100 Things I Hate About "The Exodus, Part II"
A review by Recall317

Here we have it, possibly the most reviled episode of Sliders. Co-creator Tracy Tormé referred to it as "horrifying. It was just, I thought it was one of the worst hours of television I'd ever seen, and I thought that…nobody really cared about the [episode] in a million ways. I mean, everything was just shoddy. The production was bad, the acting was ridiculous, things didn't tie together." Later he'd call the two parter "an absolute utter embarrassment" showing signs of "lack of caring, lack of thinking; lack of everything."

He isn't wrong.

Unlike the first installment that went to great lengths to show contempt for reality, this story concentrated more on showing contempt for everything Sliders' fans hold dear. Contempt is a running theme in "The Exodus" from Rickman's brazen disregard for his company, to Wade calling Quinn a bastard after Rembrandt laid him out, to Kari Wuhrer's disdain for proper enunciation…but I digress. One hundred things to hate, starting with:

  1. The "Last Week on Sliders" segment. In it, they repeat what Arturo had to say about their impending doom: "Every living thing on this planet will be dead before we are due to slide." If you're disregarding your own script, at least don't remind the audience you're going to do so.

  2. The guy in Delaware. How exactly did he survive to broadcast his message of despair? And how did he manage to make his way on to California radio?

  3. Jensen's sudden turn on Quinn. One episode, they're cracking jokes about Maggie, the next he thinks Quinn's trying to steal his wife. I'm not saying he's wrong, but…

  4. "He also said that if Mr. Mallory had taken any longer getting her back, she'd be dead." Don't blame Quinn! Blame the scriptwriters for being unable to recognize how the timer they created is supposed to work.

  5. Rembrandt's immediate reversion to Season One form at the mere mention of home. Quinn tells him this extraordinary news and all he wants to know is if he called Artie.

  6. Arturo tells everyone to calm down as they'll be seeing their loved ones in a few days. A few days? The slide happens in about nine hours. Wade says as much not more than two minutes later. Is anyone proofreading, or all they just ad libbing?

  7. "You can be such a bastard." Part I: Quinn's inability to do right by his friends. Rembrandt is absolutely right when he says they've done all that's required of them to help this world. Why don't they just go home?

  8. There's no need to swap timers as Rembrandt says. Have Maggie (or any soldier) wear a gas mask. They can set the timer for ten seconds, drop off the four sliders at home, and then slide back to continue the operation. It's that damn easy because Jensen's timer doesn't have a recall function (and if it does, it can clearly be overridden.) It doesn't take a genius to figure this out.

  9. "You can be such a bastard." Part II: Why is Quinn so concerned about the deal he made with these people? They forced him to do it! Nobility is nobility and promises are promises, but nobody is buying this excuse.

  10. Wade suggests that they can put Malcolm in a bubble once they go home. It's a good thing Fox execs had stopped watching the show by now, or Frankie Muniz could be starring in an entirely different show on Sunday nights.

  11. "You can be such a bastard." Part III: Quinn, taking an unspeakable cheap shot, has the nerve to accuse Rembrandt of abandoning Malcolm by wanting to go home. Aside from the callousness, when did Quinn even learn of Malcolm? He hasn't been in one scene with any slider since the operation began.

  12. "You can be such a bastard." Part IV: "We're not leaving," Quinn declares. Case closed. Your opinions don't matter. When Arturo tries to tell him things will calm down once they're home—in a couple of days (smack!)—Quinn says, "You're assuming that I care." Well yes, up until now, we had assumed you'd care.

  13. Malcolm tells Rembrandt that the TV said…no, no, hold it, hold it. The TV said? What TV? With this sort of radiation consuming the planet, you can kiss reception goodbye. Well, the radiation as defined in "The Exodus" Part I anyway.

  14. Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates. Part I: How little does he think of them? Little enough to walk into a church—with a priest standing at the altar—and relieve a soldier of his brain fluid. Fortunately, everyone on this base is either blind or rock stupid.

  15. Rickman utters an "Amen" after he puts the guy in a coma. How thoughtful.

  16. Maggie's response to Quinn saving her life is beyond irrational. She rips into him for jeopardizing the mission. What risk was he taking by calling an ambulance for a choking victim? It's not like he pulled out a gun and commandeered one or anything. Although I bet the producers just wish they'd thought of that…

  17. "IF the situation were ever reversed…" Never has one woman brought so much depth of feeling to the simple word "if."

  18. How many army bases have you visited with stained glass windows?

  19. Did their furniture look like it was donated by the Holy Roman Empire?

  20. Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates. Part II: He's playing with his collection of brain fluid right in front of his receptionist.

  21. Even the supposed touching moments, like the shooting of the civilians outside the army base, come off flat. It could be the lack of corresponding incidental music. It could also be the lack of any sign of moral quandary by any of the characters.

  22. At least Wade seems to get the horror of it…but she doesn't seem to get what's going on when she started culling the list by DNA and brain chemistry. Once again, it's clear Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates.

