The Sliders arrive on an epidemic world where penicillin was never invented.
During the opening scene we discover the Sliders have landed on a world where oil is underneath all of San Francisco. Everybody’s rich, it’s the Black Gold Rush! Just when the party gets started the Sliders notice they only have a minute till the next slide. They manage to stash some cash from a downpour of money and slide out. I’m sure many of us would have been tempted to stay on this wealthy San Francisco. But can we truly place a value on our own home, family and friends?
After landing on the epidemic world, they discover that Quinn’s double is the original carrier of the disease. Wanted for his crime, Quinn is mistaken for his double and is on the run. It’s interesting how this world has taken such drastic precautionary measures against a virus called the “Q”. Everything is hygienically approved by the CHC (The California Health Commission), from your local fast food restaurant to the motel across the street.
This world isn’t too far fetched from our own by the way. The only major difference is that penicillin was never invented. It can really get us to think, what if our world had never invented the vaccines we have today? Where would we be? How healthy would we be? Would we even be alive? Imagine the chaos. That’s what this episode illustrates and it delivers quite well.
Quinn is quickly snatched up by the CHC, and the rest of the team discovers that behind the weak silver lining is a dark world of quarantine zones spread over San Francisco. Wade becomes infected with the deadly Q and they discover Quinn’s double is the head of the quarantine zone.
While watching this episode you may get the feeling of being confined in one place too long, as if you’re really in a quarantine zone. The use of dark lighting and the dingy look of the quarantine area is quite effective in engaging one with the story. This episode has effective cosmetic make-up too. As Rembrandt would say, they all look like the color of a wax candle back home. The muddy yellow on all the faces, the coughs and well; it can get you to tense up, if you’re afraid of illnesses.
Quinn’s escape from the CHC is questionable, his double struggles to prove his own innocence and the Professor is running out of time to find Wade a cure. To end on a good note you’ll find a touch of comedy and hope, after all the dramatic mayhem. This episode illustrates the struggle of developing new vaccines and it reminds us of the extreme sensitivity of the health environments we all live in today.