Emmett Brown

Emmett Brown

    Back to the Future
Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Character Analysis

(Avoiding Spoilers)

Grew up… in his family’s mansion in Hill Valley, California. Dr. Brown was once very wealthy, until he spent all his money on realizing his ultimate “vision” – a time-travel device.

Living… in 1985, on the verge of completing his vaunted time machine: a DeLorean DMC-12 sports car altered with a “flux capacitor,” a radioactive device that functions as the core of the time machine.

Profession… inventor. Doc Brown describes himself as a “student of all sciences.” He spends his time toiling away in his garage-turned-laboratory, where he invented the flux capacitor. He’s willing to take any risk in order to pursue his vision, including scamming Libyan terrorists. As Doc puts it, “They wanted me to build them a bomb, so I took their plutonium and, in turn, gave them a shoddy bomb casing full of used pinballs.”

Interests… science. Doc reveres the great scientists, mathematicians, and inventors from history. He named his two dogs Copernicus and Einstein, and he keeps portraits of famous scientists such as Isaac Newton and Thomas Edison in his laboratory.

Challenge… getting his young friend Marty McFly back to the future. When Marty is sent from 1985 back to 1955, he seeks out the help of the younger Doc Brown. In 1955, Doc Brown has to find a way of getting Marty back where he belongs before he accidently alters the course of history – and potentially erases his own existence.

Personality… verbose and enthusiastic. Doc Brown speaks in a grand, antiquated manner. His eccentric character doesn’t clash with his undying optimism. As he likes to say, “If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything.”  


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