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ATTENDING PHYSICIANS

New York Times, Sunday, June 12, 2016

Author: Finn Vigeland
Editor: Will Shortz
Finn Vigeland
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
1110/20/20107/27/20162
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
5113010
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.62220

This puzzle:

Rows: 21, Columns: 21 Words: 140, Blocks: 72 Missing: {Q} Scrabble average: 1.72 This is puzzle # 10 for Mr. Vigeland. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Finn Vigeland notes: This is my first add-a-letter-and-create-a-wacky-phrase puzzle in the Times, and my 10th Times puzzle overall. Considering my penchant for puns, I'm surprised it took this long! DRWHOSYOURDADDY is definitely ... more
Finn Vigeland notes:

This is my first add-a-letter-and-create-a-wacky-phrase puzzle in the Times, and my 10th Times puzzle overall. Considering my penchant for puns, I'm surprised it took this long! DRWHOSYOURDADDY is definitely my favorite themer. (DRWHOSONFIRST was another contender for the Dr. Who entry, but this one fit better... and made me laugh more.)

Sundays can be a slog to solve sometimes, but they are certainly a lot of fun to construct given the larger canvas to play with. I really enjoyed fitting in entries like SUPERBOWLMVP (so many consonants!), SETHROGEN, SANFRANCISCO, FRATBROS, HUGITOUT, and OHBOOHOO, as well as introducing shorter stuff like JDATE and JLAW (and who doesn't love those J's?).

Pleased that Will and Joel kept probably 90% of my clues. I've always preferred gridwork to cluing, so it's a nice affirmation to see that I'm getting more on track with variety, difficulty and length of clues.

Jeff Chen notes: A great example of a simple theme executed well. Plenty of constructors have played on DR, by adding it, subtracting it, putting it outside the grid (Doctors Without Borders), etc. But I like Finn's take, which I ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

A great example of a simple theme executed well. Plenty of constructors have played on DR, by adding it, subtracting it, putting it outside the grid (Doctors Without Borders), etc. But I like Finn's take, which I haven't quite seen before. The title is perfect — ATTENDING PHYSICIANS indicating to add DR for kooky results — and it was great to get a bonus revealer in THE DOCTOR IS IN. That last phrase fills me with good memories, reading "Peanuts" strip for hours as a kid. Maybe as an adult too. Ahem.

Which DR WHOS YOUR DADDY?

Not all the themers made me laugh, but DR WHOS YOUR DADDY was awesome. Great base phrase, and the image of DR WHO biting his nails while awaiting a paternity test = comedy gold.

What made the puzzle stand out amongst the various DR puzzles is Finn's gridwork. Since the theme concept has the potential to become repetitive and lose solvers' attention, it was really important for Finn to work in a lot of snazzy fill. He did not disappoint, with so many strong entries that he pointed out above.

And that beautiful NE corner! It's tough to fill such a large chunk of white space; so many mid-to-long answers intersecting each other. Finn gave himself the advantage of only one themer constraining that region, and he was able to work in so much — HUG IT OUT, TEAM USA, PSYCHIC my favorites — with no trade-offs. Some say that YASIR ought to be YASSER, but both seem to be in prevalent usage.

The only place I thought was a little rough was the SW corner. READ ONLY, OH BOO HOO, yes! LA NOTTE crossing SYOSSET … not so much. SYOSSET is probably obvious for New Yorkers, but the NYT puzzle is done all across America. I would have liked to see all fair crossings for it, and LA NOTTI or LA NOTTA both seemed plausible.

Otherwise though, some freshness in FRAT BROS (I'm too square to have heard this, but it seems interesting) and a lack of gluey entries besides OSA is a great result. A really strong puzzle I'd happily point novices to.

