Jan 25, 2019
With all the speculation in recent episodes about the possibility of Captain Bill Daly traveling through time (even more likely since Zeke did it without even needing a plane), the meeting in episode 12 between Zeke and Michaela promises to bring the right mix between drama and genre. Already, some fans are buzzing that another romance, or relationship triangle (as if the show really needs another one) is brewing.
Whatever drama unfolds, it will have to be put on the backburner until things get sorted out as to what happened in the cave causing Zeke to jump ahead a year. But that doesn’t keep fans from speculating what their pairing should be named:
Although there is some merit to the blending or meshing of names, and although I agree that fate may have brought this couple together, I want to examine a different kind of connection. Rather than focus on a possible love interest, I contend that the meeting between Zeke and Michaela is related to the series’ mythology (at least one part of it) that was introduced earlier in the season.
The Meaning of Zeke and Michaela
- Ezekiel means “God will strengthen.”
If we break that part,
- Zeke (חָזַק – chazaq) means “to strenthen,” and
- El ( אֵל – ‘el) means “God.”
Michaela is feminine for Michael (Think: Archangel Michael) which has several meanings:
- “one who is like God”
- “gift from God”
- “close to God”
Is Michaela a type of “earth angel”? Like the Archangel Michael is Michaela being called to do divine intervention in the lives of others? Notice that when Zeke asks Michaela, “How is it possible you’re here?” Ben interrupts and asks for Zeke’s name. In other words, the meeting between Michaela and Zeke was made possible (and has significance) because the “one who is like God” was called “to strengthen.”
Moreover, Zeke’s last name is Landon. Michael Landon’s last television series was Highway to Heaven (1984-1989) in which (as Jonathan Smith) he played a probationary angel whose job was to help people in order to earn his wings. Sound familiar? (cf. 111.1 and 111.21)
Isaiah, the Believer
Although much remains to be seen in understanding Michaela’s character, that is, her distinctive mental and moral qualities, no one brings this out more that the suspect that was wrongly blamed for Kelly Taylor’s murder who Michaela visits in jail. He gives Michaela a cryptic message saying, “When I die, I will return. I will be like you, Michaela. I will be pure.” When Michaela responds, “Trust me, I am far from pure,” he says, “Because you haven’t unburdened yourself, for there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, nothing concealed that will not be illuminated. What have you concealed, Michaela, even from yourself? (103.22)
This seems to suggest that Michaela is receiving the callings to heal (i.e. strengthen) and bless others, but in order for that to fully occur she needs to undergo a purification process which she has already begun having reentered society following the plane’s return. Until that is complete, she will have a rough go at trying to help people. Her blessings may at time feel like curses (104.25).
The Angel of Waters
In the same episode, Saanvi has a vision of a “Gray Woman” who leaves wet footprints on the floor (194.2), while Michaela has a similar vision of this woman as an angel with wings (104.10). Bethany connects both instances to the Angle of Waters statue in Bethesda Fountain (104.22).
Angel of the Waters is a bronze, eight-foot statue depicting a female winged angel in the center of Bethesda Fountain in Central Park. The fountain was built to celebrate the opening of the Croton Aqueduct which brings fresh water to New York City from upstate NY. The Healing of the paralytic at Bethesda, a story from the Gospel of John about an angel blessing the Pool of Bethesda, giving it healing powers, was the inspiration behind the statue. The angel carries a lily in one hand, representing purity, and with the other hand blesses the water below.
At the end of episode 4, Michaela stands in front of the Angel of the Waters statue asking “What do you want from me? This is the first real instance we see Michaela praying, another time in which she talks to the calling is when Jared is unconscious in the hospital: “I don’t know who you are or what you are, but I have listened to you. Listen to me, please. I can’t lose him. Please, I can’t lose him. I can’t lose him. I can’t lose you. I can’t lose him” (109.19).
All Things Work Together for Good
This seems to bring us full circle. Ever since the first episode when Karen Stone says, “You know my favorite verse ‘All things work together for good,'” and Michaela says “I don’t believe that anymore, Mom” (101.1), Romans 8:28 (and the number 828) continued to manifest itself in subtle ways.
When it was announced that their flight was overbooked and passengers were asked if they would consider a voucher and a ticket back home on Flight 828, Michaela who is narrating the scene says she “jumped” at the chance. She didn’t want to hear any more religious talk from her mom. Little did she realize that her words would come back and bite her when Flight 828 jumped 5 1/2 years into the future.
Eventually, Michaela began to see the wisdom of her mom’s mantra (cf. 101.6). We even watched her take the side of faith in debates with Ben, a man of science, about the callings. In the second episode she’s already reminding him that their mom would say, “God works in mysterious ways” (102.16). Yet Ben, for the most part, remained unconvinced, saying, “God’s a catchall for things peole don’t understand. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. We just need more information” (102.20).
In episode four, when Michaela begins to have visions of an angel, she begins to think that the callings may be some kind of divine intervention and understands the callings as a blessing, even though Ben thinks they might be a curse (104.25).
As Jeff Rake likes to point out, the debate between faith and science is as old as time itself. It just happens that in the series’ mythology, that debate is also intertwined with time. Now that Michaela has connected with Zeke in Episode 12, I believe that viewers are are in for a twirl. Everything seems to be converging. Like the angel we saw in episode 4, I suspect we will soon see something similar.