Forgetful Jones

A character whose defining characteristic is that he is ridiculously forgetful. Usually played for comedy, this trope does not cover characters with Alzheimer's or brain injuries that legitimately impair their short-term or long-term memory.

Compare Absent-Minded Professor. For showrunners assuming their audience's memory is this bad, see Viewers Are Goldfish.


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    Comic Books 
  • Ira West (Iris' adoptive father, Wally's grandfather) in The Flash. In his first appearance, he was told Barry Allen's Secret Identity and helped create his super-compressed costume, but had forgotten all about it the next day.
  • Quinton Zempfester from Thieves & Kings.
  • Senilo in the Swedish superhero spoof Kapten Stofil. His superpower is being incredibly forgetful. While generally useless, this sometimes allow him to perform marvelous feats as long as they occur off-panel and he doesn't remember what he did. ("How did you get free?!" "I haven't the foggiest. Where are we?")

    Fan Works 
  • Bow the Gothorita, one of the supporting characters in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Reflecting Balance, is very forgetful, often forgetting to tell other Pokémon of her visions of the future until after they have already happened.

    Films — Animation 
  • Dory from Finding Nemo
    Dory: I suffer from short-term memory loss. It runs in my family. Well, at least I think it does... Where are they?

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Absent-Minded Professor (or, indeed, any Absent-Minded Professor). The original movie begins with the Fred MacMurray character forgetting his own wedding!
  • Uncle Billy in It's a Wonderful Life: Besides his big blunder toward the end of the film, an earlier scene shows him with reminder strings tied on several different fingers, indicating that he is generally prone to forgetfulness.
  • Decidedly not Played for Laughs in Memento, where Leonard's anterograde amnesia drives the plot, and the movie's format.

  • "Biffy" Biffen from the Jeeves and Wooster stories, who has found the girl of his dreams, but can't remember her last name! Also applies to the TV show.
  • Another P. G. Wodehouse example: Lord Emsworth of Blandings Castle.
  • Professor Plum from the Clue book series.
  • Mr. Forgetful from the Mr. Men series. In his book, he even has to memorize a message (and, being Mr. Forgetful, gets the message wrong, of course).
    Mr. Forgetful: There's a goose asleep in the rain!
The original message was "There's a sheep loose in the lane."
  • Neville Longbottom of Harry Potter fame, long before his Memetic Badass days, was this for the first four (and part of the fifth) books. It's implied that he was this because of his lack of self-confidence and drive to be better. Or it could be due to the Memory charm he received as a child to erase his traumatic memories of watching his parents be tortured into insanity.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Saturday Night Live sketch "Mr. Short-term Memory", with Tom Hanks.
  • In the Drake & Josh episode "Football" Drake and Josh meet the school janitor, Zeke Braxton, who used to be a pro football player until a head injury affected his memory.
    Zeke: Who are you kids?
    Drake: I'm Drake.
    Zeke: And you are?
    Josh: Josh.
    Zeke: And I am?
    Drake: Zeke... you're Zeke.
    Zeke: Right... And you are?

    Puppet Shows 


    Video Games 
  • Advanced V.G. II: There's only thing Tamao seems able to remember: which is how much she admires Yuka. Aside from that, don't expect her to remember anyone else's name for more than a few seconds (literally) before she forgets it. Kaori actually had to reintroduce herself three times, within a minute, after first meeting her.
  • Koishi of Touhou had become this as a side effect of her completely sealing her ability to read any minds, including her own. By Hopeless Masquerade, she mentions that she tends to forget everything now, so she's surprised that she could still remember the Mask of Hope that she found some time ago.
  • Gaboonga from Wonderland Adventures frequently forgets his own name.
  • Who was that Maud person, anyway? (This is a reference to the eponymous poem by Alfred, Lord Tennyson.)

    Web Animation 
  • Ultra Fast Pony has Rose, in her one scene from the episode "So Random!"
    Pinkie Pie: I can't help but notice that despite your name and cutie mark, you're growing flowers that aren't roses.
    Rose: Sorry about that, I've got a very bad memory.
    Pinkie: Oh, don't worry. I'm sure we'll get that fixed one day.
    Rose: Get what fixed?
    Rose: 'Allo, Pinkie Pie!
    Pinkie: Goodbye, Rose.

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 
  • Sparadrap from Noob, thus extending his The Watson role to things that his guildmates have presumably already explained to him previously off-screen and mild cases of Viewers Are Goldfish.

    Western Animation 
  • In one episode of The Care Bears, Beastly was written as having an extremely bad short-term memory. To the point where he would often lose his train of thought mid-sentence. He wasn't written that way in other episodes.
  • The entire elephant village are depicted as this in the ThunderCats (2011) series.
  • The Courage the Cowardly Dog episode, "Bride of the Swamp Monster" had a swamp monster's girlfriend (also a swamp monster) who forgot things instantly. She even says that she never got his letters because every time she got off work she forgot where she lived.
  • On one of the U.S. Acres segments of Garfield and Friends, Wade's cousin Newton, who has a ''really' bad memory visits. He keeps forgetting who Orson is less than a minute after he tells him. One hilarious dialogue between them:
    Orson: You really do have a bad memory.
    Newton: I know, I'm in a club for people with bad memories.
    Orson: What's the name of the club?
    Newton: I forgot.
    Orson: How often does it meet?
    Newton:: I dunno.
    Orson: How often are the meetings held?
    Newton: Beats me.
    Orson: Why don't you just quit??
    Newton: I can't! I'm the president! Incidentally, what was your name again?
  • Mr. Scatterbrain from The Mr. Men Show.
  • This is the main trait of Lily the fox on Timothy Goes to School. It's not played for comedy, though, so much as An Aesop that she is working to get better about it.
  • On Young Justice, Klarion, since he's a Lord of Chaos whose mind works differently than a human's. Upon being told that T.O. Morrow is in a coma, he pauses to ask "Did I know that already?" Word of God also noted that while everyone in the Light knew about Black Manta being Kaldur's father, "whether Klarion remembers is a legit question."
  • Patrick on Spongebob Squarepants is so stupid he'll sometimes forget things in seconds. Like when he and SpongeBob were hiding out in the desert and he decided to eat his only food, a chocolate bar, in one go and then immediately forgets he ate it.
  • Adventure Time: Lumpy Space Princess can be ridiculously forgetful at times. In "Video Makers" after Jake tells her they're filming a food fight scene she immediately forgets they're filming a scene and gets mad when Peppermint Butler throws food at her.
  • The Tweety and Sylvester cartoon "Red Riding Hoodwinked" features a version of The Big Bad Wolf who can never remember Red's name and has to be prompted by other characters. Another, even more forgetful wolf was Bugs Bunny's antagonist in "The Hare-less Wolf"
  • Lilly from Timothy Goes to School is very prone to forgetting important things. One episode had Lilly take care of the class pet (A fish) which Doris thinks isn't a good idea. Lilly always remembers what to do with her pet fish and proves it in that episode. She can also be seen wearing a string around her hand to remember things and would talk to herself to remind herself.
  • In Aladdin: The Series episode "Mission Imp Possible", Genie, Iago and Nefir end up in The Bog of Forgetfulness.
    Iago: You know, you're big, blue and funny looking; you must be a genie. Turn into something that will help us out.
    Genie: How about an elephant? An elephant never forgets. (Turns into a hippopotamus) Was this what I was suppose to turn into?
    Iago: You weren't always a hippo?

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