A COMMERCIAL airliner takes off from Montego Bay in Jamaica and after a pretty violent bout of turbulence, lands in New York City - some five-and-a-half years later.

Now I know travel these days can be a bit of drag, but this delay is clearly more to do with something weird going on, rather than yet another strike by disgruntled air traffic controllers.

I won't lie, this is a brilliant premise for a television show; in fact any opening scenes that feature an introduction to the main characters in an airport, deciding to take a flight they don't need to, well, you just know something good is going to happen - and by good, I mean bad.

Lost, that wonderfully weird series that had me gripped for several years was the last I can think of to use such an opening, and that show went on to be one of the modern day classics - rubbish ending aside!

The concept of an airliner going missing is not completely lifted from the pages of fiction either, as the mysterious and baffling incident of Malaysian Airlines MH370 can testify, so why was I not gripped by Manifest?

In a nutshell, it's the basics (or lack of them) with both the writing and acting quite simply, awful, making any chance of buying into the believability of the subject matter very difficult indeed - even the turbulence was wooden.

This is actually a crying a shame (not that they do crying particularly well either) because the quirk of fate which separates the Stone family at the airport is completely believable - brother and sister Michaela and Ben, along with Ben's Leukaemia-stricken son Cal, volunteer to take another flight as their scheduled one is over-booked - while the other half of the family fly home as planned.

When they touch down, having not aged a single day, they find their lovers and relatives have completely moved on with their lives. The soon to be jilted Ben and Michaela have the added problem of dealing with strange voices in their heads and newly acquired physic powers, while Cal has a lifeline in the form of Saanvi Bahl; a medical researcher and fellow passenger, who just happened to be working on a detailed analysis of, yes, you guessed it, children with Leukaemia; research, which five years on, is now the basis of a pioneering medical breakthrough,

In fact, the concept is so good, I might well give it another go; but I am sceptical, to say the least, that this television show will manifest itself into anything more than a complete turkey.