9 out of 10 Dentists
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9 out of 10 Dentists, also known as 9 out of 10 Doctors refers to a popular culture trope which has often been used in commercials for non-prescription products such as toothpaste and gum. The trope has been parodied in pre-internet jokes and has since gained popularity in memes online.
In 1976, Warner-Lambert Company launched a new advertisement campaign for its sugarless chewing gum brand Trident. The advertisements stated that "four out of five dentists surveyed recommend sugarless gum for their patients who chew gum".
On November 21st, 1980, the Chicago Reader question-and-answer column The Straight Dope answered the question about what the fifth dentist recommended:
The research people came up with a list of 1,200 dentists who were supposed to represent a cross-section of their profession. The dentists were asked what they recommended to their gum-chewing patients–sugared gum, sugarless gum, or no gum at all.
Sugarless gum won with 85 percent. Nobody seems to remember exactly how many votes sugared gum got, but I figure there had to be at least one. Cast by the same guy that in a real election always votes for Donald Duck.
In the following decades, the trope has been reused in various advertising campaigns multiple times, most notably by Crest, Sensodyne, Colgate and other toothpaste manufacturers in their commercials (shown below).
The earliest joke referencing the trope is believed to belong to the American TV host and comedian Jay Leno, first made before July 23rd, 1998.
The New England Journal of Medicine reports that nine out of ten doctors agree that one out of ten doctors is an idiot.
The joke has since gained popularity in memes, with the dentist who doesn't recommend the toothpaste often presented as a renegade who is challenging both toothpaste manufacturers and other dentists. In 2019, the trope gained significant popularity in the /r/dankmemes subreddit and other meme communities on Reddit.
A New Toothpaste Is Released
On August 9th, 2019, Redditor IlConteiacula posted a 9 out of 10 Dentists meme captioned "A New Toothpaste Is Released; Dentists:" and included ten images of Smudge the Cat, with nine images conveying a positive reaction and one illustrating a negative one. The post gained over 45,900 upvotes in /r/dankmemes subreddit in four days.
In the following days, a significant number of memes following the format were posted on Reddit, with notable examples appearing in /r/dankmemes, /r/memes and /r/ShitPostCrusaders subreddits (examples shown below).
 Now I Know – Who Was the Fifth Dentist -- That Didn’t Recommend Trident?
 Straight Dope – 4 out of 5 dentists recommend sugarless gum. What does the 5th recommend?
 Chicago-Kent College of Law – Joke of the Week Archives
 The Literary Link – Charade's Quote Collection
 Reddit – 9/10 goddammit [OC]
 Reddit – 9/10 approves
 Reddit – DAGA KOTOWARU
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