An amazing Sci-Fi show that should have had the success it deserved instead of being buried by lame writing and casting.
Sliders focused on a group of 4 people who discovered a way to 'slide' between parallel worlds. Unfortionatley, they got lost in the inter-dimension, and were consigned to wandering between the many parallel universes in the hope of someday finding their way home.
When Tracy Torme' and Robert K. Weiss created this show in 1995, they had truly made something special. Unfortionately FOX decided to completely ruin it.
They began by airing the episodes out of sequence in the first 2 seasons, meaning that there could be no continuity between episodes, so whenever an extra character slid with the Sliders they were never seen again (with one poor exception). In the 3rd season David "Peckerhead" Peckinpah (a man with less talent than a dog turd) became an Executive Producer and many episodes became movie rip-offs instead of 'what if' concepts where parallel worlds had alternate histories to our own. The amazing John Rhys-Davies was then fired mid season 3 and replaced with Kari Wuhrer, a terrible actress who played a terrible character.
FOX allowed the Sci-Fi channel to take over the show for its 4th and 5th seasons. They put David Peckinpah completely in charge of the show, and he buried it by having ape-men called Kromaggs take over the Sliders' home world and by rewriting the backstory of the lead character completely. The premise was changed from finding home to fighting ape-men. In the last season, only one of the original Sliders remained.
When the show finished, it was without any resolution to many of its story arcs or the final episode's cliffhanger.
I feel Tracy Torme's pain. No one could have imagined that they would create a show as brilliant as Sliders, only to see it totally destroyed before their eyes.
Sliders had so much potential, but it was ruined by talentless hacks like 'Peckerhead'.
The first two seasons and the first part of season 3 are really all that are worth watching unfortunately.
I think the ending sucked, if they renu Sliders they need to end the old cast at the beginning of the show. they could first start by separating Quinn from Mallory, find Collan, get Brown back help bring Wade to her normal self, It could been explained as Wades clone or her in another damnation, Have them slide back to the world were they left the real professor, of course Maggie will be with them, have them all slide home were Brown got the viruses relished, Have Maggie find her husbands duplicate, Quinn and Wade get together, the Professor and Diana go into research together, Mallory find new purpose with his new healthy life, Brown starts his singing career again, Colian invent a new and easier way of sliding, but his timer gets stolen there you have new Sliders, and a good ending for the old cast. That is a ending. I rated a 5 because the first 3 seasons of Sliders were good but the last 2 seasons were bad.
It had the seeds of greatness but the foundation was weak. A tornado came and the entire city crumbled like a cookie.
That's my metaphor of this entire series. It started out great, it really did. I was impressed with Jerry O Connell and I thought Sabrina Lloyd as Wade started ok but a smite negative and dull but I thought maybe she will lighten one day. All the nagging can get to you after some time. Maybe she was the wrong choice to begin with because as the series went along, she became more righteous, naggy, whiny and more wifely like than ever! And there is definitely not much chemistry between Quinn and Wade to pass for anything. The professor was probably the most captivating character capturing the endearing gruffness of House and the intellect to match. He maybe at times a little tad insecure but hey he's human. Rembrandt was alright too being the humor of the series but after a while, I notice the characters were more 1 dimensional and perhaps if they got the dimensional development then maybe this show could have been interesting.
Still I enjoyed Season 1. Season 2 had too much bickering and negativity. Made it all less fun. I was bored with Season 3 and kept forwarding. The ideas were dull, been there and followed the same format of sliders get in trouble, sliders save the world, sliders slide outta there. It was predictable. I am about to watch Season 4 and 5 and am not sure if the change of cast was well explained but let's see. I like Kari Wuhrer and I think she might be hotter than Wade, but Jerry O'Connell's brother joining the show is a little hard to swallow. He doesn't have the same acting chops as Jerry really. I'll save more for later after I'm done watching it all :)
Sliders is about a team of travellers who travel from world to world. Jerry O'Connell played Quinn "Mallory" Mallory who finds a worm hole in his basement, and there it goes from there. It lasted for 5 seasons, but Jerry left after season 4, which could be the reason it slowly cascaded. They also got rid of Wade to a breeding camp but still. It was a fun show to watch over a Bud, but it slowly began to fade after season 3-4, which was a shame as it started out promising. It's a nice guilty pleasure to pass the time away now.
This was one of the best new ideas for a sci-fi show to hit the air waves. When the show began it was inventive and had great potential to capture the imagination of a new generation of sci-fi fans. However, with each passing season, the writing became more and more copies of older sci-fi films or simply a medium for someone's personal agenda. Finally, the cast began bailing from the show like rats from a sinking ship (and I certainly can not blame them for their decision). As a result, the show was nursed along for some unknown reason and finally it was brought out to the woodshed like Old Yeller. It was a good start, but failed to finish.
