Before ringing out the year 2022 and in with 2023, I thought I may make a quick post related to a classic Science Fiction franchise and its relation to the as classic tropes of naming characters:

Enter Doctor Emmet Lathrop Brown:

When we discuss naming characters in fiction, we typically see authors use the terms Cratylic and Hermogenic, the former relating to names that are given with a specific meaning in mind, and the latter those that are arbitrarily given. This is where Back to the Future fits the Cratylic mold rather perfectly.

Emmet Lathrop "Doc" Brown's name is on the surface level one of two rather uncommon personal names plus a rather ordinary surname, which is the official reason given by Zemeckis and Gale.

The fact that they somewhat spell out "time portal", when written backwards appears to be a happy accident, more than purposeful pun, however it still fits fortuitously. Brown's own name could be in reference to the father of modern rocketry, Wernher Von Braun, since it is also mentioned that Doc's father Anglicised the German surname to fit into society.

His unusual first name Emmett also fits the trend of other "eccentric" scientists such as Julius F. Kelp, Theophilus Branestawn and Ivo Robotnik.

"Doc" rounds it off as an old fashioned if informal way of referring to someone who either is a doctor, or has the traits of them.

Plus there is the echo of pulp magasine heroes in it, as well.

With that in mind, have a Happy New Year!