Egg Monsters From Mars
Series number: 42
Number of pages: 115
Release date: April 1996
Tagline: They’re no yolk!
Did I Read It as a Child?: I don’t think so but I’m not a 100% sure
The Story On the Back
An egg hunt. That’s what Dana Johnson’s bratty little sister, Brandy, wants to have at her birthday party. And whatever Brandy wants, Brandy gets. Dana’s not big on egg hunts. But that was before he found the Egg. It’s not like a normal egg. It’s about the size of a softball. It’s covered with ugly blue and purple veins. And it’s starting to hatch…
The Story On the Pages
Oh boy. Egg Monsters From Mars. It’s one of those stories where literally everything you need to know is in the title, but a grim curiosity that it might be more makes you pick it up and read it. But then after you’ve read it, nothing but the title sticks with you. That’s why I’m not entirely sure if I ever read this one as a kid.
The book opens with the dullest birthday party imaginable: an egg hunt. And the worst egg hunt imaginable at that. The eggs aren’t chocolate, just regular eggs. And these regular eggs? Not painted or decorated at all. They’re not even hardboiled. You can see where this is going, right? A large pack of bored ten year olds with dozens of raw eggs at their disposal? What could possibly happen?
While exactly what you think happens, happens, Dana (a more mature twelve year old) has found himself an egg that’s not part of the egg hunt festivities. It’s a pale shade of green and has veins covering it. And it throbs. And when it hatches, it oozes a slimy, viscous liquid.
Oh god… I’m so uncomfortable…
When a horrible runny egg monster hatches from the egg, Dana scoops it into a cardboard box and, after ruining his best friend Anne’s breakfast by slapping it on her plate, he totes it off to the friendly, neighbourhood scientist at the local laboratory for inspection. Turns out Dana has one of many aliens that fell to Earth and as Doctor Gray shows the twelve year old around his lab and lets him look at the other aliens, something sinister is brewing.
The good doctor locks Dana in cold storage so he can do experiments on the boy. It’s creepy the way this man approaches kidnapping a young kid. It’s fairly common when talking about aliens to talk about their threat to us. Doctor Gray is worried about germs and possible human mutations. The only logical way to deal with this possible crisis is to lock Dana in with the creatures. The scientific method if I’ve ever seen one!
Though I have to say, between reading chapters that focus on the creature that hatches from the throbbing, veiny egg, and this crazy scientist running experiments on a child, I’d much rather read about the experiments.
Why’d the egg have to be described as veiny too?
The story ends with Dana almost freezing to death but the aliens saving him by blanketing him with their oozing bodies. The good doctor is freaked by this physical change in his aliens and assaults both Dana and them before the aliens strike back.
Dana runs home to get his parents to bring back to the lab to see the aliens and (more than likely) a smothered scientist because the aliens crawled over his face.
The aliens have left though. Gone to wherever a snot-like alien goes. But they’ve left something behind. Another egg. Only problem is that it’s Dana that lays it.
I can feel your confusion through the very molecules of the air. But it’s true. The aliens used Dana as a host to reproduce in. But it’s meaningless. It’s literally the last few sentences of the book before it ends forever, never to have a sequel.
Egg Monsters From Mars has all the usual Stine characters, the twelve year old main protagonist, a younger sibling, two “regular” parents, a best friend, and a monster. Despite having a host of characters, the story is a mostly just Dana dealing with an egg alien in a cardboard box.
I suppose most Goosebumps books have the main child alone at one point or another, but Dana felt especially separated from the rest of the cast. It’s probably the one thing I don’t have a complaint about. It works for the story a helluva lot better than if Dana and his best friend Anne had been trapped in the freezer together. Alien stories usually have the one person who is the lone believer or witness to the alien related stuff. Egg Monsters From Mars is no different. Dana is the one burdened with dealing with the repercussions that these aliens bring.
Not that they really bring repercussions. The unhatched “runny scrambled egg” aliens fell to Earth from Mars (because that could totally happen) and covered this one, single town. When they hatch, they seem to be fully grown with reproductive cycles, but to what end? To impregnate the population of Earth so more are born?
But then what? In the book we see them form themselves together into a different and bigger shape, but could enough of them form into something threatening? I highly doubt it. I highly doubt that any alien species could do much to harm humans. We’re pretty great at killing things we fear and don’t understand. Aliens that look like scrambled eggs are supposed to conquer us?
I don’t think so.
The aliens even prove, during Dana’s time in the freezer, that they’re actually quite benevolent. They form into a solid shape and ooze themselves overtop of him to keep him from freezing to death. Side note: this is when Dana (presumably) gets knocked up by the aliens.
When Doctor Gray assaults Dana and the solid form of aliens the next day because Dana “wrecked his aliens”, that’s when a malevolent side is shown. The aliens cover Doctor Gray and he’s never seen again. Did they eat him? Dissolve him? Take him back to Mars? We’ll never be privy to that information.
Even with aliens from Mars, the only remotely interesting character in Egg Monsters From Mars is Doctor Gray. He’s a wacko that works at the tiny, local laboratory this town seems to have. Why though? Is this place prone to brief showers of alien eggs from Mars? Why is there just a laboratory down the street?
Anyways, after collecting all the eggs that rained to Earth (don’t ask me how he found them all or how he was the only one to notice because it’s never said) he hatches them and keeps them in a large freezer in the back of his lab. When Dana comes with another one, Doctor Gray leaves him to chill in the freezer with the alien monsters. His reasons? To run “experiments” on the only other human to have any contact with the bizarre creatures.
Spooks and Scares
Where do I even begin with Egg Monsters From Mars? I guess with saying it’s not a scary book. But is it because an egg monster from Mars isn’t a very good idea or because I’ve never been scared (or even a fan) of sci-fi alien invasion stories?
The egg monsters are described disgustingly enough, and having them need a human host (or a warm-blooded host in general?) to reproduce is like, Ridley Scott levels of alien rape. But the reproduction is used as a gag at the end for the patented Stine twist and all Dana does is lay an egg. There’s no chest-bursting here. And face-hugging? Forget about it.
The egg monsters form a blanket for Dana in the cold storage freezer but stop at his chin.
What did Stine want to achieve with Egg Monsters From Mars? The age group he’s appealing to is too young for the brief Alien references. What ten year old wants to read about vaginal aliens raping men? I mean, I want that in hindsight, but for reasons steeped in misandry, not because of the aliens themselves.
I suppose there are some legitimate fears he’s playing on if the scrambled-egg-looking aliens don’t do it for you. Stranger danger is huge with Doctor Gray kidnapping Dana for experiments because he’d had exposure to the aliens. Germs and weird mutations that aliens might give to humans is another one, but I don’t think there’s a kid on Earth that’s scared of germs at age twelve.
Monsters From Mars kind of feels like Stine didn’t seem to care. Or Stine was rushed. Or Stine found a gag he liked and wrote a whole story around it. Of all the aliens that could have been created, of all the reasons they could have come to Earth, of all the things they could have done to humans… they look like runny scrambled eggs, they fell to Earth from Mars, and they impregnate twelve year old boys after blanketing him from the cold of a freezer.
I suppose that’s a story. It’s just not the one I wanted.