Sunday Toughie 105 (Review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Sunday Toughie 105 (Review)

Sunday Toughie No 105 by proXimal

Review by Sloop John Bee

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This puzzle was published on the 28th of January 2024

 

 

Across

1a           Lag once around a tank, one hollow (10)
EXCAVATION: A former prisoner EX-CON, goes around a tank or container  A VAT, and the letter that looks like one I. EXC(AVAT)(I)ON

6a           Girl cut husband’s fine hair (4)
LASH: An informal girl LASS, swaps her final letter for an abbreviation of husband LASS becomes LASH the fine hair around the eyes

9a           Rising alert, cover removed and connecting device (7)
COUPLER: A usually military uprising COUP, and the letters that remain of alert when uncovered LER, a connecting device for trains a COUPLER

10a        Truck seen outside large boozer (7)
TIPPLER: Not the building but one of its habitual inhabitants from a type of truck TIPPER, around the abbreviation of large L A boozer or TIPP(L)ER

12a        Firm area tasted great in bananas (7,6)
TRADING ESTATE: Bananas is an anagram indicator; Firm area is the definition of a place where businesses are grouped together, TASTED GREAT IN becomes a TRADING ESTATE

14a        Rowing and shouting without introduction (6)
OARING: A synonym of shouting, much practiced by Brian Blessed or Lord Melchett in Blackadder ROARING, loses its introductory letter

15a        Sample of children’s emblemed outfit (8)
ENSEMBLE: A lurker (Sample of) hidden within the next two words an ENSEMBLE

17a        Tone in discord with such inactivity might be condemnatory (8)
DORMANCY: An extraction anagram, it removes the letters of tone from CONDeMnAtoRY and what remains is anagram fodder for a period of inactivity or DORMANCY. Two anagram indicators (in discord and might be) are required as tone is not removed intact

19a        Doubts persist regularly and dominate (6)
OBSESS: Alternate letters (regularly) of the first two words to dominate ones thoughts to OBSESS

22a        Spooner’s putting personnel in part of canal, silly person (8,5)
LAUGHING STOCK: A silly person discovered when the act of providing manpower for the busiest parts of a canal STAFFING LOCK is treated in the manner of The Reverend Doctor Spooner to become LAUGHING STOCK

24a        Knight ousting king, evidently without hindrance (7)
CLEANLY: A synonym of evidently CLEARLY, ousts a Latin King (R for Rex) and replaces it with the chess notation of a KNIGHT N, CLEARLY becomes CLEANLY

25a        Exposed area reportedly became dull and rank again (7)
REGRADE: A homophone (reportedly) of became dull GRAYED becomes GRADE, following what remains of area when it has been exposed RE. Steve C may have to rank his dissertations again if distracted by the news that Mrs C is coming home soon

26a        I’m hesitant to leave dog home (4)
SETT: An interjection expressing hesitation ER, leaves a type of dog SETTER, leaving the home for a different type of animal a Badger SETT

27a        Dead dry, the ground lacking water (10)
DEHYDRATED: Ground is an anagram indicator, lacking water is the definition, leaving the first three words as the fodder DEAD DRY THE becomes DEHYDRATED

 

                Down

1d           Burn fine shed within reach (4)
ETCH: An abbreviation of fine on pencils F, is shed from a synonym of reach FETCH becomes ETCH or burn with chemicals

2d           Nobleman upset excellent fellows in deeply personal retort (15)
COUNTERARGUMENT: A rank of Nobleman (The European equivalent of an Earl) COUNT, followed by a reversal (upset)of a synonym of excellent RARE becomes ERAR, and some fellows MEN, in a deeply personal GUT, feeling COUNT(ERAR)GU(MEN)T

Thanks Philbert and Gazza

3d           Criminal‘s country house home (7)
VILLAIN: A country house much loved since Roman times VILLA, and a synonym of at home IN

4d           Burning awful endless rubbish that’s turned up (6)
TORRID: A reversal (turned up) of almost all of a synonym of awful DIR(E)and some decaying rubbish ROT DIRROT becomes TORRID

5d           Figures leave cats on crumpled covers (8)
OCTAGONS: A synonym of leave GO covered by an anagram (crumpled) of CATS ON becomes the eight-sided figures OCTAGONS

7d           Everyone rushed after dawn to get menu offering (3-3,9)
ALL-DAY BREAKFAST: Synonyms of everyone ALL, and dawn DAYBREAK, with a synonym of rushed FAST, coming after

8d           Antelope can’t stand crossing river, most advantageous to traverse end of June (10)
HARTEBEEST: A disliking of or can’t stand HATE, crosses a river R, and a synonym of most advantageous BEST, around the last letter of June E, HA( R )TE BE( E )ST or HARTEBEEST a type of Antelope

11d        Stick of crayon with end snapped off (5)
PASTE: A soft chalky crayon PASTEL, loses its end and maybe you can stick it back? Or PASTE it

13d        Grand supermarket to the north invested in new cooks and food taster (10)
GOLDILOCKS: An abbreviation of grand G, and the reversal (to the north in a down clue)  of a discount supermarket LIDL becomes LDIL, in an anagram (new) of COOKS. She specifically tested porridge and only liked one of the three offerings

16d        Comedian and DJ in Lebanese city (8)
MCINTYRE: A popular comedian Michael McIntyre, and a play on words of being IN the Lebanese city of TYRE,and another two-letter abbreviation that could be a Disc Jockey or otherwise in charge of entertaining an audience a MC or Master of Ceremonies

18d        Shelled cashew nuts primarily pale (5)
ASHEN: What remains of (c)ASHE(w) when shelled and the primary letter of nuts N, pale or ASHEN

20d        Online account provider (7)
BLOGGER: Right now it is me, a little earlier it was Senf. We also have Cryptic Sue, Gazza, Mr K, Huntsman, 2Kiwis, Falcon, Pommers, Dutch, Shabbo, Alp, Phibs, The Numpties, Rahmat Ali and Prolixic and many more providers of hints past and present (Stephen L, Twmbarlwm, Kath, Miffypops, Deep Threat, Kitty, Tilsit and not forgetting the Big Man who started it all) – I hope I haven’t missed anyone!). How delightful it would be if we could get together in Little Venice again to celebrate Big Dave’s legacy properly

21d        A starter of salmon on board in canteen is wrong (6)
ASTRAY: A from the clue, the starting letter of salmon S, and the board on which you collect food from a canteen TRAY, have all gone wrong or ASTRAY

23d        Group listened to broadcast (4)
A homophone (broadcast) of listened to HEARD becomes HERD, a group of animals or a band from the 60s that Peter Frampton was a member of

 

That’s all Folks…

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