Free’ky Fridays — Back to the Future edition
Posted on June 17, 2011 by Chris Nelson
I was prepping a “Not on DVD” article a long while back about Back to the Future – The Animated Series cartoon show, and now that Telltale Games has a free download of the first episode of their Back to the Future Adventure Game series, I figured I’d roll them into one article.
First up, the Back to the Future cartoon. Some of you may remember this short-lived gem from Fox’s Saturday morning cartoon lineup (Fox Box always looked like Fob X to me…). Next to the Sam and Max TV show, this was one of my main reasons to stay home Saturday mornings. The series took place after the films, and actually built on the Back to the Future mythology in admirable fashion (though, as noted on Wikipedia, “co-creator of the Back to the Future series Bob Gale has stated that it and the comics take place in their own ‘what if’ and alternate timelines and not part of the main continuity.”).
Following the conclusion of Back to the Future Part III, “Doc” Brown settled in 1991 in Hill Valley with his new wife Clara, their sons Jules and Verne, and the family dog, Einstein. As with the films, time travel was achieved through the use of a modified DeLorean, which had apparently been replaced following the original’s destruction at the end of the trilogy. The new DeLorean had voice-activated “time circuits” and can also travel instantaneously to different locations in space and time, in addition to folding into a suitcase. The characters also traveled through time using the steam engine time machine Doc invented at the end of the third movie.
Although Marty McFly and his girlfriend Jennifer Parker made occasional appearances, the show focused primarily on the Brown family, whereas the movies focused on the McFly family. The film’s villain, Biff Tannen, also appeared from time to time. In addition, relatives of both the McFly and Tannen families were plentiful in the past or future parallel time zones visited. Unlike the films, which took place entirely in Hill Valley and the surrounding area, the series frequently took the characters to exotic locations.
Check out the first episode of Back to the Future – The Animated Series below:
You can actually find pretty much the entire series on YouTube, with each episode in similar 3-part installments. The only other way I knew to obtain these in legit fashion was on Laserdisc (they have copies at Mountain View’s Videoscope). It really is a shame they’ve never been officially released on DVD in the us.
And now on to the games.
For those of you not in the know, Telltale Games has been releasing an episodic adventure series based on the Back to the Future universe. From Wiki:
Back to the Future: The Game is a graphic adventure video game based on the Back to the Future film franchise. The game was developed by Telltale Games as part of a licensing deal with Universal Pictures. Bob Gale, who was involved with the creation of the film trilogy, assisted Telltale in writing the game’s story, while both the original actors Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd have allowed the developers to use their likenesses in the game for the lead characters Marty McFly and Doc Brown, respectively. Lloyd also provides the voice for Doc, while new talent AJ LoCascio plays the role of Marty. The game is split up into five episodes available on multiple gaming platforms, the first episode released for Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X on December 22, 2010. PlayStation 3 and iPad versions followed February 15, 2011. Episodes 2 through 4 were released throughout February to April 2011, with the fifth and final episode to be released on June 23, 2011. In this episode Michael J. Fox voices one cameo role.
Here’s the trailer:
Telltale’s actually making the first episode available games’ Back to the Future site to claim your free episode. It works on Windows and Mac (and Linux with some wine tweaking [There are also versions available for PS3 and the iPad, but I'm not sure they have any freebies]).
And these aren’t the only Back to the Future games around. There were also two DOS games way back in the day, as well as a number of other bizarre entries, including the Japan-only Super Back to the Future 2 (non PC, but amazing). Check ‘em out:
So much cool stuff!
Not BttF, but for you Lea Thompson fans.