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From whimsical to wicked

Fashion critic Mr. Blackwell does not like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ new football uniforms.

“I’m disappointed that the team went from a winking pirate - something slightly whimsical - to a logo that’s mean and angry,” said the phantom of fashion about the Bucs’ unis of red, black and pewter.

“We’ve had enough of that in movies. Red stands for anger and the skull means death. Why must we produce more anger, more meanness and more hatred?

Want more anger? Talk to a Bucs season-ticket holder.

Are you sure they didn’t hire ‘The Joker?’

Frank Gorshin, “The Riddler” on the old “Batman” television series, is part of the Philadelphia 76ers’ campaign promoting Allen Iverson as the NBA rookie of the year.

The 76ers are distributing a video featuring Gorshin asking a series of questions touting the accomplishments of Iverson, the first overall draft choice in the NBA draft and the league’s leading rookie scorer.

Iverson’s last three votes will go uncontested.

Shaq takes on the web

Shaquille O’Neal will sing “Itsy Bitsy Spider” on an ABC-TV primetime special which will focus on the importance of early childhood development and its impact on society.

Shaq is one of several celebrities who will appear on “I Am Your Child,” to be hosted by Tom Hanks on April 28.

The Lakers star is active in community service activities involving children in the Los Angeles area, including a program called Reading is Fundamental, and the Shaq Paq, which enables underprivileged children to attend Lakers’ games.

For $121 million, free-throw shooting should be pretty fundamental, too.

Boston massacres its new mascot

The reception was lukewarm Sunday for Wally the Green Monster, the Boston Red Sox’s new mascot.

The development - which had been known for days - coincided with the release of a children’s book about the mascot.

Except for the hug by Joey Cora of the visiting Mariners, the greetings were fairly nondescript until Wally was booed when he came out for the seventh-inning stretch along with the Parachute Express (a singing trio) to help lead the crowd in the singing of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.”

“I was in the on-deck circle and I was flat-out laughing,” Boston’s Tim Naehring said. “I heard them booing. I didn’t know if it was for the mascot or the singers.”

Said Peter May of the Boston Globe: “The Red Sox would have had a better reception had they brought out Mike Torrez and Bucky Dent.”

This from the Cubs’ clubhouse

“Knock, knock.”

“Who’s there?”


“Owen who?”

“Owen 12.”

The last word …

“I love opening day in Cleveland - especially when the Zamboni comes out to clear the field.”

- Overheard on the Anaheim Angels’ flight to Cleveland

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Photo