Sliders had an original concept that allowed the writers to do anything they want every week. Borrowing elements from Quantum Leap (leaping and sliding into a new story every week with little continuity to carry over other than for the main cast) and The Outer Limits (comments on society...a lot!), Sliders took it's influences but never wore them fully on their sleeve. Thus giving itself a personality of it's own.
What help was the brilliant mis-matching of minds between the four original sliders. Brilliant but brash young scientist, his over-bearing but intrigued professor, his best friend/love interest and probably most original...a washed up soul singer. Yes, obviously Rembrant was there as a kind of eyes of the viewer, constantly questioning Mallory's techno-babble, but he was very much a 3D character in his own right.
If this was any other US sci-fi, the main cast would have been like Stargate (they're always on the same wavelength, always). Here, Sliders took the idea of being lost and finding uses and friendships in people you wouldn't think about in a normal situation. Sliders was basically held together by these four people, even when the episodes were bad.
And yes, quite a few were bad. Unable to really live up to limitless potential (not to mention the obligation of some kind of action) of parallel worlds, the writers would usually rely on the "utopia that is really dystopia" or even the just plain daft "zombies and vampires of the week". There was some poor writing which got Sliders stuck in a rut early on. They'd slide, go to a hotel, one of them would discover something bad, adventure, meet an ally, Quinn would say some speech before they slid (despite Arturo saying they literally had seconds left!) and repeat. Despite this being the sliders actual routine in a new world, we didn't need to see it being played out every week. Basically, if you ever need to learn anything about a parallel world...ask the hotel staff! They seemed to know EVERYTHING!
Rubbish writing aside, when Silders hit upon a great idea it really worked (see the Lobbying For Men's Rights episode). It really could use the stories as a satirical slant on what was happening in our world at the time. There were some great "what if?" episodes that really excelled. Only some were bogged down buy the obligatory all-out action. It's fine to see them run for their lives (you have to have that sometimes!) in certain episodes, but while it was suggested that not all worlds were bad, it just painted a lazy picture that Earth Prime was the best and every where else was bad. Extremely bad.
But even during these episodes, it was held together by the four sliders. You really cared for them and there was always that hope that they would make it home together. Sadly it wasn't the case. Season 3 amid all it's network troubles really lost focus, the shock death (the moment where it jumped the shark) was the beginning of the end. Stories were focused on more action and adventure (not alwyas bad, but very throwaway) and the new sliders that would eventually join would never gel well with originals. Did we really need an ex-marine in the group? Let's face it, Wade was miles better but made redundant when the action girl came into it (undoing years of character building). The suprise twist of a brother didn't help too. The show just started to add things because no-one mentioned them in the early episodes.
While it nice to see they had an arch nemesis and the idea that there were other sliders out there, it just didn't feel the same as the quirky off-beat show about four normal people in a bizarre predicament; with the basic premise of wanting to go home.
There's nothing memorable about the final half of the series. An alien race that enslaved humanity in all parallels was re-introduced, back in full empirical army mode. A real shame, since the idea that they were out there on the firnges of the unknown was a much better and horrific idea. It couldn't be as far removed as possible for the show. Rembrant become tougher and a natural leader, but with losing Mallory, the show lost it's scientific counterpoint (though thankfully the self-smug, obligatory, Quinn speech to some doe-eyed woman at the end of each slide. Bleurgh!). Sure, they had him in a new body but the lines given just weren't him. It's fair to say that this reviewer tuned during the end of Seasson 3, catching the odd later episode here and there. But from what was seen, the show (while much darker) had lost all touch with reality. There was no chemistry between any of the cast and with 3 of the originals gone, you had to wonder why the actor playing Rembrant ever stuck around.
It's a shame really, but when you can only do so many "what if?" episodes, where do you go from there?
All we wanted to see was them making it home and while the twist in Season 3 prevented that, it's a shame it never ended there with the survivors making it back. It was a case of carrying on for the sake of it (epsecially the evil slider aliens...WHAT? Who cares!), with a sense that "going home" really wasn't as exciting as "saving the worlds".
So with what amounts to two quirky, flawed, but entertaining two seasons; a darker and more weird 3rd...and two seasons that no-one watched because they were appalling...Sliders will go down in history as a cult sci-fi that had bags of potential, but never lived up to what could have been.
Watch it for the first two seasons at least though!
I miss this show, up until a month or so ago SCI-FI was showing an episode every weekday. The story was great, and although the last couple seasons kind of tanked, I thought it was still compelling television. I wish SCI-FI would do a movie, just to show what happens to ALL the characters from the show.
I was a fan of this series for the same reason that "Time Tunnel," "Voyagers" and "Quantum Leap" were all great series, but something happened between the second and third seasons that made the show a rip-off of "Stargate." "Sliders" had started off as a show that showed worlds where some historical event never happened or as a political satire on society, but it went downhill in a way that I lost interest. I could almost forgive for replacing Sabrina Lloyd with Kari Wuhrer, but then they eliminated the professor, gave Quinn a brother he didn't need and then eliminated both of them. I had stopped watching the series entirely by that point. It was not the same show by that point and I had lost interest. Let this show be an example of how excessive tampering can ruin a once great cult series!
