NTSPP – 075 (Review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 075 (Review)

Not the Saturday Prize Puzzle – 075

A Puzzle by Boaz

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Getting to the bottom of things

It’s a warm welcome back to Boaz with a cracking puzzle (full of cracks to be sure).  I have highlighted my favourite clues in blue below.  We look forward to an early return to the series from our latest setter.


1a Flower taken in by Mr. Humphrey was an official Downing Street one (6)
{MOUSER} – Humphrey was a cat who lived at 10 Downing Street.  We therefore need another word for a cat that comes from putting the name of a river (flower) inside the letters of Mr.

5a Team with monogrammed taps in the changing room? (4,4)
{HULL CITY} – This football team, nicknames the Tigers, may be said to have its initials on the taps (hot and cold) in the changing rooms.

9a KP lived with a hairy bowler from India (5,3)
{KAPIL DEV} – The name of an Indian cricketer comes from an anagram (hairy) of KP lived and the letter A.

10a Like Pamela’s rear and the heart of Jodie Marsh (6)
{ADMIRE} – A word for like comes from the final letter (rear) of Pamela the inside letter (heart) of Jodie followed by a synonym for a marsh or fen.

11a Hold 55.5? (4,6)
{HALF NELSON} – A wrestling hold comes from the number that 55.5 represents.  If you take the slang for 111 (a person who had one arm, one eye and one leg), the answer should be obvious!

12a Every other bench hook is an imitation (4)
{ECHO} – A word for an imitation comes from the alternate letters (every other) of bench hook.

13a Ordering extra fat is not gross (5,3)
{AFTER TAX} – A word in accounting terms meaning not gross comes from an anagram (ordering) of extra fat.

16a Door frames caught Spock? (6)
{DOCTOR} – Spock (not the Vulcan but the childcare expert) is an example of this type of person.  It comes from putting an abbreviation for caught inside the word door.

17a Fought North Carolina in pasture (6)
{FENCED} – A word for fought comes from putting the abbreviation for North Carolina inside a word meaning pasture (that which provides nourishment to farm animals).

19a Bet on team that’s bottom (8)
{BACKSIDE} – A word for one’s bottom comes from a word sum of a synonym for bet followed by a synonym for team.

21a I would love trainee to become a star (4)
{IDOL} – A word for a star (as in celebrity) comes from the abbreviation for I would followed by  single letter representing love and an abbreviation for a trainee.

22a O, Romeo, did he send one to Juliet? (4-6)
{LOVE-LETTER} – For this clue we need to reverse the process in the previous clue!  Take a word that the letter O represents and follow it by a word for a character (as Romeo is in the phonetic alphabet) to find something that Romeo might have sent to Juliet.

25a What’s behind the crack reduced ’em to rubble, I heard (6)
{RECTUM} – More bottom humour!  The organ behind the crack in your bottom comes from a homophone for a phrase meaning reduced (th)em to rubble.

26a Starter consists of Italian gin, and on it – nuts (8)
{IGNITION} – This starter in an engine comes from an abbreviation for Italian followed by an anagram (nuts) of gin on it.

27a Celebrity fights for a picture of Guinness (4,4)
{STAR WARS} – This film in which Alex Guinness starred comes from a word for a celebrity followed by a word for fights.

28a Chubbier without one? Probably the opposite (6)
{LARDER} – If you had a well stocked one of these, you probably would become chubbier.  To find the answer take a word meaning chubbier (as in having more fat) and remove the I (without one).


2d Beach found to the east of Utah? (5)
{OMAHA} – This beach (or its code name in the D-Day landings) lies to the east of the beach codenamed Utah.

3d Upset staff in Swindon content to smell (5)
{SNIFF} – A word meaning to smell is hidden (in) and reversed (upset) inside staff in Swindon.

4d Possibly duck out of Soviet rally, say (3,4)
{RED MEAT} – Duck is an example of this type of food.  Take the colour represented by Soviet and a homophone (say) for a rally (as in a gathering) to find the answer.  For the purposes of Lent when this could not otherwise be eaten, I did hear that duck was reclassified by the Vatican as a type of fish to enable it to be eaten!

