Taken To Task
Sisyphus and his task are aptly referenced here - aptly! I had to complete this puzzle on my own. Or, more correctly, largely on my own. Horace was out of town and left the puzzle machine with me. Things worked out well for me on Saturday, eventually, but Sunday, not so much. I chipped away at the puzzle all day and into the night during breaks from other projects. I managed to fill in all the squares, but not correctly. As it happened, the answer I thought was wrong, 93D: Actually (INESSE) [who says that?] was right, but a couple of other clues I thought were OK, were not. To wit: 59D: Helen Keller brought the first one to the U.S. (AKITA). While I did have a vague notion in my head about the song Iko, Iko, I do, I do seemed reasonable. I decided AdITA was some kind of machine for people who had difficulty seeing or hearing. Plus, I've never heard of an Akita. Luckily, Horace had, and when he returned he corrected that mistake and fixed up the other problem area over in the high nineties. I had IONe for 95A: Isle where Macbeth is buried (IONA), YAp for 98A: Jaw (YAK), and was quite comfortable with pELELfor 99D: Onetime Krypton resident (KALEL). Horace seemed to know his Kryptonians.
I disliked the many short answers and abbreviations right out of the gate, but found several clues to enjoy. I thought 21A: Name-dropper's word? (NEE) was particularly good, along with 67A: '50s duds (EDSELS) and 92A: Went off? (DIGRESSED). I also loved the answer BEAUT, for 90A: Doozy. Plus, I learned two new words, the aforementioned Akita, and xistera (jai alai equipment, apparently).
I didn't love 62A: No longer exists (ISNT), or 111D: Talking-__ (TOS), or 72A: AARP concern (IRA) and their ilk, but I SPOSE (52D: Imagine, informally) they were necessary to fill in around the theme answers.
There are a few nods to Huygens in here as well, including 38A: Whistle-blowers?
(LOTHARIOS) andd 35A: Kind of raid (PANTY). Everyone enjoys those.
The moral of this story is, when you have to roll a BOULDER up a hill, and it feels like MISSIONIMPOSSIBLE, get some ALES and some MEATPIE and a friend and put your NOGS together. It'll be RXS (105A: Just what the doc ordered).