I like the bones of this puzzle quite a bit. There are two lovely 15-letter down answers connected by EGGMCMUFFIN. In addition, the corners are nice and chunky. The down side is all that short stuff in the middle section, which is where my error occurred. Crossing FTC with ITO is pretty rough. I guessed FcC, which really doesn't make much sense, but there you go.
I broke in with HANG and AMI (cute clue with Renoir and Monet). I was able to infer __NIK and __RAMA, which helped. What didn't help was guessing __oRAMA. Also spelling SOHN with two Ns. So I had to leave the NW corner.
My next mistake was kind of interesting, actually. At 35A: Restaurant breakfast innovation of 1971, I put in EGGowaffles, which fits exactly. Not that they're something you'd get at a restaurant. Turns out they were introduced in 1953 directly to supermarkets. I didn't know they'd been around that long. Anyway I corrected it when I got BOOMBOX.
GADGET opened up the SE. EARTHTONE was a guess which worked. When I switched UAe to UAR, I figured out TREASURED. This corner is the one that works the least for me. But I love 12D: Approachable, unglamorous sort (THEGIRLNEXTDOOR). That's a beautiful 15-letter answer.
16A: Sound of an everyday explosion (ACHOO) - that's fine cluing right there. Worth the price of admission all on its own. Also nice clue for SHREK in the opposite corner.
1A: "I hear you" (ROGERTHAT) - this feels outdated, clearly. Nowadays, my kids say "same" to mean this. Or even just "Me." The texting generation is so terse. Anyway, I like it fine, and will give it a B+.
Finally I figured out my mistakes and got GOFORTHEJUGULAR. NICEONE!