5d The rich and old do it (4,3)
{HAVE SEX} – An expression meaning do it comes from a word meaning the rich (from the expression “the x’s and the x’s not” and follow it by a two letter word meaning old.  I refuse to illustrate this one!

6d Flanders King is first to be educated (7)
{LEARNED} – A word meaning to be educated comes from a Shakespearean king followed by the first name of Mr Flanders of the Simpson’s fame.

7d Scene with mom is shot after cold starts (9)
{COMMENCES} – A word meaning starts comes from an anagram (shot) of scene mom after the letter C for cold.

8d Doctor Who regeneration is shown on the BBC (9)
{TORCHWOOD} – This TV spin-off from the Dr Who series comes from an anagram (regeneration) of Doctor Who.  The name of this programme came from the code word that was used on the video tapes of Doctor Who as they were sent around the country using the very same anagram!

ARVE Error: need id and provider

14d Experiment with green-screen (5-4)
{FIELD TEST} – A word for an experiment comes from a word sum of a piece of land (green) followed by a word meaning screen (as in examine).

15d Non-stop flight from Alsace diverted to Romanian capital (9)
{ESCALATOR} – This non-stop flight (though judging by the number out of order on the underground, this is wishful thinking) comes from an anagram (diverted) of Alsace followed by TO followed by the first letter (capital) of Romanian.

18d Cover up girl’s predicament (7)
{DILEMMA} – A word for a predicament comes from reversing (up) a word for a cover followed by a girl’s name.

19d Little girl fights for several rounds (7)
{BEVVIES} – A word for several rounds (in terms of alcoholic drinks) comes from the shortened form of Beverley followed by a word meaning fights.

20d Mustard maybe firm to Blair without one (7)
{COLONEL} – This Mustard features in the game Cluedo.   Take the abbreviation for a company and follow it with the first name of the dancer an celebrity Mr Blair after removing the letter I (without one).

23d Express dissatisfaction with gold coach (5)
{TUTOR} – A word for a coach as in a teacher comes from a word or sound you would make to express dissatisfaction followed by one of the abbreviations for gold.

24d Remind the First Lady to box well (5)
{EVOKE} – A word meaning remind comes from putting a word meaning well (as in fine) inside the first lady in the book of Genesis.

8 comments on “NTSPP – 075 (Review)

  1. Many thanks for your excellent write-up, Prolixic, and especially for making my clues seem much stronger than I intended! 22a especially as I’d only intended to mean O, in crosswordese is the ‘love letter’. I used Romeo only so I could link-up ‘O, Romeo’. It never ocurred to me that Romeo was also a phonetic letter. Although obviously if anyone asks me I’m going to pretend I meant it all along!

    Also, many thanks to anyone who took the time to give this a bash. All I can ask is for a bit of your time and then hope I don’t waste it.

    1. A warm welcome to the blog Boaz.

      Times spent solving your crosswords is certainly not wasted! Glad that I got most of the explanations right and the ones I got wrong improved the original!

  2. Good stuff Boaz, most enjoyable so many thanks.
    I thought Kapil Dev a bit obscure for non cricket fans as its’s not something you can really work out if you’ve never heard of him.
    22a I saw the same way as Prolixic – is this great minds think alike or fools never differing?
    Thanks for a great review Prolixic and thanks again to Boaz.
    Off to the disco now – I may be some time!

  3. I read 22a the same way as Prolixic, and thought that it was a splendid clue, among many others.

    15d was probably my favourite, but there were plenty to choose from.

    Really good stuff, well worthy of the national dailies.

  4. Boaz, this was excellent fun. I have been caught laughing at a piece of paper a few times today and people think I am strange, After I explained rectum to them they still thought I was strange. Thanks a bunch for that and I hope to see you back here soon!. Nice review and thanks to Prolixic too!.

  5. Excellent fare! A bit cheeky but I got there in the end…thanks to B for the puzzle & P for the brilliant review

    Rectum? It nearly blew the b#ggers off!

  6. Marvellous stuff, Boaz’s best yet I think. A fraction harder than the previous one, with just as much wit and invention. I particularly enjoyed 15d and 25a. Keep ’em coming Boaz!

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