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The Brain Parasites!
A meteor lands in Lost Lake in a resort section of Eastern Pennsylvania. Reed Richards gets a phone call from an old friend at the University of PA, Dr. Gideon Carruthers, and so the FF go to investigate. The first thing that they see when they arrive is some sort of a flying dragon, rather like the Pteranodon from the age of the dinosaurs. Torch, Thing and Mr. Fantastic fight off the creature. It finally just blows up in mid-air, but it leaves behind a brain parasite, which is grabbed by Mr. Fantastic. A little later a scary wolf-like creature appears. Mr. Fantastic grabs a brain parasite from the back of it's neck and it transforms back into a normal dog. Sue snaps at Reed for them having brought young Franklin along on the trip, when there is always so much danger wherever they go. She then apologizes to her husband and has a good cry.
Franklin stays back at the shore with Dr. Carruthers and the FF take a boat out on the lake to investigate further. Ben puts on some underwater gear and finds what appears to be a large egg at the bottom of the lake. He throws the egg to Mr. Fantastic, but Reed cannot investigate immediately, as he has to help fight a giant eel that has wrapped itself around the Thing. With the egg on the floor of the boat, five brain parasites escape and take control the the Invisible Girl. Mr. Fantastic stretches and grabs a brain parasite from the creature and the eel explodes, just like the Pteranodon did. Back on shore, a brain parasite transforms Dr. Carruthers, just like in the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. However, the Things snatches his brain parasite and saves Dr. Carruthers. Franklin realizes that his mother is not right. Mr. Fantastic snatches the brain parasites that have taken control of her and Sue returns to normal. As the FF depart, the fiery exhaust from the Fantasti-Car kills all of the brain parasites except for one and it slithers away into the grass, either to die or to live and fight another day....
- This story may well have been inspired by the 1958 science-fiction film entitled THE BRAIN EATERS, starring Ed Nelson and Joanna Lee. The 1950's film has the same basic premise as this story, as alien brain parasites land from Outer Space and attach themselves to the base of the necks of human beings in order to control them. Leonard Nimoy of Star Trek fame has a small role in the film.
- Bob Budiansky's assistant editor credit taken from letters page header.
- Features the Hostess Fruit Pies ad, Daredevil VS. Johnny Punk!