  23. Maggie is right that the odds are better with two people scouting, but why is she necessarily one of the two people? Furthermore, why did the scouting missions stop while she was laid up? Isn't time of the essence here? Couldn't virtually anyone have subbed in for her?

  24. Speaking of anyone, why is this lab so damn empty of people? This is an emergency and you have just two people working on the vortex problem?

  25. "The clock is running people," Rickman bellows. My point exactly! See #23.

  26. Rickman holds the number of sliders at 140. Why? Wouldn't it make sense for him to take as many people as possible? I mean, he might have to resort to getting his injections from animals or something if he ran out of humans…

  27. Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates. Part IV: He explains aloud to Jensen and Arturo that half the base will be left to die…in the presence of two guards.

  28. That's not a Pulsar! Part IX- Revealing their new abilities, they now make the atmosphere catch on fire as they pass by. Or maybe it's the ground, I can't see through the crappy special effect.

  29. There is no blood on the ground or on any of the civilian victims lying outside the base. They were killed in a barrage of BULLETS, RIGHT?

  30. Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates. Part V: He tells them they'll split into two groups. Nothing suspicious there, no. Hmm…it says group 2 is to assemble in Sacramento…OK, maybe not, but it's that transparent.

  31. After explaining to Maggie that sliding is never time travel, Quinn then declares that they must have slid on to a world whose technology was a few hundred thousand years before. They're doing a native dance, not discovering fire.

  32. Oh, God, no, it's a mating dance!

  33. "It looks so fluid, so smooth." I don't even really want to comment on this. Or speak of it ever again.

  34. Quinn tries to kiss Maggie—even though he knows she's married. So much for the ethical Quinn we used to know and love.

  35. Is he disappointed he gave into temptation or that he didn't get any? Unfortunately, there's no way to be sure anymore.

  36. The footage where the civilians crash the gates again looks vaguely familiar. I guess extras aren't cheap. Heck, they couldn't even bloody them up a few scenes ago.

  37. So, the forces guarding the base were defeated by civilians carrying sticks. This is a crack squad. It's no wonder Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates.

  38. After Jensen tells Maggie he loves her, she makes a slight gesture to her chest and then gives Quinn a look that says, "See what I have to put up with?"

  39. Why did Jensen modify Quinn's timer to track wormholes? All they need are their co-ordinates so they can go home and retire the timer.

  40. Another brilliant bit of commanding—Arturo tells Quinn they should stick together as things could go bad quickly, and then tells him to go along without him while he finishes up some work.

  41. That's not a Pulsar! Part X: Now the pulsars are causing some blue flashes in the sky. Whatever, I really don't care much either way at this point.

  42. They're making quite a big deal over the vaunted list, though knowing this crack squad, they'd probably accept names written in pencil.

  43. Hey, why would Rickman add coma patients to the list for all to see instead of just quietly bringing them along? It just might be that Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates.

  44. Worse, Rembrandt can't seem to recognize the sinister motive here. All he sees is an opportunity to slide Malcolm's parents.

  45. Arturo threatens Rickman. Very sage, Professor. Excellent timing too.

  46. "Help…me…" Part I: We all know Arturo is going to die this episode. Could he have at least been allowed to leave with some dignity? You have to suck his brain fluid first? Unconscionable.

  47. "Help…me…" Part II: Arturo sounds like a mechanical man winding down, with the volume turned way up.

  48. As Wade gives Arturo medicine, Quinn questions her as if she were going to give him poison.

  49. Among Wade's other professions learned this season, we can now add candy striper to the list. There's no ability or experience we can't fabricate in the interest of plot contrivance, even when we don't even need to create an excuse.

  50. The TV's still working I see. [shakes head] Idiots.

  51. "Help…me…" Part III: In a sneak preview of an episode to come, a zombie-like Arturo mumbles "Brain…brain…"

  52. "Help…me…" Part IV: The sliders are being awfully inconsiderate of their disabled friend. Instead of playing charades with him to find the timer, just search his pockets already!

  53. "Help…me…" Part V: An extremely painful fifteen seconds or so as Arturo tries six times to say the word "needle."

  54. It's about time someone figures out that the coma patients are victims of assaults! Of course after the attack on Malcolm's father, that much should have been blindingly obvious.

  55. "You can be such a bastard." Part V: Who is Quinn to tell Wade to make sure Remmy doesn't do anything stupid?

  56. In another extremely moving moment, the son is allowed to slide while the mother is led away. Maybe it was written that way, but it came off as warm as a carp.

  57. Rembrandt and Wade uncover a wealth of incriminating evidence just lying around to be found, probably because Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates.

  58. I like how Rickman saved the newspaper clippings. Awfully convenient too.

  59. Yes, it's all clear now. Rickman has been stealing brain tissue fluid for some five or six years. And in all that time, I guess it never occurred to him to see a doctor about this.

  60. Speaking of the Gulf War, I'm surprised it was fought considering the Cold War was still on. This could be an interesting bit of alt-history if we were interested in that sort of thing.

