Let’s face it – the media and entertainment industries have always taken delight in portraying dental professionals as buffoons, geeks, dorks and worse yet, torture mongers.
From W.C. Fields playing a horrible dentist attempting an extraction to Steve Martin’s nitrous breathing sadist in “Little Shop Of Horrors” to Nick At Nite’s cartoon loser, Glen Martin, D.D.S., we haven’t exactly been portrayed as the coolest people in the world. Even The Three Stooges made us look like morons – something they would never do to physicians or attorneys.
And of course who could forget the most famous movie dentist of all time – Lawrence Olivier’s totally creepy and scarily unforgettable dentist in Marathon Man? Just say the phrase “Is it safe?” and chills will go up every spine!
Even Jerry the orthodontist on the Bob Newhart show was portrayed as a successful loser.
But things may be about to change! Finally – the award winning and highly rated TV show “Glee” has made dentists cool by casting none other than sex symbol John Stamos as Carl Howell, D.D.S. !! Stamos has described the character as “cool” in numerous interviews – a word not usually used in the same sentence as “dentist!!”
Is the tide finally turning? Is it possible that the media and entertainment industries finally realize that dentists don’t torture people, but are a hugely positive force in society? Could be!
So to all dental professionals – keep up the good work! We are not only changing our image but also changing lives!
At the very least, sex symbol John Stamos could boost our new patient flow!
According to dental blogger Dr. Harold Katz,
“With visions of dashingly handsome dentists in their minds, oral health providers may at least see an uptick in female patients!”
Now if we could only get Cameron Diaz to portray a female dentist on another show, everyone would be happy!!