A Drilling Dentist in My Fair Lady

Steve Martin singing dentist in the most famous dentist song

Steve Martin in a Little Shop of Horrors. Image from fanpop.com

If you ask almost anyone about a song featured in a movie that mentions dentistry or dentists, over 99% of people will mention Steve Martin’s character in a Little Shop of Horrors.

How did I come up with the 99%? Over the years, I’ve asked dozens of my patients that very question. Their response was always Steve Martin.

However, just recently one patient gave me a response that I was not expecting. He gave his response without even pausing to think:

“Well of course. It is Professor Higgins singing I’m an Ordinary Man in My Fair Lady.”

My Fair Lady Movie Poster which has a song that mentions a dentist drilling on teeth

My Fair Lady. Image courtesy Warner Bros.

My patient was completely surprised that I wasn’t aware of the song. When I told him that most people mention Steve Martin in a Little Shop of Horrors, he said, without even pausing, that he had never heard of the movie nor the dentist character.

Naturally, at my first opportunity, I rushed to Google the song. Here is an mp3 clip of the line to which my patient referred:

Drilling Dentist Line from My Fair Lady:


For those who don’t want to listen to it, the line goes: “I’d be equally as willing for a dentist to be drilling.”

I can’t say that I am a huge fan of musicals but I was intrigued enough to go stream the entire movie. While the musical was definitely entertaining, I would have to say that this line ranks fairly low on the list of best songs about dentists. Steve Martin is still number one in my book.

Does anyone else know of uncommon references to dentists in songs in movies? If yes, let me know!


  1. Not from movies, but from songs…

    It came instantly to mind because I was young, maybe seven or eight, when my older sister bought Alice Cooper’s album “Billion Dollar Babies.” One song,combined with an experience of six fillings with no novocaine a couple of years later, made such a bad impression on me that I went for several years without seeing a dentist at ALL.

    Although he has a song entitled “Novocaine,” it’s not about dentistry. It’s “Unfinished Sweet” that is a dreadful dentist song; it even features the sound of the drill, combined with Alice moaning/screaming. I don’t recommend it for any seven-year-old. Or anyone with a dental phobia. Or maybe anyone at all.

    • Jennifer,
      I will have to check out both those songs. Leave it to Alice Cooper to have a song about dentists/dentistry. Maybe I’ll write a blog post about it!

      • I was going to quote one of the lyrics from “Unfinished Sweet” in my original comment, but decided not to because it made such an awful impression on me. Didn’t want to risk having any small persons reading my post and getting a mental picture they couldn’t get rid of!

  2. Also, parents? Making your kid have fillings without the anesthesia injection will NOT “teach them to take care of their teeth.” It will teach them to avoid the dentist. I’m not a parent, but maybe brushing and flossing together would be a better teaching tool.