SlidersCon Q&A Session
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Marc Scott Zicree Q&A

As part of the Sliders Online Convention, new Sliders producer/writer Marc Scott Zicree agreed to sit down and answer questions from the fans. Earlier this month, the convention hosted a board where fans could post their questions. Selected questions were then answered by Mr. Zicree.

Marc Scott Zicree is best known as the author of the Twilight Zone Companion. He has also penned scripts for such science fiction shows as Babylon 5, Star Trek:The Next Generation, The Twilight Zone. He has also written for the television series Beauty and the Beast. This year, Marc adds yet another science fiction series to his resume, as he tackles double duty as both a producer and writer for the television series Sliders, which moves to the Sci-Fi Channel in June of 1998.

Ryan asks:
We heard of the possibility that Sci-Fi channel might order more than the 22 episodes scheduled. When will we know for sure if Sci-Fi will order more episodes?

Marc Zicree answers:
Ryan, it's possible -- I'd say even probable (now that Barry Diller owns both Universal TV and the Sci-Fi Channel -- that more episodes would be ordered of SLIDERS. But I don't assume that will happen until late Spring or early Summer.

Temporal Flux asks:
One question that has been eargerly debated on the net is whether or not Rembrandt took Rickman's timer with him to Earth Prime.Many of us have watched the episode over and over, and it appears that Quinn meant to give Remmy the timer as he pushed him the vortex, but it is quite obvious that Quinn kept it according to the footage. In fact, the next scene shows Quinn putting it in his back pocket. So, the question is...was this a production mistake? Did Jerry just forget to hand off the timer or was it written where Quinn was supposed to keep Rickman's timer and not give it to Remmy as Quinn pushed him into the vortex? Also, is there any mention of the "Future World" that Maggie and Quinn ended up on, or will it be skipped over?

Marc Zicree answers:
Temporal Flux--As to the question of whether or not Remmy took Rickman's timer... well, it does get confusing. This season, we've been playing it that our guys have only one timer. Anything more than that would be confusing. And whatever Remmy had when he arrived on Earth Prime, the Kromaggs soon captured him and no doubt took it. As to the "Future World" Quinn and Maggie landed on, we haven't yet dealt with it but are talking about a story which would examine it.

Alan H asks:
Any chance of Sabrina Lloyd returning say as a guest star?

Marc Zicree answers:
Alan H--As to Sabrina Lloyd returning as a guest star, we're not planning that at this time -- but that doesn't rule it out down the line.

Temporal Flux asks:
Will the Sliders be getting yet another new timer this season?

Marc Zicree answers:
Temporal Flux--So far, the Sliders haven't gotten a new timer this season. Though they do utilize the Slidewave Device in my episode "World Killer."

Temporal Flux asks:
I was wondering if you roughly know the ratings that Sci-Fi Channel is shooting for with Sliders on its cable network...in other words, roughly what number level of ratings would get Sliders a season five?

Marc Zicree answers:
Temporal Flux--I don't know what ratings the Sci-Fi Channel would need to consider SLIDERS a success. Certainly ones lower than the broadcast networks. PirateQueen asks:
Can you tell us more about the new Slider. Will he be a bit comical? (we could use a few laughs after last season) How will his relationship with Quinn progress? Also how do you think Charlie O'Connell is doing in the role so far?

Marc Zicree answers:
Pirate Queen--Our new Slider, Colin Mallory, Quinn's brother, comes from a non-technological world, yet is himself a genius inventor (along the lines of a Leonardo or Benjamin Franklin). His wide-eyed innocence allows us to see worlds like our own through new eyes. We've used him to great advantage both in serious and comedic episodes. It's great fun to see Charlie get comfortable wit the role and flex his acting muscles. We're giving him a wide variety of notes to play, and both he and we are having a good deal of fun with it.

PirateQueen asks:
I was wondering which repeating characters like, Bennish, Pavel the cabbie, and Logan St.Claire, will be returning? Will new repeating characters be developed?

Marc Zicree answers:
Pirate Queen--As to repeating characters like Bennish, Logan, etc., we haven't used them this season (partly due to the show being filmed this year in L.A. rather than up north). We haven't introduced new characters that we meet more than once. Our main focus this season has been to examine and expand our regulars.

BeerDoctor asks:
Has John Rhys-Davis expressed a desire to be a part of SLIDERS again, and is there a way to make that happen?

