MPP 046 – Review

Monthly Prize Puzzle – 046

March 2016

A Puzzle by Prolixic


Congratulations to Frank Greaney who correctly worked out which six of the Across answers could be linked, in the manner of a DT Quick Crossword pun, to form Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, the song from the musical film Mary Poppins.   He  can now choose one of the Hamlyn Telegraph Crossword Books as his  prize and hopefully the rest of us can now get rid of the earworm.


1a           American reviewed a word for great (5)
SUPER –   A reversal (reviewed) of US (American)  followed by  PER (a, each)

4a           Hardened locals  due for reorganisation (9)
CALLOUSED –  An anagram (reorganization) of LOCALS DUE

9a           Determined to include relative in plan (9)
INSISTENT – SIS (sister, relative) included in INTENT (plan)

10a         Way Victor returned is corrupt (5)
VENAL –   V (Victor – NATO Phonetic Alphabet) and a reversal (returned) of LANE (way)

11a         Delicate paper put in folder (7)
FRAGILE –  RAG (newspaper) put in FILE (folder).

12a         Poison discovered in bacon items (7)
ACONITE –   Discovered lurking in bACON ITEms


13a         Speak of international unit … (6)
INTONE –   INT (international) ONE (unit)

15a         … say German petroleum company producing a type of paint (8)
EGGSHELL –  EG (say, for example) G (German) SHELL (petroleum company)


18a         Relating to the quality of message by King leaving country (8)
TEXTURAL –   TEXT (message) and URAL (R, Rex, King leaving RURAL [country])

20a         I’m surprised a Catholic describes saint for spiritualist (6)
MYSTIC –   MY (I’m surprised) and  I (a, one) C (Catholic) ‘describes’ or goes round ST (saint)

23a         Worried about Times following old Earl stopping STD (5,2)
VEXED BY – BY (times in maths) follows EX (old) and E (earl) inside VD (STD)

24a         A French national is rude (7)
UNCIVIL –   UN (the French indefinite article) CIVIL (national)

26a         Graduate leaves pudding to dance (5)
RUMBA –   BA (Bachelor of Arts, graduate) leaves RUM BABA (Prolixic calls it a pudding but the splendid one I had in Naples was definitely a cake)


27a         Leaving port, hospital ship regularly treated a personal complaint (9)
HALITOSIS –   Remove the P (leaving Port) from HOSPITAL, take the odd (regularly) letters of ShIp and then rearrange to get some foul breath (personal complaint).


28a         How to apply Clearasil in a dangerous situation (2-3-4)
ON-THE-SPOT  –  A  double definition.

29a         American lawyer put back appointments (5)
DATES –  DA (American District Attorney) followed by a reversal (back) of SET (put).

1d           Cover over old tool – a cheeseparer (9)
SKINFLINT – SKIN (cover) FLINT (old tool)


2d           Crush a Turkish governor (5)
PASHA  – PASH  (crush in the sense an adolescent infatuation) A (from the clue)

3d           Two boys and a foreigner (7)
RUSSIAN –   RUSS and IAN (two boys)


4d           Heard Blue was in the boat (6)
CREWED –   A homophone (heard) of CRUDE (blue)

5d           Allow half-hearted prince to describe Government’s inaction (8)
LETHARGY –   LET (allow) and HAR[R]Y (prince) ‘describes’ G (Government).

6d           Unaware of Light Infantry’s departure, that’s clear (7)
OBVIOUS –   The departure of  the abbreviation for  Light Infantry from OBLIVIOUS (unaware of) makes the solution to this clue clear.

7d           Military leader interrupts conscious thought (9)
SENTIMENT –   M (the leader of military) interrupts SENTIENT (conscious)

8d           Investigate key day of celebration? (5)
DELVE –   DEL (the delete key on your keyboard) and VE (the day Victory in Europe was celebrated)

14d         Sack ten in invite leaving no Scot! (3-6)
TAX-EXEMPT –   This particular Scot being a historical tax originally paid in Scotland) –   AXE (sack) X (the Roman numeral for 10) inserted into TEMPT (invite)

16d         Restricts collie being let loose with ass (9)
LOCALISES –   An anagram (being let loose) of COLLIE and ASS.

17d         Magazine’s cool title (8)
LADYSHIP –   Relating to the Lady magazine – LADYS and HIP (cool, fashionable)


19d         Expose peacekeepers’ hanging (7)
UNDRAPE –  UN (United Nations, peacekeepers) DRAPE (hanging)

21d         Sailed around reef with Henry Heath? (7)
YACHTED –   A reversal (around) of CAY (reef) H (Henry being the SI Unit of Inductance) and TED (Heath).

22d         Lettuce endlessly chopped in dish (6)
CUTLET –   Remove the E at the end of LETTUCe and make an anagram (chopped) of the remaining letters.


23d         Sign note left for oriental bird (5)
VIREO –  The musical note G is replaced by  E (Eastern, oriental) in VIRGO (the sign of the Zodiac) to produce a small American insectivorous bird.

25d         Vatican City question call (5)
VISIT –   V (the IVR code for the Vatican City and IS IT (a question!)

Thanks once again to Prolixic ( it was worth the three year wait ;)   ) for another fine MPP and to Mrs BD and BD himself for their parts in this month’s puzzle production.


  1. Jane
    Posted March 21, 2016 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    Many thanks, CS – I was glad of your splendid review to get the full parsing of 27a&14d plus the explanation of the ‘H’ in 21d.
    As you said – worth waiting 3 years for, but I hope it’s not as long again before we get the next MPP from Prolixic.

    Congrats. to Frank – what a great puzzle to score your win!

  2. Prolixic
    Posted March 21, 2016 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Crypticsue for the review. This crossword has a bit of a backstory. I originally set it three or so years ago and sent it to Sue and Gazza to test solve. I had their comments back and was about to send it to Big Dave when Paul had a crossword published in the Guardian that used the same pun (with slightly different words). “Rats”, I said (or words to that effect) and put it in store until Big Dave persuaded me to resurrect it!

  3. Hanni
    Posted March 21, 2016 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the excellent review CS.

    Loved solving this and giggled when I got the whole pun. Certainly worth the three year wait. Thanks also to Proloxic, looking forward to more of your puzzles.

    Well done to Frank,

  4. jean-luc cheval
    Posted March 21, 2016 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

    Congratulations to Frank (or is it our Franco?) on winning this month prize.

  5. jean-luc cheval
    Posted March 21, 2016 at 8:56 pm | Permalink

    And to CS for the review and explanations.