Tracy Torme Chat at DragonCon '97 on June 28, 1997
TracyTorme: Hello from Atlanta!
akfow: Are you really Torm
Informant: Who of the cast (including John Davies and Sabrina Lloyd) is comming back? Or really has a good chance of coming back?
hrivnak: you have to msg Moderator? or does he take questions?
Kyrie: They fear us unmoderated, right?
thewizard: helo tracy
Daniel: "Posting is useless, you will be moderated"
Dragon0: I think Lanfear and Asmodean where resurrected by the Dark One as the Right and Left hand (I forgot there Old Tongue names)
corgi826242: isn't sliders cancelled?
hrivnak: Hey tracy!
Aran`gar: you have to msg moderator
Daniel: That was Aginor and Balthamel
Saidin: Hey, check out ShayolGhul, its kewl
Bob: The Sliders format is great for writer's creativity!
Kyrie: Tell me about it <grin>
Moderator: OK, we're gonna go moderated now.
corgi826242: hey I thought fox didn't renew sliders for a next season
Moderator: To ask a question, type "/msg Moderator" followed by your question...
Moderator: Tracy, any opening words?
TracyTorme: I'm here at DragonCon - having a great time - looking forward to answering whatever questions I can.
Moderator: <MST3kCommander> to <Moderator>: How did you come to Creating Sliders?
TracyTorme: I guess you could say I was a protege of Gene Roddenbery when I was at Star Trek and he always encouraged me to create my own shows.
Moderator: <Informant> to <Moderator>: Who of the cast (including John Davies and Sabrina Lloyd) is comming back? Or really has a good chance of coming back?
TracyTorme: This is somewhat up in the air right now - I'm certain Jerry O'Connell will be back, everything else is uncertain at the moment.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: Tracy, how heavily will you be involved in the 4th season?
TracyTorme: I'm already involved with 2 other shows that are getting ready to go on the air, so my Sliders involvement will have to be somewhat limited.
TracyTorme: I am the Executive Consultant for the life of the series, and if I am successful in steering the show back towards its roots, I will be much more involved than I chose to be last season.
Moderator: <Kyrie> to <Moderator>: Will Sliders return to the earlier style next season or continue the way season three left it?
TracyTorme: I am greatly in favor of returning to the Sliders we produced for the first two seasons. The third season was pretty hideous and if I could apologize to each and every viewer that stuck with us last year, I would.
Moderator: <Skulker> to <Moderator>: What other shows? Any info?
TracyTorme: I created a new show for MTV called "Kung Pow" which I will be executive producing for that network. It is a very dark, twisted comedy described as a cross between Batman, Kung Fu and The Prisoner.
TracyTorme: The other show is an ABC/Warner Brothers show called "Hunger for Survival" which is due to air possibly as early as October.
TracyTorme: I am a consulting producer on the show, spending 3 days a week at Warner Brothers and helping with the structuring of the series.
Moderator: <crestgirl> to <Moderator>: Mr. Torme', Do you think you'll convince John Rhys-Davies to come back to Sliders, at least a few times? Do you want him to?
TracyTorme: My understanding is that John has already informed the show that he would like to return. If this could be worked out, I would be all for it.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: Will you ever work with Fox again, after what they did to your baby?
TracyTorme: The regime at FOX has already half turned over since the end of last season - so if new people come in to run the network, I'd be happy to go back.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: How much did fan involvement save the show?
TracyTorme: I can't honestly say that I can judge how important fan involvement was - but I was greatly touched by the amount of time and effort Sliders fans put into reviving the show, and I certainly think it couldn't have done anything but help.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: Tracy: I loved Fire in the Sky... any chance you will do more movie screenplays?
TracyTorme: Absolutely. I'm working on one now called "Storm Riders" and will always endeavor to bounce back and forth between television and movies as I have in the past.
Moderator: <Informant> to <Moderator>: any plans of episode storys for Sliders yet?
TracyTorme: No, it's way too early.
Moderator: <thewizard> to <Moderator>: what was your favorite world?
TracyTorme: Nudist world, of course. (laughs)
TracyTorme: We had to shoot everybody from the waist up.
Moderator: <Skulker> to <Moderator>: Will we ever get to see the return of the Earth conquering sliders ( forgot what they call themsleves ) or will we find out which Slider was implanted with the homing device?
TracyTorme: There were called the Kromaggs and we've certainly had a lot of requests to bring them back. If we do so, we must be careful that it's handled with taste and doesn't devolve into some kind of monster show sequel. And, yes, we will eventually find out which Slider was implanted.
