March 18 through 20 marks the first-ever Silicon Valley Comic Con, brought to San Jose by legendary tech guru Steve Wozniak. The schedule is packed (as I’m sure San Jose Convention Center will be), but Saturday’s panel caught my eye. “Spotlight on Back To The Future” will reunite the stars of the 1985 saga for an afternoon, including Michael J. Fox.
Along with many other little girls in the 1980s, I had a huge crush on Michael J. Fox, and I loved the Back To The Future trilogy. (Well, I wasn’t crazy about episode 2, and episode 3’s scene involving Marty’s prospective hanging looked far too realistic for my taste. A chapter in Fox’s memoir Lucky Man would prove that my suspicions were correct about that, but I digress.) My favorite Fox vehicle then and now, however, is decidedly more obscure. Since I loved research even as a kid, I was fascinated by Fox’s mentions of hockey in interviews. In that pre-San Jose Sharks era, however, I had yet to see a game. In November 1986, I sat down to watch David Letterman’s prime-time holiday film festival, eager to see the short film directed by Fox. I was completely unprepared for the following gem:
The Iceman Hummeth still holds up today, thanks to its clever premise and editing. More importantly, in its roundabout way, it got me into hockey, so I’m grateful to MJF for that. One mystery remains, however. There are many examples of tough hockey guys who are gentle souls in everyday life (just look at children’s book-writing enforcer Stu Grimson). Are most classical musicians secret brawlers, as the film would have us believe? The world may never know.