Toughie 2783 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

Toughie 2783

Toughie No 2783 by Beam

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Thanks to Beam for what I thought was a slightly easier than usual Toughie.

Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of the puzzle.

Across Clues

1a Match with oddly cool interior, it’s said (8)
COINCIDE: the odd letters of ‘cool’ and what sounds like a synonym of interior.

5a Beginning to seem bothered? (6)
SCARED: the first letter of ‘seem’ and a verb meaning bothered or minded.

9a Bad case of wind gripping one (8)
MISTRIAL: the name of a wind that blows through southern France contains the Roman numeral for one.

10a A tabloid rejected accepting this compiler’s hostility (6)
ANIMUS: start with A, reverse a tabloid known as the currant bun and insert “This compiler’s” from the compiler’s viewpoint.

11a Retiring extrovert? (8)
OUTGOING: double definition, retiring as in leaving office.

12a For the audience, singer produces note (6)
TENNER: a very old chestnut – a homophone of a male singer.

14a Watch part about king surrendering eastern slope (10)
ESCARPMENT: start with a mechanism in a watch or clock, then insert the abbreviation of the Latin word for king and remove the second occurrence of the abbreviation for eastern.

18a Small Conservative deceits concealing new plots (10)
STORYLINES: string together the abbreviation for small, a familiar term for Conservative and some deceits containing the abbreviation for new. Very topical.

22a Former wife’s describing skill returning accessories (6)
EXTRAS: the short word used for a former wife plus the ‘S contains the reversal of a word meaning skill or knack.

23a Balance second partner without guilt occasionally (8)
MODULATE: stitch together an informal word for a second or short time and a partner on a romantic assignation containing the even letters of ‘guilt’.

24a Unemotional team almost holding crowd back (6)
STOLID: a synonym of team without its last letter contains the reversal of a crowd or large number.

25a Stuck in part if I cement craft (8)
ARTIFICE: hidden.

26a Shoots unedited film scenes (6)
RUSHES: double definition with shoots meaning ‘moves quickly’.

27a Obsession is wrong over eating French bread (8)
NEUROSIS: reverse a moral wrong and insert what’s been the French ‘bread’ for the past twenty years.

Down Clues

1d Appeared on very big special appearances (6)
CAMEOS: a verb meaning appeared or arrived precedes an abbreviation meaning very big.

2d Periodically witnesses test papers (6)
INSETS: regular letters from the middle two words. These papers (perhaps more familiarly known as the same word containing an R) are the annoying bumph which always seems to fall on the floor when you pick up a magazine in a shop.

3d A rifle emptied, held by criminal element (6)
CARBON: A and the outer letters of a verb to rifle or pillage are contained in an informal word for a criminal.

4d Analytical detective having some doubts (10)
DIAGNOSTIC: the abbreviation for a senior police detective and an adjective meaning having some doubts of a religious nature.

6d Scorn jailbird with time, aimless, endless (8)
CONTEMPT: start with an informal word for a jailbird (who was a criminal in 3d) and add the abbreviation for time and an adjective meaning aimless or ineffectual without its last letter.

7d Cue rest missing centre of black (8)
REMINDER: a synonym for rest or surplus without the central letter of black.

8d Unattached and tactful dropping one sweetheart (8)
DISCRETE: an adjective meaning tactful has one occurrence of the letter found at the heart of sweet dropped to the end.

13d Track access cut by account (10)
RACECOURSE: a noun meaning access contains an abbreviation for account.

15d Referee held up by crosses saved (8)
ASSESSOR: hidden in reverse.

16d Moderates fraud abuses online removing a line (8)
CONTROLS: a word for a fraud or scam and a verb meaning abuses online without one of its abbreviations for line.

17d Hedonist say, gutted with sex in nude (8)
SYBARITE: paste together ‘say’ without its guts and a synonym for nude containing an informal word for sex.

19d Comparatively feeble joke crowning current Queen (6)
PUNIER: a joke of the type we get every day in the Quickie sits atop the symbol for electric current and our Queen’s regnal cipher. Anyone else remember the old Charles Atlas adverts?

20d Young boys losing heart for young women? (6)
LADIES: a word for young boys north of the border loses its central letter. I’m not sure why ‘young’ is there but there is a question mark.

21d Depression could get you time off (6)
RECESS: a double definition to finish. The time off is, for example, what our parliamentarians call their holidays.

The clues I liked best were 9a, 8d and 17d. Which one(s) earned your plaudits?

