A Puzzle by Phito
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
Today we have another new setter. This puzzle has an interesting sub-theme. As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
A review of this puzzle by Prolixic follows.
Many thanks to Phito for his creditable first Rookie crossword. There was a mini theme based around a comedy duo. Lots of good clues to admire here with only a few errant indicators that would normally be smoothed out when test solved.
9 Gershwin time! I’m not angry (5)
IRATE – The first name of one of the Gershwin brothers followed by the word time from the clue after the IM has been removed (I’m not).
10 Dissonant, dismissed frequently by one over the Channel (3,2,4)
OUT OF TUNE – Another word for dismissed in cricket followed by a three letter word meaning frequently and the French (over the channel) feminine form of “one”.
11 Large area where urea is a problem (7)
EURASIA – An anagram (problem) of UREA IS A.
12/1/3 Mayhem at inn with some feathers is a feature of 2 and 25 (7,4,4)
ANOTHER FINE MESS – An anagram (Mayhem) of INN SOME FEATHERS for one of the films (feature) of the comedy duo that forms a mini theme in this crossword.
13 Film “The Bottoms Out” is smut (5)
FILTH – Remove the last letters (bottoms out) from Fil[m] Th[e]. The use of bottoms to indicate the removal of the last letters of the words does not work in an across clue. It would be fine in a down clue.
15 Very nasty opening issue (3)
SON – A two letter word meaning very followed by the first letter (opening) of nasty.
16 Give up roast occasionally (3)
RAT – The odd letters (occasionally) of RoAsT.
17 Without us, Schulz’s retiring philosopher is nothing (3)
NIL – Schulz’s philosopher is Linus from the Peanuts cartoon strip. Remove (without) the US and reverse (retiring) the remaining letters.
19 Thanks to strong cheese, we find a lustrous material (7)
TAFFETA – A two letter word meaning thanks followed by the abbreviation for strong or loud in musical terms and a type of Greek cheese.
20/16D Ah! Choral arrangement for the producer (3,5)
HAL ROACH – An anagram (arrangement) of AH CHORAL gives us the producer of many of our comedy duo’s films.
23/24/30 Two playing with sweaty uniform are a feature of 2 and 25 (3,3,4)
WAY OUT WEST. A film staring our comedy duo. An anagram (playing) of TWO SWEATY U, the U being the letter indicated in the NATO phonetic alphabet by Uniform.
25 Durable road through the grass, one of a pair (5)
HARDY – The first member of our comedy duo is also a word that means durable. The abbreviation for road goes inside a word for dried grass.
27 Record held by excitable steed is firmly embedded (4-3)
DEEP-SET – The abbreviation for an Extended Play record goes inside (held by) an anagram (excitable) of STEED.
29 Players on the green disturb Serb clutching hooter (7)
BOWLERS – An anagram (disturb) of SERB includes (clutching) a bird that hoots.
32 Crushing revolts, each half lifts (9)
ELEVATORS – An anagram (crushing) of REVOLTS EA (half of ea[ch]).
33 Fix pen when unspecified number becomes cold (5)
STICK – The wordplay and solution were clear here. A word meaning fix comes from a stink with the N (unspecified number) becoming C (cold). I needed Big Dave’s assistance to discover that “pen” is Cockney rhyming slang. Pen and Ink = stink.
1 See 12 Across
2 Honour hands around a flower, one of a pair (6)
LAUREL – The second of our comedy duo. The abbreviation for Left twice (hands) goes around the A from the clue and the name of a North Yorkshire river.
3 See 12 Across
4 One does lose energy getting up for a mixer (4)
SODA – A letter for “one” and the DOES from the clue without the abbreviation for energy are all reversed.
5 Ann and I met two times, a remarkable accomplishment (10)
ATTAINMENT – An anagram (remarkable) of ANN I MET TT (two times) A.
6 Revolving tractor factory surrounds Greater Barnet (4)
AFRO – The answer (a big style of hair do (greater barnet) is hidden (surrounds) and reversed (revolving) in TRACTOR FACTORY.
7 Letter from Greek church about which flyer emerges (8)
NUTHATCH – The Greek character Nu and an abbreviation for church go around word that should usually be used when people write which. The play which I attended should be the play that I attended, etc.
8 Flustered brides often found in 2 and 25’s wake (6)
DEBRIS – An anagram (flustered) of BRIDES. A slightly tenuous link to the comedy duo.
13 Swimmer’s power source providing back-up to a point (3)
FIN – Reverse (back up) a two letter word meaning providing and follow this with a point of the compass.
14 Buddy from Texas, over time, misses Lima passionately (5)
HOTLY – The Texan singer Buddy Holly loses one of the Ls (misses Lima – L in the Nato phonetic alphabet) and this goes over the abbreviation for Time. The wordplay A over B to indicate A going around B works in an across clue. In a down clue it means A followed by B.
15 The easier path to post, thanks to no paperwork (4,6)
SOFT OPTION – To post is STATION. The TA (thanks) becomes O (no) FT (paper) OP (work) to give the answer. Thanks to Phito for the elucidation.
16 See 20 Across
18 The amount of noise made by the herd? (3-5)
LOW-LEVEL – A cryptic definition of the amount of sound made by cattle.
21 Amateur drama without an introduction (3)
LAY – Remove (without and introduction) the first letter from another word for a drama.
22 See 29
26 Land on river going north (4,2)
REEL IN – A two letter word meaning on followed by the name of a river associated with Egypt reversed (going north).
28 Mates back strike (4)
SLAP – Reverse a word meaning mates. This is one of those clues where putting the reversal indicator between the two words should be a hanging offence as there is no way of knowing which is the definition and which is the wordplay element. Phito is not alone – see 22d in Tuesday’s Daily Telegraph Crossword.
29/22 Boy dances on public transport and passes on feature of 2 and 25 (4,6)
BUSY BODIES – Another film involving our comedy duo. An anagram (dances) of BOY under a word for a type of public transport followed by a word meaning passes on. The wordplay does not work here. The anagram of BOY comes after not on (above) the public transport.
30 See 23 Across
31 Intoxicating stuff, once said, loses momentum (4)
SAKE – An word once used in as the past tense of to say, as in “Thus Spake Zarathustra”, loses the abbreviation for momentum (from the original term used to describe persistence of an objects motion). P as the abbreviation for momentum is obscure unless you are a physicist. It is not given in Chambers as a recognised abbreviation.