Sunday, October 8, 2017

Sunday, October 8, 2017, Erik Agard and Alex Briñas

Power Ballads

Today's theme is kind of cute and pretty well executed. The constructors came up with some apt favorite musical acts for a legion of super heros - apt! :) My favorite theme answer is LILWAYNE (Batman's favorite rapper) because I didn't see it coming but it's perfect. My second favorite is BILLYOCEAN (Aquaman's favorite singer?), maybe because I forgot all about Billy Ocean (sorry!), or maybe because I was a fan of Patrick Duffy's Aquaman in my youth. The theme revealer SUPERGROUP and the puzzle's title, however, don't really pack a punch.

CASS, CROON, and ALOHAOE add some nice additional musical notes to the grid. What are the chances that ALOHAOE shows up in two consecutive puzzles? I don't know, but it happened, and I smoothly lei'd in the now-familiar answer.:)

I entered DiO at 104A in lieu of DEO (volente) and didn't notice how that made a mess of the MiTRO at 100D, causing my FWOE.

My favorite non-theme entry might be Smell ARAT (sense something fishy). See, it's funny that when you sense something fishy, you smell a rat. :) I liked TONY for uptown, and SACREDCOW (Divine bovine?) and COINTOSS (Several quarter turns) were some of the better entries today, but in general, the powerful theme answers are surrounded by some rather weak fill.


Right out of the gate, at 1A, we have TSA (Agcy. for Kennedy and Reagan). The clue gets some props for the presidential misdirection, but not enough to rescue it from Crosswordese's evil lair. It has a lot of company down there: GPS, GDPS, GRR, ETC, CEST, NEOS, YMA and UMA, ALLA, ERAS, TAD, TABS, FOURPM, ATEAM, ELON, COL, OOH, OWIE, ISLE, TWOMAN, REUSE, and EDS, to name just 23.

There were a couple of answers that set my teeth on edge: 29A. With child, informally (PREGGERS) - a word I've always disliked, and 32A. Feminine hygiene product (PAD). Call me a prude, but I think that answer could have been clued more pleasantly. You can also call me old-fashioned as I frequently use an ATLAS as a provider of directions.

To sum up, I would like to marvel at this puzzle, but I'm afraid I have to give it more of a D, or C.



  1. 17:39 FWOE
    I also had one error, which was ASAGUESS instead of ATAGUESS for 9d: Approximately. I am not familiar with the expression "at a guess".

    Overall, I enjoyed the puzzle. Mr. Agard always has lots of fresh clues for the Millennials, and not the usual stuffy New York based fare. A smooth ride for a Sunday.

  2. 21:49
    Way, way too fast for a Sunday solve. Like Frannie, I enjoyed the theme, but found a good portion of the fill to be rather tired. Also, like Frannie, I often use an ATLAS for navigation, and never use GPS, although I've resolved that the next time we are in a foreign country driving about, I'll spend the extra on a GPS unit for our rental, thus avoiding the fiasco of our Italy visit. The sour mood that resulted was remedied only by the sheer wonder that is Tuscany.

  3. Easy peasy, even though I FWOE'd as well. Although I'd like to say that gILLYOCEAN would have been a double whammy for Aquaman.