I loved this show from the start. But after the professor was taken off the show. It was all down hill from there. They kept bringing in new characters and taking others out. In the end is was like they were sliding with an entire circus. The show had such great promise. They should have just cancelled it after the professor left the show instead of running it into the ground.
My favorite episodes of Sliders were from Seasons 1-2 and part Season 3. I lost interest in Sliders due to the fact couldn't view it for one thing and the episodes became a bit repititive to think that the writers had great ideas but could of had plot twists. GREAT!!!
While trying to invent an anti-gravity machine, college student Quinn Mallory accidentally invents something completely different: a way to travel to parallel earths, or as he put it in the narration... "same planet, different dimension" He and a group
It was a promising show at the beginning, one whose premise could have led to nearly infinite storylines if handled correctly and for a while, it seemed they were doing just that. The four main characters, Quinn; his physics professor Maximilian Arturo; Quinn's tomboyish friend Wade Kathleen Welles; and a middle-aged musician named Rembrandt Brown who was convinced he was on his way to a come-back, all worked well together. They journeyed from dimension to dimension in an effort to get back to their own after an accident in the premiere shorted out the device that Quinn had developed.
The series explored what America would be like if England had won the Revolutionary War, or if Russia or Spain ruled the country, or if the Egyptian civilization of thousands of years ago had never died out. They had episodes which examined the possibilities of the U.S. where women held the social "upper hand", or the justice system was reduced to a game show, hosted by, of all people, the man who played Ralph/Malph in Happy Days.
Perhaps the best part of those early episodes was the social commentary behind the plots. Many of them made you stop and think. There was a lot being said in them and they had a relevancy that was lost in the later episodes. Then the professor was written out in a very controversial move which I think lost the show a great deal of support and then Wade's character was also lost. When I found out she wasn't coming back I stopped watching the show. By that point it had lost so much of what had made it special to begin with.
Quinn Mallory accidentally invented a machine that gave him the ability to travel between dimensions. With his friend Wade Wells and Professor Arturo they decide to take a spin round the universe...without thoroughly testing the machine first.
Caught up in the vortex is Rembrant "Crying Man" Brown, who is understandably shocked to find himself driving into an iceberg.
Stuck in the middle of a natural disaster with a tornado approaching fast, they have no choice but to ignore a warning from Quinn's double and open the wormhole early. The consequences of their actions are clear...they have not returned home and are now lost in another dimension.
The sliders travel from world to world searching for their home world and encountering friends and enemies along the way.
The show had a great premise and with an infinite number of worlds there was an infinite number of storylines to go with it.
The first series was original, inventive and each episode offered something new to enjoy. The second series was equally enjoyable.
However by the third series the show seemed to have started to lose its direction. With the departure of Arturo and the introduction of Maggie Beckett there were changes in store. The Professor's opinions and knowledge about history were noticeably absent and instead the focus moved to the enemies that the sliders had made during their travels, most notably Rickman, a killer from Maggie's home world and the Kromaggs, a race of beings who are determined to enslave the occupants of every world they slide to.
But the show remained enjoyable to watch and there were some good episodes still to be had.
The fourth series came around and there was a glaring absence in the cast. Wade Wells, played by Sabrina Lloyd, was no longer there. Written out with not even a final episode to do her justice there was an opening for another slider to join the three remaining travellers.
The expansion of the Kromagg storyline gave the sliders a new reason to continue travelling. This time in search for Quinn's natural parents, doubles from another world, and the brother he never knew he had. An interesting idea but one which took the show even further away from its roots.
By series five I had almost given up on the show but after hearing that it was probably the final series watched anyway in order to see just would happen.
The series opened with two more absences, both Quinn and his brother Colin were gone with only a brief glimpse of two actors pretending to be them taking their place. Each of them was then written out with even flimsier storylines than that of Wade. The two replacement sliders, Mallory and Diana are soon travelling with Maggie and the last remaining original slider Rembrant.
The series was not entirely bad, the episodes focusing on Rembrant are always strong, and the episode Requiem at least offered a conclusion to the story of what had happened to Wade all those months ago. But with so many of the old favourites gone and the storylines once again focused not on how the worlds are different, but on the enemies they have made, it was not surprising that a sixth series never arrived.
A great show that went downhill when so many of the cast had left. It lasted well past it prime and like so many other shows gave the viewers no real conclusion.
I liked this show and even started watching the reruns to it again! But i just cant stand the seasons after they took off the professor but i thought Maggie was a good replacement! And then they took Wade off and didnt get the good of a replacement! Then to top that all off they had Quinn go through some portal but then turns into some other man! That was soo stupid lo!
