Back to the Future screenwriter finally closes major plot hole

Bob Gale has weighed in on the debate around Marty McFly

Ellie Harrison
Thursday 23 April 2020 09:46
This Back to the Future deepfake featuring Robert Downey Jr and Tom Holland is so accurate it's terrifying

Back to the Future screenwriter Bob Gale has finally closed a major plot hole that’s had fans scratching their heads for 35 years.

Since the cult hit was released in 1985, many have wondered why Marty McFly's parents didn't recognise him as Calvin Klein, the teenager who engineered their romance back in the 1950s, when he returned home in the 1980s.

How could they not have noticed their son Marty was also their high school acquaintance Calvin?

Debate around the plot hole was recently reignited amid a discussion about what makes a film “perfect” on Twitter.

Marvel filmmaker James Gunn wrote: "Back to the Future SEEMINGLY could be imperfect (why don't Mom and Dad remember Marty?), but I would still argue it's a perfect film because there are reasons why this could conceivably be the case (time protects itself from unraveling, etc). Or maybe I'm in denial. Who knows."

Chris Pratt, who starred in Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy, replied: "Maybe they do remember him tho, not as Marty, as Calvin. When Marty returns to present day 1985, it could have been years since his parents would have perhaps originally noted the uncanny resemblance between their son and that kid from high school 20 years previous."

It appears as though Pratt was right, as Gale closed the plot hole once and for all, telling The Hollywood Reporter: "Bear in mind that George and Lorraine only knew Marty/Calvin for six days when they were 17, and they did not even see him every one of those six days. So, many years later, they still might remember that interesting kid who got them together on their first date."

“But I would ask anyone to think back on their own high school days and ask themselves how well they remember a kid who might have been at their school for even a semester. Or someone you went out with just one time. If you had no photo reference, after 25 years, you'd probably have just a hazy recollection.”

He continued: “So Lorraine and George might think it funny that they once actually met someone named Calvin Klein, and even if they thought their son at age 16 or 17 had some resemblance to him, it wouldn't be a big deal. I'd bet most of us could look through our high school yearbooks and find photos of our teen-aged classmates that bear some resemblance to our children."

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