Nature of Marty McFly and Doc Brown's Friendship Finally Revealed

August 17, 2011


If you're one of the many who belong to the generation that grew up on Back to the Future's story of time travel, flying DeLoreans, hoverboards, etc., chances are, if you were going to start asking hard questions of the series, you would have started somewhere around the fading photographs or paradoxical invention of rock and roll before you would have gotten around to demanding answers for why Doc Brown and Marty McFly were such May-December chums. Still, though, in what Dateline tells me are pedophile-heavy times, it is a valid question to ask: why is this high school kid the only one Christopher Lloyd is granting access to the most impressive, powerful invention ever created?

Earlier this week, MentalFloss posed this very question to their readers and yesterday got a response from a surprising source: Bob Gale, co-writer and co-creator of the series. His definitive answer?

Okay, from the horse's mouth (yes, I'm the horse -- er, co-writer, co-creator): We never explained it in the movie. But the history of the characters that Bob Zemeckis and I created is this... For years, Marty was told that Doc Brown was dangerous, a crackpot, a lunatic. So, being a red-blooded American teenage boy, age 13 or 14, he decided to find out just why this guy was so dangerous. Marty snuck into Doc's lab, and was fascinated by all the cool stuff that was there. when Doc found him there, he was delighted to find that Marty thought he was cool and accepted him for what he was. Both of them were the black sheep in their respective environments. Doc gave Marty a part-time job to help with experiments, tend to the lab, tend to the dog, etc. And that's the origin of their relationship.

-- Bob Gale

So there you have it. Still doesn't explain all those deleted scenes where Doc kept nervously forcing wine coolers on Marty, though.


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