TV ReviewsManifest Season 1 Episode 2: Reentry Review

If you would like to read my review of the last episode, click here.

Synopsis: The passengers from Flight 828 find themselves under government scrutiny as they struggle to resume their lives. Michaela is forced to confront the fact that Jared is married to her once best friend, while Ben tries to help a fellow passenger reconnect with his son. Cal is approached by an obsessive stranger, as Grace and Olive disagree on whether or not to reveal a devastating secret. (TVGuide)

Writer: Jeff Rake and Matthew Lau

Director: Dean White

Rating: TV-14

Running Time: 43mins

Airs: Mondays at 10pm on CityTV (Canada)/NBC (United States)

“Reentry” starts off with emergency crews watering down Plane 828 that was destroyed by an unknown explosion. News crews state that a number of passengers were seen on site by security cameras. The NSA detains the passengers and asks them about why they were there with many stating they had the urge to view the plane. After Michaela gets everyone released, Director Vance decides to put eyes on everyone just in case.

At home, Grace is getting changed when she is startled by Ben. He explains the situation and brings home a surprise meal. He heads downstairs and runs into Olive, asking her to hang out and catch up, but she’s busy with her own life. Suddenly Ben starts to hear some classical music, but no one else does. As Ben leaves, Olive confronts her mom about telling her dad the truth. Michaela returns to the precinct where she runs into her old best friend Lourdes, but can’t stand to face her and heads into the captain’s office. She asks for some extra work so she doesn’t go stir crazy at home and he tells her to go see a counsellor to make sure she’s cleared for active duty.

During Cal’s treatment at the hospital, Ben introduces Grace to Saanvi who has offered to take Cal as her patient. With Grace and Ben alone, she tries to tell him, but is unable to give herself the courage to. While walking through Times Square, Ben again hears the classical music and starts to search for where it’s coming from. He runs into a fellow passenger, Radd, who asks for Ben’s help. Turns out Radd’s son Adio, who is now 18, was arrested and is now in prison. He pleads with Ben’s paternal instincts to help and Ben can’t help but say yes.

At the counsellor’s office, Michaela discusses with her the influx of information she received once returning to reality. She just wants to get back to work and manages to get the counsellor to sign off. As she is exiting, Michaela receives a call from Ben asking for a favour. Ben and Radd are able to see his son at Rikers who explains that the jewelry store he worked for was robbed and he was the fall guy.

Grace and Cal are walking home from some clothing shopping when a stranger grabs Cal and starts chanting “He is risen. He is not here.” Radd and Ben go to the jewelry store where the owner starts to curse about Adio and explain that he used fake information to get the job. Grace questions Cal’s safety, but Ben reassures her that they are safe because they have a cop in the house. Jacob confronts Michaela at work about her inability to face her old best friend and that tells her that they aren’t bad people.

Director Vance and a group of government officials discuss what happened to the plane. Are these people the same people? Are they aliens? Vance decides that the 20 people who watched the plane explode are their best bet at answers. Ben and Michaela talk about Radd’s situation which prompts Michaela to question that Ben heard something new. She tells him to bring Grace into the loop, but he’s worried she’s too preoccupied with stuff. Ben makes dinner for the family and asks Olive to go for an ice-cream run, but she blows him off again.

In bed, Ben notices a mark on Grace’s back that she says came from scuba diving as they lay down together. The next morning, Grace has an emotional conversation with her presumed new partner that Michaela overhears. She confronts her sister-in-law, but Grace hasn’t decide who she wants to be with. Michaela advises her to make that decision before Ben finds out. Meanwhile, Ben notices one of the passengers is talking to a news station questioning the world and what the government told her. Ben confronts Saanvi and asks if she has been dealing with the voices as well and they confide in one another. As Cal goes into his treatment, he hands Ben a drawn family portrait with a mysterious shadow figure looming over the Stones. In the parking garage of the news station, the passenger enters her car as a shadowy figure watches her from afar.

Michaela brings Adio’s case file to Ben saying that it looks like he did it which prompts Michaela and Ben to fight and take digs at one another. It spirals into Ben questioning why his daughter and wife are so distant. At Rikers, Adio tries to explain the situation to Radd, but he is dragged off by a prison guard. At home, Michaela goes through five years of Facebook posts that reveal Lourdes posted every year on Michaela’s birthday.

She goes to the counsellor and discusses the emotions that arose from learning about her mom’s death and what happened with her best friend. Lourdes messaged a ghost for five years and when she returned, she couldn’t even hug her. Through this revelation, Michaela has made enough progress to return to active duty. She arrives at the precinct where she is congratulated by Jared. Ben and Cal return home from the hospital where they are greeted with all the LEGO sets that he could desire, but he just wants his own stuff back. Olive decides to go for that drive with her dad.

They arrive at a storage facility where Olive reveals that she always knew Cal was still alive, it was a twin feeling. When her mom wanted to get rid of all their stuff, Olive decided to keep it just in case. They open the locker and grab the stuff when Ben notices some scuba flippers prompting him to discover Grace’s secret. He hugs Olive when the classical music starts to fill his head leading Ben to run off in its direction. He races through the storage facility until he finds an open locker filled with the stolen jewelry and the jeweler’s son standing in the middle of it all.

He tries to buy Ben’s secrecy, but he punches him and calls the authorities. Michaela arrives and questions Ben’s ability to solve this crime, but Olive asks if they can just go home. Cal unpacks his things and finds his beloved stuffed animal Art. Olive confronts her mom about being told she was crazy for not letting go and now her mom has to make that decision. Meanwhile, Michaela knocks on a door when Lourdes answers. She thanks her for the posts online and Lourdes wants to mend their friendship, but Michaela says they will play it by ear. Lourdes feels like a fraud or the second choice, but Michaela reveals she was debating giving the ring back after she returned even though in a flashback it’s revealed that through text she tried to say yes.

That evening, Grace confronts Ben about her secret. He applauds Grace’s ability to raise Olive into the strong young woman she has become and he doesn’t care where she found the strength to do so. She breaks down about having to let her family go when he never had to deal with that thought once, but Ben pleads to give their family a second chance. Grace looks at her husband romantically as they undress and embrace. At Rikers, Adio is released where his father is waiting for him. At the office, Jared opens a letter in his desk that contains the ring he gave Michaela. The episode ends with the drawn family portrait zooming in on the ominous shadow figure that has arrived at the mysterious passenger’s house and shoots her point blank.

Captain’s Log

  • Who or what is the mysterious shadow figure?
  • What is the mysterious voice?
  • Will Cal be cured of his Leukemia?
  • What is the whole story of Michaela’s accident?
  • Will Olive mend her relationship with Ben?
  • Will Saanva stop the sale of her trial?
  • Who else will we meet from the manifest?

Overall, this was a good episode. It showed the episodic nature that this series can take and its potential by focusing on the stories of individual passengers as they are intertwined with the Stone family through this ominous collective sound they keep hearing. The continued focus on the Stone family helps to make for an easily investible main group of characters to not only focus the family drama around, but the mystery aspects as well. While the mystery of the week was very predictable and the overall intrigue of the premise has had no huge developments, that should change once the heavy set up and exposition of this new series has been established.

Score: 7.5/10

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