15 things Back to the Future told us we’d have by 2015

Back to the Future the musical will hit the West End next year and the 1989 film sequel made some big promises about technology that year...

15 things Back to the Future told us we’d have by 2015
Written By

Back to the Future the musical is happening. It’s heading to London in 2015, ready to delight us with a stage version of Marty and Doc Brown’s time travelling adventures.

Of course 2015 is a timely year for it to hit the stage, given it’s the very year the pair are blasted into in the 1989 sequel.

This got us thinking. There’s a whole lot of things that need to happen by the time we get to 2015, if Back to the Future is to be believed. From flying cars to self-tying shoes, here’s what the film told us 2015 would look like…

Mr Fusion

By next year we should be merrily throwing rubbish into the Home Energy Reactor and, by the magic of nuclear fusion, be making ourselves some cheap, clean energy to use. Beats worrying about which colour bin the empty beer bottles go in…

Flying cars

Aside from a few boy racers taking corners rather too fast, the wheels of our vehicles are still firmly on the ground. What’s that all about? When Marty and Doc pop up in the future they’re caught on the wrong side of a flying car highway. In a year’s time we should be zipping our way through the sky, past hovering street signs and seemingly weightless street lamps. Did this film not teach car manufacturers anything?

Self-tying shoes

By 2015 we should be laughing at our foolish selves for wasting precious minutes of our day tying our laces. Nike, we’re looking at you. Marty’s Nike Air Mags simply do themselves up. Your replica version, while neat for giving proceeds to the Michael J Fox Foundation, missed this rather vital component.

Rejuvenation centres

Hands up if you want to look thirty years younger? Yeah, the Doc doesn’t have to worry about night creams or keeping an eye on what he’s eating. He just has a quick visit to a rejuvenation centre, and boom! – he’s a spring chicken once more.

Doc Brown: "I went to a rejuvenation clinic and got an all-natural overhaul. They took out some wrinkles, did a hair repair, changed the blood, added a good 30 to 40 years to my life. They also replaced my spleen and colon – what do you think?" 

Weather Service

Our weather reports give us a bit of hint if we need to put an umbrella in our bag for some point within the next three days. Doc Brown is able to predict exactly when it will stop raining just by looking at his watch. To the "tick" as he says. Doc goes on to credit the "Weather Service" who he says is far more reliable than the post office, which will apparently still be an issue next year. Damn.

Self-drying jacket

Talking of popping out and getting caught in the rain, these guys said we wouldn’t need to worry about it anyway. Back to the Future promised us self-drying jackets. Marty can also press a button and make the jacket adjust to his size. Perfect after a bit too much holiday indulgence.

Petrol station robots

You might think you’re rather swish when you pull into the ‘pay at pump’ lane. You casually bypass that tiresome visit to the person behind the till, a slight thrill as you feel like you’re driving off without paying. Well, Back to the Future thinks we'll be met (in our flying cars of course) by a robot that will fill our tanks (with whatever passes for petrol then) and process the payment for us. We’re waiting…

Jaws 19

We’ve had Jaws one, two, three and four… but Jaws 19? There’s just one year for filmmakers to blast into shark-filled action. Sharknado is well on its way to having two films. What are those people over at Jaws HQ waiting for? And, sorry, 3D movies are one thing, but Marty gets ‘attacked’ by a holographic shark that leaps from the theatre to entice him into the cinema. If we don’t have this in a year’s time the disappointment will be epic.

Food hydrators

Sure we can order a hot pizza straight to our doors. Yes, we can easily buy a pizza, fling it in the oven for roughly 12-14 minutes and be merrily eating a cheese covered slice. But the McFlys said we’d have food hydrators. A mini pizza goes in, er gets hydrated, and pops back out steaming hot and full-sized in, like, seconds. Delicious and space-saving!


This time next year back pain should be a thing of the past. Back to the Future has shown us exactly how it should be done. George McFly puts his back out and moments later is hanging upside down by his ankles with some sort of chiropractic hoverbelt fixing the pain for him. Simple.

Indoor garden centre

Who wants a fruit bowl when you can have an indoor garden centre that appears and retracts on command. Marty wants some fruit, and what do you know, there appears a bowl from the ceiling bursting with delightful treats. Is anyone on this? Anyone?

Pick your scenery

Back to the Future said that by 2015 we’d be able to avoid the dreary outside world with our very own scenery channel. Raining outside? Switch to the Barbados scene. Snowing? Pop up a nice picture of a lush green garden. It can’t be that hard can it?

Moving rubbish bins

Never a rubbish bin when you need one? In 2015 rubbish bins should just be flying by, apparently. Does the litter bug know it’s needed, or is it always on the move? Who knows. But flying rubbish bins are definitely something the world should have, like Roomba but outside.

Hovering cameras

Yes, hovering things are cool. Why get someone to hold a camera for you when one can hover and record your every move? Doc Brown yells, "I've managed to re-wire the hovercam so I can beam transmissions to you people back in the present". Maybe not necessarily an every day item, or indeed very clear, but well, they said we should have them so come on guys.


Of course, last but certainly not least, we still do not appear to be able to hop on a hoverboard and fly. A skateboard is not the same. Not at all. One year people, one year to get this into our lives...