Re: Sliders DVD Releases (Universal, Mill Creek, SD blu-ray)
Probably the more complex explaination is that he knew Kromagg Prime Mrs. Mallory would be an on-going role and if he didn't like Linda Henning, he hired a new actress, while still kept her in that episode to explain her off in a way. But that's giving a little more credit then is needed to Peckinpah.
I have skimmed Reborn. That part of the explaination as far as I understood it was due to the universe being rewritten and stuff. You also included an explaination for the production order vs the airing order. Nice Job.
To be blunt, I don't know if the explanation is actually that strong. Part 4 of SLIDERS REBORN is a transcript of a conversation between a man in a mental asylum claiming to be an interdimensional traveller named Quinn Mallory. A psychiatrist listens to his crazy story. Quinn describes how he had four amazing years of adventures in sliding with Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo -- except in Year Five, they ran into Dr. Geiger's Combine experiment. Suddenly, reality shifted: Quinn found himself trapped in the body of another man, Mallory, Wade and the Professor were gone, Rembrandt's mustache vanished and there was this new slider, Maggie, whom Quinn had never met and didn't know.
Quinn was further confused when Mallory used a holographic memory machine on himself and Quinn proceeded to watch the first four seasons of SLIDERS as we know them in these holographic flashbacks. Quinn was baffled by what he saw: the day of the first slide, March 22, 1995, was now September 27, 1994. His adventures were being shown in the wrong order. The extra sliders of "Luck of the Draw" and "El Sid" and "Love Gods" would instantly vanish between slides. The third year had monsters and magic which he'd never encountered as well as the death of Professor Arturo which Quinn had never seen. The fourth year had the invasion of Earth. "It was like someone had taken my life and infused it with horror and madness," says Quinn. I think this is the part of the story that actually works; it features Quinn effectively watching SLIDERS as though he is a fan of SLIDERS and being upset by the network issues, production problems, cast departures and showrunner changes.
The explanation is later that Quinn's original memories are the original timeline and that Dr. Geiger's experiment ripped all Quinn-doubles of reality which, due to Quinn being an interdimensional traveller, was like tearing load bearing walls out of the entire multiverse. Reality collapsed, resulting interdimensional scar tissue to try to maintain the structure of reality via an altered timeline with a damaged form of Quinn's adventures, a form where the differences from the original were initially small but became more overt as events neared the ground zero point of the Combine disaster. This serves as a catch-all blanket explanation. The story further explains that the multiverse has the capacity to activate a 'system restore' function that's later used to restore the original Wade, and then the original timeline with the Kromaggs expunged from the rebuild.
This is the part where the story starts to make less and less sense because the rules and explanations don't really speak to any coherent or consistent perspective on physical reality.
There's an earlier passage in Part 3 where Quinn says that "all matter is frozen light." Arturo calls this "an absurd oversimplification" and I think Arturo is correct; in reality, light is not matter at all but electromagnetic radiation. However, in the context of SLIDERS, Quinn is correct because Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt, Arturo and everything around them were illuminated diodes on a cathode ray tube television and in the context of SLIDERS REBORN, everyone and everything is composed of pixels on a screen. The 'science' of SLIDERS REBORN is really the science of stories.
The dual timeline argument is not a rational one. Instead, it's emotional, declaring that the SLIDERS multiverse may have been warped and twisted into something obscene and unrecognizable, but it is fundamentally a fictional construct defined by friendship, teamwork, problem solving and the triumph of improvisation and imagination, and that however damaged or broken it may be, Quinn and Wade and Rembrandt and Arturo will always return to save it. The author can only hope that the reader is so won over by the conceit of Quinn watching SLIDERS as a fan and voicing the same complaints of fans that they'll accept the second half of the story.