Sliders Season 5

4: The Great Work
Written by Robert Masello
Directed by Reza Badiyi
Sci-Fi Channel
July 9 1999

I's a simple idea for a story. On a war-ravaged parallel Earth, civilization has fallen. Keeping a record of this once-great society has become the task on an order of monks, who live out their quiet life on a small island. But when this Great Work is threatened by attacking raiders, it's up to Diana to invent a new means of storing data - before it falls into the wrong hands.

There's a gentle, somber tone to this hour that initially seems very appealing. The cast all underplay their roles and The Great Work seems less flashy, more performance-orientated than recent episodes of Sliders. Sadly, it all goes nowhere - Robert Masello keeps things simple, but runs out of ideas as the seemingly secret menace behind the monks' society gives way to ratings-friendly fight sequences.

There are some highpoints: Robert Floyd's comic aptitude comes to the fore, Tembi Locke is able to make Diana more gutsy and guest star Rob Youngblood (Space Precinct) is fine as Maggie's duplicitous would-be love interest.

However, like the monks' own detailed records, this tory self-destructs and one is left with the distinct impression that {The Great Work} just couldn't live up to its title.


Alternate Earth 117
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