep. And so before the man can take Michaela off to her death (ostensibly to continue the conversation in a neutral location), Jared intervenes and arrests her for arson, conspiracy to commit arson, and homicide. "I just saved your life," he informs her before leaving her in a holding cell.
Add this — and every conversation he and Captain Bowers had — to the column labeled "proof Jared's undercover"? Or is he just not willing to stand by and let her be killed? Are there some lines he still won't cross?
Manifest, Mondays, 10/9c, NBC