Toughie No 2257
Double, double toil and trouble by Firefly
Hints and tips by 2Kiwis
BD Rating – Difficulty ***– Enjoyment ****
Kia ora from Aotearoa.
Bet you didn’t expect to see us back in the blogging chair quite so soon. Bufo was not available so we stepped up to review a Toughie for a change.
There’s a theme here that you’ll probably guess from the heading. A couple of new words for us and good fun all the way through.
Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.
4a Hellenic gatherings in the past attracting artists (6)
AGORAS : A three letter word for in the past plus Royal Academicians.
8a Initiate Sharp into MS Office — no peripherals required! (5,3)
START OFF : A synonym for sharp or acidic is inside the letters that are left of MS Office once the computer peripherals used to navigate the cursor are removed.
10a Band section given leave … (6)
ARMLET : A section or wing and then given leave or allowed.
11a … to get rid of vocal in Oxford, for instance (4)
SHOE : A homophone of a word meaning to chase away.
12a In rough condition, Grace sings remarkably (10)
CRAGGINESS : An anagram (remarkably) of GRACE SINGS.
16a Every second, still more stupefied by newspaper boss (4-8)
EVEN-NUMBERED : Still or placid, then ‘more stupefied’, and finally the newspaper boss.
21a Crown holding the setter to account (4)
ACME : The abbreviation for account and a personal pronoun that Firefly might use.
23a Sun’s first with press club (4,4)
SAND IRON : The first letter of Sun, then a synonym for with and press or make smooth.
24a Delivery in Underwood’s last over also turning, short of length — runs added (6)
DOOSRA : String together the last letter of Underwood and the abbreviation for over. Next, in the reversal for the word ‘also’ replace the abbreviation for length with that for runs. (We went through all this process and then were surprised to find it was there in the BRB.)
25a Take out daughter — excellent lunch except the enchiladas for starters (6)
DELETE : The first letter of six words in the clue.
1d Be vigilant — this could make synchronisation difficult! (5,3)
WATCH OUT : The wordplay points to a malfunctioning timepiece.
3d Reptile showing up in midst of the herd? Here’s a way to show off your muscles! (7)
ECORCHE : The reversal of the short form of a large aquatic reptile is inside the central three letters from the phrase ‘the herd’. (Another surprise for us when we checked in the BRB.)
5d See 15 Down
6d Remember short skirts? Take a look outside — one about to go! (9)
REMINISCE : An informal word meaning to take a look loses one of the letters that stands for the Latin ‘about’. All of this surrounds short skirts from the 1960’s.
9d Leaving old city, resentment shown among fans in upset for Bavarians (11)
FRANCONIANS : Remove crossword’s favourite old city from the end of a synonym for resentment and put what’s left inside an anagram (upset) of FANS IN.
14d On the way to a 21 Across? (9)
CRESCENDO : A musical instruction to build up to a peak.
17d Put straightforwardly, this is new in cake (2,5)
EN CLAIR : The abbreviation for new is inside the cake with an interesting definition in BRB.
18d ‘From the South’ — seen it, a meticulously abridged performance (7)
MATINEE : A reversed lurker.
19d Man perhaps grabbed by boss and taken for a ride (6)
MISLED : The initials for a managing director or boss contain a geographical entity of which Man is an example.
21d Main track‘s out of the way (1-4)
A-SIDE : Remove the hyphen from the answer to find ‘out of the way’.
Hard to pick a favourite when we enjoyed all the clues.