Episode 1: To The Moon
- Why didn't River just tell John about their first meeting, without going through the whole rabbit ordeal? At first it seems that it's only due to her Asperger's, but revisiting the first part of the story, it becomes apparent that she wanted, in her own way, to bridge the gap between them by reminding him of (arguably) the only time when they truly connected, and that wouldn't work unless he remembered on his own.
- When you realize that River made the rabbits to try and remind Johnny of their first meeting. And that when the white rabbits didn't work, she tried a yellow one, because the moon is yellow. And that when the yellow one didn't work, she managed to make one with a yellow belly (for the moon) and blue head and feet (for the sky and stars). To add an extra layer to it... Her wedding dress was yellow and blue.
- Why didn't Johnny accurately remember David's main morph? Because he never read the books himself. Joey did.
- Ever notice how Johnny's clothes are coloured brown and dark green, while River's are mostly white and blue (and occasionally yellow)? Brown and green are very "Earthy" colours, while white, blue, and yellow are the colours typically associated with the moon and the night sky. Not only does this symbolize their relationship, to a degree (close, yet far away), but it also symbolizes Johnny's plight (he is a "down-to-earth" guy who wants to go to "the moon", his wife) AND their respective personalities (to most people, the Earth could be considered boring and mundane, at least compared to the unusual and exotic moon).
- Tying into this is Johnny's desire to be different - it was a result of his being a twin, and The Unfavorite to boot.
- During gameplay, people that Johnny didn't bother remembering or forgot all about are just silhouettes, indicating that he remembers that someone was there, but he cannot remember who or what they looked like. People and places that Johnny remember to some extent appear blurry and pixelated, often without any definable faces. And as a fridge moment of heartwarming: The only people that Johnny can remember with perfect clarity throughout his entire life, aside from himself, are Nick, Isabelle, his twin brother and River.
- The theme For River is a slow but, as noted in the game, rather repetetive piano piece. But keep in mind that Johnny wrote the piece in tribute of River who has Asperger. One of the more notable traits of Asperger Syndrome is "stimming", self-stimulation, repetitive behavior often involving one's fingers or hands that many Aspies often engage in order to relax themselves. For River is stimming in musical form.
- The title itself. While, blatantly, it expresses Johnny's wish to go to the moon as he had promised River when they were young, it can also represent the love Johnny had for River as a whole in this one phrase: "I love you to the moon and back."
- At first glance, "Everything's Alright" (the song that plays when Johnny's memories are reconfigured for the last time) seems to be an elegy for River. Considering the subject matter (which hints at River's Asperger syndrome), it probably is, but it could also be taken to refer to Joey. The phrase "If you're with me, then everything's alright" refers to the brother Johnny lost, whose return sets off a chain reaction that leads to the best possible outcome for Johnny's life.
- Of course, "Everything's Alright" certainly refers to River, with its references to her Asperger syndrome. The first verse refers to Johnny and his own struggles with her condition.Why do my words
Always lose their meaning?
What I feel, what I say
There's such a rift between them
He said, I can't
really seem to read you."
I just stood there
Never know what I should do.
- Blink-and-you'll-miss-it: When Johnny, at Izzy's insistence, tells River that he initially decided to be friends with her because she was weird, he absently adds that he "shouldn't have tainted our first meeting" by telling her. River responds by pausing and staring at him, then challenges him to throw her hackey sack all the way to Anya. She was testing him to see if he remembered giving it to her or if he really had forgotten. Of course, he threw it as far as he could, and the rest is history.
- River's reaching out of her hand for Johnny to hold seems a bit more normal than River's shown herself to be, even compared to later in her life. Then you remember that this is constructed from Johnny's memories. It's the same reason as with River showing up at NASA in the first place. All of River's data as an individual comes from him and is influenced by his wishes and desires.
- On the other hand, why didn't River in all those years, ever learned on her own of Johnny's past and the reason he never remembered?
- Johnny couldn't remember his past, and his mother either intentionally hides it or has snapped and thinks Johnny is Joey. In light of this, there's no way for River to have ever learned about it.
- Last I checked, NASA doesn't allow married couples to go into space together.
- On the other hand, it is possible that they got married after going to the moon, since we got a chance to see his memories post-lunar trip.
- Also, the illusion is created by combining actual data with the assumptions the person makes. maybe Johnny didn't know married couples are not allowed to go into space and the simulation decided not to enlighten him, as doing so would cause a bunch of trouble with keeping it going.Neil: Ah, yes, a wiki of existing facts tainted by personal fairytales.
