Back to the Future

Season 1 Episode 1


Aired Saturday 8:30 AM Sep 14, 1991 on CBS



  • Trivia

    • In 1991, McDonald's also released four Happy Meal toys, featuring Marty on his hoverboard, Doc in the DeLorean, Verne in his Junkmobile and Einstein in the time train

    • Verne Brown's (one of Doc Brown's kids) middle name is revealed in this episode. It is Newton, after Sir Isaac Newton.

    • Verne says Jules was using an Etch-A-Sketch when he was 2. Jules was probably born in 1886 or 1887, and I'm pretty sure that by 1888-1889, they didn't have an Etch-A-Sketch!

      Ed. note: But they're time travellin' kids! That doesn't really count. FYI, the Etch-A-Sketch was first produced by the Ohio Art Company on July 12, 1960. (link)

      Response: True, they are time travelling kids, but back in 1888/9 when Jules was 2, Doc had not finished building the time train. He probably took about 10 years to build it. So, without a time machine, how could Jules get the Etch-A-Sketch?

      Ed.: Once a time-traveller, always a time traveller. There's an unwritten time travel story in there somewhere, not a goof. But, I'll leave up this debate; visitors to our pages may decide for themselves...

    • When Verne heads back to 1864, the time circuits say "February 11th 1864". Verne arrives in the evening of the 11th. When Doc, Marty, Jules and Einstein find out where Verne went, they also input the Destination Time in the train as February 11th 1864 - yet arrive the day after Verne got there.

    • When Doc uses the time train to enter the year 1864, the train is flying when it travels trough time, but when it arrives to 1864, the train is on tracks, not flying.

  • Quotes

    • (Marty steps out in front of the Confederate army to halt the charge)
      Marty: Fellas, whoa, whoa, chill out! You can't fight today. It's, uh, a national holiday.
      General Tannen: What holiday?
      Marty: Uh, Lincolns birthday.
      General Tannen: Charge!
      (the army runs Marty over)
      Marty: Wrong crowd.

    • (Jules and Verne are arguing over who gets to use the computer)
      Jules: You upstart, overgrown mass of immature parasitic life form!
      Verne: Give it here, you geek with a bad haircut!

    • (when Verne first meets General Tannen)
      Verne: (astonished) Biff Tannen?!
      General Tannen: (with a Southern accent) General Beauregard Tannen to you, buttocks-brain!
      Verne: Don't ya mean 'butt-head'?!
      General Tanen: (twirling his handlebar mustache) Hmmm... I like that!

  • Notes

    • This episode was released on the VHS entitled Back to the Future: Clara's Folks and Brothers.

    • Marty is the only member of his immediate parallel family to appear in the series.

    • The Spanish Civil War took place during the 1930's.

    • Although she is mentioned a few times, and is seen through photographs, Clara does not appear in this episode. Neither does Jennifer.

    • "Dean Strickland" is obviously Principal Strickland, Marty's principal from the BTTF movies, apparently having gained a promotion.
      Clara apparently was born in 1855 (if she's nine years old in 1864).

    • The theme song is a edited version of the song we hear at the end of the credits for Back to the Future Part I.

  • Allusions

    • :
      Doc Brown's kids are of course named for the great 19th Century science fiction author Jules Verne. However, Mr. Verne was a scientific realist, and never wrote about time travel, believing it to be unachievable fantasy. Time travel would only enter SF with H.G. Wells' The Time Machine in 1895.

    • "Ulysses S. Clayton" is a reference to Ulysses S. Grant, noted Union army general and later president of the United States.