Musings of a Back to the Future Fan

Welcome to Retro Time.  In this blog, I’ll be covering topics related to film and television from past decades.  These won’t be reviews, but rather a selection of memories, thoughts, and ideas designed to spark a little nostalgia and maybe inspire a conversation or two.  Spoilers will likely come up, so please keep that in mind.  Thanks for stopping by, and if you have any thoughts or ideas, feel free to chime in.  I’d love to get your feedback.  Now, let’s get ready to take a look back…

Back to the Future

I went to grade school in the late 1980’s. Back then, the thing to do around the holidays was to bring several classes together in one large room and play a VHS movie on one of those wheel-in TV carts.

For some reason unknown to me, the teacher in charge one year decided to play Back to the Future. Now, as you may recall, that film has quite a bit of cursing in it. Nothing too crazy by today’s standards, but a bit more than a group of 5th graders should probably be receiving from your average school assembly.

The teacher’s plan to combat this was to sit there with a remote control and fast-forward through all the curse words. The concept: Instead of the dreaded dirty language, we’d get that garbled, fast-forward sound that went something like ZZZUUUGGG… The problem: The teacher didn’t have the movie memorized, so he didn’t necessarily know when the curse words were coming. More often than not, he’d hit the fast-forward button AFTER the offending words were spoken.

So instead of having our delicate little ears protected by the teacher’s sharp reflexes, we were treated to a chorus of curses quickly punctuated by fast-forwards that sounded a bit like:

“Holy shit! Let’s see if these bastards can do 90!” ZZZUUUGGG…

“Hey you, get your damn hands off her.” ZZZUUUGGG…

“You caused 300 bucks damage to my car you son of a bitch! And now I’m going to take it out of your ass.” ZZZUUUGGG…

I don’t know what was more fun.  Watching the movie, or watching the teacher tweak out every time he missed a curse cue.

Over the coming years, I’d see Back to the Future many times and would come to count is as one of the best sci-fi films ever made. But no viewing of it will ever compare to that time when a majority of the curse words were highlighted by a teacher’s valiant yet ill-timed fast-forward bursts after the fact.

Call me silly, but after all these years later, I still think it’s pretty damn funny.


5 thoughts on “Musings of a Back to the Future Fan

    • George Ebey says:

      Yes! And remember those stick figure drawings on the side that would show you how to properly push the cart? Push the cart wrong and the TV crushed the stick figure to death.

  1. Seth Heasley says:

    I tried that trick with the mute button watching T2 with my kid. I have a great memory for dialogue, but I still managed to miss a few.

    Ah, the school TV/VCR unit. And that brief time where the AV guys were cool. And now those days are back!

    • George Ebey says:

      I came to love that TV cart. It was passed around to different rooms depending on use, so when we’d come to class in the morning and see it there, we’d all get excited because it meant the teacher was planning a video at some point during the day. Good times.

    • George Ebey says:

      I came to love that TV cart. It moved around from room to room depending on need. When we’d get to class in the morning and see it there, we’d get all excited because it meant that the teacher was planning to show a video at some point during the day. Good times.

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