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How Manifest explains QAnon

  • The recently canceled NBC missing plane drama "premiered in 2018, long before the existence of QAnon began to register on any non-involved person’s radar," says Rebecca Onion. "But the odd qualities of this show go far to explain why that sprawling conspiracy theory jibed with so many people (formerly) in the mainstream. In Manifest’s story, as in the Q world, we’ve got a group of normal, everyday people who start experiencing 'callings,' sent by an apparent higher power. (The first episode even starts with Michaela and Ben following a calling to free a pair of kidnapped girls from captivity, before they can be trafficked—classic Q- and Q-adjacent fantasy!) These callings alienate the passengers from others, but they must stay true to the mystery despite their families’ resistance, and the world’s doubt. Shadowy agents hidden in the ranks of the government are helping them along, while others are working against them. There’s also spirituality—sometimes overtly Christian spirituality—all over the place. Michaela’s and Ben’s mom’s favorite Bible verse—Romans 8:28 (get it? 828, like the plane)—is a motivating force in the plot. The verse promises that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” This is straight-up Q: the idea that there are some people out there who are 'on the manifest,' and if they align themselves with “his purpose,” they will prevail. (Or, perhaps—double meaning!—they will 'manifest' his will.) I haven’t arrived at the third season yet—Netflix only has two—but apparently, it involves the appearance of a piece of Noah’s Ark, adding to the explicit Christianity of it all."

    TOPICS: Manifest, NBC, QAnon