The Weaker Sex


Completely strapped for cash and stuck for six weeks, the four look for work in a matriarchal society. The men find few takers, but Wade gets a plum job working for the Mayor. Outraged at the state of his gender, Arturo spouts off in front of a political reporter and is recruited to run for mayor. This causes a schism between the men and Wade, who takes some delight in the role reversal. Despite ridiculous odds and many early missteps, the campaign gains enough traction to earn Arturo a debate with Wade’s boss. An assassination attempt convinces him that this truly is a terrible idea, and he attempts to throw the debate by breaking down and crying. The move backfires, and the race grows tighter than ever. Elsewhere, Rembrandt is emasculated by a conniving executive who promises to take him to the top.

Worlds Visited

Feminist World

A world where woman are in a position of power while men are relegated to second-class citizens.

Read the full Travelogue entry »

Tropicana World

The Sliders stay here for a nice vacation, with sun, sand, surf and a resort hotel full of boat drinks.

Read the full Travelogue entry »

Details

  • During President Clinton’s speech Hillary says, “Ladies and Gentlemen, I speak to you tonight from the White House. The recent compromises in my health care reform bill…”
  • Rembrandt calls the Sliders’ attention to a magazine called Sports Monthly which has the headline “Swimsuits!” at the bottom of the front cover.
  • On the rack behind the Sports Monthly is a Time magazine (with the old font used for “Time” — white border on red lettering). The headline reads “Is Getting [obscured] the Answer?”
  • The mayor’s offices are located in suite 511.
  • As Rembrandt, Quinn and Arturo step off the elevator, the billboard reads: “Re-Elect Anita Ross for Mayor. Bold Leadership for the 21st Century.”
  • While waiting for their job interviews, Rembrandt flips through a magazine that advertises “Club Fem” on the back cover. Danny reads a newspaper with “Facts & Arguments” as the headline on the back page, and Quinn reads the Free Weekly newspaper.
  • One of the professor’s campaign slogans is “Arturo: A Man for a Change.” Very clever.
  • While Arturo is on his mini-podium in front of the white van with his poster plastered on it, there is a blue box at his feet that reads “Campaign Donations.”
  • A woman puts an Arturo bumper sticker on her red Mustang (traditionally a guy’s muscle car) that reads “Arturo: Another Woman for Arturo.”
  • The Mustang’s California license plate reads “3SAC406” and was purchased at “Coastal Ford.”
  • The headline of the San Francisco Daily Star reads “Arturo at 7%.”
  • Serena’s note to Rembrandt reads “The coffee is perking, but so were you last night.”

Character Information

  • Quinn says that he types.
  • Arturo smokes cigars, on occasion.
  • Quinn says he doesn’t like coffee.
  • Rembrandt likes coffee.
  • Rembrandt says that he has gold records on his wall, though he doesn’t specify how many. He would do that in The Exodus, part I.
  • Further demonstrating his skills in the kitchen, Rembrandt cooks beef Stroganoff, which is evidently one of his cooking specialties.

Money Matters

  • Upon entering Woman’s World Arturo, of course, announces he’s hungry prompting the four to question their funds. Unlike Oil Boom World, where Rembrandt grabbed gobs of discarded cash on the street, Rembrandt says he only has 39 cents while Wade pulls out a five dollar bill. After buying a pretzel, Quinn says there is now “$3.98 left in the kitty.”
  • Later, Rembrandt forks over “another seven dollars” he earned from singing on the street. But with six weeks to go, it’s evident the four must get jobs.

Cultural References

  • After the brick is tossed through the window at Arturo’s headquarters, he says “As Ronald Reagan said, ‘I’d rather have been in Philadelphia.” Ronald Reagan spoke those words while recovering in hospital from the 1981 assassination attempt on his life by John Hinckley Jr. One of Hinckley’s bullets ricocheted off Reagan’s bullet proof limo and punctured his lung. He made a full recovery.
  • Arturo, drunk with power, says “I feel like Martin Luther King must have felt on the march through Selma.” He refers to the great Civil Rights leader leading a protest march through the streets of Selma, Alabama in the late fifties to raise public awareness of the injustice going on in the American South concerning civil liberties.
  • Pete says that Arturo should have heard the praises heaped on the professor’s emotional display at the debate from “Cokie Roberts.” Cokie Roberts is a real-life news reporter for ABC news.
  • As Arturo jumps through the vortex, he throws his campaign pin up in the air and says “With my luck, it’ll land on edge.” The line was over-dubbed later in post production, and doesn’t even appear in Closed Captioning, but it actually refers to an episode of the original “Twilight Zone.” The episode, “A Penny For Your Thoughts,” concerned a mild-mannered bank clerk who could suddenly read people’s thoughts because a coin he bought a newspaper with landed on its very edge and stood upright. His day went on to contain numerous amazing revelations [and instances of great luck] simply because he could read thoughts — and because his coin landed on its edge. However later in the day, the coin falls over at the newspaper stand and his power is gone.

Notable Quotes

  • “Cheese? This is not cheese. Brie is cheese. Camembert is cheese … this is yellow plastic!” — a grumbling Arturo when offered a cracker heaped with Quinn’s ‘cheese in a can.’
  • “It would be my pleasure to press your button.” — Arturo (unwittingly) to the mayor.
  • About an unfavorable review in the press Arturo says: “Well, they laughed at Ross Perot.” and Wade replies: “They still do.”
  • “That moment when I changed that disgusting little brat’s diaper — classic.” — A very moved Arturo commenting on his election commercial.
  • “Well, I guess I learned to cry over nothing just by watching you.” — Arturo, to Rembrandt, after he blows the election with fake tears. Rembrandt is touched by the tribute.

