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Back to the Future: The Expanded Universe

posted by bttf4444 on - last edited - Viewed by 1.6K users

I'm trying to figure out if The Ride and The Animated Series are compatible with each other. Both were released in the year 1991. Here is what I think might happen.

Perhaps, the after a couple years, the Brown family decides to settle back into the future - since the boys do seem to be a few years older in TAS. Of course, they'll need a good explanation of where his wife and children came from. Then, after awhile, he sets up the Institute of Future Technology. Perhaps, Bill Nye is one of his time travel associates at the IFT - and a certain wing of the IFT is using for Doc to teach his budding young scientists.

After a few months of working with his colleagues, he finally lets them in on his secret - and, of course, he swears them to secrecy. He then purchases another DeLorean, which they use for time travel experiments.

Then, sometime later, he purchases another DeLorean - and creates a device that allows the DeLorean to travel to places outside outside of Hill Valley. That may even be the DeLorean that he used to visit Edison, the Wright brothers, Einstein, et al. He decides to keep that one for home use, though.

Then, finally, he creates the eight-passenger DeLorean - which the time travel volunteers were the first ones to use.

Also, sometime between 1986 and 1991, Marty gets seriously injured - and is in a coma for a few weeks. He never fully recovers - and, as such, that's why he's such a dufus in TAS. Also, from spending a lot of time at the IFT, Doc has grown accustomed to using technical speech even with his family. Of course, Jules takes after him.

How does that sound?

If we throw in The Game, it would make things even more complex. Of course, there is a conflict between The Game and the TAS episode "Gone Fishing". I'll have to re-watch that episode, but it might not make a big difference to imagine that the events of that episode occurred nine years earlier. Beauregard Tannen exists in both TAS and The Game, and he very well could be the same person.

I suppose the events of The Ride and TAS would occur in the final timeline. I guess Doc decides to live part-time in 1985-1986 - and then, a few years later, he finally decides to bring his entire family into the present. That also gives him plenty of time to set up the IFT.

There is only a question of when exactly Future Doc of Episode Five decided to show up in 1931. At first, he was very confused by what Marty was doing in 1931, and he seemed to not remember being "Carl Sagan". Then, I guess, after returning to 1986 - he runs into his older self*. His older self is then able to finish his present for Marty, and then gives it to his younger self to give to Marty.

* Remember, there's still that part in Episode Three where Doc vanishes - upon returning to 1986. In the final timeline, he wouldn't vanish. So I guess my theory is the it's a slightly younger older Doc we saw in Episode Five.

If you want to go even further, we could also figure out how to include the Looney Labs card game into the expanded universe.

It's best to not even try to include things like the DirecTV advert, the Nike advert, the Check Your Coat music video, the Microsoft Tech Ed, the Universal Studios Promo, or the Earth Day special into the expanded universe - but I think including the adverts for Garbarino can fit into the expanded universe, quite well.

These videos include:

Doc Arrives in Argentina 2011
Security Video Footage
Doc at a Conference
Garbarino vs Doc's Garage
Young Emmett and His Mother
Time Sleigh

I think they actually could fit into The Ride Universe, specifically.

17 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • I think this game actually retconned the animated series back five years. Yeah, let's go with that. It actually makes more sense that way (he's in college, remember?).

  • @BttF_LttP said: I think this game actually retconned the animated series back five years. Yeah, let's go with that. It actually makes more sense that way (he's in college, remember?).

    Completely wrong. The animated series is non canon. TTG just decided to put some aspects of it into the game. They're doing fan references (People are fans of that show?) for the animated series as well while not connecting them.

  • For the record, I don't usually include any of the expanded canon (TAS, The Ride, The Game, or The Card Game) into my ficverse - although, that doesn't quite rule out the possibility of me ever writing fics for any of those universes. As Bob Gale mentioned, only the films are canon - but the others can be seen as alternate universes.

    I think it's be fun to imagine a universe that involves the whole shebang , though. I also figured out the best way to reconcile Gone Fishin' from TAS with The Game, which requires making two tweaks. One, imagine that the episode takes place in 1920 (so that it's still the Roaring Twenties) - and, two, imagine that Emmett is six (instead of four). His age was only mentioned once, in the episode - so I don't think it makes too much of a difference.