  61. What's with all the religious imagery? Consequence of picking a former mission for a military base, or was it in the script all along? In any event, it's blasphemous, and with no satirical point being made, completely unnecessary.

  62. Continuing an unending sequence of inopportune walk-ins, Jensen rolls in while Rickman is in brain morph mode, followed immediately by Malcolm walking in as Rickman shoots Jensen. This all could have been prevented had Rickman been more discreet, but then again Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates.

  63. "You can be such a bastard." Part VI: Quinn tells Arturo that "not a day goes by I don't carry the weight for having dragged [Rembrandt] into all this." Not that he's planning to do anything about it.

  64. "Help…me…" Part VI: "New-ton." I sincerely doubt Arturo teaches anything so basic at the university. Of course to our fair scriptwriters, gravity probably is a grad student topic.

  65. "Quinn, you're brilliant." Wade dreamily states as he builds his jet-propelled battering ram. A bastard, but brilliant.

  66. I suspect there were probably more conventional means of escape. After all, the door is only wood.

  67. Couldn't Quinn have just opened the valve vs. breaking it off?

  68. So he opens the door and all is forgiven. The Professor is nearly dead and they all might die of radiation, but hey, he used a jet-propelled battering ram!

  69. Which is worse? Rickman's blasé explanation of Jensen's death or Maggie's attempt to emote?

  70. Maggie does a good impression of an air traffic controller in front of the vortex. Maybe she missed her calling.

  71. I'm not sure why turning the camera forty-five degrees makes Rickman firing a gun more dramatic.

  72. The slow motion bullet. By filming it this way, it gives the impression that everyone is just standing around watching Arturo get shot.

  73. Again, no blood. You have to watch it twice just to make sure he's hit.

  74. Arturo dies.

  75. Quinn absently—and without emotion—says Arturo shouldn't have done that. And so, the mentor's death wish passes on to the student.

  76. The Sliders use their own timer to leave this world, well after the pulsars have struck California. I guess there was no reason to get involved in the first place. Go figure.

  77. Rickman wants a report from Maggie in three hours. I hope they brought their battery-operated word processors.

  78. Just in case you didn't guess he was evil by now, Rickman also is a slaveholder. I mean, everything else we could forgive, but this is the final straw!

  79. So, the earth catches fire and then it explodes. You know, they missed an opportunity to rip off "This Island Earth" and have the earth turn into a second sun, an oversight that must gnaw at them to this day.

  80. It's night! It's day! It's night! So much for concurrent timeline, although to be fair, it was never there to begin with in this effort.

  81. Wow, it's lucky the sliders arrived so close to base camp considering that 400-mile radius and all.

  82. Maggie accepts Quinn at his word that Rickman killed her husband. That's what I like about her, she never bothers to question or process anything. Advertisers must love her.

  83. When hunting down a madman, it's a good idea to leave half your team behind at base camp surrounded by soldiers who answer to the madman.

  84. It's an even better idea to divide your remaining meager force so he can take you out one by one.

  85. Rickman informs Maggie that Jensen was a victim of bad timing. The rest of us are victims of bad acting.

  86. Just shoot him, Quinn! Don't run at him!

  87. Why didn't he shoot? He was afraid he'd hit Maggie. Just how bad is his aim? They're a considerable distance apart and Maggie is slumped on the ground.

  88. Rickman chooses not to kill them both, but to SLIDE. So much for all that careful planning with his vaunted list. Oh well, it's probably for the best, as we all know Rickman doesn't think much of his subordinates.

  89. Quinn, in a scene recalling the glorious "El Sid", tries to follow Rickman through the vortex.

  90. Maggie decries that they can't wait for the timer to tick down as it's hours away. How would she know how much time is left? We, the viewers, don't know.

  91. "Someone want to say something?" Quinn asks as they hold a service for Arturo. How about YOU, you twit!

  92. Rembrandt says he's going to write a song for Arturo, something classy…as opposed to the crap he usually produces.

  93. Wade doesn't believe in goodbyes...and tells the professor goodbye.

  94. Quinn can't bring himself to cry, and Jerry O'Connell can't bring himself to try and convey that emotion.

  95. They're using a blue screen of the ocean scene! Ugh…

  96. Maggie resigns her commission. This token gesture becomes all the more meaningless as she never renounces anything she's done or the training and conditioning the armed forces gave her.

  97. Maggie declares herself part of the mission and they just sort of accept it. No discussion, just terse statements saying they won't stop her.

  98. They exit the vortex and Wade ends up touching the electric fence. Guess it was turned off.

  99. They just happen to slide in where Rickman must have just exited, as evidenced by the body lying there. So which is it? Does it track where he lands or where he leaves? What am I asking, these people occasionally forget to turn the timer on during filming, let alone consider such far-reaching effects.

  100. It's not enough that they killed off the beloved Arturo, but they did by mangling the actor's story…and maliciously at that. And so, a once great series is irreparably destroyed over petty vengeance. Maggie would be proud.

What more can you say? John Rhys-Davies does a succinct enough job of it: "I just WASN'T very happy with the show."