Marty looks up Dr. Emmett Brown's number in the 1955 telephone directory.

"Marty nodded and started for the booth at the back of the store. Grabbing the directory, he flipped through the pages until he came to the familiar name. "Brown, Emmett L." Immediately following was the word, "Scientist," then Brown's address and telephone number. / Marty smiled and withdrew a nickel from his pocket. / The phone rang and rang. No answer. / "Damn," Marty muttered. "This just isn't my day." / He ripped the page out of the directory and sauntered back toward the counter."
—From Back to the Future by George Gipe (quote, page 86)

A telephone directory, or phone book, was a large book which contained an alphabetical listing of names, addresses and telephone numbers of both individuals and firms in a certain geographical area.


On November 5, 1955, Marty McFly made use of the telephone directory in the payphone booth at Lou's Cafe to look up the number of Dr. Emmett Brown.

Having called the number and received no answer, Marty then tore out the page containing Doc's details (as he didn't have a notepad or scratch paper, and a pen or pencil on him, this uncharacteristic act of vandalism can perhaps be forgiven) and asked Lou Carruthers directions to 1640 Riverside Drive.

Behind the scenes[]

  • In the phone book listing seen on-screen, Doc's first name is clearly shown to be misspelled as 'Emmet'. The novelization corrects this error (see Quote above).


See also[]