The human brain, for all its incredible capacity, is a pretty fragile thing, easy to squash or slash. It also has to be maintained in a liquid environment at all time. That is why it is housed in a completely airtight solid chamber called cranium.
Aliens, however, do not have the limitations of puny humans, and can live with their brain exposed without any problems. In some less realistic medium, humans too might survive with their brain exposed or protected by something much more flimsy than a cranium.
This trope is different from Brain in a Jar
as the character is question still has a body and a head in addition to his brain. However, a monsters whose body is comprised mostly of an exposed brain but that also has legs and arms and a mouth and other body parts fits in this tropes.
Not to be confused with My Brain Is Big
, which is for for characters whose big brain is a sign of heightened intelligence (which is not a prerequisite for this trope) and can be(and is more often than not)covered with a cranium. Henceforth, if this is accepted, some of the examples on that page (mostly those identified as subversion) will go here. The Trope Pic for My Brain Is Big
might also requires changing.
- The Metalunan Mutants from This Island Earth
- The Martians is Mars Attacks!
, both the original cards and the movie and comics derived from it.
- Psimon from DC Comics has his exposed brain protected by nothing more than a glass shell, and it doesn't seem to be bathing in liquid as it should.
- Depending on the Artist
, Dungeons and Dragons Mind Flayers are sometimes depicted with brain-like head instead of craniums.
- Still from Dungeons and Dragons, Intellect Devourers are huge brains with four legs, a motuh and a lashing tongue.