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- "Chicken. They were laughing and calling him chicken. / He walked down the dusty street, serape over his shoulder, ready for the showdown. Except it wasn't high noon. In fact, he hadn't even had his breakfast. / Still, he had to go through with this. He clamped down on the tiny cigar in the corner of his mouth. / 'Aim for the heart, Ramone,' he said. / Something was wrong here. These guys were calling Clint Eastwood a chicken! / Somebody clucked. / Marty woke up. All he could see were feathers. / He realized he was staring at the chicken on top of Doc's egg-frying machine, a contraption that managed to break open and fry the egg while making coffee and — there was the ringing now — even setting off an alarm clock. / Marty sat up and turned off the alarm. He was just as glad he was awake. Those western dreams were almost as bad as real life."
- —From Back to the Future Part III by Craig Shaw Gardner (quote, page 137)
An automated breakfast maker was constructed by Emmett Brown in 1885 at his livery stable. When a cuckoo clock struck 7:00 in the morning, the chute underneath a caged chicken opened, and one egg rolled into a ceramic bowl that held the shell as it tipped and poured the egg into a hot frying pan. A pot of coffee sat on another burner of the stove, a piece of toast was lifted out of a toaster by a string, and a strip of bacon was pressed through a washing machine wringer into another pan.
Although Doc constructed the breakfast maker without the aid of electricity, it was a marked improvement over the machinery that performed the same function in Doc's home in 1985 — which had only provided toast for breakfast, and burnt toast at that.
However, despite its clever construction, the breakfast maker has several flaws:
- If the chicken has no eggs in the nest, Doc would have no eggs for breakfast.
- If the burner fails to reach a certain temperature, it wouldn't properly cook the eggs or bacon. Doc would have had to take this into account when building the device so he wouldn't become ill because of bacteria.
- The string that holds the toast has to be replaced from time to time because the heat from the toaster could cause it to catch fire and possibly burn down Doc's livery stable.
Behind the scenes
- The egg the chicken lays was actually hidden in a special compartment in the cage, as chickens don't lay eggs on cue!