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Everything Back To The Future: Part II Got Wrong

Everything Back To The Future: Part II Got Wrong

Everything Back To The Future: Part II Got Wrong
Danielle de Wolfe
20 October 2015

It's finally happened. That fateful day is basically upon us where everything that happens in Back to the Future: Part II no longer happens in the future, but in the past.

One of the most iconic visions of a near future world is no longer futuristic, but rather 'retro-futuristic'. 

Sure, the film's writers got a lot of cool stuff right: holograms are in their early throws of becoming full-on mediums of entertainment, hoverboards are getting there - but what about the other stuff?

Here's everything that BTTF: II didn't get quite right.


Okay - there are a few hoverboards doing the rounds at the moment, but none of them are quite what BTTF promised us.

We've got hoverboards with wheels (which are just cheating us all with that name), and several that use magnets to levitate over conductive surfaces, but no one has made a board that float about over any given surface. 

As soon as they do, we'll be giving up walking for good.

The self-tying shoe

Sure, we've got shoes that use lace lace levers, and Nike has got a patent in the works, but we still don't have self-tying trainers yet.

And that makes us sad. Come on science/engineers/whoever makes shoes these days.

We're still old

In order to ensure that Marty still recognises, Doc heads to a rejuvenation clinic, literally peeling 30 to 40 years off his face.

Which would be nice. Certainly a lot less invasive than botox or facelifts. Whoever does come up with this ingenious procedure is bound to make an absolute fortune. 

Our clothes still take ages to dry

"Size adjusting: Fit. Drying mode: On."

Now wearable tech and fancy materials have taken impressive leaps in recent years - with some fabrics capable of dispelling huge amounts of heat or even turning super dark - but no one has made a jacket that can tailor itself before getting a quick blow dry.

We'll have to stick to trying to work out if we're a small, medium or large for a few more years yet.

We're still paying with cards or cash

Another piece of tech we're so close to having is paying for goods or services with biological IDs, like our fingerprints.

While plenty of phone contactless systems use fingerprints as a way of confirming payments, we're still yet to arrive at a point where a cab ride can be paid for sans chip-n-pin. 

This tit had a contactless card implanted into the back of his hand, but that's not that same thing. That's just stupid.


BTTF got drones right in a lot of ways - with big businesses like Amazon and Google all keen to get them delivering goods and ruling our skies. 

But litigation and safety rules mean that we still don't have drones taking our dogs for walks. Pity.

Need a lift?

While vehicles like the AeroMobil 3.0 claim to be "flying cars", they're just planes that can fold their wings up, pretending to be flying cars.

Given the laws of aviation, gravity and thermodynamics, we still haven't reached a point of scientific understanding where Jeeps are able to do this...

Annnd sleep

In one slightly concerning moment in BTTF: II, Doc Brown produces the future gadget equivalent of a Rohypnol, knocking poor Jennifer out in seconds.

Mercifully, this isn't a real thing, with electric tasers being the closest hand-held equivalent - albeit far more painful. 

It's coming out of the screen!

Holograms are doing some cool stuff these days - you can even make them with your smartphone

But they aren't leaping out of advertising boards at us, causing a little wee to seep into our jeans. Here's hoping we're not around for a future in which that's possible.


Ah the humble fax machine. Back in 1989, a future without this sort of office tech seemed impossible - surely they'd just get smaller? Right? With better paper and faster printing?

What do you mean you just send everything via electronic emails? What's an iPad? 

We're being mean - this is possibly the one point at which BTTF: II's future looks older than our present.