Monday, October 24, 2016

Monday, October 24, 2016, John Guzzetta


This is a really beautifully done Monday level puzzle. I am particularly impressed because of the closeness of the three middle theme answers, that there isn't more junk in the fill.

The theme is straightforward: take the endings of several well-known phrases, and connect them in some way. In this case, they are the segments of a news show. I like that in each case, the word in question is not being used in the sense that it is on the news. Or at least, not anymore. NEWPORTNEWS is speculated to be called that because of happy information that arrived in the form of new supplies to a starving colony. I liked SPOILSPORTS the best, in that these unfortunate individuals make playing sports much less fun.

The revealer, MORNINGSHOW, seems just a tad off. I think of that type of television program as being a talkshow, with lighthearted banter and interviews. But I understood it well enough.

There are some nice long crossing answers, especially ALGORITHM and TOPSECRET. 5D: One often seen standing just outside a building's entrance (SMOKER) was unexpected. I also liked the answer JETLAG, if not the actual sensation. Although it usually accompanies a vacation, say to Paris, or even Italy, say.

1A: Molars usually have four of these (CUSPS) gets a B. It was not my first answer, which elevates it for a Monday, in my mind. My actual first answer came at 2D: In ____ (unborn) (UTERO).

So we had a few items like AFTA, RIAL, HESS, JIF. On the other hand, DARCY. Oh, and I would have preferred MEL clued by this person (she's in the yellow):

- Colum


  1. 4:08
    I chuckled out loud at this theme, and that's a good thing. The only problem with the revealer for me is that - full disclosure, I don't watch any morning shows - I don't think of them as having much sports news. Or news news. But what do I know? I just told you I don't watch them...

    I liked the side-by-side vertical nines, and I liked the clue for TRI (Prefix with -ceratops) both for its ludicrousness, and because he was always my favorite dinosaur.

    Fun Monday.

  2. 5:31
    Being on the elliptical many mornings, I watch an occasional MORNINGSHOW and can confirm both Horace's and Colum's views: they are "news light" but they do contain snippets of all of the theme answers, so the puzzle is valid in that respect. Anyway, good Monday. NORIEGA above DRUGTRAFFIC is a nice touch, as is LEATHER above ___SPORTS (aren't some balls made of leather?). I don't know about the clue for TOPSECRET, though (12D Highly classified); "Classified" and "Top Secret" are two different levels of security clearances (there are many). WELT: bad, but BIER and ODIN are nice Monday entries.