- During The Stinger, it's implied that Neil might be dying. And once you think about it, you come to understand why he's constantly acting immature, doing stupid things, being mean, jerkish and funny: He's trying to make the most out of life before he dies...
- It's implied that all of the game's events in fact take place in Neil's head, quite possibly while he is in a similar state to John. Consider the Deja Vu of the squirrels running along the same path twice, almost like a glitch in the matrix.
- The first theory is further hinted at the very beginning of the game, in an optional scene you could miss entirely if you played as Eva: the mock RPG fight against the squirrel. If you check Neil's health bar, you'll see it's not full. If you play with Eva, the bar will be full.
- To support the theory that Neil is dying, at the carnival when they meet the fortune-teller, Neil refuses to see his future. "Good or bad, I'd be s***ed either way."
- Another one which makes you realize how truly screwed Johnny is: The reason Johnny's mother made him take the beta blockers which made him forget about his dead twin brother was because his mother was Driven to Madness by Joey's death and wanted Johnny to become his Replacement Goldfish, which puts her straight into the Abusive Parents field.
- A lot of things just seem... missing, as far as Johnny's memories go. Consider how old Johnny is, and consider all of the events he deems as "life-changing" or "life-defining." Not once is there any mention of a father figure, and Johnny's mother just appears out of nowhere, the first instance being his wedding. Remembering how the game is structured, that means Johnny never thought of his father as an memorable part of his life (if he was in Johnny's life to begin with), and he never thought of his mother as memorable from the time of his marriage to his death, which Johnny looks anywhere between 70-90 years old, as a very rough estimate. We don't know if his mother died, or truly went crazy, or just barely hanging on to her life as someone who is even older, but one thing is sure: she isn't even deemed as memorable in his life, which means if she died, he didn't consider the funeral as important. If she ever got sick, that type of affair was never considered important. And while one can make the argument that after marriage, the wife is the woman who matters most to a man, that's still at least 55 years of his mother not meaning anything to him to make it a life changing moment. Clearly, the familial issues run very deep.
- What's also disturbing is what he DOES deem more appropriate to remember. The things he remembers range from understandable (the important moments with River), to things that should have been forgotten (he remembers moments with Isabelle, but never actually meeting her) to the downright mundane, (ALT-F4 apparently is more memorable than his mother's funeral, graduation, so on.) And while it is absolutely sweet how 90% of his memories revolve around River, it's also somewhat terrifying how these moments alone comprise most of the highlights of his life.
- It's safe to assume that Johnny has more memories than just that. It's just that the heroes used his memories of River to get to his past since she was the most consistent part of his life, so The Law of Conservation of Detail applies. After all, in most (if not all) The Legend of Zelda games there are only about one to three overworld villages, but that doesn't mean that Hyrule consists of only those few villages and inhabitants. It's just means the developers didn't put more in and opted to show the ones that were important to the events of the story. In To the Moon, putting more memories could've ruined the pacing, theming, or it could've been too costly to do so we the viewer see only the plot important memories.
- It's absolutely tragic if you remember that while Johnny died completely happy, never having any sort of misunderstanding with River, River died with Johnny never knowing the truth.
- Thankfully, this is softened in the mid-credits sequence. After Johnny flat-lined, three sets of credits appears before it cuts back to child!River sitting on the log at their spot. Soon, child!Johnny appears, hands her the stuffed platypus, and seats himself next to her, cuing the rest of the credits.
Episode 2: Finding Paradise
- After knowing The Reveal, a lot of things about Faye make a lot more sense.
- She never interacts with anyone outside of Colin, no one ever acknowledges her, and even Colin himself doesn't talk to her when others are around.
- Colin said she was weightless. Well, he's not wrong...
- When Faye and Colin walk to the Community Theater, Eva and Neil are, of course, set to be non-interactive. And yet Faye walks around them while Colin walks right on through.
- Her name itself. Faye is a variation of "fae", which means fairy, and fairies are said to be invisible to most people.
- In accord with Colin's wish, aside from a last conversation with Faye, the only major change to Colin's memory was the deletion of Sigmund Corp. And its fantasy/promise/product of happiness on demand - meaning he wouldn't wonder What Could Have Been.
- The "gravitational center" of Colin's memory is the time when he let Faye go.