I'm not sure what the NXdomain issue is. Take a screenshot and send it to me? I'll ran it past Dreamhost tech support.
One has to wonder: was Torme's revival idea something that NBCU found accessible and marketable? Judging from Torme's hints, that Torme's pitch was SLIDERS: THE NEXT GENERATION which is an odd proposition for a broadcast audience (as opposed to a fan audience). SLIDERS: THE ORIGINAL SERIES was hardly STAR TREK: THE ORIGINAL SERIES.
There's another area where Torme perhaps did himself no favours: he declared on a podcast that a SLIDERS revival wouldn't be "woke". Some heard that and felt that Torme was effectively aligning himself and his SLIDERS revival with the opposite of what is considered "woke", and allying himself with misogyny, racism, transphobia, bigotry and fascism.
The aggrieved white male demographic of SLIDERS cheered; transgender SLIDERS commentator Annie Fish (formerly known as Ian McDuffie) was deeply offended and I doubt Annie was the only one. I would not be surprised if NBCU heard Torme's remarks and decided to focus on QUANTUM LEAP instead.
But let's look at Torme's remarks which I personally feel were misunderstood by both sides:
Tracy Torme on the Cardinal Sin podcast:
We’re all hypersensitive about politics now. I thought I had a tough time 20 years ago or whenever it was, 30 years ago, getting certain stories off the ground in SLIDERS. And it’s much worse now. I can tell you that it’s going to be even more of a struggle even than it was then.
Already I’ve thrown a couple of ideas out and everyone in the room was kind of horrified going, "Oh! You can’t do that!" So I can already tell you that people are so hypersensitive to so many issues now that it’s going to be even more of a challenge trying not to turn it into some politically correct, ‘safe’ show. If it becomes that, what’s the point of doing it? That’s going to be the big struggle.
I promise you it will never be woke. Never.
I feel I should note here: Torme has voted Libertarian in every election since at least the 90s.
I don't believe that Torme meant his remarks in the way that they have been heard by people who self-identify as "woke", but I can see it being a dealbreaker for studio executives. I don't mean that in a political sense; I mean that in a marketing sense.
Recently, there was some hilarious outrage over the Anheuser Busch beer company marketing their Bud Light beer with a transgender social media influencer. A former Hollywood leading man whose name I don't wish to type declared he'd buy Busch Light beer instead (peculiar as I know for a fact that he barely drinks and Busch Light and Bud Light are made by the same company). A country music star bought some cases of Bud Light and proceeded to fire a gun at them. These men felt threatened that a mass market product was being marketed by a transgender individual.
Here's the thing: a beer company doesn't actually care if its product is 'woke' or 'conservative'. A beer company wants to sell its beer to the widest range of people possible: men, women, non-binaries, transgendered individuals, Christians, atheists, liberals, libertarians, conservatives – their money is as good as anyone else's.
Any mass market product in 2023 whether it's beer or a SLIDERS revival has to be sellable to a broadcast audience that includes people of colour, LGBTQ+ individuals, women, college students, high school dropouts – and exclusionary attitudes like transphobia and other bigotries, in addition to being hateful, limit the spectrum on which a product can be sold. In contrast, a product that rejects bigotry still has a lot of potential customers. SLIDERS is a TV show and it's called broadcasting for a reason.
In that podcast, Torme inadvertently declared that he was not interested in broadcasting.
I don't even think that's what Torme meant at all. I think Torme misused the term "woke" which I think he associates with "political correctness" which I think he's also misused historically. Torme has called "political correctness" to be "the great lie of the left".
"Woke" and "political correctness", if examined carefully, are terms that simply mean that in our speech and conduct, we live by certain truths: that all human beings are created equally and endowed by their existence with certain inalienable rights, that among these rights are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and James Brown is acknowledged as the godfather of soul. To be "woke" and "politically correct" means that we hold those truths to be self-evident whether for ourselves or for people who are women or black or Asian or transgender or non-binary or gay.
