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The Sci-Fi Mystery Hidden Gem You Can Stream On Netflix

In 2004,  a TV series came along that popularized the mystery genre in a way that arguably hadn't been seen since Peter Falk said "just one more thing" for the first time on Columbo. And that series is the ultimate in the "what happened with those people on that plane" subgenre of science fiction — Lost. Hard to believe but true, it's been that long since we all collectively started wondering what the heck was up with that smoke monster. And in the years since the pilot for Lost aired, there have been a massive number of shows that were influenced by its mystery box storytelling in one way or another. Heroes, The Event, Flash Forward, Persons Unknown, and on and on until we arrive at the present day where the trend is still going strong. If you have any doubt of that, check out Manifest on NBC which is literally about a bunch of people on a plane who disappear.

Interestingly, Manifest is actually a marriage of both Lost and another mystery series that debuted in 2004: The 4400, which is streaming on Netflix right now.

The 4400, mysterious disappearances, and superpowers

The set up for The 4400 is very simple: one day, a giant ball of light returns a group of 4400 people who have mysteriously disappeared anywhere between 1946 and the present day. For the people who vanished, no time has passed and the series, at its heart, is about the complexity of the trauma of their returns, both for them and for the world around them. But, of course, this is still a science fiction show and so we need more; "missing people return" is but the first of many boxes. One of the first things we discover after all these people return is that many of them now have some manner of superhuman ability: precognition, telekinesis, the ability to heal the sick, and a host of other powers deemed as "gifts."

And if you've ever read an X-Men comic book in your life, you already know that people with powers equals threat in the eyes of the government. And that is the next of the mysteries — how will the world deal with the 4400 and vice versa? There is also the most obvious of mysteries — when all these people disappeared, where did they actually go? If you've never seen the series but are thoughtfully stroking your chin and thinking, "why, yes, I think I will binge The 4400," we won't give that mystery away, but let's just say it probably doesn't go the way you think. Regardless, if you loved Lost and if your thirst for Manifest is nigh on unquenchable, The 4400 is most certainly the next stop. You can stream all 4 seasons of The 4400 on Netflix now.