The premiere of Sliders was enthralling, entertaining, and fun. From there, the series itself began to slide. The introduction of the Kroaggs was perhaps a mistake that cost the series some of its cast members and its place where it may have been in history - as a great sci-fi series in the likeness of The X-Files. Unfortunately, this was not the case, and the show lasted a mere 5 seasons (only three on its parent network of FOX - which I believe treated the show unfairly with scheduling, etc). Maybe one day, the show can be re-made and the Kroaggs can be left out...
This show is OK. I think it's good. It just what I need when I get home from a bad day at work. It’s entertaining full of laughs and makes me want to never move again. It really captures the free spirit of media and keeps you wanting and guessing for more. It’s the kind of show that you don’t need to constantly watch in order to get the whole spectrum of what’s going on, I really like that, that way you can do multiple things at once. If you feel like it that is. This is defiantly one of my favorite shows.
Sliders was one of my favorite shows when it first started. The idea of alternate realities was really cool and a great basis for a show. They also had a strong cast who seemed to have had a great chemistry together and who the audience could love and relate to. Unfortunately the show started to go downhill when endless mistake after another was made. Their first mistake was getting rid of the character of the professor. Their next mistake was bringing in Kari Wuher (YUCK! CAN'T ACT!). Then they brought in the storyline of the Kromags which was ok but they never got off that one thing. It got old fast. And finally the cast, first they lose 3 of the 4 strongest characters (the people who made the show) and they bring in other actors and characters that are weak and just didn't make the cut. The only good thing at the end was that the character of Rembrant was still there. They should bring back the show with the original cast and the crew from the 1st and 2nd seasons because they made it great.
Short and sweet folks. Great concept, i mean fantastic because of the possibilities but the acting should have been better. Shoulda woulda coulda, great show. The only thing left to talk about is why this web page wont let me leave a short review. I said all I want to say and this is what I have to go through to voice my opinion. F*%k a one hundred word minimum. Its childish and stupid. Shame on you free web sites for making me waste my time when I could be watching more damn television. Christ five more words and then.
Sliders started off well but just started going down hill fast after they started losing the original characters, then finally when Rembrant was the only one left. They ended the show with one of the worst endings I have ever seen. No conclusions just a jump into space not ever really knowing what is going to happen. But you know once the writers got lazy something bad was going to happen and that's when they introduced the character Mallory combining the two brothers it was a complete disaster. All I can say is at least you know what happened to the professor when he died(still horrible though). Everything else was just a quick useless answer. Bring back the original cast and this show would do miracles again. To bad they had to end it.
The show originates with Quinn Mallory, boy genius and college student who discovers a way to travel back and forth between parallel Earths. While experimenting with it, he takes some people along with him through the wormhole and land on an Earth that is covered with ice and snow. To escape being killed, Quinn has to open the window early. In effect, they can not get back home. This series follows the adventures of Quinn and his companions as they travel to a different Earth and banter with the locals and sometimes encounter alternate versions of themselves. Sliders shows us the writer's conceptions of what their Earth would be like if they or others had made different choices from the tiny to the extreme.
The second half of the third season and the fourth one lost the real Sliders. To be honnest, I never had the chance to watch the fifth season because the channels I get decided not to buy it after the mediocre audience scores of the fourth one. I was told by several fans that this matches the spirit of the show again, but how is that only possible without the main characters ?
What made Sliders Sliders was not just the vortex and travelling through it from a Universe to the other dealing with people needing help and trying the determine whether or not the sliders should do so. What made Sliders Sliders was a combination of factors : the cast, the topic, the scripts, the social satire and the humor.
The cast was originally these four people taken into an incredible journey through parallel universes, all of them bringing an original point of view.
The topic was that of new theories which were just starting to be known at the time. Think that the fourth season was in 1998-1999. In an episode, you hear about the M theory, created by Eric Witten in 1998.
The scripts were well written for most of them, suggesting other ways of life, other points of views that the sliders analyzed as they tried to survive and help whoever they could. This brought interesting debates about how our Occidental society seems to be a model, but how a slight variation could have changed everything. How can we say that we are right ?
A decent show, indeed. But the first seasons really were underestimaded. They aired in 1995. I was eight years old. They made me want to be an astrophysicist.
Interesting characters, and the need to return to their world, this was the plot about this amazing show. the only problem is that some of the characters eventually became a little bored, just like the worlds. But besides that have the potential to make at least another season, i really hated that the protagonist left the show that is one of the main reason why i stop watching the show I hope for a new show with a similar plot. Good Bye...
Before sci-fi was turned into technobabble-pastiche-with-loads-of-soap-opera, we had action/adventure using *concepts* instead, where drama came from the situation - not from the characters' personal lives.
Sliders is about a boy genius (named Quinn) who, in an attempt to create an anti-gravity device, figures out how to cross parallel dimensions instead. A mishap occurs and he, his college professor (Arturo), his friend (Wade Wells, who wants to be lovers with him), and a complete stranger (a singer whose fame has come and gone, Rembrandt Brown).
Some people compare this show to Quantum Leap and I do not know why. In Quantum Leap, a character goes back in time and does something to ensure history goes on the right path. As a result we get to see stories pertaining to racism, sexism, homophobia, et cetera. While a good series, Quantum Leap and Sliders are very different beasts.
