Appearing in "Remembrance of Things Past"
- Hiram Sheckerberg (First appearance)
- Leland Gabriel (Only appearance)
- Danny Grimm (Only in flashback)
- Elsie Grimm (Only in flashback)
- N.Y.P.D. officer (Only in flashback)
- Tom (Mentioned)
- Dr. Jake Grimm (Mentioned)
- Yancy Street (Main story and flashback)
- Sheckerberg's Pawn Shop
- Star of David (Main story and flashback)
Synopsis for "Remembrance of Things Past"
The Thing has returned to Yancy Street where he bumps into a lost tourist and warns him that this isnt' a great neighborhood to get lost in. Naturally, the man from out of town is frightened by the Thing's appearance and bolts out of the nieghborhood. As Ben walks through the old neighborhood his mind drifts back to when he was a child....
He thinks back to when he earned the ire of local shop keeper Hiram Sheckerberg when he threw rocks at his store. Hiram just about dragged young Ben Grimm to his family's apartment if his brother Benjamin hadn't interrupted and offered to pay for the damage. Scheckerberg slapped the money out of Daniel's hands, uninterested in money that was ill gotten through crime. Taking offence to this, Daniel Grimm was about to pummel the old man, but young Ben Grimm intervened. Ben got off the hook by offering to work weekends for Scheckerberg in order to pay for the window. He also thinks about the time he saw his brother after a gang fight. Daniel told Ben that you had to fight for what is yours otherwise someone will take it from you, telling him that Yancy Street belongs to them. When Ben expressed an interest in the stars his brother told him that the Grimms were strictly street level people. This leads to Ben thinking about the night his brother Danny died in a gang fight. His father was off at the bar again. When Ben tells his mother that he will look after her like his brother did, the office who is on the scene tells Ben to stay out of the trouble that his brother got into. When the officer tries to console Ben by telling him that God took Danny to a better place, Ben wonders why he left them here. Thinking ahead of time, Ben recalls how when he was a teenager he stole the Star of David owned by Hiram Schekerberg as part of his initiation into the Yancy Street Gang.
This ends Ben's recollection of the past as he pulls up to Scheckerberg's pawn shop, which is still in operation. Going inside, the Thing is surprised to see Hiram come up to him with a baseball bat shouting about not being intimidated. Although Schekerberg recognises Ben, he thinks that he has come to rough him up and break his merchandise as part of a protection racket. Although Ben clumsily wrecks some things, he gets the apparent truth from the increasingly agitated Sheckerberg about his old gang apparently threatening his store. Ben tells Hiram that he is no longer part of the Yancy Street Gang and offers to deal with the problem for him. Hiram agrees to anything that will get Grimm out of his store and stopping him from accidentally wrecking anymore merchandise. As Ben goes outside he begins to think back to his final days with the Yancy Street Gang...
Ben's parents had just died and he was forced to move in with his uncle Jacob uptown. Unwilling to live apart from Yancy Street, Ben returned to the old neighbourhood and attempted to call a meeting. Instead of a warm greeting, Ben was pelted with garbage and called a traitor for leaving the neighbourhood.
Ben's recollection is cut short when he is pelted by real life garbage by the real life Yancy Street Gang. This only makes Ben angry, but they manage to catch him off guard when it appears that he has been shot by high enough calibre bullets to pierce his rocky hide. However Ben soon realises that he was actually hit by harmless paint balls. He is then struck with a stink bomb and sprayed with a fire hose. Ben rushes back inside Sheck's pawn shop for cover and tries to convince him that he has the Yancy Streeters under control. However inside he finds the real protection racketer, an super-villain calling himself Powderkeg, whose explosive punch knocks Ben right outside of the shop and back out into the street. The two begin to fight it out, but Ben is distracted by Sheck who comes out to heckle them for fighting in the street. This allows Powderkeg to blast Ben and also seemingly slay the elderly Jew with a smaller blast. Ben recovers and resumes the fight, with some unexpected help from the Yancy Street Gang. While the Gang distracts him with their usual pranks, Powderkeg is easily incapacitated by the thing.
Checking on Hiram, Ben begins to think that he is dead and begins reciting a Jewish Kaddish over his body. However Hiram wakes up very much alive. Hiram is impressed that Ben hasn't forgotten what he learned in Temple over the years. This follows into a discussion about Ben's faith and how he doesn't talk about how he is Jewish to the press. Eventually Ben explains the reason he has come is to return Hiram's Star of David on what he thinks is the Day of Atonement. Hiram appears momentarily touched but then reams Ben out for it being the wrong day and time. But he says the main reason why he cannot forgive Ben is because there is nothing to be forgiven since Ben manage to leave his life as a petty hood behind and make something of himself. Hiram then theorises that the reason that Ben continues to return to Yancy Street and let the old gang torment him is because he feels guilty for moving on with his life and leaving them behind. Also because Ben is a protector, reminding Ben of the Jewish myth of the Golem and how Ben somewhat resembles the mythical creature. Hiram then tells Ben to protect his Star of David for some time. Soon after Hiram goes back to his crotchety behaviour after assessing the damage done to his shop. When Ben offers to pay for the damage, Hiram refuses but later accepts Ben's offer to come down and work for the old pawn broker in exchange for the damages.
Finally the authorities arrive and when Ben is about to haul off Powderkeg to the police, the villain asks if he is really Jewish. When Ben confirms this and asks if Powderkeg has a problem with it, the villain says he doesn't, he just thinks that the Thing doesn't look Jewish.
- This story expands on the story of Ben's childhood growing up on Yancy Street, the death of his brother, his joining the Yancy Street Gang, and having to move uptown to live with his uncle when his parents died. This tale was originally depicted in Thing #1. There is only one glaring difference between the two accounts. Originally it was stated that Ben was witness to his brother getting stabbed by a rival gang member and got arrested. In that account Ben was picked up from the police station by both of his parents. This version of the story isn't clear on if Ben was present during his brother's death or not. However the instance where the police are at the Grimm home and Ben's father is off drinking contradicts the original account.
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- 3 Images from Fantastic Four Vol 3 56
- ↑ First and only known appearance to date besides flashbacks
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