I know there are a lot of people out there who are just dying to start reviewing this puzzle. I can just see them all, champing at the bit. Fingers twitching. Planning out their humorous insights.
Okay, ILLGOFIRST. (Boy, that was a convoluted way to get into the review).
I'll start with the strange idea I had that a "dewlap" was something Scottish. I essayed that maybe the answer to 19A: Pet with a dewlap and a beret? would be FRENCHscotty. Not that such a thing exists, mind you. But it's a Thursday! Maybe we were imagining a series of answers with two nationalities in each? "American Turkey"? "Japanese China"?
But no, after some confusion, I figured out PURPLEIRAN, and got that we were looking at phrases where the second word was anagrammed. It wasn't until the revealer that I realized that in each case, the anagram put the I at the beginning of the word and left all the other letters in order. Thus: "version" becomes "iverson". That's some pretty cool stuff.
All four original phrases are strong, with "roll of coins" being the least recognized. The new versions are okay, and the humor in the cluing is not all that wacky, unfortunately. I'm most impressed with COVERIVERSON because of the surprise in the switch.
|Knowing this movie helped a bunch|
GOLFRESORT I could do without. It's fine, I suppose, although I wanted GOLFcourse. And plus there's the reference to Trump. Is this the way more right-leaning NYT xword solvers felt the last 8 years? 29D: One who might get down to Alabama? (LINEDANCER) must be referring to the Southern rock band by that name.
I actually enjoyed most of the midlength answers here. DORITO was so brazen in its brand naming, I laughed aloud. 10D: Challenges for movers (PIANOS) is an unexpected way to get to that answer. I never thought of a dogie as an ORPHAN, but that's exactly what it is.
1A: Go on a little too long (DRAG) - C+.
Fave: ROUNDTWO (6D: Another go) - I had ARNO in place and was dreading a RE- answer here. So pleased with this instead.
Least fave: ASFOR (28D: Regarding). So dry.