It also means that we recognize that there are some people who have failed to live up to those truths. And we don't pretend otherwise -- regardless of how much they helped me with SLIDERS fanfic or how much Lego they photograph and share. And since my previous paragraph quotes dialogue that Tracy Torme adjusted and approved for "Prince of Wails", it is my conclusion that Tracy Torme is in fact "woke" and "politically correct"; he just doesn't use those terms for himself or use them as they are generally used in common parlance.
Why does Tracy Torme say that he isn't "woke" or "politically correct"? I mean, he describes himself as a Libertarian, a "radical environmentalist" and "radical animal rights" person. My personal theory: this stems from how Tracy Torme writes black characters.
"Summer of Love" presents Rembrandt's family speaking in lyrical and poetic, non-standard American English and has them all highly egotistical and overaggressive and utterly hilarious and wonderful. This was considered highly inappropriate in 1994 screenwriting; there was a school of thought that all black characters in film and TV should be scripted as though they were white and merely played by a black actor.
All the black characters on BABYLON 5, for example, were scripted as 'race neutral' which, when the writer is white, just means writing them as white. And while there is nothing specifically disrespectful in that, it does deny that there are life experiences that are unique to black people that are not lived or known by white people or white writers.
Torme was a white writer who wrote black characters like Rembrandt with a specific eye to how Rembrandt has had life experiences that white people do not have. Torme wrote Rembrandt and his family with an awareness that black people have to work twice as hard as white people to be considered half as good, hence the hypercompetitiveness and pettiness at Rembrandt's funeral.
Torme wrote the Brown family as having to be their own law enforcement, hence Rembrandt's wife coming after him with a gun. Torme wrote Rembrandt's brother as talking crap about Rembrandt when dead but being warmly supportive to his face.
It is very obvious to me that these are all based on black people whom Torme met, knew and loved in his childhood.
Torme would have undoubtedly seen intense resistance from studio and network executives who would want him to just write his black characters as white people played by black actors.
To me, Torme saying that his SLIDERS revival wouldn't be woke means that Torme's writing would never simply present the Democratic Party's talking points and platforms as SLIDERS' values any more than he'd have the sliders perform Hitler's MEIN KAMPF. Instead, Torme would have eagerly satirized and poked fun at and inverted every system of political dogma whether libertarian or conservative or liberal or socialist.
What's the transgender episode of SLIDERS in Torme's hands? It's probably not the QUANTUM LEAP episode providing a lecture on transgender rights. Instead, it's probably a bizarre inversion of conflict over transgender rights instead: the sliders land on a world where gender-specificity is considered taboo and rude, but Arturo makes an angry rant about how a man is entitled to gender-segregated restrooms and suddenly emboldens a terrorist group that he is not equipped to stop. SLIDERS' take on this issue isn't going to be a seminar and a speech; it's going to be a bizarre parody.
Let's note that Torme also had no issue with his own values and worldviews being mocked and pilloried. Torme loves sports. He is obsessed with baseball, football and hockey. He allowed "Eggheads" to mock professional sports from both a competitive perspective and a fan perspective. Torme is obsessed with Westerns; he personally rewrote "The Good, The Bad and the Wealthy" to criticize the violence of Westerns.
I don't feel Torme conveyed his worldview with the nuance and care needed for something so delicate and it could have become a problem. Note that the key person to whom he was pitching a SLIDERS revival was Danielle Claman Gelber.
Claman Gelber is a veteran TV executive who is a powerful woman in the male-dominated entertainment industry, who in addition to spearheading development on X-FILES and ALLY MCBEAL and DAWSON'S CREEK, also developed lesbian TV programming like THE L WORD, shows that made psychotherapy mainstream (WEB THERAPY), shows that destigmatized marijuana (WEEDS) and cancer (THE BIG C) on broadcast TV.
Claman Gelber's career seems to have a highly progressive bent, if only for marketing. Her output suggests that she is someone who may well have been put off by Torme, a potential business partner, declaring, "SLIDERS will never be woke."
I have to wonder if maybe, in the future, Torme should just be quiet and let Marc Scott Zicree do all the talking from now on.
I cannot stress enough in the name of Slidology: the views of ireactions are not the views of Sliders.TV.