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New York Times, Saturday, October 8, 2016

Author:
Julian Lim
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
221/6/201010/8/20160
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
1115437
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.63101
Julian Lim

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 68, Blocks: 33 Missing: {JQXZ} Spans: 2 This is puzzle # 22 for Mr. Lim. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Jeff Chen notes:
Eye-catching grid pattern, all those black squares connected in geometric patterns. I was hoping the sideways Ts would relate to a few ... read more

Eye-catching grid pattern, all those black squares connected in geometric patterns. I was hoping the sideways Ts would relate to a few entries somehow — ah well.

Nice grid-spanners in IM WAY AHEAD OF YOU and LIMOUSINE DRIVER, with its great clue, [One with a long stretch to go?]. Took me a while to realize that "stretch" was slang for "limo."

Some other colorful long answers, too: THE PIANO, FREEMIUM, and PAY AS YOU GO not far away. Nice duo, those last two!

It can be tough for single-word entries to shine (OVERLOUD, I'm looking at you), but I loved GENDARME. The clue tying it to "Les Miserables" puts it over the top for me, making me reminisce about all those crazy emotions I had when I first saw the musical. Great stuff.

Fun to have a French mini-theme, too, what with DÉTENTE, ROTISSERIE, and LE MONDE, all nice answers. And how cool that LEMONDE and LEMONADE are so similar! I sense a crossword theme in there somewhere …

Ah, if it hadn't been for the odd SMIT. NEET, REG, ANON, and ERNO (Rubik) feel pretty minor to me, and ONE NO is something I read about nearly every day in my beloved Bridge Bulletin. Okay, I admit that the last one is iffy (and that I wish we were back in the day when bridge was America's most popular game. sigh). SOR is … the Soroptimists? Took me almost ten search queries to figure that out. (Whoops, it's short for "sorority." Thanks to Nancy Shack and Dave Glasser for pointing this out!)

My first impression after solving was that there wasn't that much crossword glue, but when I count it up, it's a pretty high number. Julian does well to spread everything around, never concentrating too much in one spot, which helped to camouflage it all.

It'd have been nice to get more grid flow — that diagonal line tends to split the grid in half — but entries connecting the halves were pretty easy to get. And I liked how the grid presented so much great long material in concentration. To kick off the puzzle with STRAWMAN, THE PIANO, IM WAY AHEAD OF YOU, TOSS A COIN blaring like headlines was a neat effect.

1
S
2
C
3
R
4
A
5
P
6
S
7
S
8
T
9
R
10
A
11
W
12
M
13
A
14
N
15
M
O
O
L
A
H
16
T
H
E
P
I
A
N
O
17
I
M
W
A
Y
A
18
H
E
A
D
O
F
Y
O
U
19
T
O
S
S
A
C
O
I
N
20
P
I
O
N
S
21
S
K
U
N
K
22
D
23
E
24
C
25
R
Y
26
R
E
G
27
R
28
O
29
M
30
A
31
S
32
I
G
L
O
O
33
S
34
R
O
35
B
O
C
A
L
L
36
E
G
O
S
U
R
37
F
38
D
E
T
E
N
T
E
39
G
O
N
E
G
I
R
40
L
41
T
I
L
T
E
D
42
O
N
E
N
O
43
E
E
44
L
45
S
O
A
R
S
46
E
M
I
47
R
S
48
S
49
H
50
O
51
W
52
S
53
M
O
V
I
E
54
F
55
O
56
N
57
E
58
L
I
M
O
U
59
S
I
N
E
D
R
I
V
E
R
60
O
V
E
R
L
O
U
D
61
E
I
L
E
E
N
62
G
E
N
D
A
R
M
E
63
S
E
E
N
T
O
© 2016, The New York TimesNo. 1008 ( 24,441 )
Across
1
Eighty-sixes : SCRAPS
7
Rhetorical creation : STRAWMAN
15
Green : MOOLAH
16
First Palme d'Or-winning film directed by a woman (1993) : THEPIANO
17
"That thought already occurred to me" : IMWAYAHEADOFYOU
19
Let fate decide, say : TOSSACOIN
20
Subatomic particles with zero spin : PIONS
21
Kind of cabbage : SKUNK
22
Pillory : DECRY
26
Pump option, for short : REG
27
Marinara sauce ingredients : ROMAS
32
Structures with excellent insulation : IGLOOS
34
Telemarketing tactic : ROBOCALL
36
Try to find oneself? : EGOSURF
38
Warming : DETENTE
39
David Fincher thriller of 2014 : GONEGIRL
41
Had a list : TILTED
42
Bid on a hand unsuited for suit play, maybe : ONENO
43
Cusk-___ (deepest living fish, at 27,000+ feet) : EEL
45
Rockets : SOARS
46
Leaders in robes : EMIRS
48
Screens : SHOWS
53
Onetime Fandango competitor : MOVIEFONE
58
One with a long stretch to go? : LIMOUSINEDRIVER
60
Blaring : OVERLOUD
61
Fisher for compliments on one's dress? : EILEEN
62
"Les Misérables" extra : GENDARME
63
Managed : SEENTO
Down
1
Infatuated, old-style : SMIT
2
Italian city where Pliny the Elder and Younger were born : COMO
3
Matrix specifications : ROWS
4
"Sob" : ALAS
5
Type of mobile phone plan : PAYASYOUGO
6
Take to living together, with "up" : SHACK
7
Austrian philosopher Rudolf : STEINER
8
"Phew!" : THANKGOD
9
One might turn on it : RED
10
Per : APOP
11
Modern flight amenity : WIFI
12
Main ingredient of rémoulade : MAYO
13
Composer of many limericks, for short : ANON
14
"À ___ la Liberté" (1931 René Clair film) : NOUS
18
Period of a revolution? : HOUR
22
San ___ : DIEGO
23
Urge : EGGON
24
It's all the same : CLONE
25
Einstein-___ bridge (wormhole) : ROSEN
27
Game's turning point? : ROTISSERIE
28
Brand of sponge : OCELO
29
Cousin of a skate : MANTA
30
Neuter : ALTER
31
Places for runners : SLEDS
33
First word in many temple names : SRI
35
Something odd in roulette? : BET
37
Pricing model for many apps : FREEMIUM
40
Newspaper name that becomes a beverage if you insert an "a" after its fifth letter : LEMONDE
44
"___ a little!" : LIVE
47
State fair attractions : RIDES
48
Uphill climb, say : SLOG
49
Drone's place : HIVE
50
Breaking a comb, in Japan, e.g. : OMEN
51
"I agree," in slang : WORD
52
Toni Morrison novel : SULA
54
Menu bar heading : FILE
55
Plot feature in "Hansel and Gretel" : OVEN
56
Old brand in the shaving aisle : NEET
57
Puzzle designer Rubik : ERNO
59
Young women's grp. : SOR

Answer summary: 2 unique to this puzzle, 4 debuted here and reused later, 3 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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