Alice Cooper coming to town


Another season of Centennial Terrace concerts will feature classic shock rocker Alice Cooper July 9, with tickets going on sale Friday at 10 a.m.

The Raise the Dead tour will feature a full-scale theatrical presentation of the ghoulish Cooper and include hits such as “Welcome to My Nightmare,” “I’m Eighteen,” and “School’s Out.”

Tickets will be available at the Stranahan Theater box office, by calling 419-381-8851, or online at They are $59.50 and $30.50. Centennial Terrace is at 5773 Centennial Rd.

Seth MacFarlane dances between crude and classy

There may be a giant maw of a generation gap in reactions to Oscar host Seth MacFarlane. But love him or loathe him, viewers should be able to agree: That opening went on too long.

MacFarlane is creator of the raunchy animated Fox comedy series Family Guy, which was evident in jokes throughout the 85th Annual Academy Awards telecast Sunday night.

But he also has an avowed appreciation for big band music and classic Hollywood, which also came through in myriad live musical numbers, particularly the Chicago/’Dreamgirls/Les Miserables performance.

MacFarlane began the show with a monologue that was overly reliant on inside-Hollywood jokes, but some of the lines were funny.

In speaking to Lincoln star Daniel Day-Lewis, who reportedly stayed in character throughout the shoot, MacFarlane said, “If you saw a cellphone, would you have to be, like, ‘Oh, my God, what’s that!?’ If you bumped into Don Cheadle on the studio lot, would you, like, try and free him?”

MacFarlane also made some cutting, funny jokes at the expense of Chris Brown and Mel Gibson.

Just as the monologue seemed to head off track, William Shatner appeared as Capt. James T. Kirk, who was traveling back in time from the 23rd century to warn MacFarlane about the bad reviews he’ll get if he doesn’t make swift improvements.

Viewers were treated to several bits, including a song about seeing actresses’ breasts in movies (juvenile but with clever wordplay), a somewhat random soft-shoe dance with Daniel Radcliffe and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and an intermittently funny backstage encounter with Sally Field.

MacFarlane returned throughout the telecast to offer quips, including a crude, shock-humor joke about Lincoln: “The actor who really got inside Lincoln’s head was John Wilkes Booth,” he said to gasps from the audiences. “150 years and it’s still too soon?”

Some other notable elements of Oscar night:

● Battle of the pre-shows: Let’s face it, any red-carpet show is, by definition, shallow and full of kissing-up. In recent years, ABC has offered a notably awful pre-show. This time, actress Kristin Chenoweth took the lead role, and although her enthusiasm seemed sincere, her fawning over the stars made the E! hosts seem like actual reporters by comparison.

● Unfunny, uncomfortable presenters: Paul Rudd and Melissa McCarthy are terrifically talented, but they were given painfully unfunny patter for their presentation.

The Block News Alliance consists of The Blade and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Rob Owen is a staff writer for the Post-Gazette.

Bowersox to sing at Walleye game

Isn't that Crystal Bowersox?

Why, yes it is. The pride of Elliston, Ohio, will be singing the national anthem before Sunday's hockey game between the Toledo Walleye and the Trenton Titans. Tickets remain for the 5:05 p.m. game for $15 and $24; they are available online at the Huntington Center box office, 500 Jefferson Ave., at, or by phone at 419-725-9255.

The American Idol runner-up will also perform a full concert later Sunday down the street at the SeaGate Convention Centre, raising money for the Toledo School of the Arts. Tickets to that 7:30 p.m. show (doors open at 7 p.m.) are $37 at the Huntington Center box office, Ticketmaster outlets,, or 1-800-745-3000.

New faces at WTOL-TV

Raycom Media-owned and operated WTOL-TV, Channel 11, recently added a trio of on-air staff to its newsroom.

Crystal Clark is the new weekend morning anchor and will also provide reports during the week. A graduate of North Carolina State University, Clark previously worked at WECT, the Raycom station in Wilmington, N.C.

Another Clark, Natalie, is a new weekday reporter. An Ohio native and a graduate of Bowling Green State University, Natalie previously worked at WFMD in Mansfield, Ohio.

Katherine Bail is WTOL’s new Wood County Bureau reporter. A graduate of the University of Michigan, Bail previously worked for the Big 10 Network.