    Also, if we try to fit everything together, The Game would take place before TAS would. Sometime after settling into 1986 as a part-time resident, Doc sets up the Institute of Future Technology. The rest of the family then moves to the future sometime between 1988 and 1991 (Jules and Verne are about two or three years older in TAS, then they were at the end of Part III). Also, sometime during that time, Doc went back in time to get an autograph from Thomas Edison (occurred in both The Ride and TAS) - as well as met the Wright brothers, Albert Einstein, Richard Nixon, and The Beatles.

    ETA: I think the Doc we saw in Episode Five was younger than the Doc we saw in Episodes One and Two.

  • I do not believe that the Garbarino ads count towards canon at all. Biggest hint of that is that ad where he goes back to visit his younger self and see his mother. Emmett Brown would never do that.

  • On further thought, yeah, you're probably right. Although, that actually was part of why I kinda did want to include them - and it would sort of be in character with Ride-verse Doc, who seemed to have a less cautious view on time travel. Come to think of it, though, that other reason why that doesn't really seem to work is because the house they lived in was considerably smaller than the mansion.

    Forget the Garbarino adverts, then. What do you suppose an expanded canon universe that includes The Ride, TAS, The Game, and The Card Game would be like? Do you think it could possibly work?

    BTW, is there anything that I missed - as far as the extra features that include Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown go? I suppose the Kinect Fun Labs advert would be a borderline case, but he was never explicitly mentioned to be Doc Brown - although, he kinda does look like First Citizen Brown.

  • As mentioned the game seemed to keep continuity where they could (Beauregard tannen for instance was in the first episode of the show which took place during the civil war).

    But there's quite a few things from the show which are not true to the characters. As mentioned doc would not authorize using time travel as a way to 'perfect' the past. For instance there's an episode where Marty's ancestor pee wee McFly is a baseball pitcher and they go back in time and give him some enhanced glasses to help him pitch. No way doc would authorize something like that; willingly give technology from the future to a person in the past.

  • Maybe it is better to just see them all as being separate universes, especially if another gaming company was to take on BTTF - they wouldn't really have the rights to the characters and such that Telltale Games created. They would have to create an entirely different continuation to the trilogy.

    Gone Fishin' is the most problematic episode from TAS to try to reconcile with the Game-verse, due to Emmett being established as different ages.

    Would be interesting, though - if TAS-verse Doc, Ride-verse Doc, and Game-verse Doc were to meet each other. Also, TAS and The Ride are probably more compatible with each other, than either are with The Game.

    In general, I don't really accept anything else other than the films themselves as canon - even though I've include Edna Strickland from The Game and various TAS characters into my universe. Arthur and Sylvia (both also from the novelization of the first film) are also included, but they're not really like how they were established in The Game. My Sylvia is Swedish - and has been so, long before The Game was even being planned. Also included are Ellen Baines and Marty's birthday from the Number Two Draft (where Doc and Marty go back to 1967, instead of 1955, to get the almanac back from Biff).

    I'm glad that The Game included Beauregard Tannen and Verne's love for video games, so it's cool that they made some references to TAS.

    Come to think of it, I wonder if we're gonna get anything new from the BTTF franchise in the year 2015.

    Still, it would be interesting to imagine that Biff Tannen Jr (from TAS) and Tiffany Tannen (from The Game) are siblings - even though I was never too fond of the name "Biff Jr". I always thought "Cliff" should've been the name of Biff's son and Griff's father.

  • @bttf4444 said: Maybe it is better to just see them all as being separate universes, especially if another gaming company was to take on BTTF - they wouldn't really have the rights to the characters and such that Telltale Games created. They would have to create an entirely different continuation to the trilogy.

    Gone Fishin' is the most problematic episode from TAS to try to reconcile with the Game-verse, due to Emmett being established as different ages.

    Would be interesting, though - if TAS-verse Doc, Ride-verse Doc, and Game-verse Doc were to meet each other. Also, TAS and The Ride are probably more compatible with each other, than either are with The Game.

