710 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

Toughie 710

Toughie No 710 by Osmosis

Gnisrever hcum ooT!

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BD Rating – Difficulty *****Enjoyment ****

Greetings from the Calder Valley. Today’s Friday Fiend is Osmosis who produces some of the most challenging Toughies, and today’s is no exception. This is quite a beast of a puzzle and I struggled for a while to get a foothold after entering a couple of answers wrongly (IN TUNE at 20 down and KINDLE at 21 ac). However perseverance paid off and things fell into place. Osmosis (and his other guise of Scorpion in the Indy) puzzles are notable for their detailed constructs which can be rather convoluted. This for me sometimes spoils things for me as it means the clue looks slightly forced and the pudding somewhat over-egged. There were a lot of reversals today as well. Having to rely on the unchecked letters to solve a clue, as happened with a couple of clues today because the definition and indications are very very obscure or vague, is not to me a fair way of puzzle-solving. I feel a heated debate coming on tomorrow!

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