Moderator: <Kyrie> to <Moderator>: Will there be any more licenced merchandise to come for Sliders? Action toys would be cool! <giggle>
TracyTorme: There's a lot of merchandising on the way. So far, I know we have novels, comic books, trading cards, hats, shirts, mugs, etc.
Moderator: <corgi826242> to <Moderator>: any incling as to why fox screwed up sliders?
TracyTorme: Well, frankly they micromanaged the show far too much - this came from the fact that we were never a FOX in-house show and that we went in too many directions for their tastes (ie. sci-fi, satire, music, etc.).
TracyTorme: If you look at the history of Sliders, you'll see that FOX never had a real handle on the show and they periodically expected VR.5, Strange Luck, Space: Above & Beyond, etc. to take our place. Thanks to our legion of very loyal fans, we survived again and again.
Moderator: <Informant> to <Moderator>: if you keep the maggie character, will you change her?
TracyTorme: I'd rather not comment on that right now.
Moderator: <Skulker> to <Moderator>: Mr. Torme, I remember you father Mel in an episode. Have you made an appearance in one?
TracyTorme: I had a cameo in the pilot as one of the American underground revolutionaries but it ended up on the cutting room floor.
Moderator: <Javarra> to <Moderator>: Which Arturo slid with the group from Post Traumatic Slide Syndrome - the alternate, or the "original" from Earth Prime?
TracyTorme: Only I know for sure and I hope to clear this up in a future episode, but if I told you now it would spoil all the fun.
Moderator: <corgi826242> to <Moderator>: I've read some of the comic books, I was wondering if we could ever see narcotica by O'connell come to the small screen
TracyTorme: On several occasions, we've tried to do drug-allegory stories, only to have them nixed in the early stages. Perhaps we can try again next season with Jerry's, or one similar to it.
Moderator: <Kyrie> to <Moderator>: Will there ever be a Sliders Soundtrack? The original songs rule!
TracyTorme: Thank you - I wrote all the original songs, which was one of the great joys of doing Sliders - everything from rap to country to Rembrandt's immortal "Cry Like A Man" and "Tears in my 'Fro."
TracyTorme: I look forward to writing more music for the show in the future - you may have noticed that there was no original music in third season, and when they did sing old songs, they got all the lyrics wrong.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: Somebody on the net related to "The Many Deaths of Sliders" as a parallel to Star Trek. Do you think it will come back as strong as ST did? Movies would be great. :)
TracyTorme: I would love to do some movies. Obviously, that would be down the road. Also, I would hope that we would come back better and stronger than ever, but of course that remains to be seen.
Moderator: Let me just make sure that everyone here knows: Sliders has been picked up for a new season by Sci-Fi Channel! New eps, and also the old ones will be shown....
Moderator: <Shannen> to <Moderator>: Tracy, please tell me that some of the humor that's been sorely missing from the show will return. I really miss that. No matter how many time I see it, Quinn saying in the pilot, "Oh my god..I kissed Hurley!" never fails to make me laugh. Sliders needs some of that humor back! :-)
TracyTorme: Shannen, I couldn't agree with you more. I started out at SCTV and Saturday Night Live and as you can imagine the humor on Sliders was very important to me, and was sorely lacking last season.
TracyTorme: Also, I am commenting on what the Moderator said, I believe we will be the first show to be aired simultaneously on the USA Network as well as Sci-Fi Channel.
Moderator: <Rizzo> to <Moderator>: Hello Mr. Torme. I lve in Toronto, we can't get the Sci-Fi channel here, are there any sindication plans?
TracyTorme: I loved my time in Toronto by the way - my understanding is that the Sci-Fi Channel is rapidly expanding, and I would guess that it will be available to you in the near future.
TracyTorme: After this season, we will have 70 episodes of Sliders, so our plans for syndication are looking very good for the future.
Moderator: <crestgirl> to <Moderator>: Mr. Torme', please, can you get Cleavant singing more?
TracyTorme: Cleavant is great to work with- especially musically. We had a great time and a great collaboration going when we recorded The Spinning Tops' songs. Who can ever forget "Slap Me, Love Me?"
Moderator: <Javarra> to <Moderator>: One of the great things about the episodes are the details, plays on things in our own world, like the "BSA Today" newspaper. Are there any such details that perhaps ended up on the cutting room floor, or too small or quick to notice on screen, that you'd like to tell us about?
TracyTorme: These are what we call "cross-cultural references." We worked very hard to come up with these in seasons 1 and 2, but they disappeared from sight in season 3.
Moderator: <corgi826242> to <Moderator>: when will the new season of sliders air on the scifi channel? and will you be getting a budget cut?
TracyTorme: Early word says January - and, yes, the budget will be cut fairly substantially - but don't despair, this should lead to more character driven stories. Bad news for those of you who loved the giant snake episode.
