SLIDERS

I loved Sliders.  For those of you who don’t know, it was a science fiction show in the 90s starring Jerry O’Connell.

The basic premise was that a boy genius built a machine that could allow people to “slide” into parallel universes.  The same Earth, the same year, only with slight (and sometimes major) differences.

Even though this show was enjoyable it wasn’t without flaw and there were some terrible episodes.  Most of them come from the fifth season after the show had been canceled by Fox and revived by Sci-Fi with several new cast members.

But I’m not going to write about that season because:

A. I don’t have access to it

and,

2. I didn’t really watch that terrible season

So instead, we’re going to look at an episode from season three.

THE PLOT

The episode begins with a band called Stoker being featured at a gothic rock club.

One of the band members brings in a pretty young girl who wants to audition to be the band’s female singer.  The underling (played by Danny Masterson, don’t think I didn’t see you) introduces her by saying she’s a runaway who has no family.  Which is both not suspicious and a perfectly normal way to introduce someone.

My only question is, if she has no family who did she run away from?

The other guys in the band circle around her, and at this point, I’m hoping all they do is kill her.  The leader of the band calls them off and kicks them out and he sits down with the girl.

He displays his teeth, for the camera I guess, and then lunges for her.  So, he’s a vampire.  In a band called Stroker. Because fuck subtlety.

We transition to the band playing and discover that Wade is in the audience, apparently being hypnotized by the vampire singer.

In the Sliders’ hotel room, Maggie is arguing with Quinn and Rembrandt about how to find Rickman.  Oh, Rickman was a bad slider who kills people and sucks their brains out.  The Sliders have been looking for him all season long.

Wade comes out of the bedroom and says the band seems to have a lot of fans who are missing girls.  They think it might be Rickman, but Maggie wants to check the hospitals.

The other Sliders leave Maggie to nurse her hangover and walk out.

At the hospital, Rickman is posing as a priest and using a needle to suck out that sweet cerebral spinal fluid.  I hear it has a minty taste.

Next, we see a music critic leaving his office.  He gets into his car and the dead girl from the beginning is in the back.  He starts screaming and the drummer appears on the hood.  He uses the best stop-motion animation that a TV budget can buy and crashes the man’s car into a wall where it explodes.

I’m unclear on the all the powers a vampire has, but I was pretty sure magic wasn’t a part of them.

Wade is getting dolled up for her return to the concert, and she’s obviously under the influence of some kind of mind control.

At a blood bank, the band is running a blood drive in exchange for Stoker tickets. Rickman shows up looking for a line on more victims. Apparently, the same blood bank that is allowing vampires to get blood is also working with Rickman.

I always wonder how these people find each other.  Is there a pamphlet that goes around?

Wade walks into the club before it opens and starts singing.  The lead singer invites her to audition and she says she can’t.   The then stares at her and she gets lost in his baby blues.  They ride off on his motorcycle, while a guy we’ve seen in the background a few times kills a band roadie with a stake to the heart.

He turns out to be a vampire because he helpfully shows his fangs to the camera before he dies, but what if he wasn’t?  I mean are all their roadies and security vampires?

The others are digging up a grave because they think it might be Rickman.  Turns out it isn’t and Quinn runs off to check skid row.

Rembrandt and Maggie get arrested for grave robbing, Wade is singing with the band and  Quinn sees her.

Tommy Chong meets up with Quinn and gives him the 411 on the vampires.

Turns out that Stoker has been a band together since the civil war.  In this world, it’s known that vampires exist, but it’s a been a felony since the 1870s.

The lead vampire wants to turn Wade because she reminds him of someone he loved.

Wade tells him all about sliding and the vampire wants to slide to a new world where they don’t know vampires are real.

Wade and Danny Masterson bailout Maggie and Rembrandt because Wade wants the device so the vampires can slide.  Meanwhile, Quinn and Tommy Chong are killing people the vampires turned.

The Sliders infiltrate the base and rescue Wade.  Then they all slide out to another world.

THOUGHTS

The effects are pretty lame, the acting isn’t much better.  This is towards the end of the third season and marks a real decline in the quality of the show.

If you want to check out Sliders I would suggest seasons 1 and 2.

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The Author

Mark Phillips

Mark Phillips

Mark Phillips is the author of several thriller and literary novels. His Bentley Books series introduced the world to sadistic serial killer Bentley Grimes, a villain of unbelievable cruelty and unimaginable coldness. His literary novels are populated with richly drawn characters struggling with issues that affect our society today, such as: homosexuality, alcoholism, family struggles, poverty, greed, and bigotry.

He is an avid sports fan as well as a lover of movies and television.

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