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New York Times, Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Author:
Mike Doran
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
79/16/200311/8/20160
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
1141000
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.50100
Michael J. Doran

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 78, Blocks: 38 Missing: {QVZ} Spans: 1 This is puzzle # 6 for Mr. Doran. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Michael J. Doran notes:
This theme idea came in the way that many constructors get their ideas — at the last possible time one would think they'd come ... read more

This theme idea came in the way that many constructors get their ideas — at the last possible time one would think they'd come up with one. Believe it or not, I was watching Jeopardy! one night while drinking something from Dunkin' Donuts when a player hit a Daily Double. I noticed the two phrases and their alliteration on the letter D, and the rest, as they say, is history. Then I simply added the twist of IN2D for an extra kicker in the SE corner. As an avid fan of Jeopardy! I was upset that due to certain constraints that Daily Double didn't make it into the grid, but I feel I came across enough common phrases to make the theme work. I hope Trebek will understand.

Will Shortz notes:
67A is a mean trick to throw in a Tuesday puzzle. Still, the theme is otherwise straightforward, so Tuesday feels right. I tried to ... read more

67A is a mean trick to throw in a Tuesday puzzle. Still, the theme is otherwise straightforward, so Tuesday feels right. I tried to make the lower-right corner as easy as possible. Not surprisingly, the clue for 60D was my addition.

Jeff Chen notes:
A straightforward theme today, phrases starting with D and D. The dork in me so badly wanted DUNGEONS and DRAGONS to appear somewhere ... read more

A straightforward theme today, phrases starting with D and D. The dork in me so badly wanted DUNGEONS and DRAGONS to appear somewhere as bonus entries, but I suppose I'll have to settle for entertaining myself with my +1 laptop of doom.

Really nice theme answers, well-chosen from the universe of D and D type phrases. It is a shame that DAILY DOUBLE didn't make it in, but I was glad to hear Mike say that he gave it up in order to make a better puzzle. It's extremely difficult as a constructor to let go of a great entry, and too many of us hang on for dear life, even though it means there are heavy OLEO (or is that OLIO?) and ORT prices to pay.

This is a good example of why most of the time, constructors break up the three first across answers 4/5/4 or 3/5/5 (or some permutation thereof) instead of a 3/6/4 arrangement. There's a lot of fun fill in the very NW corner, with JEDI and JETS and EARP, but the center has the unfortunate APORT. Trying to fill a six-letter stack is (perhaps surprisingly) much harder than filling a five-letter stack. This arrangement also has the drawback of the NW and SE corners feeling a bit separated from the rest of the grid. I certainly appreciate APOGEE and RATED G, very fun answers, but the price of including APORT and ROTA seems a bit high to me.

Finally, neat inclusion of a number in the revealer. It happens so infrequently that it had me stumped for long seconds, and I appreciated it when I finally figured it out. I wish IN2D had more of an "in-the-language" feel, as IN3D seems much more common to me, but still, it was a fresh way to tie together the phrases, turning a common type of theme into something a little new.

