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We Can Remember It for You Wholesale
"We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" is a short story by American writer Philip K. Dick, first published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction

View Wikipedia Article

For the collection of Philip K. Dick stories named after this story, see We Can Remember It for You Wholesale (collection).

"We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" is a short story by American writer Philip K. Dick, first published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction in April 1966. It features a melding of reality, false memory, and real memory. The story was adapted into the 1990 film Total Recall with Arnold Schwarzenegger as the story's protagonist. That film was remade in 2012 with Colin Farrell as the protagonist. It also inspired Buichi Terasawa's manga Space Adventure Cobra.

Contents
  • 1 Synopsis
  • 2 Film adaptations
  • 3 Publication history
  • 4 Notes
  • 5 References
  • 6 External links
Synopsis

Douglas Quail works a menial office job in the "not too distant future." His biggest dream has always been to visit Mars, but is constantly dissuaded by his wife, who is annoyed by this fantasy. Quail eventually discovers Rekal Incorporated, a company specializing in memory implants and supporting artifacts, and decides to get some to satisfy his dream. Quail also fantasized about being a government agent and pays extra to have this added. To the shock of the Rekal technicians, Quail's memories reveal that he really is a secret agent who has been to Mars. Suddenly undergoing a personality change, Quail berates the technicians for blowing his cover.

The Rekal representative, McClane, refunds half of Quail's money and sends him home. Quail decides that his new memories are fake and that the staff just simply botched their job, and manages to get a full refund. He returns home still believing the memories are fake, but discovers a box of fauna smuggled from Mars in his desk. He confronts his wife about whether or not he has actually been to Mars, and she angrily leaves him. Two armed men suddenly enter and reveal that Quail has a telepathic transmitter in his head that allows them to read his thoughts. They then have a conversation that is both verbal and mental which leads to Quail suddenly remembering why he had his memories erased: Quail wasn't just a secret agent, he was an assassin who fought through several bodyguards on Mars and killed a political opponent for Earth's government.

With his memories returned, the armed men appeal to Quail to surrender, but Quail, with his abilities awakened as well, fights them, but flees, threatening to kill them should they follow. Wondering what to do, Quail's former commanders suddenly speak to him through the telepathic transmitter. Quail suggests going through another mind-wipe, but his commanders state that he will just get bored with his life and go to Rekal again or try to go to Mars. Quail comes up with another idea, to remove his current memory of being an assassin and implant a new and amazing memory of something exciting. His commanders agree, feeling that it is their obligation to help their former assassin.

Quail turns himself in and is placed with a psychiatrist to figure out what his own personal desires are: When he was young, Quail always envisioned that as a child he came across minuscule aliens that were going to launch a full invasion of Earth with their superior technology. However, Quail was so kind and accepting to the aliens that they decided to hold off on their invasion as long as he was alive. While finding the fantasy narcissistic, his commanders agree to plant the memories at Rekal. To everyone's shock, those memories turn out to be real as well. The aliens had suppressed Quail's memories of them, and given him a weapon that he had used while an assassin. McClane realizes that Quail will probably get a real citation from the UN, instead of the fake that Rekal was to have provided.

Film adaptations

The plot was loosely adapted into the 1990 film Total Recall, directed by Paul Verhoeven and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. In the film, the hero, renamed Quaid, travels to Mars on a dangerous mission, but the initial memory implant scene foreshadows much of what he achieves while there, causing the viewer to question whether events in the story are real or are all in Quaid's purchased memory.

A remake of Total Recall was directed by Len Wiseman and released on August 3, 2012. This film was largely based on the original and does not credit Dick as a writer.[1]

Publication history

"We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" was first published in the April 1966 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. It has since been republished in the following collections:

  • Nebula Award Stories Number Two (1967)
  • World's Best Science Fiction: 1967 (1967)[2]
  • The Preserving Machine (1969)
  • Alpha 5 (1974)
  • The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick: Volume V (1987)
  • The Little Black Box (1990)
  • We Can Remember It for You Wholesale (1990)
  • The Philip K. Dick Reader (1997)
  • Minority Report (2002)
  • Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick (2002)
  • The Wesleyan Anthology of Science Fiction (2010)
Notes
  1. ^ "Total Recall (2012) Full Cast & Crew". IMDb.com. Retrieved 17 November 2018..mw-parser-output cite.citation{font-style:inherit}.mw-parser-output .citation q{quotes:"\"""\"""'""'"}.mw-parser-output .citation .cs1-lock-free a{background:url("//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/65/Lock-green.svg/9px-Lock-green.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .citation .cs1-lock-limited a,.mw-parser-output .citation .cs1-lock-registration a{background:url("//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/d6/Lock-gray-alt-2.svg/9px-Lock-gray-alt-2.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .citation .cs1-lock-subscription a{background:url("//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/aa/Lock-red-alt-2.svg/9px-Lock-red-alt-2.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration{color:#555}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription span,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration span{border-bottom:1px dotted;cursor:help}.mw-parser-output .cs1-ws-icon a{background:url("//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/4c/Wikisource-logo.svg/12px-Wikisource-logo.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output code.cs1-code{color:inherit;background:inherit;border:inherit;padding:inherit}.mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{display:none;font-size:100%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error{font-size:100%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-maint{display:none;color:#33aa33;margin-left:0.3em}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration,.mw-parser-output .cs1-format{font-size:95%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-left,.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-wl-left{padding-left:0.2em}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-right,.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-wl-right{padding-right:0.2em}
  2. ^ published by Ace Books, edited by Donald A. Wollheim and Terry Carr, #A-10
References
  • The Collected Short Stories of Philip K. Dick, Vol 2: We Can Remember It for You Wholesale. ISBN 0-8065-1209-1.
External links
  • We Can Remember It for You Wholesale title listing at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
  • v
  • t
  • e
Philip K. Dick
  • Bibliography
Novels
  • Gather Yourselves Together (1950)
  • Voices from the Street (1952)
  • Solar Lottery (1954)
  • Mary and the Giant (1954)
  • The World Jones Made (1954)
  • Eye in the Sky (1955)
  • The Man Who Japed (1955)
  • A Time for George Stavros (1956)
  • Pilgrim on the Hill (1956)
  • The Broken Bubble (1956)
  • The Cosmic Puppets (1957)
  • Puttering About in a Small Land (1957)
  • Nicholas and the Higs (1958)
  • Time Out of Joint (1958)
  • In Milton Lumky Territory (1958)
  • Confessions of a Crap Artist (1959)
  • The Man Whose Teeth Were All Exactly Alike (1960)
  • Humpty Dumpty in Oakland (1960)
  • Vulcan's Hammer (1960)
  • Dr. Futurity (1960)
  • The Man in the High Castle (1961)
  • We Can Build You (1962)
  • Martian Time-Slip (1962)
  • Dr. Bloodmoney, or How We Got Along After the Bomb (1963)
  • The Game-Players of Titan (1963)
  • The Simulacra (1963)
  • The Crack in Space (1963)
  • Clans of the Alphane Moon (1964)
  • The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch (1964)
  • The Zap Gun (1964)
  • The Penultimate Truth (1964)
  • The Unteleported Man (1964)
  • The Ganymede Takeover (1965)
  • Counter-Clock World (1965)
  • Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1966)
  • Nick and the Glimmung (1966)
  • Now Wait for Last Year (1966)
  • Ubik (1966)
  • Galactic Pot-Healer (1968)
  • A Maze of Death (1968)
  • Our Friends from Frolix 8 (1969)
  • Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said (1974)
  • Deus Irae (1976)
  • Radio Free Albemuth (1976; published 1985)
  • A Scanner Darkly (1977)
  • VALIS (1981)
  • The Divine Invasion (1981)
  • The Transmigration of Timothy Archer (1982)
  • The Owl in Daylight (unfinished)
Collections
  • A Handful of Darkness (1955)
  • The Variable Man (1956)