Moderator: <GentleGiant> to <Moderator>: It was interesting to see Rembrandt's character evolve from a scared, whining, whimpering guy who'd been dragged into the situation, to a self-assured confident character. Will he remain this take-charge kinda guy?
TracyTorme: I think Rembrandt became too much of an action hero in season 3. Although I don't agree with your characterization of him, I'd like to see a return to his show business roots and his "everyman" outlook.
Moderator: <Javarra> to <Moderator>: Mr. Torme, I know Robert K. Weiss is on AOL. Have you been on the Net much? Do you regularly visit any of the web pages, message boards, etc.? What do you think of all the Net support for the show?
Moderator: <Rizzo> to <Moderator>: Mr. Torme, when Sliders does return, will it pick-up from the last episode where Quinn and Maggy are in a futuristic world? Sometimes when shows move they don't follow the plot.
TracyTorme: I'm not sure about this - I'll have to go back and look at the final show and see whether we want to continue with what they had set up.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: I would like to ask about your MTV show? Who is going to be the star? When will it begin airing?
TracyTorme: We should be shooting the pilot around the beginning of August, and if all goes well we would be on MTV by January. 10:00pm Sunday night has been a rumored time slot - as to the cast, we have various people in mind, but the only one I can openly discuss is my friend Ed Wasser, who many of you may know from Babylon 5.
TracyTorme: The character he would portray is named Orson Leech.
TracyTorme: Orson is a wealthy and successful artist who would have the world by the tail if it weren't for a tragic accident which left him with a bionic right hand.
Moderator: <Javarra> to <Moderator>: I had heard earlier that any romance between Wade and Quinn has been nixed. But what about Wade and Rembrandt? Or would it take another love spell to bring that about?
TracyTorme: I actually wrote a script where a romance between Rembrandt and Wade was possible, but this too was nixed by the network. It is my belief that Wade and Quinn always have and always will be attracted to one another, whether they act on it or not.
Moderator: <Skulker> to <Moderator>: Will you be doing episodes with a running storyline ( Like the Sliders chasing the Colonel ) or will they be more along the lines of one episodes stories?
TracyTorme: I've always wanted to do episodes with running storylines but FOX forbid it on the grounds that they didn't want to be locked into any specific episodic sequence (show order).
Moderator: <Bob> to <Moderator>: <Bob> to <Moderator> The format for Sliders is so rich it must be a writers heaven in terms of freedom to develop plot and story line. Is it easier to write for Star Trek or Sliders?
TracyTorme: Actually, I think Star Trek was easier to write for because you always had the home base of the ship to return to. If you think about the way Sliders is structured, we went to one, two or sometimes three new Earths every week - for production reasons alone, we were limited in what we could do. Also, from a writing standpoint, starting over on a new Earth again and again is quite a challenge.
Moderator: <corgi826242> to <Moderator>: are you going to write a new theme song for season 4
TracyTorme: I never wrote any of the theme songs for Sliders, but I did just write the theme song for "Kung Pow."
Moderator: <GentleGiant> to <Moderator>: The casting of Roger Daltrey in some episodes was brilliant. Can we expect to see more "name" stars?
TracyTorme: Given the budgetary limitations we will be faced with next season, it's kind of a hit-or-miss proposition when it comes to casting.
Moderator: <Javarra> to <Moderator>: What about endings for Sliders -- sliding to a new world -- that are modular, a la Quantum Leap? The next episode could pick up where the previous one left off, and the endings could be rearranged for reruns so the network wouldn't be locked into a particular show sequence. Do you think this might be possible with the Sci-Fi Channel?
TracyTorme: That's a good question. It's something I'll look into.
Moderator: <Skulker> to <Moderator>: Why was the first season of Sliders shown out of order? Did Fox just not really care about some sort of continuity?
TracyTorme: FOX insisted on reserving the right to run every episode in the order they saw fit. This really screwed us up on occasion, continuity wise, and prevented us from doing continuing storylines.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: One of the few episodes I really enjoyed this season was Murder Most Foul (along with the wonderful Guardian). Any chance the kid from MMF will come after our sliders??
Moderator: To ask a question, type "/msg Moderator" followed by your question...
TracyTorme: The beauty of Sliders is, there's always a chance to bring back old characters or meet their doubles on other worlds.
Moderator: <Kyrie> to <Moderator>: I miss the Quinn of season one who was far more likeable than his later counterparts. While part of it certainly was character growth, will he ever show signs of the awkward genius he was early on?
TracyTorme: I really hope so. The changes in Quinn were very disturbing to me - he, too, is now an action here with a GQ look.
