BARRY COURTER: Lisa, not to imply that you've been around for a while, but I know you remember the old "Shock Theater" show. And I know you know that Jack Gray and friends have been trying to scare up some new interest for several years now. Well, it seems it might be gaining a little life. They will have a new episode Saturday, then another on Oct. 4, another on Oct. 25 and yet another on Nov. 1.
The format is simple and fun, with Gray as Dr. Shock being joined by Dingbat, the prankster puppet, Nurse Goodbody and Dirge introducing each new horror film while providing a little humor and music. WDEF-Channel 12 will air each episode at midnight. The film on Saturday will be "The Brain That Wouldn't Die."
LISA DENTON: Wow, how do you get on that health plan?
BARRY: Now we are talking real horror stories.
LISA: I googled that bad boy -- the film, I mean -- and discovered that it's about a doctor experimenting with transplant techniques who tries to find a new body for his girlfriend's decapitated head. Golly, who could resist that premise? No wonder it's a cult classic. But it's perfect for segues back to Nurse Goodbody.
BARRY: Wonder what he did with the body. Never mind, that's a different kind of film altogether.
LISA: Maybe we should stage dramatic readings of the screenplay. There are lines like: "What's behind that door?" from the disembodied head. The response: "Horror no normal mind can imagine!"
BARRY: Well ... oh wait, it says normal. Never mind.
LISA: And don't forget that today is the last day to visit the SoakYa side of Lake Winnepesaukah. The water park will be closing for the season after today.
BARRY: And the amusement park's Mom's Monday Concert Series wraps up today as well with the Wade Trammell Band playing on the Lakeside Stage at 6:30 p.m. Moms and military personnel get in free today.
LISA: And Regis Philbin will be in town Saturday for the Life Boomers & Seniors Expo, produced by the Times Free Press. He'll be singing and taking questions from the audience. I don't know why the event planners here at the newspaper didn't schedule a Regis sound-alike contest, like they did the look-alike contest when Betty White was here for Life. When our colleague Lynda Edwards finished her phone interview with him the other day, she went all Regis on me. It was like a mini version of Shock Theater.
BARRY: He'll be doing his thing at 3 p.m., which is a good thing because the Notre Dame-Michigan kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. He's a graduate of Notre Dame and a big fan. Don't ask me why I know this.
LISA: Oh, I know how you know this. Just don't forget about the restraining order while he's here.
BARRY: The Tennessee Valley Railfest is Saturday and Sunday, too. Live entertainment, demonstrations, fun for the kiddies, food and all things trains.
LISA: In the "Try Something New" category, Ensemble Theatre is staging an all-female version of Shakespeare's tragedy "Othello" for two weekends, starting Thursday. They call this type of casting "Chickspeare."
BARRY: Moor, please.
LISA: And the Northshore Gallery of Contemporary Art (formerly Graffiti) has set an opening for an exhibition that has made my mouth water. It's a photographic essay on Zarzour's Cafe by Bradley Shelton. Zarzour's, as you know, is where the elite meet to eat -- as well as people like us. The opening reception is Saturday night at the gallery on Cherokee Boulevard, and the exhibit continues through Oct. 1. They say framed and unframed prints will be available for purchase, along with a book of all the images in the show, but I'm hoping they'll pass around some of Zarzour's cornbread, too.
BARRY: That's pretty cool. Zarzour's reeks of history. And home cookin'. But if they're serving food, I'll take some icebox pie.
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Contact Barry Courter at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6354. Contact Lisa Denton at email@example.com or 423-757-6281.
Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...
Lisa Denton is deputy features editor and content editor of Current. She previously was a lifestyle, entertainment and region reporter/pod leader for The Chattanooga Times, which she joined in 1983. Lisa is from Sale Creek and holds an associate’s degree in journalism from Chattanooga State Community College. Contact Lisa at 423-757-6281 or firstname.lastname@example.org.