A Puzzle by Bungo
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
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 by Prolixic follows.
Welcome back to Bungo. Overall this was a good second outing. On the whole the shorter clues worked best. Some (I’m looking at you 6d) became too contrived for their own good. Whilst the length of a clue is a matter of style for the setter, if the clue is long because the wordplay has become too complicated, it is probably a good idea to scrap the clue and start again.
There were some places where the part of speech indicated by the definition were not matched in the solution.
Some good ideas were on display in clues like 13a. The commentometer reads as 3.5/28 or 12.5%
1 Green head of toad, an amphibian (4)
NEWT – A three-letter word meaning green followed by the first letter (head) of toad.
3 Invalid’s account following tumble given notably short shrift at first (10)
FALLACIOUS – The abbreviation for account after a four-letter word meaning tumble followed by a note given to acknowledge a debt and the first letter of shrift. Like others, I am not convinced that “notably short” really indicates the three letters required.
9 One going on tour taking in look around African city (7)
TRIPOLI – The letter representing one after (going on) a four-letter word for a tour include a reversal (around) of a two-letter word meaning look.
11 Maybe Doris is behind drama being broadcast at this time? (7)
NOONDAY – The three-letter surname of the actress Doris after (is behind) a two-letter-word for a form of Japanese drama and a two-letter word meaning being broadcast. Not sure about the at as a link word with the resulting structure of wordplay at definition.
12 When developing pub lot or housing I left planning committee (9)
POLITBURO – An anagram (when developing) of PUB LOT OR includes (housing) the I from the clue. I cannot see how the left works in this clue. It cannot be an abbreviation as the anagram already includes a letter L. It is awkward as link word and you would have wordplay left solution when, grammatically, it should be wordplay leaves solution.
13 Left extremes of killer heat, and kept in shade (5)
KHAKI – The leftmost letters of the fourth to eighth words of the clue.
14 Feast, having cooked Red Sea tuna with cored yams (6,6)
EASTER SUNDAY – An anagram of RED SEA TUNA YS (cored yams).
18 Before start of exam, former pupil backed staff with abandon in obsequious display (3,3,6)
BOW AND SCRAPE – Before the first letter (start of) of exam reverse (backed) the abbreviation for old boy (former pupil) with a four-letter word for a staff or rod and a five-letter word meaning to abandon. I am not sure that the part of speech required by obsequious display is matching by the solution which would require …ing and …ing
21 Rejoice as Catholic’s first to leave former sect (5)
EXULT – Take a phrase 2-4 meaning a former sect and remove (to leave) the first letter of Catholic. First has already been used as an initial letter indicator. Here as C is a recognised for Catholic this would enable the clue to be rewritten “Rejoice as Catholic leaves former sect”.
22 Previously admitting plot, that is, in submission to authority (9)
OBEDIENCE – A four-letter word meaning previously includes (admitting) a three-letter word meaning garden plot and the abbreviation for that is.
24 Nice one – a don made out in the dark (7)
UNAWARE – The French (Nice) masculine singular for one followed by the A from the clue and a homophone (made out) of wear (don).
25 Captain Bligh saw guppy caught heading west (7)
PUGWASH – The answer is hidden (caught) and reversed (heading west) in the third to fifth words of the clue.
26 Impresario’s loopy cast, as described by Spooner (5,5)
DOYLY CARTE – A Spoonerism of COILY (loopy) DART (cast).
27 Prime Minister’s key study (4)
EDEN – A musical key followed by a three-letter word for a study.
1 Silent, unlike a shepherdess? (3,1,4)
NOT A PEEP – Definition by reference to being unlike a nursery rhyme shepherdess.
2 Sponge – absorbing lake with it first is a pain in the neck (8)
WHIPLASH – A four-letter word meaning to sponge or clean includes the abbreviation for lake and (before the abbreviation) a three-letter word meaning with it.
4 All the best depart wearing gold (5)
ADIEU – A three-letter word meaning depart this life has the chemical symbol for gold around it (wearing).
5 Alight from bow next to 27 (4,2,3)
LAND OF NOD – A four-letter word meaning alight followed by a two-letter word meaning from and a three-letter word meaning bow.
6 Roughly whack on clothing, flapping about on leaving, and missing hotel’s checking out time repeatedly (5-8)
CLOCK WATCHING – My best guess a single letter meaning roughly followed by an anagram (flapping about) of WHACK ON CLOTHING after removing (leaving) the ON and the abbreviation for hotel! There is a technical term for clues that become too contrived for their own good. They are called otters (don’t ask me why). This one is a otter on steroids!
7 Extraordinarily hot lad behind The Times? (3,3)
OLD HAT – An anagram (extraordinarily) of HOT LAD.
8 Check swelling muscle in elbow to begin with (6)
STYMIE – A three letter word or a swelling followed by the initial letters (to begin with) of the third to fifth words of the clue.
10 Suffering tenth coronary? Not at all (2,3,8)
ON THE CONTRARY – An anagram (suffering) of TENTH CORONARY.
15 Neighbours, say, mostly rise and go off on time (4-5)
SOAP-OPERA – A four-letter word meaning rise with the final letter removed (mostly) followed by a three letter word meaning go off or explode and a three-letter word for a period of time.
16 Lacking energy, Fred’s friend’s unsympathetic when heading off for area of US farm (8)
BARNYARD – Fred’s friend in the Flintstones without (lacking) the abbreviation for energy followed by a four-letter word meaning unsympathetic without the first letter (heading off).
17 Broadcast fundraiser from hotel, somehow breaking number of green bottles (8)
TELETHON – An anagram (somehow) of HOTEL inside the number of green bottles hanging on the wall at the start of the children’s song.
19 Rich capital city bores (6)
FECUND – A four letter word for capital (in monetary terms) includes (bores) the postcode for the City of London.
20 Peculiar in technique as youngster (6)
QUEASY – The answer is hidden (in) the final three words of the clue.
23 Living abroad, seeing postman who’s late? (5)
EXPAT – Split 2,3 this might implies the children’s postman character in the cartoon series is dead. The answer here is a noun or adjective but has been clued as a verb.