Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Wednesday, June 16, 2021, Finn Vigeland

Today's theme is entertaining thanks to its revealer. The theme entries are movie titles in which the directional element has taken a turn, or has been MISDIRECTED. The movie "My Left Foot" becomes MYRIGHTFOOT, for example. Another is WESTOFEDEN, instead of "East of Eden." I knew something was up when I tried to enter "Knives Out" at 25 Across, but ran out of squares before I ran out of letters. My first instinct was to glance up to the top of the app to see if today was Thursday - thinking of a possible rebus situation - but it was Wednesday, and I had two squares after KNIVES so a straight up one-square rebus seemed unlikely. It's nice that Mr. Vigeland was able to include four different kinds of directions in the the theme answers: right/left ; in/out ; west/east ; up/down.

I enjoyed the pair of 'burning' clues at 1A and 1D ("Items purportedly burned outside the Miss America Pageant in 1968" (BRAS) and "Item needed for burning, once" (BLANKCD) - fun misdirection in the latter. 


I feared things were taking a turn for the worse at the cross between 10D "_____ Jackson, a.k.a. Ice Cube" and 23A: "Rapper Megan ____ Stallion" because I didn't know either of the missing name parts, but in the end, only the letter E seemed to make sense in both directions, so I went with it (OSHEA / THEE). 

My star board today includes the word STYMIE and the clues "It made the peseta passé" (EURO) and "Follower of smart or bad" (ASS) and "Word with luck or waiter" (DUMB) were right up my alley. I can also re-port that I love a tater TOT. Come to think of it, no matter how you slice it, I enjoy a potato. 



  1. Wow, this one crushed me...seemed like I was staring forever at blank squares, especially in the NW corner. Absolutely flummoxed by BLANKCD and DIYERS. Having said that, it's good to have a puzzle that stubbornly resists being solved. Kudos to the setter on this one! 9:01

  2. It is a great concept but I think it would have worked better for me if I had heard of any of those a movies (well, OK, I am somewhat dimly aware of East of Eden but nothing for the other three).

    Still, there were some cool entries, like a rather fun clue for VIOLENT or AMTRAK (just because you don't often see it in a puzzle)

  3. C'mon! Right out of the box with BRAS, and ASS showing up later on, too? That's a DAM great start right there, plus SHAKIRA! I enjoy what some would consider to be a MISDIRECTED BLT: the famous *facon*, lettuce and tomato sandwich. I've heard of half of the movies, so I'm slightly better off in that respect than Mr. Kingdon, but HANGUL needed all crosses, not that I'm DUMB, mind you. Took 10:44 for me, which is normal for a Wednesday.