25 comments on “Toughie 2783

  1. Straightforward although I did need to check my construction for 17d. Thanks to Gazza and Beam.

  2. G. Yes, I remember those Charles Atlas adverts so always wore a face visor when sunbathing on the beach – just in case! :-)

    1. I seem to remember that an ad for X ray glasses appeared alongside the ones for Charlie Rattlearse.

  3. Seemed tough on first approach and then rapidly fell into order.
    As always accurately clued with some humour.
    I sent off for the Charles Atlas book when I was 11 or 12….” Dynamic tension “ which does have some use in muscle building, basically by contracting agonist and antagonist simultaneously.
    Back to crossword,….thanks to Beam and Gazza although rarely I didn’t require any help today.

  4. This was my ideal Toughie – challenging but doable and great fun all the way.

    I needed my BRB for the watch parts in 14a, the film scenes in 26a, and to check that 2d meant the same thing with and without an R.

    Although I agree with Gazza that 18a is topical, I don’t think the current Conservative deceits can be considered as “small”. :wink:

    My podium comprises any three from 9a, 18a, 4d, 17d & 21d.

    Many thanks to Beam and to Gazza.

  5. Very enjoyable indeed, as concise and witty as ever. Couple of references I needed to check in what became a steady solve after a slow start. Great stuff.
    In a very strong field my podium contenders are 9a,18&27a plus 4,17&19d.
    Many thanks to Beam and Gazza for the top notch entertainment.

  6. I agree with the commentariat above. Great fun, doable with a few bung-ins to complete.

    Thanks to Beam and Gazza.

  7. Was so far off the pace with this I nearly pulled up but did eventually plod round without a letter reveal though I hit a few fences on the way & would likely have been lapped by the rest of you. The SE in particular caused me no end of head scratching. Failed to correctly parse the emptied rifle bit in 3d & also 13d & needed to confirm the watch part. Anyway thought it a super puzzle. 1,9,18&27a along with 4,8&17d are my picks.
    Many thanks to Beam & Gazza.

  8. Great crossword from Beam as usual and I made heavy weather of it although it’s hard to see why. Favourite was 4d. Thanks to Beam and Gazza.

  9. One of my rare Thursday Toughie finishes unaided, and it must be because I have finally found myself simpatico with the great Mr T. My top three are the same as Gazza’s (9a, 8d, & 17d), but it was the watch part clue that wins the Clarkie because, even though it was my LOI and I didn’t know the watch term, I have always loved the word for ‘slope’. Many thanks to Gazza for the review and to Beam for the total pleasure. Best puzzle this week–and that’s going some.

  10. Slow and steady but enjoyable. Just failed to complete thanks to a couple in SW corner – one of which a lurker so a little frustrating. Thanks to Beam and Gazza

  11. Eminently doable despite the awful grid [again]. There seemed to be a gimme for each corner along with the trademark Beam clues. I liked the French bread at 27 which was nicely disguised by the context of the surface.
    Charles Atlas and dynamic tension were parodied brilliantly in “Mr Apollo” by the Bonzos – “I was a 7 stone weakling, now I am two separate gorillas”.
    Thanks to Beam and to Gazza for the blog.

  12. Really enjoyed this one and scored max points. I’m usually a couple of minutes over the hour when I attempt a toughie. This one-eyed very challenging at first, then the new corner flowed in. Rating ****

  13. Another very enjoyable puzzle; agree with BD Rating. Favourite, just ahead of 27A was 4D; thanks to setter.

  14. Not “one eyed”, should say one seemed.
    Not “new corner” but NW corner. I hate spell check sometimes!

  15. Evening all. My thanks to Gazza for the review and to everybody else for your comments. Much appreciated.


    1. Good evening, Mr T, you just beat me to it today! Thanks again for a delicious puzzle – very much enjoyed.

  16. Late getting round to this one having been out with a friend and her husband to celebrate the latter’s 75th birthday. He was enjoying his day until his brother-in-law commented on the fact that he’d now reached three-quarters of a century…………
    Experienced a few tricky moments during the solve (not with the watch part I hasten to add!) but eventually it all came together very satisfactorily. Podium places went to 9&18a along with 4&17d.

    Devotions as ever to Mr T/Beam and thanks to Gazza for the comprehensive review.

  17. There we are again with 18a shining the light on all things Boris!

    Enjoyable puzzle, but the grid should probably resign along with you-know-who!

    1. I’m curious. What’s wrong with the grid? No double unches so assume 1 clue access to each quartile is the resignation issue. With you on the other fella mind.

  18. Completed in two sittings – first late last night, second this morning. Agree with all above. My only comment would be the multi-use of the word ‘con’. It does make life easier for the solver though! Thanks to all

Comments are closed.