Happy Earth Day!
Huzzah for our planet. Let's do more to make sure we can pass it on to the next generation and the generations beyond that one. But before you do, take the time to read my blog review of today's non-Earth Day related puzzle! And congratulations to Mr. Burch for his debut today. And it's a beaut!
I figured out the rebus pretty early on, not in the northwest corner, but in the central north section. 7D: Who has finished a 100-meter dash in under nine seconds (N[OO]NE) had two possible answers: Usain Bolt and nobody else. I put in NoNE, thinking that seemed weird. And then 15A: Ruckuses (H[OO]HAS) looked very odd as HoHAS. And so it clicked.
Shortly thereafter, I realized that 17A had to be SEANCONNERY, and I knew what was going on. There were going to be seven squares with OO in them, for "double-O 7," James Bond's assigned number from MI-6. This helped immensely, because I was able to put DANIELCRAIG and PIERCEBROSNAN in without much thought.
Turns out there are, as predicted, seven rebus squares, but when I finished the puzzle, an animation kicked in to helpfully demonstrate that the squares were set out in the shape of a seven. Very nice!
For the record, I would rate the actors who played James Bond in the following way:
- Sean Connery. Iconic. Brutal. Problematic nowadays, in the way he treats women, but it was of its time.
- Daniel Craig. Brutal, brooding. A little humorless at times, but super stylish.
- Roger Moore. Swerving into the campy here, but a great run.
- George Lazenby. One movie? He's pretty good in it though.
- David Niven. Also one movie, and it's a spoof, but he more than anyone, actually embodied what the role was meant to be, I think.
- Timothy Dalton. Meh.
- Pierce Brosnan. Double meh.
Meanwhile, in the puzzle, I thought 38D: Flustered (INATIZZY) was the best answer of the day. And how about the fact that SHEBA in the bible is referring to Yemen? I had no idea. I always pictured it being in Northern Africa, like Algeria or some such.