An animated series based on the movie of the same name. Marty, Doc Brown, Jules and Verne travel through time in the Doctor's modified DeLorean, bouncing from one era to the next where a different adventure awaits them each time. Between shows there are live-action segments featuring Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown with Bill Nye the Science Guy. Written by
Jean-Marc Rocher <firstname.lastname@example.org>
After the credits, Biff Tannen appears and makes a comment/joke about the episode. For example, the episode that involves baseball has Biff saying "Hey butt-head, how do you hold a baseball bat? By its wings! Ha ha ha". Then Biff holds a real bat by its wings which ends up biting him and ending that segment. See more »
It seems utterly pointless to type this sentence as it's such an obvious thing to say, but this cartoon continuation of the great movie trilogy doesn't operate on anything like the same level. It isn't terrible, but its hurried animation, infantile humour and tinny music don't really capture what made the films so special.
The set-up is that following the finale of 'Back to the Future Part III' Doc, Clara, Jules and Verne have settled down in a farmhouse in the present day; in the barn is a new Delorean and the time travelling train, both now equipped to travel through space as well as time in order to widen the scope of the adventures. The series focuses on the family with less involvement from Marty and none at all from the rest of the immediate McFly family, although we do meet various McFly ancestors and Tannen incarnations along the way.
It's a decent way to reframe the premise and I really like the character design, which is probably the most successful aspect of the cartoon. The voice work is variable: Dan Castellaneta does an acceptable Christopher Lloyd impression, but why the writers felt the need to give Doc catchphrases like 'Jumpin' jigowatts!' and 'Oucha ma goucha!' when 'Great Scott!' would have done just fine is a mystery. David Kaufman voices Marty as through he's going through puberty. Tom Wilson returns to provide the voices of various Tannens and his performance is genuinely funny, while Mary Steenburgen is back as Clara and seems to be reading off a script under heavy sedation.
Other key players from the movie series remain. Christopher Lloyd, who has reprised the Doc Brown role in so many spin-offs, cameos, music videos and movies that he may as well sew the long white wig permanently to his head, appears in live action bumpers that look dirt cheap and provide a science lesson based on the particular episode's plot. And Bob Gale's involvement includes directing the live action segments in the second season, a role that's so far beneath his talents it's depressing, although as he seems to have essentially given up screen writing to become curator of the BTTF brand it's not surprising.
The series' finest hour is probably the episode that riffs on Ray Bradbury's 'A Sound of Thunder' in which Doc and the kids prevent an asteroid from crashing into Earth and wiping out the dinosaurs, only to return to the present day to find the creatures have evolved into a modern society - including a dinosaur version of Biff! It's very silly and pretty funny, and it's a shame that the rest of the show doesn't live up to it.
What we have instead, for the most part, is humour that relies far too much on tiresome slapstick, typical Saturday morning cartoon standard animation and music by Michael Tavera that sounds like a muzak version of Alan Silvestri's fine scores played on a digitised kazoo. It falls far short of the invention, poignancy and adventure of the films (not to mention the established tone and occasional diversion into darkness), which is pretty much what you'd expect from this sort of thing, I guess.
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