LOS ANGELES—Sliders, the science-fiction series that followed a group of adventurers who used a space-time wormhole to "slide" between parallel universes, ended its five-year run much too soon and with unresolved questions, show creator Robert Weiss said, unprompted, to literally nobody Tuesday.
Weiss, who spoke out loud for nearly four and a half hours as if there were other people in his general vicinity, noted that the series never had network support, and that seasons six and seven would have brought the Jerry O'Connell vehicle to a proper close.
Sliders was canceled in 2000.
"Two seasons—44 more episodes—that's all we needed," Weiss said as he sat alone in his Los Angeles home, his voice echoing off the living room walls. "So many threads were left hanging: Sure we know Quinn's mom is safe, but how safe? After Rembrandt injected himself with the virus, was he able to kill the Kromaggs?"
"Another season also would have given us the chance to explore the fanatical religion of Slidology further," added Weiss, who was more than 600 yards away from the nearest human being. "Much further."
According to Weiss, who even gesticulated as if he were engaging another person in a face-to-face conversation, the producer could have used the extra seasons to return the show to its alternate-history roots. The former showrunner told his bathroom mirror reflection that he had ideas for parallel-reality episodes in which the atomic bomb has never been used, yo-yos are the primary form of entertainment, and the Ku Klux Klan is made up entirely of African-Americans.
"Allegory is a powerful method for examining society," Weiss said with no regard for the standard communication model in which a sender relays a message to a receiver. "If given the chance, me and the whole Sliders creative team would have loved to tackle 9/11. Some shows would have been too afraid to touch it. But not Sliders. We were fearless."
Weiss continued his uninterrupted monologue as he exited his house, got into his car, and drove to a Santa Monica diner and explained to nobody that with 2,000 additional minutes of airtime he could have finally revisited how Logan St. Clair lost touch with the gang after they switched timers in the season-three episode "Slide Like An Egyptian."
"It's a fickle business," said Weiss, an empty booth before him. "I was talking to [series cocreator] Tracy [Tormé] the other day and we already have a finale in mind. Imagine this: Quinn and Wade get married on a planet that can only sustain life for two more days. And the final shot is of our Sliders arriving through the gateway and we discover we were watching the other Sliders throughout the entire show. Awesome, right?"
Weiss then meandered through the Farmers Market, down Fairfax Avenue, and along the beach, his words often devolving into muttered sentence fragments, including, "Second Earth Prime? Could work," "Simple phone call and Jerry [O'Connell] would have come back for season six," and "Canceled? Fuck you, I'm canceled. You're canceled."
Records confirmed that, in the past seven years, Weiss is the only person to speak aloud about Sliders.
Standing at the edge of the Santa Monica Pier, with seagulls the closest living organisms capable of hearing him, the producer discussed a potential five-episode arc in which the Kromaggs successfully convince the Sliders that they never slid away from Earth Prime in the first place. He later refined the idea in a desolate downtown alleyway, telling some leaky water pipes that it might be better if just Quinn remembers sliding and the other don't.
"That could be good for dramatic tension. Hey, where am I? Anyway, Sliders was way ahead of its time," added Weiss, who later returned to his empty house, lay on his bed, and turned off his bedroom light. "The bottom line is that the fans deserve closure."