This one started out as a potential television series.
And it does show.
It involves a mysterious building, which somehow or other exists in untold numbers of parallel universes at once – and which allows people to cross from one world to the next, every thirty-six hours. Somehow, the mysterious “core world” created this apparently derelict structure and thrust it into the other universes. But who controls it? why does it exist? and is someone from the building nuking some of the cities it visits?
Well, we’ll never know.
Obviously, it resembles Sliders, although it is conceptually far more interesting. And, what there is of it is quite nicely made and thoroughly enjoyable (at least, if you remember its status as a failed pilot). It seems a shame that it failed to find a home as a series. One has to wonder how the storyline with their father would have played out: is he a villain? a hero? a liar? is he really their father? did he and their mother really come from another universe?
And what is he really after?
Perhaps the best moment comes at the very end when we make a surprising discovery about one of the characters which quite nicely ties up a lot of odd little loose ends.
To date, Parallels‘ writer and director, Christopher Leone, has a modest number of directing credits for several TV shows and a handful of writing credits. But one of those was for the SyFy Channel’s decidedly interesting fantasy miniseries, The Lost Room (a room which might almost have been created by the same people who built Parallels mysterious building, now that I think of it).
It could have been a contender. But one does wonder if, as Sliders did, it would just have devolved into yet another member of the strange new world of the week club?
It is a pity we’ll never know.