Jeez You Smoke Too

Lorraine smoking, to her future son Marty's utter shock.

Smoking Required-Sign

A Smoking Required sign is displayed at the main entrance to the Biff Tannen Museum.

"Sam fiddled with the rabbit ears of the new set, finally managing to bring in a rather muddy image of a cigarette commercial. / Marty watched, fascinated, as a surgeon stepped out of an operating room, lit up a cigarette, and began speaking to the audience. "After facing the tension of doing three lung operations in a row, I like to relax by lighting up a Sir Walter Randolph. I know its fine tobacco taste will soothe my nerves and improve my circulation..." / "That's incredible!" Marty said, in spite of himself. He had never seen a television commercial advertising cigarettes and couldn't quite comprehend the brazenness of it."
—From Back to the Future by George Gipe (quote, page 106)
"The rest of the family, except those too young to comprehend, stared at Marty incredulously. To say that one day American television would be without cigarette commercials was like saying one day Christmas would be devoid of Santa Claus."
—From Back to the Future by George Gipe (quote, page 107)
Marty: "Jesus, you smoke too?!"
Lorraine: "Marty, you're beginning to sound just like my mother."
— Marty McFly and Lorraine Baines

Smoking was a form of stimulant release performed by many people over the centuries.


Around the end of the 20th century, doctors began to see the health risks associated with smoking and anti-smoking campaigns popped up.

Smoking was known to many residents of Hill Valley:

  • Lorraine Baines McFly smoked cigarettes in 1955 and 1985 (before Marty altered events).
  • A large red NO SMOKING warning sign was outside at the Texaco service station in 1955, while a smaller white sign on one of the canopy posts near the gasoline pumps read NO SMOKING / STOP MOTOR in red lettering.
  • Marty McFly was surprised to see a television commercial featuring a surgeon who, having worked on three lung operations in a row, then advertised Sir Walter Randolph cigarettes (see first Quote above). He later tried to point out the Surgeon General's warning on the cigarette packet to Lorraine, only to discover that it was noticeable by its absence:
" He [Marty] took the cigarette pack from her [Lorraine] and looked for the Surgeon General's warning. It was not there. Instead, there was a line, obviously written by the cigarette manufacturer, which read: "This fine blend of Turkish and domestic tobaccos calms the nerves, improves the circulation, gives you a sense of well-being." / "Good God!" Marty whistled. / He handed the pack back. Somehow he'd avoided smoking all his life and he wasn't about to start now. "
—(quote, page 205)


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