Invasion of the mind-altering parasites
This year, science writer Ed Yong went from being a noted critic of the TED conference science coverage to being part of the TED conference science coverage. And he nailed it.
Here's Ed's talk — all about the wonders of mind-controlling parasites — which manages to tie awesome scientific facts back to a larger idea without overselling that Big Idea so much as to become misleading. May it be a model for all science TED talks to come.
Also: I particularly love the video Ed shows at about 2:47 into the talk. It features a worm that drives a cricket to suicide and then uses the death as an opportunity to crawl out of said cricket and continue on its merry way through the worm life cycle. In other words, it's got everything a good mind-control parasite story should have.