Muller Monthly Music Meta, November

puzzle 8ish; meta DNF (Matt) 


Title: “Picture Perfect”
Prompt: The meta for this puzzle is an album released in 2005.
Answer: “Have a Nice Day” by Bon Jovi

Busy week here and I unfortunately didn’t get to look at this meta until Sunday evening. Seemed foreboding, with just 50-something correct solves earlier today, so I figured it was gonna be tough.

Long story short: I made no headway, and this one’s a one-leaper so you either saw that one leap or you didn’t get the meta. That leap was: take the letters in PERFECT, highlight them in the grid, and they approximate the smirking cover of Bon Jovi’s 2005 album “Have a Nice Day.” I had wondered if something were going on with letter frequency since there seemed to be a lot of some letters and few of others, which isn’t a profound insight but my spidey-sense turned out to be right even if I couldn’t close the deal. Slight ding for there being two E’s in PERFECT, since that sort of steers the solver away from using it as a letter bank. Though if you had thought to do so, you didn’t need to be familiar with the album cover to get the meta since the top part of the grid’s letters would be symmetrical, telling you you’re not just looking at random noise. Then a scan of 2005 album covers would bring the meta answer home.

4.44 stars.

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10 Responses to Muller Monthly Music Meta, November

  1. Pete Muller says:

    Thanks Matt!

    Tough one this month with only 60 correct answers.
    People that got it seemed to like it though.
    Next month will not be as hard – November is always the hardest MMMM of the year.

  2. jefe says:

    I figured it’d be a picture meta, so I Googled 2005 album covers to see if I could find one that would be “drawable” like this. Unfortunately, HaND doesn’t appear in Google’s list unless you restrict the genre. SAD!

  3. Evil Steve says:

    This one had two of the elements I hate most in a meta:

    * Title as instruction, and literally impossible to get without the title
    * Seriously, I have to do an image hunt?

    A rare swing and a miss from Pete on this one, IMO .

    • I can understand not liking a meta, but I really don’t understand either of these criticisms.

      * Title as instruction, and literally impossible to get without the title

      The title is usually a key inroad into tougher metas. Would your opinion be different if he put PICTURE PERFECT in the grid instead (leaving aside that doing so would almost certainly mess up the image)?

      * Seriously, I have to do an image hunt?

      Yes, that’s a valid way of hiding a meta. What’s the problem? Once I figured out the image was showing me a smiley, I just put “2005 album smiley face” into Google and the Bon Jovi album cover showed right up.

      • Pete Muller says:

        Thanks Evan-

        Always nice to have someone stick up for you.

        For the solvers that did get the meta, I got a higher % of user 5’s than for any other puzzle this year, so go figure.

        The clue for PEN [A thick colored one might be useful in cracking this puzzle’s meta] strongly hints that you’re looking to draw something in the grid.

        And the November MMMM is billed as the toughest of the year, so fair warning was provided.

        No sour grapes here, though. I really do appreciate people giving their honest feedback.

  4. sharkicicles says:

    This was definitely in the “not in a million years” category for me.

    The real news, though… Bon Jovi had an album in 2005?!??

  5. I didn’t love this meta but that’s mostly because I made zero progress on it. It was a perfectly fair but difficult meta, as advertised.

    I’m also not familiar with the album, so even if I had gotten the first step, I would not have recognized the album from the smiley face drawing; but it is easily googlable so I have no issues with that step.

  6. Steve Thurman says:

    Yeah, a big zero for me this month too.

    I hail-mary’d “X + Y” by Coldplay because of its blocky cover image and the fact that the first track on the album is “Square One.”

  7. BethA says:

    Some of us were wondering about IBO? The closest reference I could find mentioned IGBO, but not IBO. Any source available?

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