    In general, I don't really accept anything else other than the films themselves as canon - even though I've include Edna Strickland from The Game and various TAS characters into my universe. Arthur and Sylvia (both also from the novelization of the first film) are also included, but they're not really like how they were established in The Game. My Sylvia is Swedish - and has been so, long before The Game was even being planned. Also included are Ellen Baines and Marty's birthday from the Number Two Draft (where Doc and Marty go back to 1967, instead of 1955, to get the almanac back from Biff).

    I'm glad that The Game included Beauregard Tannen and Verne's love for video games, so it's cool that they made some references to TAS.

    Come to think of it, I wonder if we're gonna get anything new from the BTTF franchise in the year 2015.

    Still, it would be interesting to imagine that Biff Tannen Jr (from TAS) and Tiffany Tannen (from The Game) are siblings - even though I was never too fond of the name "Biff Jr". I always thought "Cliff" should've been the name of Biff's son and Griff's father.

    I don't thinkt he animated series or ride can be in the same universe. The ride takes place in 1991 (well technically the present is whichever day the person is on it but 1991 is the year it starts) and the series 1991-1992. There is clearly no 'hill valley institute' in the animated series. The game and series can't be either because seems during the game jules and verne are closer to college days whereas they're kids in the series (seems doc actually skips time in the game since they're less than 6 years older than they were at the end of part III). The game and ride COULD be the same universe depending what happens the next five years.


    I personally think the only thing which is sacred should be the trilogy itself. Everything else is merely 'what ifs'

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    Jennifer Moderator

    While I have no problem with the idea of the different media being from different universes, the point about Doc and his family being different ages in the movies vs the game and the animated series doesn't mean you can't fit it into canon.

    The game established Doc is comfortable having his kids live in different time periods (he mentioned wanting to have Jules and Verne go to college in either the 1960's or the 2020's). There's no reason a younger Doc, Clara, Jules, and Verne couldn't time travel to 1991 and live with Marty while he's in college (and as for the supposed age difference of Marty - it's not unheard of for people to take a few years off from school before they start college. Marty would be 23 in 1991. That's definitely still college age).

    And if you really want to squeeze the ride into canon, that could be done too with the same thing I said about time travel earlier. Doc could have come from any point and established the Institute of Future Technology in 1991. While it seems like Doc wouldn't have wanted to have two of himself in the same time, the ride seemed to indicate the Institute was pretty top secret, so maybe Doc thought his other self wouldn't know the institute was there so he wasn't worried about meeting his other self.

    Oh, one more thing out of curiosity: where is the reference to Emmett's age in Gone Fishin'? I just watched it and I must have missed it.

  • @Jennifer said: While I have no problem with the idea of the different media being from different universes, the point about Doc and his family being different ages in the movies vs the game and the animated series doesn't mean you can't fit it into canon.

    The game established Doc is comfortable having his kids live in different time periods (he mentioned wanting to have Jules and Verne go to college in either the 1960's or the 2020's). There's no reason a younger Doc, Clara, Jules, and Verne couldn't time travel to 1991 and live with Marty while he's in college (and as for the supposed age difference of Marty - it's not unheard of for people to take a few years off from school before they start college. Marty would be 23 in 1991. That's definitely still college age).

    And if you really want to squeeze the ride into canon, that could be done too with the same thing I said about time travel earlier. Doc could have come from any point and established the Institute of Future Technology in 1991. While it seems like Doc wouldn't have wanted to have two of himself in the same time, the ride seemed to indicate the Institute was pretty top secret, so maybe Doc thought his other self wouldn't know the institute was there so he wasn't worried about meeting his other self.

    Oh, one more thing out of curiosity: where is the reference to Emmett's age in Gone Fishin'? I just watched it and I must have missed it.

    I dont think there is a reference but pretty sure Gone Fishin takes place in the 1930's with Emmet being a young child

    The institute of future technology is clearly located in Hill valley, no way Doc would set up shop in the same town and same time as his other self. In the game marty seems to be his natural age (23) but it doesn't seem as though Jules and Verne have aged six years since the end of part III.

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