Back to the Future is an animated series based on the Back to the Future trilogy of feature films. The series lasted two seasons, each featuring 13 episodes, and ran on Syndication from September 14, 1991 to December 26, 1992. It reran until August 14, 1993 on Syndication, and later on Syndication from March to September 2003. Actors Christopher Lloyd, Thomas F. Wilson, Mary Steenburgen and James Tolkan reprised their roles from the original trilogy. The series won 4 Emmy awards between 1992 and 1993, 1 each year in Sound Mixing and Sound Editing.
Although the series takes place after the films, 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 re-built after it was destroyed at the end of the trilogy. The DeLorean now has 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 Jennifer Parker made occasional appearances, the show focused primarily on Marty and 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.
At the end of every episode, Doc Brown would appear with his assistant (Bill Nye) to do an experiment, often related to the episode's plot. The first season also included post-credits segments with Biff Tannen telling a joke related to the episode.
Marty McFly (voiced by David Kaufman) — The main character of the series. Marty spends a lot of time visiting the Brown house where Doc, Clara, and their sons live. He continues to travel through time alongside Jennifer, Doc and the rest of the Brown family on many of their adventures. Marty and Jennifer become students at Hill Valley College after graduating from Hill Valley High School.
Doc Brown (portrayed by Christopher Lloyd in live action segments; voiced by Dan Castellaneta in the animated segments) — Marty's best friend and the inventor of the time machine, which he built out of a DeLorean sports car in 1985 and later built a locomotive time machine from 1885 to 1895. He lives with Clara and two sons Jules and Verne.
Clara Clayton Brown (voiced by Mary Steenburgen) — Doc's wife, who, along with the rest of the family, moved to the 20th century. She and the Browns lived in a farmhouse outside Hill Valley in 1991. Clara has settled well into 20th century life, and became a teacher at Hill Valley Elementary. She occasionally joins her husband, sons, and Marty on their time travel adventures.
Jules Brown (voiced by Josh Keaton) — Verne's elder brother. His middle name is Erastosthenes. Unlike younger brother Verne, Jules is intelligent for his age and, similarly to his father, uses long words in his everyday vocabulary. He calls Marty McFly "Martin". Jules is top of the class in his school; however, he is not very popular and has but a few friends. He has a crush on his classmate Franny Philips and enjoys baseball and inventing.
Verne Brown (voiced by Troy Davidson) — Jules' younger brother. He is a cheerful young man; however, he dislikes losing and doing chores. He likes video games and watching television. He is almost always seen wearing a raccoon skin cap. Unlike his older brother Jules, Verne is quite popular at school and has many friends, including Marty McFly. He also acts his age, unlike Jules. Verne often uses his favorite insult, "skunkhead", primarily toward his older brother.
Einstein (voiced by Danny Mann) — The sheepdog living with Doc, Clara, Jules, and Verne. He is also Marty's friend.
Jennifer Parker (voiced by Cathy Cavadini) — Marty's girlfriend.
Biff Tannen (voiced by Thomas F. Wilson) — Biff is the great-grandson of Buford "Mad Dog" Tannen and is the present day villain of the series, although most episodes feature his numerous ancestors or descendants instead (Marty once rhetorically questioned if there was a "Biff" in every time period and place they visited).
Gerald Strickland (voiced by James Tolkan) — Gerald Strickland was the authoritarian discipline officer of Hill Valley High School and high school principal of Marty, his girlfriend Jennifer, his parents, and Biff Tannen. He becomes the Dean of Hill Valley College, continuing to call Marty and other people he doesn't like "slacker."
Back to the Future has a total of 26 episodes spread over 2 seasons that were produced from September 1991 to December 1992.
International television broadcast history
Comic Book Adaptation
Two comic book mini-series were published by Harvey Comics detailing further adventures of the animated series. The first was a four-issue run; the second, a three-issue run subtitled "Forward to the Future". A "Special" issue was also released, reprinting parts of the first mini-series' first issue. The comics were written by Dwayne McDuffie with art by Nelson Dewey.