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© 2016, The New York TimesNo. 24,323
Across Down
1. Jump to conclusions : ASSUME
7. Off-guard : ABACK
12. Medium : PSYCHIC
19. Has reservations : DOUBTS
20. It may be waved from the top of a pyramid : POMPOM
22. Olympic group in red, white and blue : TEAMUSA
23. Result of shaking a soda too hard before opening? : DRPEPPERSPRAY
25. Parts of many modern addresses : ATSIGNS
26. In ___ (gestating) : UTERO
27. Homecoming giveaways : TEES
28. Herbert of the Pink Panther films : LOM
30. Limited : FINITE
31. 5 is a high one : PAR
32. Busy Apr. workers : CPAS
34. Noted sexologist, in her infancy? : BABYDRRUTH
36. Yahoos : BOORS
38. Common tidbits in fried rice : PEAS
40. "Is That All There Is" singer Peggy : LEE
41. Any day now : SOON
43. Daniel ___ National Forest : BOONE
44. Stocking stuffer : COAL
45. Heroine of "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" : JANET
47. Strike caller : UMP
48. "The paternity results are in ... it's the protagonist of a long-running BBC sci-fi show!"? : DRWHOSYOURDADDY
51. Bury : INTER
53. Masseuse's stock : OILS
54. Messages you don't want to send to your parents accidentally : SEXTS
55. Nosy person's request : MAYISEE
57. Watson's creator : IBM
58. Element of one's inheritance : GENE
59. Go to ___ : POT
60. Cousins of gulls : TERNS
62. Maiden name of Harry Potter's mother : EVANS
64. 1970s-'80s Sixers star and friends? : DRJCREW
68. Take out to dinner : TREAT
70. Area with R.N.s : PREOP
72. Disorder that the Ice Bucket Challenge benefited, for short : ALS
73. Certain Facebook reaction button : HAHA
75. Collar : NAB
77. One of Spain's Balearic Islands : MINORCA
79. Ones fully agreeing with you, metaphorically : CHOIR
81. Kind of pick : AFRO
82. "P.U.!" : GROSS
85. Controversial TV personality's magical sidekick? : THEWIZARDOFDROZ
88. "I'm not overwhelmed" : MEH
89. Overwhelms, as with humor : SLAYS
91. Ironically, small Starbucks size : TALL
92. "Two thumbs up!" : GREAT
93. "Quién ___?" ("Who knows?": Sp.) : SABE
95. QB's try: Abbr. : ATT
96. "Primal Fear" star, 1996 : GERE
97. Rimes of country : LEANN
98. Hurt a Bond villain? : DODRNOHARM
101. A little progress, idiomatically : DENT
102. Quick smoke? : CIG
105. Loving, as eyes : GOOGOO
106. Inits. at Grand Central Terminal : MTA
107. Feds : GMEN
109. Fanny ___, Barbra Streisand role : BRICE
111. Quickly : INHASTE
113. Sign on Lucy's "Peanuts" booth ... or a hint to this puzzle's theme : THEDOCTORISIN
116. Broccoli pieces : FLORETS
117. Four Corners tribe : NAVAJO
118. What's played mainly for kicks? : SOCCER
119. Mid-Long Island community : SYOSSET
120. Rahm Emanuel's post-White House title : MAYOR
121. Not on board, say : ASHORE
1. Make sense : ADDUP
2. "Ish" : SORTA
3. Sports bigwig every February : SUPERBOWLMVP
4. Alternative to a cab : UBER
5. Resort area in northeast Pa. : MTPOCONO
6. 12-Across's skill : ESP
7. "___ moi le déluge" : APRES
8. Big name in audio equipment : BOSE
9. Audio equipment : AMPS
10. Jump-start of sorts, in brief : CPR
11. Eucalyptus lovers : KOALAS
12. Our Children magazine org. : PTA
13. Release : SETFREE
14. The P.L.O.'s Arafat : YASIR
15. Just below average : CMINUS
16. Resolve a dispute in a modern way : HUGITOUT
17. Has the lights off, perhaps : ISNTHOME
18. Detective's assignment : CASE
21. "Butt out!," briefly : MYOB
24. Certain airline alerts, for short : ETAS
29. Knight's greeting : MYLADY
33. Continues forward : PRESSESON
34. Topless? : BALD
35. Plead not guilty : DENYIT
37. ___ and aahs : OOHS
38. Moue : POUT
39. Good listeners : EARS
42. "Ask Me Another" airer : NPR
43. Suborn : BRIBE
44. Directed the rowers : COXED
45. Matchmaking site that asks "Do you keep kosher?" : JDATE
46. Land in South America : TIERRA
48. "You sure got me pegged!" : DOI
49. Strong appetite : YEN
50. Latin love : AMOR
52. Bird so named because of its call : NENE
56. Frequent James Franco collaborator : SETHROGEN
58. Rock whose name sounds good? : GNEISS
59. Certain notebooks : PCS
61. Where "The Princess Diaries" is set : SANFRANCISCO
63. With 65-Down, technological escalations : ARMS
65. See 63-Down : RACES
66. "The Hunger Games" star, in tabloids : JLAW
67. Pattern for a forensic scientist : WHORL
69. Future dealings? : TAROT
71. Chip material : POTATO
74. Financial ___ : AID
76. Dickens nom de plume : BOZ
78. Beat : RHYTHM
79. Department head : CZAR
80. In fine shape : HALE
81. Yemeni seaport : ADEN
82. Baseball V.I.P.s : GMS
83. Like many uneditable files : READONLY
84. "Cry me a river!" : OHBOOHOO
86. Tabloid twosome : ITEM
87. Stereotypically rowdy dudes : FRATBROS
90. 1961 Michelangelo Antonioni drama : LANOTTE
94. Awards won by Stephen King and Agatha Christie : EDGARS
96. Successor to South Carolina's Thurmond in the Senate : GRAHAM
97. Time to give up? : LENT
99. Kentucky Derby winner's wreath : ROSES
100. Abbr. on a cover sheet : ATTN
101. Furnishings : DECOR
103. More dangerous in the winter, say : ICIER
104. Comedy, e.g. : GENRE
105. Loopy little films? : GIFS
107. Down Under greeting : GDAY
108. Bad thing to lose : MOJO
110. Rolling in it : RICH
112. Superlative finish : EST
114. Longoria of "Telenovela" : EVA
115. She-bear: Sp. : OSA

Answer summary: 13 unique to this puzzle, 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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