July 10, 2012 at 1:39 PM ET
Jokes about British dental hygiene are common in the U.S. -- who didn't laugh during that "Simpsons" episode when Ralph Wiggum was horrified by Prince Charles' teeth in "The Big Book of British Smiles"?
But in reality, royal teeth are pretty good. Certainly queen-to-be and Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton has beautiful, pristine white teeth, the smile of a Hollywood star.
That's why it's so shocking to see a Photoshopped image of Middleton on the cover of The New Republic magazine. Middleton's fake choppers look like gray Chiclets that fell in the mud and were randomly jammed into her gums.
Why mess with Middleton? The New Republic's headline is "Something's Rotten: The Last Days of Britain," and as you can guess, it's not going over well with royal-watchers or the Brits themselves. NBC News spoke to regular folks on the streets of London who called the cover "not fair" and "really mean."
Camilla Tominey, a royal expert, told NBC News that "The aristocracy of Britain aren't really known for their dental hygiene, they're above such vanity concerns."
But not everyone agrees. "Look what this awful American magazine has done to our beautiful Kate Middleton's stunning smile! #outrageous" read one tweet out of the U.K.
The tweeter in question? A toothpaste company.