WAREHOUSE 13 is the undemanding, low stakes procedural that I need right now. The procedural that America needs right now! And I consider "QED" an episode of the show. WAREHOUSE 13 has some interesting parallels with SLIDERS and the potential for legally dissimilar shows about parallel universes. Watching the first several episodes of WAREHOUSE 13, WAREHOUSE 13 is clearly a legally dissimilar copy of THE X-FILES with two government agents (Secret Service, not FBI!) investigating supernatural artifacts (to confiscate and cover them up, not to expose them! Not like THE X-FILES at all!).
The pilot episode of WAREHOUSE 13 seems like something that nobody wanted to make or take ownership of, much like Season 5 of SLIDERS. The original script was written by Rockne O'Bannon (FARSCAPE) and Jane Espenson (BUFFY, ONCE UPON A TIME, GILMORE GIRLS, JESSICA JONES) but Syfy bought it and then retooled it with at least four different writing teams before landing on Jack Kenny, a veteran of children's fantasy show THE SECRET WORLD OF ALEX MACK. By the time WAREHOUSE 13 made it to air, it had become an indecisive, confused product. A photocopy of a photocopy of a photocopy with many contradictory sensibilities.
The Pilot has the story elements of a paranoid, conspiracy-minded series of secret agents in a shadow government organization and a simple, Nickelodeon children's show where the heroes look to find and contain dangerous supernatural objects and the questions of who they work for and why is not something kids would ask. WAREHOUSE 13 also seems to be visually very similar to Season 5 of SLIDERS with interior locations being redressed beige hallways if it's not the warehouse set that's the equivalent of SLIDERS' Chandler Hotel.
But WAREHOUSE 13 cast well. And by the end of the first season, WAREHOUSE 13 had succeeded in doing what SLIDERS did in its first two seasons: it created a strong ensemble with the exuberant and childish Eddie McClintock, the bookish and flustered Joanne Kelly, the sardonic Allison Scagliotti and the jaded Saul Rubinek. And their affable, friendly chemistry smoothed out the conceptual confusion of their show. WAREHOUSE 13 was still a legally dissimilar X-FILES shot on a much lower budget, but it was an amiable, undemanding, unchallenging, lightweight X-FILES clone that was soothing and relaxing. Aside from the comedy episodes, THE X-FILES was never fun.
WAREHOUSE 13 being a clone of a pre-existing property and then cloned from subsequent drafts of the clone itself, however, was always something that held it back. I wonder if it is simply bad development strategy to look at a previously successful series and try to replicate it but with just enough differences to a void a lawsuit. But it can work sometimes. BILL AND TED was plainly an American Polaroid of a DOCTOR WHO episode. STAR WARS was an American portrait of THE HIDDEN FORTRESS.
What would JOHN RHYS-DAVIES' SLIDERS be like?
Jerry O'Connell and John Rhys-Davies, last year, were very enthusiastic about conceiving a new SLIDERS project. Assuming they could get Cleavant and Sabrina back and that they would be setting the creative direction -- what would Jerry and John want to do with SLIDERS? John most definitely has serious creative ambitions for SLIDERS. He wanted to run the writer's room and write scripts. But he also wanted to be the lead character and for Jerry to be his sidekick. I don't know if that's changed in the years that have passed.
I imagine that John would probably want JOHN RHYS-DAVIES' SLIDERS to just start over from the ground up again and he would want to take ownership of the new show and define it with his personality and interests. And I'm not sure John's interests are in social satire; judging from his personality, he would probably be more along the lines of overt lecturing and moral outrage and it would be a very different voice for SLIDERS having originally been more indirect and comedic.
John also doesn't want to do more than a year or two of playing Arturo before quitting and moving on.
I suspect Jerry doesn't have any real creative ambitions aside from always being happy to be working. He's the executive producer of CARTER and it's very obvious from watching CARTER that Jerry just wants to hang out with his friends on the set for 10 episodes a year.