The Breeder

A parasite takes up residence inside of Maggie, taking her over completely and endowing her with superhuman powers. This symbiote is of great interest to an America having issues with its organ donor programs, and the Sliders are charged with bringing Maggie back in or having their own organs contributed to the cause. Maggie proves an elusive foe as she attempts to find the proper mate for her parasite. The parasite hates cold, so Quinn and Rembrandt ice her down. Quinn then attempts to lure the parasite out of Maggie, but fails to capture it. The group slides out and the symbiote takes over Maggie’s doctor.

Worlds Visited

Parasite World

A tropical world where the primary life form is an aggressive parasite who reproduces by depositing a larvae into a host body.

Read the full Travelogue entry »

Donor World

Government policy on this world is to harvest organs from people aged 18-25 in case someone older and more powerful needs one… quickly.

Read the full Travelogue entry »


  • Wade’s wrist implant is number 291.
  • On this world, Diggs’ bar is called “Le Plaisir,” which, translated from French, means “Pleasure” (how appropriate).
  • The hot tub is three and a half feet deep.
  • It’s 6:30 p.m. when Wade escapes Dr. Sylvius.
  • The Sliders stay in room C24 at the Royal Chancellor Hotel.

Character Information

  • Wade says that Maggie is five-foot five-inches and in her mid-twenties.
  • Quinn gets a mild concussion from his ‘fight’ with Maggie.
  • Rembrandt makes reference to “the Good Book” (aka The Bible) indicating that he has at least read portions of it, which gives more insight into his religious upbringing.

Money Matters

  • The Sliders have enough money to pay for a room at the Royal Chancellor Hotel.

Notable Quotes

  • “Gee, and I thought she liked me.” — Rembrandt’s response to Dr. Sylvius’ theory that Maggie was coming on to him because the symbiont inside her needs to breed.
  • “If she doesn’t care what kind of guy it is? A bar.” — Wade’s answer to Quinn’s query as to where a woman would go to find a man.
  • “You know, when I first started sliding all I saw was adventure. Now all I seem to see is death.” — Wade, which prompts a defensive response from Quinn.
  • “Yeah. They inject those chickens with hormones, doesn’t make that thigh any less enjoyable.” — Rembrandt’s response to Quinn’s observation that the beautiful women at the gym have probably spent “more time under the scalpel than they have under the barbell.”


  • Maggie is the last person through the vortex, but mysteriously disappears before the other Sliders emerge.
  • Talk about not caring: Quinn jumps into the vortex on Parasite World, except he lands on the ground and walks off-screen! Take TWO, please…
  • The similarities between this episode and the film Species are uncanny, especially the scene where Maggie flies out of the window and sticks to the wall and the pool scene where she drops her dress and climbs into the steaming hot tub.
  • As Quinn and Wade are strapped to their beds in the complex, a close up shot shows Wade’s wrist and then Quinn’s. Notice that on Wade’s shot the wrist restraint is below the implant while Quinn’s wrist restraint is above the implant on his forearm. Then, when they are released in the restraints, both Quinn’s and Wade’s restraints are below their implants.
  • Wade talks about the good they’ve done on various earths by mentioning the 150 people they saved in The Exodus, part II, but fails to discuss the BILLIONS they saved in Fever and Last Days? That would require continuity…
  • For some reason there is no sound effect when Maggie breaks that man’s arm in Diggs’ bar.
  • Since when does the timer beep at the ‘one minute left’ mark? Not only that, when it hits the one minute mark, it actually takes Wade 1 minute and 33 seconds of on-screen time to open the vortex.
  • Why do the Sliders think that freezing Maggie at the end will help? She’s frozen in the beginning of the episode and the symbiont doesn’t die.


  • The diner the Sliders walk past after they find Maggie is “Mel’s Diner,” which is a standing structure on the Universal Studios lot.
  • As Quinn and Wade are being put in the “D” Squad truck, notice the marquee on the Palace theater is advertising Back to the Future 4. All three of the Back to the Future films were filmed on the Universal lot, but the marquee sparked some internet rumor that a fourth installment was actually in production. Also, notice that one poster on the wall of the theater is advertising the Jim Carrey film Liar Liar — another Universal film that opened right around the time this episode aired.
  • Wade makes a reference to The Exodus, part II when she says that Quinn saved the lives of 150 people (including Maggie) by finding them a new world to live on.

Rewind That!

  • After the Sliders come through the wormhole, Maggie is cryogenically frozen while lying on the ground. Then the EMTs pick her up and carry her to the truck. Notice that they don’t use a backboard to carry her — she’s frozen stiff as a board herself.
  • Despite the urgency in their search for Maggie, Rembrandt can’t help himself and quickly checks out the fine looking woman descending the stairs at the gym.

