Dan Margolis’ New York Times crossword — pannonica’s write-up
- 50aR [Beginning of a rom-com … or a description of 20-, 36- and 41-Across?] BOY MEETS GIRL.
- 20a. [Actor who has hosted the Oscars nine times, a number second only to Bob Hope] BILLY CRYSTAL.
- 36a. [He played Gomez in 1991’s “The Addams Family”] RAUL JULIA.
- 41a. [Comic actor who was an original cast member of SCTV] JOHN CANDY.
‘Boy’ actors whose surnames are also considered to be first names of ‘girls’.
Solve seemed a little tougher than a typical Monday, but that could be down to my current state.
Charlie Oldham’s Wall Street Journal crossword, “Horsing Around” — Jim’s review
It was a big weekend for tennis, so our puzzle today is about…horses.
- 17a [Galvanizes] SPURS INTO ACTION
- 25a [Put a big financial burden on] SADDLE WITH DEBT
- 40a [Angrily overreacted to somebody] BIT ONE’S HEAD OFF. You know, I just realized how rarely I have to complain about ONE’S in a WSJ puzzle. It seems like it shows up a lot less than in other venues.
- 53a [Keeps costs under control] REIN IN SPENDING
I’m not knowledgeable enough to talk about whether spurs and bits constitute inhumane treatment, so if you care to comment on that, feel free. I felt the puzzle theme was adequate.
Fillwise: I liked PEA PATCH, I’M SOLD, and, especially, THE SAINT [Alias of Simon Templar in books and TV]. Also, the double-F mini-theme in ORFF and BANFF.
Favorite clue: [Ibuprofen’s promise] for PAIN RELIEF. This is definitely true for me as I tend to have much more success with ibuprofen than acetaminophen. I have been living on ibuprofen since The Incident a couple weeks back when The Taco That Shall Not Be Named zeroed in on me and obliterated one of my teeth (a molar, not a CANINE) after tricking me into eating it. Thankfully, pain has subsided immensely over the weekend, so much so that I didn’t take any pain meds today. Thank you for your concern. Pro tip: When you order a street taco, make sure there’s no street in your taco.
Really did not like DATER [Librarian’s stamp], but as it exists in isolation, the damage is minimized.
A fine puzzle.
Let’s close out with a tribute to the late Sir Roger Moore, a.k.a. THE SAINT.
Ed Sessa’s Los Angeles Times crossword — pannonica’s write-up
Another ultra-minimal posting.
- 49aR [Word on Lucy’s “Psychiatric Help – 5¢” sign … and a hint to 20-, 33- ad 39-Across] THE DOCTOR IS IN.
- 20a. [Challenging response to a provocation] YOU AND WHO ELSE?
- 33a. [Ruthless strategy] TAKE-NO-PRISONERS.
- 39a. [Nestlé chocolate chip treat] TOLL HOUSE COOKIE.
Doctor Who, Dr No, Dr House.
The writer is out.
Brendan Emmett Quigley’s website crossword – “Themeless Monday #418” — Jenni’s review
From mid-air, if this works; I’m flying home from a conference in LA.
This felt a bit like a slog to me, although that may be due to the fact that I had to get up at 3:00 AM to catch my flight. I solved it bottom-to-top and a few of the answers were, IMO, unfair.
What I liked:
- 1a [Moving piece of art?] once I figured it out. The “?” is important, because the answer is STABILE, so we’re talking about emotionally moving.
- 3d [“___, you’re not a terrier, you’re a police dog” (line from a 1934 comedy)”] is a nice new way to clue ASTA.
- 36a [Amorous request] reminds me of the country/folk artist Mary Chapin Carpenter, one of my faves. The answer is SHUT UP AND KISS ME. I somehow doubt that’s what Brendan had in mind.
- 46d [With 48-Down, “Criminal” singer] gets us FIONA APPLE‘s full name, for once.
- 62a [OB-GYN instruments] are SPECULA, which made me giggle for no good reason.
What I was not so fond of:
- 29d [Prepare to get juice from] is PLUG IN. To me, that should be [Prepare to get juice from]. I know, I know, you PLUG IN to an outlet. It’s supposed to be a hard puzzle. Still didn’t like it.
- 35d [Neighborhood representation] is a SKETCH MAP, which seems seriously abritrary to me.
- 19a [Technique that involves answering a difficult question by raising a different issue] is WHATABOUTISM, which probably should go in “what I didn’t know…” rather than “what I wasn’t fond of,” because it’s completely legit and apparently started with the Soviet Union. Perhaps I didn’t like it because current examples are so infuriating.
What I didn’t know before I did this puzzle: that TALIBAN means “students.”