1
J
2
E
3
T
4
S
5
R
6
A
7
T
8
E
9
D
10
G
11
H
12
O
13
P
14
E
A
R
P
15
A
P
O
G
E
E
16
E
R
R
17
D
R
A
F
18
T
D
O
D
G
E
R
19
R
I
O
20
I
S
M
21
W
A
R
D
22
C
M
O
N
23
D
I
R
T
Y
24
D
25
A
26
N
C
I
N
G
27
C
28
A
29
N
O
N
S
30
I
D
E
S
T
31
E
X
A
M
32
S
33
A
N
E
R
34
C
35
A
36
D
37
D
E
M
O
38
L
39
I
T
I
O
N
D
40
E
R
B
Y
41
E
S
E
42
O
R
A
L
S
43
B
A
L
E
44
D
45
U
R
A
N
46
T
47
A
B
B
E
D
48
D
49
U
N
K
I
N
D
50
O
51
N
U
T
S
52
I
R
A
E
53
R
O
T
A
54
S
55
A
56
S
57
M
G
M
58
D
59
O
60
U
B
L
E
D
61
U
T
C
H
62
L
E
E
63
O
N
S
I
T
E
64
N
A
T
O
65
Y
D
S
66
S
T
A
T
E
S
67
I
N
2
D
© 2013, The New York TimesNo. 1112 ( 23,380 )
Across
1
767s, e.g. : JETS
5
Tame, as movies go : RATEDG
11
Move like a bunny : HOP
14
Wyatt out West : EARP
15
Farthest point of a 50-Down : APOGEE
16
Goof or go off : ERR
17
1960s dissident : DRAFTDODGER
19
___ de la Plata : RIO
20
Suffix with Tao or Mao : ISM
21
Fend (off) : WARD
22
"You've gotta be kidding!" : CMON
23
1987 movie with the hit "Hungry Eyes" : DIRTYDANCING
27
Bodies of rules : CANONS
30
In other words, in old Rome : IDEST
31
Checkup : EXAM
32
More together : SANER
34
He's no gentleman : CAD
37
Smash-hit entertainment? : DEMOLITIONDERBY
41
K.C.-to-Nashville direction : ESE
42
Tests for many Ph.D. candidates : ORALS
43
Farm unit : BALE
44
Boxer Roberto with "hands of stone" : DURAN
46
Like some schoolbook folders : TABBED
48
Fast-food chain with an orange and pink logo : DUNKINDONUTS
52
"Dies ___" : IRAE
53
Series of golf courses that host the British Open : ROTA
54
Carrier to Oslo : SAS
57
Co. whose logo includes Leo the Lion : MGM
58
Jump-rope style : DOUBLEDUTCH
62
___ jeans : LEE
63
Like some job training : ONSITE
64
Grp. whose members account for more than 50% of the world's defense spending : NATO
65
Abbr. on a golf scorecard : YDS
66
Solid, liquid and gas : STATES
67
Lacking depth ... or like 17-, 23-, 37-, 48- and 58-Across? : IN2D
Down
1
Darth Vader, once : JEDI
2
Corny things? : EARS
3
Public transport option : TRAM
4
Letters on a beach bottle : SPF
5
Some control tower equipment : RADARS
6
To the left, at sea : APORT
7
Winter warmer : TODDY
8
Flan ingredient : EGG
9
Actor Billy ___ Williams : DEE
10
Neighbor of Lux. : GER
11
Creature that adopts a seashell : HERMITCRAB
12
Figure of myth known for his belt : ORION
13
Tine : PRONG
18
Minnesota player : TWIN
22
IV units : CCS
23
"___ arigato, Mr. Roboto" : DOMO
24
T. rex and others : DINOS
25
Mideast port : ADEN
26
Mathlete, stereotypically : NERD
27
Surrender : CEDE
28
Lumberjacks' tools : AXES
29
Acted the fink : NAMEDNAMES
32
Lectern, e.g. : STAND
33
Suffer : AIL
35
Skilled : ABLE
36
Like orange hair : DYED
38
Actress Singer : LORI
39
Hassan Rouhani's land : IRAN
40
Goes back : EBBS
45
Lanai strings : UKE
46
Students taught alone : TUTEES
47
Slightly : ATAD
48
How romantic dinners are lit : DIMLY
49
Encouraged : URGED
50
Satellite's path : ORBIT
51
Nick of "Cape Fear" : NOLTE
54
Persian suffix that ends seven country names : STAN
55
When the balcony scene occurs in "Romeo and Juliet" : ACT2
56
Like racehorses' feet : SHOD
58
Opposite of no-nos : DOS
59
Prov. bordering Manitoba : ONT
60
Winner of more than half of all the World Puzzle Championships : USA
61
Prefix with lateral : UNI

Answer summary: 5 unique to this puzzle.

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