Arturoisms


Warning: Use of undefined constant thumbnail - assumed 'thumbnail' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/customer/www/transmodiar.com/public_html/wp-content/themes/earthprime/single-guide.php on line 150

“Ignorant bovine!” — to an unreceptive female shopper at the mall.

Nitpicks/Errors

  • As Rembrandt, Quinn and Arturo are exiting city hall, there is a Royal Bank sign visible in the lobby. Royal Bank is a Canadian company.
  • Quinn calls Rembrandt the morning after Rembrandt went home with the ‘record promoter’ but how did Quinn know to call him there? Unless, of course, Rembrandt has spent more than a few days with Serena.
  • When asked by his boss to make coffee Quinn says that he doesn’t like coffee but in Summer of Love,when he wakes early to finish the equation, he says he’ll get to it after he gets some coffee.
  • On Tropicana World, Rembrandt, Quinn and Wade joke over not voting for Arturo. Would they really have been registered to vote after only being on this world six weeks, particularly since they all shared a hotel room?
  • After Rembrandt reads Serena’s note, there is a scene missing because first it shows him tossing the rose back on desk and then, in an overhead shot, it shows him putting a file back in the open desk’s drawer. Then the phone rings. Evidently, Rembrandt was going through Serena’s personal files.
  • If the National Plebiscite put women in control hundreds of years ago as a means to end war, how was there a Revolutionary War to create the United States?
  • After Arturo’s assassination attempt, Wade says “Of course it was a man [who was the shooter], when did you ever hear of a female assassin?” Wade has a point, most assassins are men, but two of the last three people [as of 1995] who ever took a shot directly at the president were women, both of whom fired at Gerald Ford on two separate occasions. John Hinckley would later try to murder Ronald Reagan.
  • After all the similarities have been laid out between the fictional SNN (San Francisco News Network) and the real CNN (Cable News Network), the episode still relies on CNN at the end of the episode with the line “CNN has now declared incumbent Mayor Ross as the winner,” when, if we are to believe the differences between this world (including the reference to Jeanie Moses) and Earth Prime there is no CNN at all. For consistency, the line should have been “SNN has now declared…”
  • As there are ten seconds left until the slide, the timer starts beeping. The beeping gets faster as the time counts down but it’s one of the only times the timer beeps to signify that the Sliders’ time is up.

Neatpicks

  • The assassination attempt on Arturo closely resembles the assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan in 1981.

Rewind That!

In the park, there is a news stand run by Bernie, the sign says Bernies — with no apostrophe. It should read Bernie’s.

History Lesson

It seems that on Feminist World hundreds of years ago females got fed up with the fact that their men were going off to war to kill each other. So, thanks to the Great National Plebiscite, they came together to take control over the country. Unfortunately, the may have gone too far and now the male population is relegated into second class citizen status. It’s an arguably better arrangement, with no wars and limited physical violence, but with millions of men whose greatest aspiration in life is to be a nanny or a nude model, some might find the glass ceiling not so appealing.

According to a 1995 almanac, the U.S. Congress and the board of directors for many large corporations and religious leaders in America are women. Newscaster Jane Pauley is Pope of the Roman Catholic (Pope Jane Pauley I), and Hillary Rodham Clinton is president of the United States.

The Inside Slide

When this episode originally aired on Fox, it was as part of the network’s “Countdown to Summer” promotion. The episode was introduced by actor-comedian David Alan Grier (who, incidentally, was up against Cleavant Derricks in the 1982 Tony Awards) riding a jet-ski flanked by two beautiful women. “Sliders is coming up next,” Grier said during the promotion.

· · ·

Rembrandt’s scene with Serena Braxton having a candle-lit dinner was filmed on March 9, 1995.

· · ·

The Jane Pauley photograph was supplied to Sliders by UPI/Bettmann.

· · ·

This episode’s writers, Dawn Prestwich and Nicole Yorkin, went on to become producers of Chicago Hope, for which they won a 1996 Golden Globe award.

Guest Stars

Co-Starring

  1. Alf Humphreys returns as a Family Man in Time Again and WorldTime Again and World.
  2. Joe Maffei also plays the head of the DaBello family in Greatfellas.
  3. The ‘Anchor Woman’ is the credit for the woman’s voice who introduces reporter Carol Johnson at the scene of the shopping mall, however the role of the reporter is listed in the credits as Jeanie Moses. Why the change? Originally the producers wanted CNN human affairs reporter (and a very funny woman) Jeanie Moses to perform the role of the reporter. The Arturo story is the just the kind of story that Moses would cover here on Earth Prime. Unfortunately, they were unable to get Moses to guest star however, the reporter’s credit wasn’t changed. On screen, the reporter is listed as Carol Johnson with the SNN, San Francisco News Network.

In Brief

Written by Dawn Prestwich & Nicole Yorkin
Production # 70406
Network # SL-107
Directed by Vern Gillum
Music by Mark Mothersbaugh
Edited by Alan Shefland

Chronology

Previously:
Next:

In Review

A
Essential

This is a comedic tour de force – it’s outrageously irreverent. John Rhys-Davies shines with the spotlight on his character and the writing is crisp and cutting. I almost pity the episode that follows.

Read the review »

Logline

Arturo finds himself in a potentially deadly mayoral race in a world where men are treated as "the weaker sex" and women hold the positions of power and influence.