'The Hobbit' sparks plastic surgery among fans
Many cosmetic patients look to movie stars as their ultimate plastic surgery models, but how many bring in a picture of a J.R.R. Tolkien character as their prime example? According to Moviefone, it may be more than you think.
The movie news site recently reported that a diehard "Hobbit" fan went under the knife for an ear reshaping surgery, but she didn't want her ears in just any old shape. Instead, model Melynda Moon had a triangular portion at the top of her ears removed so that they could resemble the elf ears featured in "The Hobbit" and "Lord of the Rings" film series.
In a video post uploaded onto YouTube, Moon explained that while some people ridiculed her for her plastic surgery choice, it couldn't stop her from following through with the procedure.
"The elegance of the elf ear is something I adore a lot," Moon said in the video.
National trend or Middle Earth?
While it may seem strange, elf ear reshaping is not an entirely new procedure, though it has been gaining momentum in recent years due to the popularity of the "Hobbit" and "Lord of the Rings" movies. Moon is hardly the first die-hard Tolkien fan to have the elf ear procedure done, and one scroll through the popular blogging platform Tumblr shows that many young adults idolize the pointy-ear look. However, it's still uncertain if the surgery is a full-blown trend or just an arbitrary procedure done by a small contingent of devoted fans.
After elf ear reshaping was featured in a Good Morning America segment, The OC Register looked into the procedure to see if it was catching on. According to the report, many plastic surgeons couldn't find evidence of the trend existing - at least, not at their clinics.
"Fortunately we are not seeing many elf ears here in Encino, or around town in Beverly Hills and West Los Angeles," one Southern California-based plastic surgeon told the news source. "The vast majority of plastic surgeons will not perform the surgical procedure because it is deforming … and is very difficult to reverse. "
Other doctors considered the surgery an "obscure" and "radical" procedure that wasn't likely to become a popular request at most plastic surgery clinics in the US. Most of the doctors also agreed that reshaping the ears to replicate those of mythical creatures was medically dangerous because it could lead to scarring or infection. In the words of a professor at the University of California, Irvine Department of Dermatology, the procedure is "close to malpractice."