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The famous 2000 film that put Christopher Nolan on the map tells the story of a man on the hunt for the man he thinks killed his wife.

Hi! New! Questions! The first "John G"

Posts: 1
Okay, excuse my n00biness as I say that I just finished watching Memento last night, and then again right afterwards. I love the idea of the film and I'll probably be watching it again tonight with my boyfriend.

So, my questions (OF COURSE, I'M A NOOB :lol: )

So, lets just go by the story of that Lenny was Sammy, and doesn't remember killing his wife.
1) How does he remember the whole Sammy story, despite the tattoo (killing his wife, the insulin, blah blah blah) if it was actually him? I've researched a lot and apologies if I don't word this right but -- He has short term memory loss, he doesn't remember anything after the blow to his head. Although he thinks Sammy is prior to the incident, THAT Sammy didn't OD his wife on insulin, etc, etc. How does Lenny remember what happened to HIS OWN WIFE, in the body of Sammy and his wife? AGAIN SORRY!

2) So, Teddy claims that Lenny killed "the real John G" 1 year prior to their conversation after killing Jimmy Gantz (sp?) And Teddy took that bloody polaroid of Lenny pointing to the missing tattoo on his chest after he killed the first "real John G". My question is, who is "the real John G" if no one murdered his wife? Teddy had Lenny kill Jimmy (omg, so many abbreviated names!) for two reasons, the drugs, and for Lenny to feel like he finally had revenge on his wife's killer. Did Teddy set up the first John G like he did Jimmy? Was he just another guy for Lenny to get his jollies from that he killed the murderer of his wife? Teddy says that he was an officer on the case and he believed Lenny's story that there was a second guy that got away, so they looked for him together; was there really two people inside the bathroom during the rape scene or was that yet another memory malfuntion?

Again, so sorry for my wording, but I'm kind of just spitting out the questions, and I can't find the right way to word them. Any help is appreciated guys!
Posts: 700
Location: Mar del Plata, BA, Argentina.
Sarag wrote:Okay, excuse my n00biness as I say that I just finished watching Memento last night, and then again right afterwards. I love the idea of the film and I'll probably be watching it again tonight with my boyfriend.

So, my questions (OF COURSE, I'M A NOOB :lol: )

So, lets just go by the story of that Lenny was Sammy, and doesn't remember killing his wife.
1) How does he remember the whole Sammy story, despite the tattoo (killing his wife, the insulin, blah blah blah) if it was actually him? I've researched a lot and apologies if I don't word this right but -- He has short term memory loss, he doesn't remember anything after the blow to his head. Although he thinks Sammy is prior to the incident, THAT Sammy didn't OD his wife on insulin, etc, etc. How does Lenny remember what happened to HIS OWN WIFE, in the body of Sammy and his wife? AGAIN SORRY!

2) So, Teddy claims that Lenny killed "the real John G" 1 year prior to their conversation after killing Jimmy Gantz (sp?) And Teddy took that bloody polaroid of Lenny pointing to the missing tattoo on his chest after he killed the first "real John G". My question is, who is "the real John G" if no one murdered his wife? Teddy had Lenny kill Jimmy (omg, so many abbreviated names!) for two reasons, the drugs, and for Lenny to feel like he finally had revenge on his wife's killer. Did Teddy set up the first John G like he did Jimmy? Was he just another guy for Lenny to get his jollies from that he killed the murderer of his wife? Teddy says that he was an officer on the case and he believed Lenny's story that there was a second guy that got away, so they looked for him together; was there really two people inside the bathroom during the rape scene or was that yet another memory malfuntion?

Again, so sorry for my wording, but I'm kind of just spitting out the questions, and I can't find the right way to word them. Any help is appreciated guys!


First, I think you should watch the movie again.
But, I'll try to answer the main things so you can follow them on the film.

1) There is something in psychology called "projection" It's a defense method. When you don't want to accept the truth about something, you project it into someone else's. An example: you call someone "selfish" but you are the one who is selfish.
2) You are missing the main thing on this one. Lenny's wife survived. She didn't died in the incident.
Posts: 13
1. The movie makes an INSANE amount of references to faking the condition and the condition not being a physical one. There's also a scene where Lenny told Jankis' "wife" (supposedly) that he believed that Sammy should be physically capable of making new memories. I think this last scene hints at that...that Lenny's condition is also not a physical one, but a mental one.

2. There were two people in his apartment during the crime. He managed to kill the one, but the other got away. Teddy believed his story, and helped him find the other guy. According to Teddy, though, it was just "some guy," nothing special...no motive...just a couple of junkies too strung out to realize his wife didn't live alone. They found the guy and Lenny killed him (hence the polaroid of him pointing to his chest), but he didn't remember it.

I think your two questions are kind of linked in that way, because Teddy was sure that Lenny would remember something as monumental as killing the guy who raped his wife. But he didn't, and that's the tragedy. Lenny was so far into his conditioned delusion, that even something as powerful as that didn't jar him out of it.
Posts: 123
How does he remember the whole Sammy story?



Sammy was a case he worked on...before he lost his memory. Thus, he doesn't remember getting the "remember Sammy Jankis" tattoo, or any of them. If Leonard was Sammy, then he would not be able to remember it. He also has no memory of his wife being diabetic, which makes John Gammell's story very suspicious. I do not see the film showing that Leonard is Sammy. If this were true, then Leonard is making up complete lies, remembering them, and erasing real memories. Very unlikely.

My question is, who is "the real John G" if no one murdered his wife?



Only John says that Leonard killed his wife. the point is not proven during the film. So let's just focus on your main question of who is John G?
If the police didn't believe there was a 'second guy', then there was no report that led to any John G.
However, it is likely that, just as there was a fake clue of the license plate number, the first tattoo of John G may have been wrong.
Maybe, it made Leonard free of any guilt over killing his wife (but he would not remember that?)
Maybe, Leonard never killed the real John G, only several people that John Gammell wanted dead.
Maybe, Leonard wanted to kill John Gammell for some other reason and got the tattoo knowing he could only kill someone he believed to be his wife's killer. Thus, John Gammell is the 'John G', but the tattoo itself was a lie.
Some people believe that John Gammell was the rapist, and some people believe EVERYTHING that John/Teddy says.
However, that means that Teddy lied about "I'm a snitch" for absolutely no reason, and lies about not being a cop twice. (there is no proof that he was a real cop, only that Leonard believes his ID/badge. (Some of Teddy's actions are not what a police officer would do, but then he's a dirty cop if he is one.)
Posts: 41
Dear Sarag,

You prove there is no such thing as a stupid question as you pick up on two important clues to find the true chronological story of Memento. I’ll try to give short answers in this post. For a full explanation please see my post "Memento Mori Chronology (the true story of Memento)".

1) The Sammy-mirror.
Lenny uses Sammy as a mirror to transform himself into Lemmy. In chronological order:

Leonard Shelby : no CRS, no wife
Samual R. Jenkis : no CRS, no wife

Lenny : CRS, dead wives bad (1st) and murdered (2nd)
Sammy : CRS, dead wife good and deceased
Lemmy : no CRS, dead wife

2) Point Zero.
The real John G. was the man who hit Leonard from behind in his car, giving Leonard CRS. He was “just some guy, does it even matter who? No reason, no conspiracy, just bad fucking luck.” In his quest for revenge he never catches the real John G, but many other John/James/Jane(?) Gs bite the dust…

Hope you have a change to read the full story my post "Memento Mori Chronology". Donno why, but so far nobody seems to take it seriously (or even read it). If you do, let me know what you think it (I'll donate USD 100 to a charity of your choice if you are able to refute it…)
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