NTSPP – 010 Review

NTSPP – 010 Review

A Puzzle by Radler

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

This is the third puzzle by Radler in the NTSPP series. His previous two have been tough solves with cleverly constructed themes but have been less approachable as result.

In this puzzle, Radler has had mercy on his solvers and split the puzzle into more complex across clues and some more straightforward down clues. In general, the down clues are simpler though there are some complex constructions towards the end. Overall, the puzzle was far more approachable than the previous two puzzles.

On top of all this, Radler shows his flair by still including a mini theme and a NINA across the top row of the puzzle.

There are a few quibbles indicated in the review below but these are minor and do not detract from an enjoyable crossword.


8a Set up and managed when retired: seen pottering around (7)
{ENSNARE} – The definition is set up, as in a sting operation, from a word for managed (RAN) reversed (when retired) with an anagram (pottering) of SEEN around it.

9a Extra portion from baker’s man in reserve (7)
{TWELFTH} – The man in reserve is a cricketing reference to the reserve (twelfth man) in a cricket team (thanks BD, sport and I have never been best of friends). For the first part of the double definition, the reference is to a baker’s dozen, which is 13. Bakers would always bake an extra item alongside the standard 12 to avoid accusations of short changing customers. Take the extra portion from this, to leave the twelfth, although I think that the first part of the definition points more naturally to twelve.

11a For 21, type “hood” (7)
{TOUGHIE} – A type of crossword (the answer to 21a) that appears in the Daily Telegraph on Tuesdays to Fridays is also another word for a “hood” in the sense of a gangster. This clue forms part of a mini-theme in this crossword indicated by 13a.

12a Relegation gone down primarily with feeling (7)
{EMOTION} – The definition is feeling from a word meaning relegation (DEMOTION) losing the initial D (gone down primarily).

13a Willing to interrupt angry speech such as 10, 17 and 21, 26 (4,5)
{WORD GAMES} – This clue identifies the mini-theme. The answer is made up from a word for willing (GAME) inside (to interrupt) a word for angry speech (WORDS).

15a Beginning to turn off fool having married talk (5)
{IDIOM} – The definition is talk (I think that the definition is a little loose although talk is listed in Chambers Thesaurus under idiom). It is made up from a word for fool (IDIOT) without the final T (beginning to turn off) and adding (having) M for married at the end.

16a Magazine article, Lois is right to be contradicted (7)
{ARSENAL} – The definition is magazine, where ammunition is stored,. It is derived from a one letter article (A) with [Lois ]LANE’S (think Superman) and R reversed (Lois is right to be contradicted). The use of “A is” to indicate A’S is acceptable if you think of the usage “Dave’s 50 today” as short for Dave is 50 today.

19a Boobs showing, gets dressed in a hurry (5,2)
{SLIPS ON} – The definition is an expression meaning gets dressed in a hurry. It comes from a word for boobs (no not that word!) (SLIPS) with a word for showing, as in what’s on at the cinema, (ON).

20a Dan’s right, brave soul (5)
{DARER} – The definition is a word meaning brave soul. It is constructed by DARE (Dan Dare from Eagle Comics) + R (right). The ‘s in Dan’s here indicates “has” as a charade indicator.

21a Damn this thing! (9)
{CROSSWORD} – A double definition clue. Damn as a cross word, it what you have been solving.

25a Revolutionary taking part in examination (7)
{ORBITAL} – The definition is revolutionary (in the sense of going round something, not a political activist) made up from a word for part (BIT) inside a word for examination (ORAL). Is taking A in B a valid container clue to mean put A inside B? Let us know your thoughts.

26a Stumps up, returning with short man after short sleep (7)
{PUZZLES} – The definition is stumps. The wordplay comes from UP reversed (returning) plus a word for a short sleep (ZZ) (normally three or more Zs are used) followed by a short man (LES).