Season 1 is produced with the most level of fun, which also dares to be camp at times. We go to parallel worlds where our characters' lives are considerably different and not necessarily good. On a different note, many societies they land in are used to suggest what philosophers in the past had postulated. There is a (slight) educational slant here, and definitely an eye-opening one as sexism is also used as a plot device.
All in all a good series, but the show lost its way in season 3 quickly and what it was transformed into in season 4 does it no respect either. (the show did survive for another season, but by then it was too, cough, original...)
Season 1 stories include:
* Pilot. (this sets everything up and is not pro-communism like all of the brainless critics of the time claimed it was. The show requires a level of intelligence on the part of the viewer.)
* Fever. (Quinn of this world is framed as Patient Zero of a deadly virus, when this Quinn merely stumbled on a nasty government secret.)
* Last Days. A meteor is heading to Earth, and Einstein shelved his plans to build "The Bomb"...
* The Weaker Sex. Women are in control. (a bit far fetched, the explanation, but roll with it. Some good points are made.)
* The King is Back. Rembrant's career in this world was like ours was of Elvis... except one of his bandmates seeks revenge...
* Luck of the Draw. The foursome think they've arrived in paradise. Prices are low, a lottery of sorts gives out as much money as you want. People want for nothing. But there's a catch. (a great episode revolving around population and resource usage and the last 10 minutes are gripping.)
Season 2 sees a bit of a change. More soap elements are added in and there's not as much "carefree fun" feeling as there is in the 1st. Additionally, a side-character (Conrad Bennish) is ousted by FOX nitwit execs... but Tracy Torme finds a way to slide him in just once more... heh.)
* Love Gods. This story deals with a world where Iraq had managed to use a nerve gas that wiped out most males. The few left alive have their own tasks to perform... The plot is a bit stretched in credbility, but roll with it - this one is a riot.
* The Good, the Bad, and the Wealthy. A Western-themed episode and feels surprisingly genuine too. It's another anti big-corporation piece, which makes it even more endearing. (keep in mind the show's creator is a Libertarian.)
* El Sid. San Francisco is turned into the nation's premiere prison. Why? They fear the "big one" is about to hit and the nastiest of the nasty are here awaiting death. This one is great and there are some chilling performances.
* In Dino Veritas. Dinosaurs survived into the 20th century and are protected by man. Again, this one stretches credibiltiy big-time as humans are also much more advanced. Yet for some reason, it holds together and works.
* Invasion. The Kromaggs. There are nothing BUT surprises and twists in this one, but I will say Conrad Bennish makes a nice, covert final appearance.
* Post-Traumatic Slide Syndrome. We think the Sliders are home, apart from a few seemingly minor differences. (study the ending very closely...)
* The Young and the Relentless. The youth took over society. It's another stretched credibility piece, but as usual it's got some worthy ideas and great jokes.
FOX, despite giving us a full run of episodes for once (26 instead of 10), thinks they know how creativity works (no, they don't - they only know how mass production works), turns SLIDERS into a movie-ripoff-of-the-week event. As a result, most stories are as paperweight and pastiche, much more soap opera, Quinn butches up, and it's all a mess. Oh, John Rhies-Davies also made good on a promise to quit because the storylines did not consistently improve in intellectual quality. I don't recall much of this season. While we did get to see the concept of returning to a world where the Sliders got involved, and a recurring character quest as well, the story quality renders it all worthless.
* Double-Cross. Another dwindling resources plotline (Sliders was ahead of its time), with the biggest surprised of them all. A must see.
* The Guardian. Quinn meets himself of his past. The science behind this one is a bit shaky and is steeped in soap, but I still liked it. It's easy to see why.
* The Fire Within. Another token plot whose saving grace is when the Sliders pick up an unintended passenger...
Sci-fi channel buys the program and makes it into one of their original programs. And when they make a program and call it original, I tend to be wary. The Kromaggs return and are used in scores of episodes, and when they're not used they're referenced. They also look much less threatening in appearance and ultimately seem like yet-another-military rather than the impressive force we saw in Invasion. Another story arc is created, and much as I don't like it when other series engage in retconning, I don't like it here either.
This was one of my favorite shows for a long time. Admittedly, it wasn't the most logical premise, the best writing, or even the best acting. And admittedly, things just got worse and worse. Still, I waatched it and I loved it. Untill season five anyway, the 'fraternal twin' Quinn was too far even for me. Just kill the character, if you have too, don't treat the audience like idiots.
But when the show was at it peak (somewhere around season 2) it was really something great. Not entirely believable, but entertaining, thought provoking, and most importanly-- fun. Parallel dimensions: a world with women in charge, where america lost the revolution, where time runs at a different speed and you can meet the younger version of yourself? Purely fascinating. A boy genius and his mentor trying to find a way to get home and two regular people just along for the ride created a great dynamic. The acting wasn't perfect (or maybe it was the scripts), but the original actors all had a charisma that made that okay. You could watch the show, relax, smile, and just ENJOY.
