Pseudopod 054: Toothache

By James Maddox

Read by Ben Phillips

He tongued the tooth and felt the slick little slivers that protruded from the cavities in his molar. He’d done this to himself, letting it get as bad as it was, he knew that, and he was about to end it himself as well; no Dr. Lynch needed. Clamp, pull, and no more troubles.

As soon as the metal touched his teeth he had to pause.

Pain filled the empty hole his doubt had created. John held a breath and tightened again on the tooth. He started pulling, slowly at first, to see what he was up against, but decided that the forceful approach was the best.

Zippy Wonderdog
September 7th, 2007 9:19 am

To date I’ve had 3 wisdom teeth pulled, so I am familiar with the pain associated with the procedure.
I was initially squemish at the prospect of listening to this story but in the end I did.
This story fails.
This story fails to convey a sense of horror with its cliche black ooze and weird dream sequences. It fails to convey the blood and the pain, OH MY GOD THE PAIN! Associated with having your tooth pulled.
In the end it wasn’t so much a horror story as it was some kinda peculiar feel good story you’d find in the studios of disney or pixar.

September 7th, 2007 10:04 am

Dude, where is the end? Does the thing end up growing to a “normal” size and killing all? Their is no horror in this story at the point it ends and it really should be at least 100% longer. Oh well, better luck next time. See you next week…

September 8th, 2007 9:29 pm

This was a bit of an odd story. I agree with Superman, and I do think it should have been longer. I personally like Liberation better, if you guys like this sort of story.

I still kinda liked it though! I’ll give it a 6.5/10.

Dark Seducer
September 10th, 2007 8:04 pm

This one was okay: A man driven mad by a toothache. The imagery was good and the story had some vaguely sensual elements. I felt it ended too abruptly. The scene in the dentist’s office came rather suddenly and had less to do with the actual story than I’d have liked to hear.
Nevertheless, you get a B minus for its engaging quality. The inro and outro sound quality was rather poor on this one.

September 12th, 2007 11:08 am

I’m going with the consensus on this one. not the Pod’s best, but you’ve yet to lose a listener in me yet!

September 12th, 2007 11:08 am

I’m going with the consensus on this one. not the Pod’s best, but you’ve yet to lose a listener in me yet!

September 15th, 2007 5:06 pm

Complete shite. Not horror at all, and lousy fantasy at that.

Not enough sensory description.
No actual feelings of fear conveyed.
tiny anthropomorphic critters that act like scared puppies ain’t scary.
The dentist bits were entirely superfluous. WTF do we care about his retirement?

Gah. this was awful. How did this make it out of the slush pile?

September 16th, 2007 1:59 pm

this was a great, surreal tale. though i would like to have seen more of the dentist (maybe in another story?). not much horror here, but as a story, it rocked.

Chena Civitella
October 4th, 2007 9:34 am

Personally, I thought the story was great… It had it’s own originality.. I hope we get a toothache part 2.. Rock on…

Dave (aka Nev the Deranged... or is it the other way around?)
October 6th, 2007 2:20 pm

I keep saying it, and apparently I will have to keep keep saying it:


Is Pseudopod suddenly in the business of running Trailers for Coming Attractions? Because it’s starting to seem like it.

October 23rd, 2007 10:13 pm

Personally, I liked it. I would have expected to hear it at the up and coming podcastle, and not pseudopod, but besides that enjoyed it throughly.

Mari Mitchell
April 14th, 2008 2:09 pm

The first transitions into his dream was nothing more than leap. It was nice how the dreams came back to echo back in the form of tooth ooze creature but don’t you think it should be a girl?

The ending did not work for me. If I had written, I too may have liked it but I know I would gotten a ton of crap for the ending.

Feeding the pod Sticky gooey candy.

July 26th, 2009 5:24 am

Once the story settled into its odd quasi-fantasy vein, I was okay with it, but the description of the tooth flicked all of my squick buttons. I am deeply bothered when things are wrong with my teeth or gums and the mere thought of such a terrible cavity (let alone trying to tug it out) nearly set off a panic attack. It wasn’t very pleasant and made an okay-not-too-impressive-but-sure-whatever sort of oddball story into a complete squirm-inducer.