Rewind That!

  • When Maggie starts to come on to Rembrandt in the hotel room she says “I want you.” Then he says “What’s gotten into you?” She says “I want you, baby.” Kind of a laughable exchange of dialogue. However, in CC, the exchange goes as follows:
        I want you, baby.

        What's gotten into you?

        I need babies!
  • After Maggie climbs into the shower at the gym, she strangles Tami with a long tentacle and drags her into the shower. The CC, as Tami is being dragged back, reads (Tami groaning) which she does but then it reads (Maggie moaning in pleasure), which is not heard in the episode.
  • As Wade is running through the complex, away from the “D” Squad and toward Remmy, in CC she bumps into someone and says “Excuse me.”

History Lesson

Ah, Donor World. Live to be 18 and you’re granted the rights to vote, purchase lottery tickets, smoke and have your organ system mapped in case of emergency transplant needs.

What’s that you say? Every citizen of this world between the ages of 18 and 25 are embedded with “Donor Tags” used for mandatory organ donation. The tag, located on the person’s wrist, contains a complete medical profile and when it beeps officers from the “D” squad comes to take that person away. That person will then be cryogenically frozen and harvested for organ donation at a government complex.

The Inside Slide

“‘Breeder’ was definitely John’s story when conceived (pardon the bad pun),” says Paul Jackson. “However, it was quickly changed to Kari simply because she’s the babe on the show and they wanted her to act all breathless and hot. Since we knew John was out, it was decided it had to be a female, since Remmy had already been pregnant and Quinn was being groomed as a more macho hero. We didn’t know who was going to play Maggie (Kari hadn’t been cast yet), but it was decided it definitely would be John’s female replacement.

“I don’t recall Wade ever being considered.”

· · ·

The working title for this episode in pre-production was “Cold War.”

· · ·

Kari Wuhrer remembers the difficulty in filming the climax scene where Quinn must lead the parasite out of Maggie’s body.

“When we were doing an episode involving this alien that I end up swallowing, which takes me over, and I have to find men to breed with in order to lay eggs, I had to play this sexual and alluring vamp,” she says. “Although I have had experience of that in the past, I found it difficult to get back to that, after gearing myself up to playing this tough character.

“I had this big phallic thing coming out of my mouth, looking for men to lay its eggs in. And Jerry had to do a scene with me where he had to try to coax this thing out of my mouth. And I’m supposed to be unconscious, and lying on this table, and he’s whispering in my mouth, ‘Come play with me,’ and I could not, for the life of me, keep a straight face. The director [Paris Barclay] was getting so upset, because I just could not stop cracking up. Jerry, in this big parka, is going: ‘Come, live inside of me.” It was so hilarious, and he finally ended up getting me through it. Jerry was like: ‘Come on, come on, all right, just focus, just think of baseball, just do something else. Put yourself in the scene as much as possible. Do whatever you have to do, but we gotta get this done.’ And he made it work for me.”

The joking, she says, “helped to ease the tension a lot on the set for everybody.”

· · ·

Cleavant Derricks considers his speech about discrimination with Jerry O’Connell one of the low points of his tenure on Sliders.

· · ·

The third season, noted Chris Black, “was no longer about their odyssey, and this quest to find a way home, it was just about eye candy. ‘The Breeder’ is a great example, because it was all about looking at [Kari Wuhrer] in this slinky seductress sort of mode and it was about just trying to garner people to watch the show, which I think was the wrong approach to take.”

· · ·

In the ratings, this episode scored a 4.3 rating and a 14 share among adults aged 18-49 and won the 8 pm to 9 pm time-out among all key male demographics — men aged 18-34, men aged 18-49 and men aged 25-54.

Guest Stars


  1. Lester Barrie reprises the role of Diggs, which he’s played in Double Cross, The Dream Masters, Desert Storm, Dragonslide and Murder Most Foul.
  2. Episode director Paris Barclay makes a cameo as the Bureaucrat who informs Wade and Quinn, via a video address, of they’re addition to the donor program. Barclay has also directed El Sid and Gillian of the Spirits for Sliders.

In Brief

Written by Eleah Horwitz
Production # K1823
Network # SL-321
Directed by Paris Barclay
Music by Danny Lux
Edited by Casey Brown



In Review


Two stars for “The Breeder?” While Matt makes the case for television perfection, Mike balances the scales with a flat zero. Here’s two separate reviews defining why each thought the episode a masterpiece… or a tragedy.

Read the review »


On a world with a mandatory organ donor program, the Sliders race to cure Maggie of a parasite from another world that has taken control of her body for the purposes of reproducing.

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Amazingly, Rembrandt forgets it at the hotel!