Unfortunstely, by season 5 only one of them was still with the show-- which ruined it's chemistry. Everytime the show lost one of the original characters, it lost a little bit of what made the show so interesting. By the time they dropped the main character, it was a pale imitation of the great show it had been.
This was a great show and it’s a shame that Sci-fi axed it because they didn’t foresee the show being able to more forward without Jerry O’Connell. Sure, they’ve had their share or horrifically bad B-movie episode plots, but there were also so great gems of episodes. Plus, members of the Farscape cast (Ben and Claudia) seem to have just been transferred to Star Gate and one of the actresses from The Invisible Man found her way into the Andromeda cast. So why couldn’t the network have done same for the Sliders’ cast?
Sliders had one of the greatest concept in the science fiction, in my opinion - alternate realities where some catalyst, be it small or huge, sends that world off into a vastly different present/future. But it never lived up to its potential, due to bad executive decisions.
I still consider seasons one and two of Sliders to be the best of science fiction. The characters showed depth, as well as the predictability of humanity. Often, the humor was subtler than that of the crude variety displayed by the later seasons. Alternate realities and their effects in these two seasons actually seemed plausible. Granted, anything is possible in an infinite number of universes, but these worlds showed the viewers what might've been our own, if but one small event occurred differently.
The third and fourth seasons were a travesty to the greatness of the show, and its fans. The acting became subpar, even by sci-fi standards. The characters were often reduced to the lowest denominator (in particular, Quinn's personality change was dismaying). The plots and corresponding worlds no longer made any sense. This downward plunge can mostly be attributed to the change in management, which also led to a change in cast.
By the fifth season, the show had changed so much as to be nearly unrecognizable, and it was hard to maintain interest in it. I found it impossible to accept the newly introduced characters, whose performance wasn't stellar anyway. Add to that a number of lackluster stories, Sliders was dead. The cliffhanger ending still managed to invoke a rather inflamed reaction, however.
I would love to see Sliders brought back. Its concept was strong; the fact that it continued to air past season three alone is a testament to that. If it were ever brought back, I hope that it will finally be allowed rightfully to shine. Had the potential not been squandered, Sliders might've been the best science fiction show of all time.
I'm a big fan of Sliders and was very happy when it was announced that the first and second seasons would finally be released on DVD in a 'Dual Dimension' collectors box set. I had been waiting a long time for this day and it wouldn't have happened without the determenation of the fans that sent numerous letters, emails and pettitions off to the executives of the show. I bought my Box set for around £28, which was a bit high considering most TV shows that have 22 episodes cost around £20-£25 or so, but I didn't care, I could finally get one of my fav sci-fi shows on DVD after all these years of waiting.
[The History behind Sliders]
Sliders started life on the Fox channel for the first three seasons and was then picked up by the Sci-Fi channel after Fox cancelled it. It's a weird history behind Sliders because it has been cancelled quite a few times. It was initially put on hiatus after 9 episodes out of the 22 were completed in the first season. This was because Fox wanted to change the nature of the show and have more action than it actually had. So because of late production on the next lot of episodes, after the hiatus period, these episodes were aired a year later and were known as season two. Fox then officially cancelled the show after the episodes were aired.
Fans were devasted at the decision by Fox, so decided to start a campaign to bring the show back. Their efforts worked and Fox gave Sliders a full 25 episode season, exactly what the fans wanted. For that season Sliders done quite well in the ratings but Fox decided to cancel it again because they wanted to go ahead with another show in the time slot that Sliders usually had. Lucky enough though, the Sci-Fi channel saw the potential in Sliders and decided to pick it up for a Fourth and then a Fifth season. After good ratings (First place in Season 4 and second place behind Farscape in Season Five), fans thought that Sliders would surely get a Sixth Season, but no they didn't. Sci-Fi cancelled the show. That decision was mainly thought to be because of problems with the budget the Sixth season would have had but I'm not sure. There are also rumours that Sci-Fi tried to pin the blame for the cancellation on the actors, saying that none of them signed up for a Sixth Season, but they responded by saying that they were never asked and went on to do other projects.
Not only has Sliders been cancelled several times but key members of cast and crew left the show too. Most notably was the removal of John Rhys-Davies (Professor Arturo), Sabrina Loyd (Wade Wells) and of course the main star Jerry O'Connell (Quinn Mallory). This was what let the show down in the fourth and Fifth seasons. There were loads of goings on with pay disputes and what not but nothing could be settled. The only actor who stayed for all five seasons was Cleavant Derricks (Rembrandt Brown), who became the lead character after Jerry left. Rembrandt was a good character but after seeing Jerry O'Connell as the lead for so long it felt very different. Various writers and producers left too, which was why a lot of the stories didn't turn out that well. There were so many cast/character changes as well that didn't help the matter. These included Kari Wuhrer joining the cast in Season three and Tembi Locke and Robert Floyd joining in Season Five. This was of course because many of the original actors had left the show for one reason or another.
