Scariest pierced creatures:

The gals in "Thirteen"

2003 was a banner year for cinema characters to pursue a bizarre social custom. Systematically, characters as diverse as "Daredevil" villain Bullseye (left), an angry Orc, and a mako shark in fish-eating rehab all had their skin violently punctured and a metal implement forced into the wound. That's right, they were pierced. Yet none of these unsavory souls generated anywhere near the terror invoked by the wayward pubescents in "Thirteen."



What can make parent Holly Hunter appear so devastated? In a harrowing film documenting many parents' worst nightmare(s), piercing ranks near the top.


Photographs of unflattering high school fashion mistakes can later embarrass, but are not lethal. Even teen tattoos can later be laser removed, leaving little residual sign. But piercings can become infected and leave permanent scars. An entire American generation now walks the earth with tiny nose scars or larger belly button blemishes from the trendy use of steel studs.

Occasionally these form keloids, thick itchy or tender scars that require medical intervention. More insidious is the increased chance for an ongoing allergy to nickel, the alloy used in most forms of jewelry. The risk of having to avoid any necklace, earring, or wrist watch with even small amounts of nickel is real, and real spooky. Do kids really want the "bling bling" to sting sting? Hopefully, the next anarchic adolescent activity will have less long term consequences.

Runners up, scariest pierced creatures:





 Bullseye, "Daredevil"

 Orc, "LOTR: Return of the King"

 Shark, "Finding Nemo"

 Christina (Shudder) Aguilera


© 1996-2008 Vail Reese M.D.

Dr. Reese's office