  • The Preserving Machine (1969)
  • The Book of Philip K. Dick (1973)
  • The Best of Philip K. Dick (1977)
  • The Golden Man (1980)
  • Robots, Androids, and Mechanical Oddities (1984)
  • I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon (1985)
  • The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick (1987)
  • Beyond Lies the Wub (1988)
  • The Dark Haired Girl (1989)
  • The Father-Thing (1989)
  • Second Variety (1989)
  • The Days of Perky Pat (1990)
  • The Little Black Box (1990)
  • The Short Happy Life of the Brown Oxford (1990)
  • We Can Remember It for You Wholesale (1990)
  • The Minority Report (1991)
  • Second Variety (1991)
  • The Eye of the Sibyl (1992)
  • The Philip K. Dick Reader (1997)
  • Minority Report (2002)
  • Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick (2002)
  • Paycheck (2004)
  • Vintage PKD (2006)
  • The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick (2011)
Short stories
  • "Beyond Lies the Wub" (1952)
  • "The Gun" (1952)
  • "The Skull" (1952)
  • "The Little Movement" (1952)
  • "The Defenders" (1953)
  • "Mr. Spaceship" (1953)
  • "Piper in the Woods" (1953)
  • "Roog" (1953)
  • "The Infinites" (1953)
  • "Second Variety" (1953)
  • "Colony" (1953)
  • "The Cookie Lady" (1953)
  • "Impostor" (1953)
  • "Paycheck" (1953)
  • "The Preserving Machine" (1953)
  • "Expendable" (1953)
  • "The Indefatigable Frog" (1953)
  • "The Commuter" (1953)
  • "Out in the Garden" (1953)
  • "The Great C" (1953)
  • "The King of the Elves" (1953)
  • "The Trouble with Bubbles" (1953)
  • "The Variable Man" (1953)
  • "The Impossible Planet" (1953)
  • "Planet for Transients" (1953)
  • "The Builder" (1953)
  • "Tony and the Beetles" (1953)
  • "The Hanging Stranger" (1953)
  • "Prize Ship" (1954)
  • "Beyond the Door" (1954)
  • "The Crystal Crypt" (1954)
  • "The Short Happy Life of the Brown Oxford" (1954)
  • "The Golden Man" (1954)
  • "Sales Pitch" (1954)
  • "Breakfast at Twilight" (1954)
  • "The Crawlers" (1954)
  • "Exhibit Piece" (1954)
  • "Adjustment Team" (1954)
  • "Shell Game" (1954)
  • "Meddler" (1954)
  • "A World of Talent" (1954)
  • "The Last of the Masters" (1954)
  • "Upon the Dull Earth" (1954)
  • "The Father-thing" (1954)
  • "Strange Eden" (1954)
  • "The Turning Wheel" (1954)
  • "The Hood Maker" (1954)
  • "Foster, You're Dead!" (1955)
  • "Human Is" (1955)
  • "War Veteran" (1955)
  • "Captive Market" (1955)
  • "Nanny" (1955)
  • "The Chromium Fence" (1955)
  • "Service Call" (1955)
  • "The Mold of Yancy" (1955)
  • "Autofac" (1955)
  • "Psi-man Heal My Child!" (1955)
  • "The Hood Maker" (1955)
  • "The Minority Report" (1956)
  • "Pay for the Printer" (1956)
  • "A Glass of Darkness" (1956)
  • "The Unreconstructed M" (1957)
  • "Null-O" (1958)
  • "Explorers We" (1959)
  • "Recall Mechanism" (1959)
  • "Fair Game" (1959)
  • "War Game" (1959)
  • "All We Marsmen" (1963)
  • "What'll We Do with Ragland Park?" (1963)
  • "The Days of Perky Pat" (1963)
  • "If There Were No Benny Cemoli" (1963)
  • "Waterspider" (1964)
  • "Novelty Act" (1964)
  • "Oh, to Be a Blobel!" (1964)
  • "The War with the Fnools" (1964)
  • "What the Dead Men Say" (1964)
  • "Orpheus with Clay Feet" (1964)
  • "Cantata 140" (1964)
  • "The Unteleported Man" (1964)
  • "The Little Black Box" (1964)
  • "Retreat Syndrome" (1965)
  • "Project Plowshare (later "The Zap Gun")" (1965)
  • "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" (1966)
  • "Holy Quarrel" (1966)
  • "Faith of Our Fathers" (1967)
  • "Not by Its Cover" (1968)
  • "The Electric Ant" (1969)
  • "A. Lincoln, Simulacrum" (1969)
  • "The Pre-persons" (1974)
  • "A Little Something for Us Tempunauts" (1974)
  • "The Exit Door Leads In" (1979)
  • "Rautavaara's Case" (1980)
  • "I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon" (1980)
  • "The Eye of the Sibyl" (1987)
  • "Stability" (1987)
AdaptationsFilms
  • Blade Runner (1982)
  • Total Recall (1990)
  • Confessions d'un Barjo (1992)
  • Screamers (1995)
  • Impostor (2001)
  • Minority Report (2002)
  • Paycheck (2003)
  • A Scanner Darkly (2006)
  • Next (2007)
  • Screamers: The Hunting (2009)
  • Radio Free Albemuth (2010)
  • The Adjustment Bureau (2011)
  • Total Recall (2012)
  • Blade Runner 2049 (2017)
    • 2036: Nexus Dawn (2017)
    • 2048: Nowhere to Run (2017)
    • Blade Runner Black Out 2022 (2017)
TV series
  • Total Recall 2070 (1999)
  • The Man in the High Castle (2015–present)
  • Minority Report (2015)
  • Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams (2017)
Related
  • Philip K. Dick Award


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