Robert Zemeckis’s beloved sci-fi comedy and coming-of-age period piece Back to the Future has spawned a lot of strange speculation from fans over the years. The film, now celebrating its 30th anniversary, seems to come alive again with each new generation, and each generation also seems to find new, bizarre conspiracies skulking in between the figurative lines. The folks at the A.V. Club have collected a bunch of the most prevalent online theories, and amid the usual JFK and Illuminati codswallop are some fun, if bonkers, ideas. Here are a few of our favorites:
Perhaps the most innocuous theory is that Marty wrote two letters to Doc Brown warning Emmett that he would be killed by the Libyan nationalists on October 21, 1955. The letters are visually different, most likely because the filmmakers didn’t have the same exact prop letter Doc tore up in 1955, sheets of paper being so easy to lose, so they just made another one. But what they didn’t realize was that with the advent of DVDs and the internet, that tiny gaffe would turn into a plot conspiracy theory.
More insidious is the Marty Martyr theory, which dictates that at the end of the movie Doc Brown, that lovable old rascal, was actually sending Marty to his death to avoid the potentially catastrophic paradox of “Marty A” and “Marty B” meeting. It’s like not crossing the streams.
Doc Brown may also be the Time Lord from Doctor Who. Yes, that’s an actual theory, too.
Finally, the whole movie may actually just be one big metaphor for sex, with the flux capacitor being a metaphorical uterus and Doc Brown dedicating his life to studying the great mystery of the universe: women.