Originally Posted by Flashtones
What'd I miss? I don't see anyone having a problem.
I agree. Well, unless you work for a client who is particular about getting the color right. In that case, given the severity of the correction, you probably wouldn't want to trust the color of the design to a hue/saturation adjustment. You'd want to go with the precision that curves offer. Which means a mask. That's the no-brainer.
As for auto-curves, that too would be a problem, given that simply moving end-points reduces the power of curves to the clumsiness of levels. Tends to blast away highlight and shadow detail, as we see here. Depending on who you're working for, that would definitely be a problem given that it's a sure way to get yourself fired.
But, to each their own. Photoshop has numerous ways to reach the same destination. I've found that the fastest method is seldom the best.