Topic: Sliders.tv: No more April Fools Day jokes
Going forward, there will be no more April Fools Day jokes on Sliders.tv. If you post any, you will be instantly banned. No, no — I’ll just tag your thread title as a joke.
I had a joke planned for April Fools Day this year. It was going to be: “The Informant Lie Exposed” where I was going to falsely reveal that Informant was actually a sockpuppet account shared by me, Matt Hutaff and Keith Damron. I was going to say we built a bot that would regularly copy-paste conservative and alt-right editorials, run them through a find-and-replace algorithm for synonym replacement to create posts and we'd take turns posting the results. I was going to jokingly declare that the three of us took turns posting as Informant to stir up posting activity during low periods.
It was, of course, a reference to the time Temporal Flux set up a chat with Robert K. Weiss, co-creator of SLIDERS, and then Transmodiar claimed as a prank that the entire chat had been staged. I was going to copy entire sections out of the original posts for this prank.
But as I read these archived posts, I came to realize that these jokes weren’t funny but childish and inane in the way all children (like Transmodiar circa 2000) are innocent and cruel. Often, kids and young adults either haven’t suffered enough to appreciate how something hurts or haven’t processed their pain and found the empathy to consider how their words and actions affect others.
The SLIDERS fan community has been deeply damaged by such pranks and outright lies. Transmodiar became a very different person in (full) adulthood. His last prank was to say he was shutting down Earthprime.com, a much gentler and more self-directed joke. In addition, Transmodiar’s behaviour was merely a symptom of an environment of deceit and false information created by the SLIDERS actors and producers themselves.
SLIDERS actors, writers and producers regularly lied: they claimed John Rhys-Davies quit when he was fired, that Sabrina Lloyd was unprofessional on-set, that a long search was made for Kari Wuhrer when she was cast a day before filming, that Jerry and Charlie quit to pursue movie careers, that Jerry quit due to a budget cut, that Colin was not going to be blown up, that Bennish was never planned for a Season 5 return, that production was hopeful of a Season 6, that there were no pitches for a Season 5 Maggie romance, that the Sci-Fi Channel mandated “Requiem” end with Wade being somehow alive, that the freelance writers were at fault for Bill Dial’s repetitive scripting in Season 5 and so forth.
There is a peculiar irony that Keith Damron, the Season 5 story editor, was viewed as an unreliable liar whereas unofficial sources like the Expert and TF were viewed as trustworthy authorities, and even then, they had to fight for it and even today, false information and attacks on their credibility abound.
As a community, I believe that we must reject falsehoods going forward whether they come from pranks or lying producers who worked on the show. From now on, there will be no April 1 threads ‘announcing’ a SLIDERS reboot, there will be no further “The RK Weiss Lie Exposed” threads. You can still post such things if you find them funny; just make your thread title clear so that nobody mistakes it for anything but a parody.