28a Sign note formerly to go after complete lot (4,3)
{DOLE OUT} – The definition here is lot, functioning as a verb meaning to allocate. The word play is complex. Take a sign of the zodiac (LEO) and put an old word (formerly) for a musical note (UT) after it. Then put all of this after a word meaning complete (DO). Got all of that. Radler has put a lot of word play into a simple clue.

29a Pink with tinge of red found at shop during visit (7)
{SERRATE} – The definition is pink, as in to cut. It comes from the first letter of RED (a tinge) added to a word meaning shop, in the sense of betray (RAT) all put inside (during) a word meaning visit (SEE).


1d Hand out live stuff (6)
{BESTOW} – The definition is hand out, as in give an award. The wordplay is a word for live (BE) plus a word for stuff (STOW).

2d Publisher is litigant (6)
{ISSUER} – The definition is published. It is made up from IS plus a word for litigant (SUER).

3d In crying a shameful tear (4)
{GASH} – The definition is tear, as in rip not weep. It is hidden inside (in) crying a shameful.

4d Merged hybrid to make sterile (6)
{DEGERM} – Radler rightly acknowledged that the solution is not in the main Chambers dictionary. However, the definition is make sterile. It is easily derived from an anagram (hybrid) of merged.

5d Those who don’t believe attending robberies (8)
{ATHEISTS} – The definition is those who don’t believe. The word play is a word for attending (AT) plus a word for robberies (HEISTS).

6d Rates towns for cycling? (10)
{VELOCITIES} – The definition is rates (as in speeds) made up from a cryptic definition of towns for cycling VELO + CITIES. The question mark alerts us to the fact that the definition is unusual.

7d See if figure shortly could become figures (8)
{EFFIGIES} – The definition is figures. It is made up from an anagram (could become) of SEE IF plus a shortened word for figure (FIG).

10d One completing suspended sentence? (7)
{HANGMAN} – A cryptic definition for someone like Albert Pierrepoint who sent criminals on their way with a well placed noose. This is another of the themed clues in the puzzle indicated by 13a.

14d DNA quota for procreation… (10)
{GENERATION} – The definition is procreation. It is made up from a word for DNA (GENE) plus a word for quota (RATION).

[Readers can imagine their own picture here!]

16d … or about to follow with papers for artificial man (7)
{ANDROID} – The definition is artificial man. The wordplay is once again complex given that this is meant to be an easier down clue. Take the word OR and reverse it. Put this after a word for with (AND) and add a word for papers (ID),

17d South Carolina masses jockey for position (8)
{SCRABBLE} – The definition is jockey for position. It is made up from the two letter abbreviation for South Carolina (SC) plus a derogatory word for masses, as in people (RABBLE). This clue forms part of the mini theme in the puzzle indicated by 13a.

18d Curl trimmed and coiffed, lay it in place (8)
{LOCALITY} – The definition is place. Take a word for a curl of hair (LOCK) and trim it to give LOC. Now add an anagram of lay it to give the answer. This is another relatively complex word play but nicely constructed to keep a convincing surface reading.

22d Stand up to work, then sit (6)
{OPPOSE} – The definition is stand up to. It is made from a word for work (OP) plus a word for sit (POSE).

23d What is able to lubricate? (3,3)
{OIL CAN} – A cryptic definition for something that contains a lubricant.

24d Shared dog’s dinner being in a hurry (6)
{DASHER} – The definition is being (as in a person) in a hurry. It comes from an anagram (dog’s dinner) of SHARED.

27d Last character’s semi-erotic: could be described as naughty! (4)
{ZERO} – The definition is a whimsical reference to nought. It is made up from the last letter of the alphabet (Z) plus half (semi) the word erotic (ERO).


One Comment

  1. Radler
    Posted April 25, 2010 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Prolixic, thank you for the review with your very kind comments. I’m very pleased you enjoyed the puzzle.
    In 9ac, the “extra portion from baker” is an extra “twelfth” of a standard dozen