Moderator: <TheCritic> to <Moderator>: You indicated earlier that JRD has contacted you about return to Sliders... do you know if he meant as a full time cast member, or for guest spots?
TracyTorme: JRD never contacted me personally. I was told he spoke to someone at Universal, stating his desire to return. Since I didn't hear the conversation first hand, I really shouldn't comment further.
Moderator: <Rizzo> to <Moderator>: Mr. Torme Now that you're with the Sci-Fi channel will filming stay in California or will you go back to Vancouver?
TracyTorme: Believe it or not, the hottest rumor has moving to Orlando. Nothing has been decided yet, however.
Moderator: <Valerie> to <Moderator>: I loved your dad in "Great fellas". How is he doing and will he do any other shows?
TracyTorme: Thank you for asking. Unfortunately, he's not doing too well right now but he's a fighter by nature and our family has rallied around him, so we are all hoping for the best.
Moderator: <Kyrie> to <Moderator>: Who would be your ideal addition to the Sliders character-wise? Characteristics and personality traits and such?
TracyTorme: I'm not so much thinking about new characters, as I am about returning the original core characters to their basic roots.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: Any chance for a return of Bennish or other recurring characters like Wing, Pavel, or the lawyer guy? BENNISH in '98! :)
TracyTorme: I love these recurring characters - especially Bennish, since the actor who portrays him is a close friend of mine. The main reason you haven't seen much of him lately is that the studio didn't want to pay to bring them down from Vancouver.
Moderator: <Skulker> to <Moderator>: Whatever happened to that semi-regular character who was Quinn's roommate in college and helped the Prof. invent the Atomic Bomb? I remember some FBI agents looking into the Sliders disappearance as well? Can we see them again too?
TracyTorme: See the question and answer above. His name was Conrad Bennish, Jr. The only pot-smoking Deadhead in the universe who can build an atomic bomb in his spare time.
Moderator: We will have to wrap up soon. Please send your final questions to the Moderator...
Moderator: <Kyrie> to <Moderator>: What's your all time favorite episode of Sliders? Your least?
TracyTorme: My favorites would be "The Guardian," "Post-Traumatic Slide Syndrome," "Invasion," "The King Is Back" and the pilot.
TracyTorme: My least favorites would be "Time Again And World" as well as virtually everything from season 3.
Moderator: <FrankG> to <Moderator>: WHERE would you like the show to be filmed?
TracyTorme: I live in Los Angeles, so it's very convenient to film there. However, I set the show in San Fransisco because it's my favorite city - too bad the teamsters have driven almost all filming away from the Bay area.
Moderator: <Javarra> to <Moderator>: What's the official word on whether the worlds in Into the Mystic and Exodus are really Earth Prime?
TracyTorme: The ending of "Into The Mystic" did indeed return the Sliders, albeit breifly, to their home world. Can't answer the second part because I don't really remember what you're refering to.
Moderator: <hrivnak> to <Moderator>: since you mentioned Jason Gaffney is a friend of yours, what other work has he done? I'd like to see some of his other work.
TracyTorme: He was in the movie Alive and has guested on several tv shows produced in Vancouver, most recently (I think) The X-Files.
Moderator: <Pepa> to <Moderator>: Any possibility that at least one of the episodes will be in 3D?
TracyTorme: I get it, you're a fan of Maggie. ;^)
Moderator: <sewilco> to <Moderator>: We also enjoyed the brief silliness at start and end of show. But I know there's a lot of FX budget needed for a few seconds of a SF tidal wave. Keep having fun with the show.
TracyTorme: We'll try.
Moderator: <TheCritic> to <Moderator>: I'd like to put in idea in your mind... a world *gasp* where disco and the 70's never died. Well, it's a long shot, but hasn't been done before. I think Rembrant would fit right in.
TracyTorme: I can't really take unsolicited ideas for legal reasons - but if I could, that's a good one.
Moderator: <GentleGiant> to <Moderator>: We all enjoyed Sliders for the brilliant vision it has. We are looking forward to the new and improved Season 4!!
TracyTorme: Thank you very much - and thank you to all the Sliders fans who've been so good to us for the past 3 seasons. I'm going to try to make up for last year by hopefully helping to produce some good new episodes.
TracyTorme: Thanks again everyone. Goodbye!
Moderator: Thank you!
Moderator: We will now make the room unmoderated...
Moderator: Once again, for those who don't know: SLIDERS HAS BEEN PICKED UP BY SCI-FI CHANNEL AND WE WILL BEGIN AIRING NEW EPISODES, IN ADDITION TO RE-RUNNING THE OLD ONES...
Back to Chat Transcript Home Page