Toughie No 2551 by Django
Hints and tips by Gazza
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +
BD Rating – Difficulty */** – Enjoyment ***
As far as I am aware we still haven’t identified yesterday’s new setter but today’s newbie was well trailed last week. Django is the comedian Dave Gorman who left a few comments last week so I really hope that he’ll continue to participate and interact with us.
The best word I can think of for today’s puzzle is ‘goodish’. We have only two anagrams (good) and a lack of obscurities (also good). I thought it was very much on the gentle side for a Wednesday Toughie but I have high hopes that the setter will be able to dial up the trickiness in future Toughies.
Welcome to Django and thanks for the enjoyable puzzle.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of it.
1a Heart of whodunit with blurb about assault (4,2)
DUFF UP: two letters at the centre of ‘whodunit’ followed by the reversal of some overblown prose trying to promote a book, say.
4a A way into reconditioned aircraft business (8)
AVIATION: string together A, the Latin word for way or road and an anagram (reconditioned) of INTO.
10a Vice squad ultimately have restraint (9)
CLAMPDOWN: assemble a type of vice, the ultimate letter of squad and a verb to have.
11a Expressed the most annoyance (5)
PIQUE: this sounds like an adjective mean ‘the most’ or ‘the highest’.
12a Saw hype about book (7)
PROVERB: charade of an abbreviation for hype or spin, a preposition meaning about and the abbreviation for book.
13a Opposition and I pass on taking 50-50 (3-4)
ILL-WILL: a phrase meaning ‘I pass on’ or ‘I bequeath’ containing two occurrences of the Roman numeral for 50.
14a Oddly missing penalties — initially Neymar scoffed (5)
EATEN: drop the odd letters from penalties and append the initial letter of Neymar.
15a English agree to swap sides, yet mostly will display great acuity (5,3)
EAGLE EYE: knit together an abbreviation for English, ‘agree’ after you’ve swapped one side for the other and ‘yet’ without its last letter.
18a Stoppage of vital functions — heard about cure in the East? (8)
ASPHYXIA: what sounds like a verb to cure or repair goes inside the landmass that we think of as ‘the East’.
20a Any of these five school staff coach set sequence (5)
TRAIN: a quintuple definition (although I think there’s quite an overlap between number one and number three).
23a Respect African country — as Trump might say, it’s ‘great’ (3,2,2)
WAY TO GO: combine a synonym of respect or manner with a country in West Africa. The answer is an informal expression in the USA.
25a Sort of car‘s difficult as far as parking (7)
HARDTOP: glue together an adjective meaning difficult, a preposition meaning ‘as far as’ and the abbreviation for parking.
26a Old-fashioned cabaret routine’s attributes (5)
RETRO: hidden in the clue.
27a Overlooked German and put warning inside (9)
UNNOTICED: the German word for ‘and’ with a word for warning or prior notification inside it.
28a Took out key dictionary to grasp right tense (8)
ESCORTED: a key that’s usually found at top left of a standard keyboard and the abbreviation for a well-known dictionary containing abbreviations for right and tense.
29a Estate Tax not quite covering debt at the end (6)
ASSETS: a verb to fix the amount of tax due loses its last letter and contains the last letter of debt.
1d Understand, after 12th month, Apple product no longer on insurance, essentially (8)
DECIPHER: staple together the abbreviated 12th month, an Apple product which has lost its ‘on’ and the central letter of insurance.
2d In Florida, a solicitor’s using every effort (4,3)
FLAT OUT: concatenate the standard abbreviation for Florida, A and someone soliciting custom.
3d Adolescent a little tempted to get into speed after university — the latest of many (9)
UMPTEENTH: insert an informal term for an adolescent and the first letter of tempted into the abbreviation identifying your speed on the road, say. Now precede all that with an abbreviation for university.
5d Terminal velocity at the start — speed of sound during echo — it’s often observed on railway platform (7,7)
VENDING MACHINE: a synonym for terminal is preceded by the abbreviation for velocity. After that we need the word for the speed of sound, a preposition meaning ‘during’ and the letter for which echo is used in the Nato Phonetic Alphabet.
6d Dismay of apprentice meeting Alan half-cut (5)
APPAL: the abbreviation for apprentice and half of ‘Alan’.
7d Gather detailed quantity of paper before end of day for hearing (7)
INQUIRY: bring together a verb to gather (used of a harvest), a quantity of paper without its last letter and the last letter of day.
8d Require limousine on vacation to see obelisk (6)
NEEDLE: a verb to require and the outer letters of limousine.
9d Spitting Image showing trick photography (6,8)
DOUBLE EXPOSURE: a spitting image or exact likeness followed by a synonym of showing.
16d Doctor tries net to describe current inflammation (9)
ENTERITIS: an anagram (doctor) of TRIES NET contains the symbol for electric current.
17d Extremely hot suit (2,6)
IN SPADES: an adjective meaning hot or popular and a card suit.
19d Pen point in command — producing drawing together (7)
STYPTIC: weld together an animal pen and abbreviations for point and ‘in command’.
21d For example, the nickel citrate sample is used up (7)
ARTICLE: hidden in reverse.
22d Move to avoid start of tennis match, drinking whiskey (6)
SWERVE: what happens to start a tennis match contains the letter that whiskey is used for in the Nato Phonetic Alphabet.
24d Smell‘s old and unfriendly (5)
ODOUR: the abbreviation for old and an adjective meaning unfriendly or grim.
My favourite clue today was 17d. Which clue(s) hit the spot for you?