Monday, April 6, 2020

Monday, April 6, 2020, Andrea Carla Michaels and Brian Thomas


The devil, as they say, is in the details. One detail I missed as I was solving the puzzle was the fact that 17A: Another name for [See shaded squares] (MRSCRATCH) was not referring to that well-known female role from an Eighteenth-century novel, Mrs. Cratch. I figuratively scratched my head for a few seconds when I filled it in. But then I moved on.

Before anybody complains that such a character never existed, I made her up.

It's a fun theme, though. SPEAKOFTHEDEVIL runs across the middle, and in each corner is found another name for the fallen angel. My favorite will always be LUCIFER. He's an important character in Neil Gaiman's masterpiece, The Sandman, and it was this version of him that was portrayed in the television series of the same name. One nice touch, as you will see below, is that his speech bubbles had a lovely ancient font.
I would say on the whole that this puzzle was more difficult than your typical Monday offering. I hold up as examples of this somewhat more challenging proper names such as DOONE, RHONE, TIMOR, KOBE, and KOLN. I also imagine that AEONFLUX, which was an objectively awful movie, would be a hard to get answer for many.

On the plus side, everybody likes a HOLODECK.

- Colum


  1. I might have thought this would be hard and in fact I did need all the crosses for AEONFLUX. But I got DOONE and TIMOR easily and RHONE after I corrected it from RHiNE. I really should learn the difference between Rhine and Rhone. I mean, I don't know what it would do to my general ability to function in the world, or the world of knowledge, or any other world except the world of crosswords where I know it can come in handy.

    The theme answers went in easily (in the case of LUCIFER, just off the L), with the exception of poor old Mrs. Cratch (who also featured in my solve, as I didn't have the revealer yet, although she had to do with being Mrs. Cr--ch which I suppose is even worse).

    End result 5:48 which is normal to fast for me on a Monday.

  2. 5:27
    On another note, Colum's time is half of the number of the beast, if we ignore the fact that part of it is base 60. I, too, until I saw the revealer, mis-parsed MRSCRATCH. I'm partial to BEELZEBUB, although there is something to be said for OLDNICK, a right jolly old demon. For me, this ran around normal for a Monday, with only VROOM as a somewhat-surprise answer. After all, "roar" is more common. Also, I tried jAlepinO where HABANERO belongs at first, which needed some crosses help. And yes, everyone loves a HOLODECK. I have to say, though, that I: 1) got AEONFLUX off of the clue, and 2) didn't mind the movie too much, but maybe I had lower expectations than Colum.

  3. 3:39

    Hilarious about "Mrs. Cr__ch" Jim, and interesting about Colum's time, Huygens! And I love the "right jolly old demon" line.

    And I thought this was a pretty fast Monday, but then, I knew AEONFLUX with a cross or two, and KOLN went in off the clue.

    Me, I'm with Colum on LUCIFER being the best.