History Main / BritishTeeth

9th Jul '17 2:14:16 PM DavidDelony
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The reasoning behind this trope has its roots largely in [[ValuesDissonance cultural differences]]. In America having bad teeth is associated with being extremely poor - not being able to afford the dentist is like not being able to afford basic medical care. Thus there is an enormous cultural stigma to not having perfect teeth. In Britain, on the other hand, for various reasons there is no such class stigma. Indeed the reverse seems to be true: having one's teeth artificially straightened or whitened is seen as a form of vanity, and cosmetically perfect teeth are seen as [[UncannyValley somewhat odd]]. The American emphasis on cosmetically perfect teeth is viewed as being obsessive, odd and an expensive financial indulgence. [[note]]Although private dentistry in Britain is taking mighty steps to remedy this lamentable state of affairs[[/note]]

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The reasoning behind this trope has its roots largely in [[ValuesDissonance cultural differences]]. In America having bad teeth is associated with being extremely poor - not being able to afford the dentist is like not being able to afford basic medical care. Orthodontia is a rite of passage for many American teenagers whose parents can afford it. Thus there is an enormous cultural stigma to not having perfect teeth. In Britain, on the other hand, for various reasons there is no such class stigma. Indeed the reverse seems to be true: having one's teeth artificially straightened or whitened is seen as a form of vanity, and cosmetically perfect teeth are seen as [[UncannyValley somewhat odd]]. The American emphasis on cosmetically perfect teeth is viewed as being obsessive, odd and an expensive financial indulgence. [[note]]Although private dentistry in Britain is taking mighty steps to remedy this lamentable state of affairs[[/note]]
27th May '17 5:17:58 PM nombretomado
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* The British adult comic {{Viz}} mercilessly turned the trope on its head in a one-off strip called Crystal's Big Chance. This was about an American girl who wanted to become a cheerleader, but was regarded as hideously ugly because one of her front teeth was just slightly out of line. She eventually got her happy ending and was hailed as beautiful at the end despite the enormous braces she now wore.

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* The British adult comic {{Viz}} ''ComicBook/{{Viz}}'' mercilessly turned the trope on its head in a one-off strip called Crystal's Big Chance. This was about an American girl who wanted to become a cheerleader, but was regarded as hideously ugly because one of her front teeth was just slightly out of line. She eventually got her happy ending and was hailed as beautiful at the end despite the enormous braces she now wore.
8th May '17 2:14:19 PM iowaforever
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* WesternAnimation/SamuraiJack's ally the Scotsman has a ''really'' bad tooth decay problem, visible whenever he smiles. (Which he tends to do ''a lot'' more often [[PerpetualFrowner than Jack]].)

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* WesternAnimation/SamuraiJack's ally the Scotsman has a ''really'' bad tooth decay problem, visible whenever he smiles. (Which he tends to do ''a lot'' more often [[PerpetualFrowner than Jack]].)Jack]]). His wife as well has teeth just as bad as his, but somehow this didn't pass down to their AmazonBrigade of daughters.
1st May '17 1:23:10 AM HabitualCrawler
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* Music/{{David Bowie}}'s teeth were... less than perfect. Until he had them replaced.
20th Apr '17 3:40:53 PM TristanJeremiah
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* An ad for Dog treats uses this trope. "[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zlUTq72A7fI Don't let American dogs suffer from British teeth]]"

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* An ad for Dog treats uses this trope. "[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zlUTq72A7fI "[[https://streamable.com/c4y66 Don't let American dogs suffer from British teeth]]"
20th Apr '17 2:53:06 PM TristanJeremiah
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Added DiffLines:

* An ad for Dog treats uses this trope. "[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zlUTq72A7fI Don't let American dogs suffer from British teeth]]"
8th Apr '17 6:56:07 AM Dragon101
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* The ''Film/AustinPowers'' films pull a few jokes of this nature on the titular spy, who has atrocious teeth. This is in part to show how times have changed since the 1960's, when straight teeth weren't as highly prized, and also furthers the point that it's Austin's personality that makes him attractive, not his looks. He does some dental work before the first movie ends. But in the following movie, they revert to being horrible when Austin time travels.

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* The ''Film/AustinPowers'' films pull a few jokes of this nature on the titular spy, who has atrocious teeth. This [[{{Subverted}}]] However, this isn't really about Austin being British, but is in part mainly to show how times have changed since the 1960's, when straight teeth weren't as highly prized, and also furthers the point that it's Austin's personality that makes him attractive, not his looks. He does some dental work before the first movie ends. But in the following movie, they revert to being horrible when Austin time travels. It's worth noting that most other British characters (from any time period) have better teeth than Austin, and the only character who complains about his teeth is the British agent Miss Kensington.
4th Apr '17 4:01:45 PM NWolfman
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* British-Irish singer/songwriter and [[Music/ThePogues Pogues]] frontman Shane [=MacGowan=] is infamous for his terrible teeth. To be fair, though, his substance abuse probably contributed to his poor dental hygiene.

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* British-Irish singer/songwriter and [[Music/ThePogues Pogues]] frontman Shane [=MacGowan=] is infamous for his terrible teeth. To teeth, all of which eventually fell out and had to be fair, though, his replaced due to substance abuse probably contributed to his poor dental hygiene.abuse.
29th Mar '17 2:03:17 AM bombadil211
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* Music/FreddieMercury of Music/{{Queen}} fame didn't move to Britain until the age of seventeen (he was born to an Indian Parsi family in Zanzibar and spent most of his childhood near UsefulNotes/{{Mumbai}}, which was then called Bombay), but he developed a recognizable overbite caused by four extra teeth that pushed his incisors forward. He refused to have his teeth corrected for fear that it would damage his singing voice.

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* Music/FreddieMercury of Music/{{Queen}} fame didn't move to Britain until the age of seventeen (he was born to an Indian Parsi family in Zanzibar and spent most of his childhood near UsefulNotes/{{Mumbai}}, which was then called Bombay), but he developed a recognizable overbite caused by four extra teeth that pushed his incisors forward. He refused to have was self-conscious about it and grew his teeth corrected for fear that trademark mustache in an attempt to hide it. He also wanted to fix the condition through surgery but ultimately decided not to go through with the procedure because it would damage have meant having his singing voice.jaws wired shut for several weeks, preventing him from working.
20th Mar '17 9:51:16 AM WildKatGirl
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* Joked about in ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'' DVD commentary (the one with Billy Boyd and Dominic Monaghan, a.k.a. "Merry and Pippin"). When commenting on the scene of Smeagol turning into Gollum, including a close-up of him devouring a fish with his mangled teeth, Dominic and Billy (who are British and Scottish, respectively) joke that the British Creator/AndySerkis used his real teeth and nails for that scene, then claiming that Scotsmen have perfect teeth used for eating haggis and biting the ends of kilts.

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* Joked about in ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'' DVD commentary (the one with Billy Boyd and Dominic Monaghan, a.k.a. "Merry and Pippin"). When commenting on the scene of Smeagol turning into Gollum, including a close-up of him devouring a fish with his mangled teeth, Dominic and Billy (who are British English and Scottish, respectively) joke that the British English Creator/AndySerkis used his real teeth and nails for that scene, then claiming that Scotsmen have perfect teeth used for eating haggis and biting the ends of kilts.
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