Marc Zicree answers:
The Doctor--I haven't talked with John Rhys-Davies. At this point, there's no plan to bring him back. But the good side of this is that not having Arturo has allowed us to focus more on the others, who have grown as a result. Quinn is now more the leader and expert. And Remmy has become something of "the wise old man." Fun stuff.

Viricide asks:
What episodes will be rerun in March on the Sci-Fi Channel? Is there a way Sliders fans can vote for what episodes they want to see?

Marc Zicree answers:
Viricide--The episodes to be rerun have not been set yet. Naturally, the key episodes that establish Sliding, the characters and the Kromaggs would be likely candidates. As to the fans voting, I've mentioned the idea to the Sci- Fi Channel and they're open to it. You might want to drop them a note via DOMINION, their website.

Viricide asks:
I was wondering if the show would get some of the humor back it had in the first season. Many fans including myself would like to see a few episodes like "The Weaker Sex" where it was mostly a comic episode instead of "uh oh someone stole the timer again".

Marc Zicree answers
Viricide--As to getting back the humor of the first season, we here on staff all agreed that was a great idea. Bill Dial, our co-exec producer, and Chris Black, our executive story editor, both come from comedy writing backgrounds. So a number of our episodes have both big laughs and sharp social satire. And in some of the other ones we just blow stuff up (just kidding...).

Viricide asks:
I know the main story arc is the kromaggs but will there be a story arc that last only a few episodes and will there be any two part episodes?

Marc Zicree answers:
Viricide--As to whether there'll be any mini-arcs of two-parters, the answer is no, at this time. However, we do have various character beats that we set up in one episode and pay off in another, etc.

BeerDoctor asks:
How come a window can be "minutes on some worlds and months on others" - why not years, or even 29 years; if the next window is 29.7 years (if they miss their slide), why are their stays limited to minutes or months, and not years (besides the obvious TV complications this would present to the series)?

Marc Zicree answers:
BeerDoctor--As to the different lengths of time our guys have on each world... I could give you a pseudo science answer, but the real reason if whatever serves a given story. Besides which, it's fun to have them one place for an hour in one story and a few days in another, it shakes up the mix.

Temporal Flux asks:
What has Torme' had to say about the ideas for this season? In my opinion, they look close to what he had tried to do with the Kromaggs the first time, but Fox wouldn't let him. Has he had any input thus far in the fourth season of Sliders?

Marc Zicree answers:
Temporal Flux--In terms of Tracy Torme's role this season. He's busy with many other projects, so he's not hands-on this year. But we do speak to him periodically. We're glad to be brining back the Kromaggs. They're great characters and have sparked a number of fun episodes this season.

Viricide asks: Will there be an episode where we go over the rules and explanations--like why do you have to wait 29.7 years if you miss the slide and just can't build a new timer, why does the timer count down, etc..

Marc Zicree answers:
Viricide--As to episodes explaining why the slide windows are different, how the timer counts down, etc., we have a bit of that threaded here and there throughout the episodes but we don't linger. For one thing, we want an hour of adventure, drama, humor, etc. -- not a lecture.

BeerDoctor asks:
Hasn't most every slide been random? Why would Max say at the end Egyptian world that, "if we advance this here Egyptian timer, it means we're back to random sliding"?

Marc Zicree answers:
BeerDoctor--As to Max's line at the end of Egyptian world, I guess we should ask Max. Seriously, though, the Slides remain largely random this season, with the exception that if the Sliders find the coordinates of a specific world they can Slide to it -- but only when the timer counts down to zero. There are exceptions to this, however, which we learn about in my episode "Slidecage."

Informant asks:
If you had to say that season 4 was most like one of the other seasons, which would you say it was more like, 1, 2, or 3?

Marc Zicree answers:
Informant--As to which previous season Season 4 is most like, I'd have to say I think we've taken what's best of each and jettisoned the weakest elements. We'll see if the audience agrees. But we've definitely tried to get a good mix of action, humor, science fiction, social satire and moving human moments.

Informant asks:
Will the look of Sliders be more like it was before, or like other cable shows, like Mission Genisis for example?

Marc Zicree answers:
Informant--Will Sliders look like previous seasons or other cheesy cable shows? The look this season is great. We have the same Director of Photography as before and are shooting on the Universal Lot on 35mm film.

Informant asks:
If you could have the Sliders slide into any other tv show, what would it be?

Marc Zicree answers:
Informant--Co-executive Producer Bill Dial replies, "If we could have the Sliders slide into any other show, it would be ER -- for the ratings."

Read Part 2 of the Q&A (note, it's formatted different, because I used templates)