Friday, October 25, 2013

What's Up, Doc?

Great Scot!

Oh, wait — that should have read “Great Scott!” I omitted the last T. It happens.

In fact, a similar scenario popped up on a toy related to this blogger’s favorite movie. Pop! docked a letter from Doc’s first name, so it’s time for me to pop the question: Where’s the other T?

It’s missing, of course, like a case of plutonium from the Pacific Nuclear Research Facility.

I may know why Pop! toyed with the name, failing to emit Emmett’s ultimate letter. The same incorrect spelling shows up during the film. Emmet is visible when Marty McFly, shortly after arriving in 1955, thumbs through a phone book at Lou’s Café and finds a listing for “Brown Emmet L scientist.”

Marty rips the page from the phone book, moseys over to the lunch counter and, if I recall correctly, has the following conversation with the establishment’s owner:

          Marty: Gimme a Tab.

          Lou: Tab? I can’t give you a tab unless you order something.

          Marty: Right, gimme a Pepsi Free.

          Lou: You wanna Pepsi, pal, you’re gonna pay for it.

          Marty: Well, just gimme T, OK?

          Lou: Tea?

          Marty: Actually, give me two T’s.

Strange that the crazy, wild-eyed scientist’s first name, in a state of flux, wasn’t filled to capacity on the package or in the phone book. It can — and should — hold six letters. Another T is just what the Doc ordered.

The T may have vanished from that Pop! quizzical box and phony phone book like a DeLorean going 88 mph in the Twin Pines Mall parking lot, but it does show up in Back to the Future’s end credits and in several other scenes throughout the trilogy. Emmett is the first word of a banner headline on a 1983 alternate-reality edition of the Hill Valley Telegraph, and it’s etched on Doc’s 1885 tombstone.

Be more careful in the future, Pop! If my calculations are correct, whenever Doc’s first name hits six letters, you’re going to see some serious Emmett.

Editor’s note: Today’s post came into existence at 8:18 a.m. on Friday, October 25 — the exact time, day and date used in the opening scene of a certain touchstone film of the ’80s. Tonight at 1:20 a.m. Einstein will become the world’s first time traveler. Temporal experiment number one is mere hours away!


  1. Love that this was published at 8:18 am on Friday, October 25th. Happy BTTF weekend! :)

  2. My good friend Pinky Lovejoy got married this weekend and took advantage of her BTTF-related October 26th wedding date. You can read about it here -

    1. It looks like it was a fun wedding and a wonderful time was had by all. Were you walking arm in arm down the sandy aisle (you looked very nice in your black dress, BTW) with Ben from “Growing Pains,” Lindsay? It sure looks like him.

      I don’t know if I’m more impressed that Pinky and her new husband managed to get their hands on a real DeLorean or that one of them realized their wedding date coincided with cinematic magic … and incorporated that fact into their plans. I think the latter is more impressive, actually. Nicely done, newlyweds! Make your future together “a good one,” as Doc Brown once said.

  3. Good eyes! Yes, it was Ben Seaver. :) He's an absolute doll in real life. So sweet. And yes, I practically died when I found out I'd be walking down the aisle with him. :)

    I know - I was pretty impressed, too. :) Such a cool element it added to the wedding.

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