All right, I have to open this video with a brilliant tweet by my friend and artist James Stowe.
“We are all looking at this Back to the Future day thing all wrong. We are just living in the future that old Biff made with the Sports Almanac.”
Personally, I think Donald Trump must have a Sports Almanac hidden away somewhere. I mean, he and Biff are kind of the same person.
Well, happy Back to the Future day, Earthlings! It’s October 21st, 2015, and we are in the future! Last time I talked about Back to the Future, and 2015 being the future, and living in the future, I was walking around outside, so…walk with me.
I wish I’d recorded this earlier. It was actually foggy earlier and then it could have perfectly matched the previous video I made on this subject. But anyway what we are talking about today is the fact that today is Back to the Future Day. it is the day in which Marty McFly travels to the future to go save his son from a horrible fate in Back to the Future Part Two!
I think…I think I said “Back to the Future” twice in that sentence. Little bit redundant. Wish I could time travel back and change that.
All right, so let’s talk a little bit about what future predictions the movie got right and wrong.
Now back to the Future Part II’s predictions of the future were meant to be a parody of a lot of the old, weird things that people would predict in future movies and comic books and stuff. It wasn’t meant to be serious but nevertheless because we saw that and grew up…especially my generation grew up seeing that as the future that’s what we’ve wanted that we strived for.
So what have we got? Hoverboards? Neehhh, we’re still working on it. Flying cars? No. And while these things are coming and they’re being worked on, obviously they’re not in the hands of the common consumer yet as depicted in the movie.
But what did the movie get the right? One of the ways I think it was the most right is in the way we consume media. Basically, what it got the most right was screens. Screens everywhere. Our world is filled is filled with screens. I’m talking to you on a screen. I’m looking at myself on a screen while I’m talking to you on a screen! It’s terrible. And by terrible I mean awesome! But also kind of terrible and creepy and…you know, life is weird that way.
So in Back to the Future Part II, a lot of things happened with screens. People talk to each other on screens. Well, we certainly have that now! People also do multiple things with multiple screens at the same time.
I remember thinking back, and thinking, “No, nobody’s gonna be watching this channel and that channel and that channel and that channel at the same time.” But we do that. We do that regularly. We’re watching TV while we’re using our computers while playing video games while looking at our smartphones. We are looking at so many screens at once, and consuming so many different things at once! I…Even as someone with ADHD, it kind of drives me little batty sometimes, trying to focus on the many things that are trying so hard to get my attention and cram themselves in my head! So as far as its depictions of consumption of media, I’d say the movie was pretty damn spot on!
There’s also the idea of paying for things with thumb prints. We’re not there yet but we are doing a lot with thumbprint technology now. We’re locking our computers and cell phones with it. And in some cases? Yeah, it’s being used to pay for things. It’s weird. It’s the future!
So I don’t know. While there’s a lot that obviously the future predictions in the movie got wrong, like a Jaws 19 or holograms on the street (well, maybe, I don’t know), and while I can certainly demonstrate the fact that fashion is subjective and based on the individual, we’re certainly not all wandering around wearing double ties.
Though, maybe I should start doing that. It is 2015 after all. Time for those double ties to come out of hiding! Time to wear them with pride and…ugh, I can barely handle tying one tie. What am I talking about?
Still, I think it’s interesting the things that the movie got most right were about media, considering media does so much to influence our visions of the future and what we actually strive for. Would we have had cell phones without Star Trek: The Original Series? Would we have iPads and the like without Star Trek: The Next Generation? Would we even care about hover boards, and how much we want them, if it weren’t for Back to the Future Part II?
[SPEAKING TO THE GOATS] What do you guys think? Huh? Do you have an opinion on any of this?
[ADDRESSING THE CAMERA AGAIN] I don’t think they do. I think they just want me to feed them.
I don’t know. What do you guys think? Let me know in comments: what would we not have now if it weren’t for the idea being out there in media? Or would we have those things whether or not they had been shown to us in mass media form? Would we have all the technological innovations we have today without sci-fi spurring it forward? Would we have that in our imagination? Our collective imagination? Would we keep fighting for it? Or do we fight for it more because we see it on a screen, or read in a book, or see it in some painting or comic book or what have you?
That’s all I’ve got for you today. Until next time, I’m Adam the Alien. Fare thee well.
[OUTRO/RELATED VIDEOS TRANSCRIPT]
Today we’re going to talk about the future. Or more accurately a past retrospective vision of what the future, aka now, is. In other words: where’s my damn hoverboard Marty McFly?