State of the Art


In a world ruled by automatons who’ve made humans obsolete, Quinn and Rembrandt become the guinea pigs in a ghastly experiment: the transplantation of their brains into robotic hosts.

Teleplay by: Nan Hagen
Story by: Schuyler Kent
Directed by: John Kretchmer
Edited by: Edward Salier, A.C.E.
Music by: Stephen Graziano

Broadcast History

Original Airdate: December 6, 1996
Production Code: K1813
Network Code: SL-311

Synopsis

Humanity has been eradicated by the robots they created for menial labor. The four come to the rescue of one of the automatons, an affable DERIC model. While attempting to find one of DERIC’s friends, Rembrandt and Quinn are captured and brought back to the factory, where they they meet James Aldohn, creator of the robots. Aldohn has been crippled in an industrial accident and has developed a technique to transfer a human mind into a robot body. Not wanting to risk this on himself, he intends to use the Sliders as test subjects. Outside, Wade and DERIC really hit it off while Arturo attempts to reactivate an ERICA model needed to infiltrate the factory. Quinn and Rembrandt escape while the others break in, but all six are captured. To fight off being transferred into his robotic double, Quinn must find a way to overload the system while the others fight their way through Aldohn.

Worlds Visited

Android World

All of humankind (all of it) has been eradicated by a few thousand emotionally dysfunctional androids. Oh, and the sky is lilac for some reason. Read the full Travelogue entry »

Details

  • The store behind the Sliders when they first land sells Potions and Charms and seems to be a Witchcraft store.
  • There is also a Fish Market a couple of doors down as well as a bakery-coffee shop, a pizza joint and a used mattress store in the neighborhood.
  • The logo on the side of the jeep reads Aldohn Robotic Technologies with a red logo depicting a robotic arm in a ‘v’ formation at the elbow joint.
  • D.E.R.I.C. is an Aldohn D.063.
  • D.E.R.I.C. stands for the Delta model of the Emotional Response Intelligence Chip unit.
  • E.R.I.C.A. stands for the Emotional Response Intelligence Chip unit, Alpha model.
  • Wade, Arturo, Deric and E.R.I.C.A. walk past a restaurant called Camabony’s.
  • D.E.R.I.C. and E.R.I.C.A. walk past a storefront called Brother John’s Southside Mission.

Character Information

  • Rembrandt says that while he was in the service, awful meals were dubbed S.O.S. but he won’t reveal what that stands for.
  • Wade’s sister is named Kelly.
  • Wade’s father told her and Kelly what to do if they ever got caught in a fire: kick through the sheet rock.


Money Matters

  • The Sliders are too busy running for their lives and robotic versions of themselves to throw down hard cash. Besides, this world’s abandoned.


Rewind That!

  • After Wade expresses interest in D.E.R.I.C. (“the fascination is mutual, believe me”), he asks Quinn about his power supply. Watch Arturo’s reaction to Wade’s gushing — almost as if he’s saying “Oh, come now, Miss Welles, really.”


Notable Quotes

  • “I feel like I just put my tongue in a light socket.” — Quinn, after getting laser-zapped.
  • “I’m sorry, I’m sorry … arghhhh!” — Quinn after slamming a metal pipe across the back of an RPP unit — to no effect.
  • “Miss Welles, the four of us have become an extended family and like all families, I’m afraid, we know how to press each other’s buttons.” — Arturo.
  • “I’m gonna need a pacemaker after this slide.” — Quinn, after getting zapped by a laser for the second time.
  • “It’s not a great fashion choice for either of them.” — Wade upon seeing the Quinn and Rembrandt ‘droids decked out in orange shirts.

Neatpicks

  • In virtually the first episode that pairs Wade with Arturo and Quinn with Rembrandt, it’s neat to see them bond and open up to each other. Usually, Wade and Rembrandt are paired off while Arturo and Quinn work together to get the Sliders out of a jam.

Nitpicks

  • Explain to me how 3,000 malfunctioning robots can overpower the combined militaristic strength and overall population of a planet.
  • It just doesn’t seem that Quinn outran the green lasers all that hard, though it could be a result of his fall out of the vortex coupled with his high school football knee injury.
  • The R.P.P. (Recall Patrol Paul) unit passes the injured Quinn over because his detection monitor only picks up electronic life, but shouldn’t it have registered the electrical impulses that run naturally throughout the human body — or even the timer in Rembrandt’s pocket?
  • Recognize the mind transfer room? Look again. It’s the same one the Arturo gets a C.A.T. scan in in The Guardian and where Quinn is experimented on in Slide Like an Egyptian.

Parallel History

James Aldohn created Aldohn Robotic Technologies, a company that would build and sell robots to humans so they wouldn’t have to work anymore, giving them more free time to “enjoy the pleasures of everyday living.”

But something went wrong. Robots eventually took over the entire workforce — scaring humans into thinking they’d outlived their usefulness. The humans rebelled and tried to destroy the robots. Aldohn, while a genius, was unable to perfect his A and B model of the E.R.I. (Emotional Response Intelligence) series because the emotions chip conflicted with the unit’s logic chip. Aldohn tried to call the models back to the factory to be repaired or dismantled but some refused to return.

When the E.R.I. units realized this they went into defense mode and began turning on the human populace. As a result of this ‘war,’ Aldohn sent out Return Patrol Paul (RPP) units to bring the E.R.I.s back to the factory. For the most part, the RPPs were successful in their bid to destroy the E.R.I. models, leveling a population of 2,916 to just a dozen or so.

However, by then, it was too late. The human population had been wiped out by the destructive E.R.I., leaving Aldohn — called “father” by his creations — as the last remaining human.

In 1989, an industrial accident killed Aldohn and his creations downloaded his brain into a robot. He never knew he was what he created until his robotic “death” in 1996.

Guest Stars

Unaccredited

  • The actor who supplies the head for M.A.T.T., “Me At Twenty-Three.”
  • Rob Chapman

    Also, it seems EVERY alternate Earth designed and built Humvees at the same time.

  • Mike D

    SOS stands for save our stomaches