Sliders has been a hit all round the world and like another cancelled show 'Farscape', continues to play on the sciFi channel. So if you want to catch a few episodes then the best thing is to check if you got that channel. They used to air Sliders on BBC2 but the BBC decided not to purchase Seasons Four and Five after they aired on Sky One. That left many of us who were watching on BBC2 in a bit of a bother because we didn't have Sky.
Quinn Mallory [Jerry O'Connell] aka Q-Ball
Quinn spends most of his time in the basement of the house, where he often conducts various experiments, one of course that led to sliding. He lives in San Fransisco and when he was 12, his dog Bopper went missing. His father died in a car crash at the same time. After his father's death Quinn got interested in 'Quantum Physics' and decided to go to the University of California to study the subject. There he attended lectures by Professor Arturo. He also works part time at the Doppler Computer Superstore as a repairman. His friend Wade also works there.
Wade [Kathleen] Wells [Sabrina Lloyd]
Wade is the best friend of Quinn Mallory and works at the Doppler Computer Superstore. She also has feelings for Quinn but she is considered to be more like a sister to him, so their romance doesn't really go anywhere to start with. Over the course of the season they do kiss but Wade becomes more closer to Rembrandt because they agree on more things than she did with Quinn.
Rembrandt [Lee] Brown [Cleavant Derricks] aka 'The Crying Man', 'Remy'
Rembrandt first started life as a singer with his music group 'The Spinning Tops' but once he left them his success went downhill. He was named 'The Crying man' after he cried real tears on stage and often provides a lot of the comic relief throughout the seasons.
Professor Maximilian P. Arturo [John-Rhys Davies]
Arturo has to be most sarcastic out of Sliders but he is very knowledgable and his bright ideas and plans help the Sliders out in most sticky situations. He's a teacher of Cosmology and Ontology at the University of California and is one of Quinn's lecturers.
[How does the story for Sliders start out?]
Quinn Mallory accidently opens up a portal to another dimension while he was trying to discover anti-gravity. After several tests he then invents a timer so that if he goes through the gateway he can return home. This is when the story really starts. Quinn decides to enter the portal and lands himself in a parallel-world that is slightly different to his own, where for example, on a traffic light, red is go and green is stop. This world was only a little bit different but as you will see later in the seasons some worlds are totally different.
When he returns from his sucessful 'Slide' he finds out that he is being blamed for things he hasn't done while he has been away. That is when he finds out that a double from another world has also invented sliding and has come through the gateway into his world.The double has been Sliding for quite some time and just as his timer counts down to the last second he tries to warn Quinn about something with the Timer. The double Quinn isn't able to finish what he is saying as the portal opens and he is sucked through.
Later Quinn invites his friends Wade and Arturo round to his house to show them what the device can do. The two are amazed when they see Quinn's basement full of gadgets and gizmos but what really amazes them is when Quinn opens up the portal. Wade wants to try it out but the professor looks at it from a more scientific view and questions whether or not it would be stable for all of them. After, they all decide to travel through the vortex but first Quinn decides to increase the power so that the portal will be large enough to carry all of them through safely, but once they enter the vortex something goes wrong and causes the portal to enlarge and travel out into the street where it gathers up Rembrandt in his cadillac.
When the four 'Sliders' arrive on the next world they stumble upon disaster, so Quinn must advance the timer and open up a new vortex for them to escape. This saves their lives but has also caused the timer to erase the co-ordinates of their own world, which therefore begins their journey sliding through numerous worlds in an attempt to make it back to their own someday.
[Season One Intro] What if you could find brand new worlds right here on Earth, where anything's possible? Same planet, different dimension. I've found the gateway!
[Season Two Intro] What if you could travel to parallel worlds? The same year, the same Earth, only different dimensions. A world where the Russians rule America, or where your dreams of being a superstar came true, or where San Francisco was a maximum security prison? My friends and I have found the gateway. Now the problem is, finding a way back home!
Overall both seasons were excellent and it was a great ride sliding through the different worlds. Some really great episodes were produced and among my favourites would have to be the feature-length Pilot episode. This was because it not only set the story for sliding through different dimensions but because it almost felt like a sort of movie. There were so many other great worlds that the Sliders visited such as the one where men are are considered the weaker sex or where most of the world's population of men have been killed by a virus. Whatever world Sliders takes you to it's always great fun. The visual effects for the show were also very good and were considered the best for a TV show at the time Sliders was made. Obviously when I watch it back now the effects are not as good as say Farscape or something but one thing that is still realistic is the vortex, which the Sliders jump through when they travel from world to world.
