Matt Gaffney’s Wall Street Journal contest crossword, “Double Features”—Dave Sullivan’s write-upThis week we are looking for a celebrity chef who would have made a good sixth theme entry. So I guess we have five theme entries to find in the puzzle. Not only are they the longest across entries, they are all wackily clued (with questions marks):
- 17a. [Refused to look at the person in the mirror?], IGNORED YOURELF
- 23a. [Result of leaving your eel in the oven too long?], CRISPY MORAY – sounds disgusting
- 37a. [Person who fired arrows at the Apache?], CHICKASAW ARCHER – so are the Apache and Chickasaw warring tribes?
- 52a. [Sound made when dropping an old movie player?], BETAMAX THUD – this one (and the indian tribes above) led me to think that the “double feature” we were looking for were things in competition, like VHS here.
- 61a. [The happiest boat in the marina?], ELATED CATAMARAN
So despite my first thought about groups in competition, it became quickly clear that the “features” we were looking for were movie names, and, specifically three-letter movie names which ended each word of the two-word theme entries. (Frankly, I didn’t realize how many of these there were; I guess the Hud of THUD was the first that gave the gimmick away.)
So what celebrity chef has a first and last-name that ends with three letter movie names? Why, it’s MARIO BATALI, who is a pretty famous chef I would think most WSJ solvers would be familiar with. Excellent find, Matt!
THE IRISH, RECOOK (I’d use reheat here) and SPRAY AT seem a bit unusual as fill, but with five theme entries, I’ll give them a pass. I enjoyed seeing PHOTON clued as [Particle with no mass] as it reminded me of my partner in meta-blogging crime, Joon Pahk, who teaches Physics at Harvard. Hope everyone is enjoying their summer so far!