DVD Extras include:
Some fans advocate positioning the episode "Stoker" ahead of this one, which certainly works for the pacing and development of our encounters with Rickman, and seems to be a good idea if its "crisis of no fun" precipitates this bit of vacationing. Trouble is, it really throws a monkey-wrench into Wade and Maggie's dialogue with each other, since Wade just doesn't appear to have been through the events of "Stoker" yet, and it's doubtful Maggie would encourage her as seen here if she had. Perhaps this episode works best after "The Breeder", where Quinn and Remmy's intense debates have precipitated their vacation, and while a cool-headed Wade volunteers to look after Maggie while she recovers. And Wade is still bottling stuff up inside, which leads to "Stoker" as the next episode....
Well, with all the ads that came out for "Anaconda" around the time of its first broadcast, I assume that that is the movie that inspired this episode, though I've no interest in actually seeing "Anaconda" to find out. I just think this is one of the most successful rip-off type stories Sliders ever did. A lot of its success goes to the credibility of the creepy creatures in it. Gone are the acrobats and extras in funky make-up trying to be scary. Gone are the wildly fanciful and not quite convincing CG creations. Today we've got snakes - and not only a successful mix of real ones, physical props, and CG ones for filming purposes, but most importantly of all, the script treats them as real multi-faceted animal characters with a richer palette of concerns than just going for the human jugular to scare the audience as many times as possible. I'm liking it. And with all the obvious comparisons being brought up between Quinn's attempted romance and Maggie's, it's just hilarious that the snakes themselves have the last word. I fell off my chair laughing at the end of this one. Nice!
Other added bonuses include the fact that Maggie is finally starting to resemble her likeable season four self, and she gets to show off her character's piloting skills for the first time. Also, Rembrandt's general response to snakes allows him to go back to fulfilling the archetype that he started out with in season one, namely the "queasy slider", while also hanging on to the character development that he has enjoyed since. Quinn is seen dealing with his slightly new position in the group since the Professor's exit, and Wade demonstrates her good side and strength once again. Good job all around.
Thankfully, Maggie is by now a fully accepted member of the group. Now if only she and Wade could be a bit less irritated with each other, everything would be peachy.
This is also a much better looking episode than those like "Sole Survivors", and it's filled with a good number of extra characters who always seem to have an interesting side to show in the story. The short mustached man in the village seems to get a lot of good mileage out of a fairly small amount of screen time. Nice.
The score for this episode is perhaps a bit livelier than usual, and composer Stephen Graziano gets the sound space mostly to himself for many of the jungle trek sequences, which he fills with some very cool and interesting pieces. I like it. "Sliders" is often such a dialogue-based show, it's nice to have such long, primarily audio-visual sections as a bit of contrast.
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