The 6-disc Dual Dimension DVD set is region one NTSC and is not available on Region 2 at the moment. The best thing is, if you've got a multi-region player, is to puchase it from a cheap canadian site like me or to get it from cdwow.com, Amazon or playusa or something. You have to watch out though because a lot of these sites ship there DVD's direct from Canada so you can get a customs charge a lot of the time. I was lucky this time, I avoided getting charged. But now that probably means when I order my next box set, a £9 something charge will be waiting for me. I really hate it when this sh*t happens. Why can't you just order it and get it delivered to your house like your suppose too?
The packaging for this box set is very different and original to most sets that I buy. This is because there is an illusion that makes the discs looks as though they are floating. This has been done quite simply with a piece of foam which is stuck on the left with six slots for the DVD's to slide in and out of. When you pick it up it does feel kind of cheap because it's nothing like the normal package you would get, but I like the design and it looks nice on my shelf. The outta case is a shinny silver in colour with an image of sliders on the front. It also has the sliders logo in a purple colour. There is also a transparent plastic cover that slots into the case so you can see the discs 'float'. There is no writing on the back and comes with no booklet, which is a shame. Many people thought that the discs would get scratched up if you keep pulling the discs in and out but various sites have tested it several times and say that the foam does not cause the discs to get scratched.
Sadly the two seasons are not in Widescreen, but instead a nice cleaned up fullscreen version is included, which I am happy with. It's probably one of the best fullscreen transfers actually, for a TV show. The colours are all in the right contrast and despite having some dust are very good quality. On the audio side of things everything is fine, considering that I first thought that there was going to be a Mono track rather than the Dolby Surround track that is actually included. It's not the best but it does the job at recreating the stunning Sliders sound effects and music. The set also contains English, French and Spanish subtitles but there are no other language tracks included.
This is a big let down because there's so much that could have been included, such as various outtakes, interviews, behind the scenes segments, extra commentaries but we get none of that and are stuck with only a total of three features. These are:-
[Audio Commemtary with writers/co-creators Robert K. Weiss and Tracy Torme]
Considering the pilot was about an hour and a half long we are given quite long commentary, which is one good thing about the extras. Overall I thought the commentary was great and very informative. We were let in a few behind the scenes mishaps and they talked about the actors, among other things. One highlight would have to be when they explained how John Rhys-Davies wanted to do this stunt where he had to roll under a truck. They told him that they wanted to use a stunt double but he kept insisting that he he wanted to do it. So they finally let him and guess what? He rolled under the truck split his head open.
[The Making of Sliders]
This was mainly featurette fluff with loads of clips from the show but it did have quite a few good interviews in there. Out of the actors though, only Cleavant Derricks and Jerry O'Connell are interviewed. It would have been nice to see what some of the others had to say but nothing from them was included. So overall it was an okay feature.
Some photos come on the screen with some music playing in the background.
Overall it was a great two seasons and I really enjoyed seeing them again after all these years. As I do with most of my TV show DVD reviews I would like to recommend the show to anyone who is into Sci-Fi. It's a great show and these two seasons were the high peak of Sliders.
Thanks for reading!
The fanlisting is at this address if you want to join: http://phase-one.org.uk/sliders. I run the fanlisting which currently has over 150 members!
think it was really underated.. especially the later ones.. but overall a good show ... I immss it and catch it on Sci_fi whenever I ca. Jerry O'Connell and John Rys Davies were in particular talented actors... would like to see a good two part MiniSeries on Sci-Fi like they did with Farscape
This was a really fun show. It had a fantastic beginning, with strong central characters and an original plot. Essentially in the "New" SciFi genre, it really was ahead of it's time. Combining time travel with adventure and intrigue. I enjoyed the show for both it's dark plots as well as it's frivolity. The writing was good, the episodes were energetic, and the characters were lively. I understand a show switching out characters from time to time, I mean a new character generally breathes new life into the show, however, I think it was a grave mistake to keep the show going after Jerry O'Connell left. I think they did a pretty good job in switching the characters out, Quinn Mallory, to Quinn "Mallory" Mallory (mix) but still, it just wasn't the same. All in all it's a good past time, it was a fun show, and it would make my top 20.
For the first three seasons of Sliders, this show was an intelligent, original and fascinating example of perfect scifi TV. The acting was mostly above average, but the character dynamics of this odd group (a whiz kid, his wannabe girlfriend, his college professor and a washed-up singer who got into sliding by accident) and the writing were what really made the show. Unfortunately, the show began to go downhill when the original cast was shaken up with the departure of the formidable John Rhys-Davies as the Professor, and jumped the shark completely when it lost Sabrina Lloyd as Wade.
Ultimately the show began to slide of course a little in Season 3. After Season 4 and 5 when two more key characters went M.I.A. Qunn and Wade were replaced by two forgettable wooden characters with more uninspired storyline the show slid downhill.
I'm sure many salivating teen males would disagree with me on the pointlessness of Kari Wuhrer, but it's clear to me that she added nothing but cleavage to the show.
So, if you want to watch a sci-fi that's not all together too serious and fun then go for Seasons 1-3 of Sliders, their definitely infinite possibilities for adventure.
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