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New York Times, Saturday, April 13, 2019

Author:
Debbie Ellerin
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
33/9/20154/13/20190
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0100002
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.58000
Debbie Ellerin

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 72, Blocks: 32 Missing: {CJX} This is puzzle # 3 for Ms. Ellerin. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Debbie Ellerin notes:
I am happy to have my third puzzle in the New York Times. I wrote this puzzle after seeing the documentary RBG. I am glad to debut her ... read more

I am happy to have my third puzzle in the New York Times. I wrote this puzzle after seeing the documentary RBG. I am glad to debut her nickname, NOTORIOUS RBG.

Other answers I like are EVILQUEEN, DREAMTEAM, KOREANAIR, and the talented actress UZO Aduba.

My least favorite answer is LEOIV, but a 5-letter word ending in V did not have many good alternatives. Sorry about that one.

Enjoy your Saturday!

Jeff Chen notes:
It was just a couple of years ago that Debbie wrote to me, asking for advice on creating NYT-quality crosswords. Look how far she's ... read more

It was just a couple of years ago that Debbie wrote to me, asking for advice on creating NYT-quality crosswords. Look how far she's come! Great to see her second Saturday puzzle – it's so rare for women to land that Saturday slot these days, given 1.) the intense competition, and 2.) the sheer number of men submitting themelesses. Well done!

I loved so many entries in this one; so colorful. TRANSYLVANIA as a place where you might go out to get a bite. The NOTORIOUS RBG. (She's a serious badass!) A refreshing-sounding drink called a SEA BREEZE. And literal color in the GREEN GOBLIN. I don't know that I'd call him Spider-man's archenemy – I'd go with Doc Ock myself – but there's no doubt that Gobby is right up there.

I appreciated the care Debbie took in avoiding crossword glue. AMAS was the only one that I noticed, and even that is becoming more recognized — Reddit seems to do a ton of Ask Me Anythings these days. (Cluing it to the Latin seems so Maleskan, unfortunately.)

The one area that made me hesitate was proper nouns. It's fine to use a couple, but let's count up the tough ones:

UZO GITA ERTES APGAR AZIZ BIZET

That's starting to feel more like a trivia contest than a crossword. I'd have favored a bit more crossword glue, maybe a partial or something, in order to reduce this count. The AZIZ / UZO crossing was particularly tough. Not sure it's 100% fair; too easily setting up the solver for failure.

But overall, a solid and entertaining Saturday offering, with even some extra bonuses in quality shorties like GONZO, BUSHWA, and ENNUI.

1
B
2
A
3
D
4
G
5
E
6
A
7
L
8
L
9
U
10
R
11
B
12
A
13
N
14
O
P
E
R
A
15
S
E
A
16
B
R
E
E
Z
E
17
O
G
L
E
S
18
K
O
R
E
A
N
A
I
R
19
S
A
T
E
E
20
N
21
I
V
A
N
22
U
Z
O
23
T
R
A
N
S
Y
24
L
V
A
N
I
25
A
26
G
I
T
A
27
B
U
S
28
H
29
W
30
A
31
A
32
D
33
D
O
N
34
D
35
R
36
E
A
M
T
E
A
M
37
H
E
R
B
38
A
L
O
N
G
39
A
R
I
A
40
E
V
I
L
41
Q
U
E
E
N
42
P
R
O
F
S
43
M
O
B
I
U
S
44
U
45
G
L
I
46
N
O
T
47
O
48
R
I
O
U
S
49
R
50
B
51
G
52
I
53
R
54
K
55
R
E
N
O
56
O
N
B
A
I
L
57
M
E
A
58
S
U
R
E
U
59
P
60
G
O
N
Z
O
61
D
E
L
I
M
E
A
T
S
62
E
R
T
E
S
63
B
L
E
S
S
64
L
E
I
65
S
N
O
T
S
© 2019, The New York TimesNo. 0413 ( 25,358 )
Across
1
Evidence of merit : BADGE
6
With 38-Across, this whole time : ALL
9
Country singer with a cityish name : URBAN
14
"___ in English is, in the main, just about as sensible as baseball in Italian": H. L. Mencken : OPERA
15
Cocktail with vodka, cranberry juice and grapefruit juice : SEABREEZE
17
Doesn't look so well? : OGLES
18
Carrier with a yin/yang symbol in its logo : KOREANAIR
19
Lustrous material : SATEEN
21
___ Drago, opponent of Rocky in "Rocky IV" : IVAN
22
Actress Aduba of "Orange Is the New Black" : UZO
23
Where one might go out to get a bite? : TRANSYLVANIA
26
Bhagavad-___ (Sanskrit text) : GITA
27
Nonsense : BUSHWA
31
Extension : ADDON
34
Collection of superstars : DREAMTEAM
37
Good name for a gardener : HERB
38
See 6-Across : ALONG
39
One of five in "La Bohème" : ARIA
40
Fairy tale villain : EVILQUEEN
42
U people? : PROFS
43
Kind of strip : MOBIUS
44
Wrinkly fruit : UGLI
46
Supreme Court nickname, with "the" : NOTORIOUSRBG
52
Cause to groan, maybe : IRK
55
Sparks can be seen at its edge : RENO
56
Way that someone might get out : ONBAIL
57
Make the grade : MEASUREUP
60
Off-the-wall : GONZO
61
Pastrami and corned beef : DELIMEATS
62
Some Deco collectibles : ERTES
63
"God ___" : BLESS
64
Hula hoop? : LEI
65
Little brats : SNOTS
Down
1
Extra help : BOOST
2
Kind of test for a baby : APGAR
3
Symbol of change : DELTA
4
Spider-Man's archenemy : GREENGOBLIN
5
Starts something slowly : EASESIN
6
Say "what?," say : ASK
7
Pope during the Battle of Ostia : LEOIV
8
Creepy-crawly : LARVA
9
Stockpile that may be subject to inspection : URANIUM
10
Rapper MC ___ of N.W.A : REN
11
Suitor : BEAU
12
Former Iraqi V.I.P. Tariq ___ : AZIZ
13
Ancient Rome's Circus of ___ : NERO
16
Piece of equipment in the game cornhole : BEANBAG
20
Big Apple media inits. : NYT
24
Soup kitchen sight : LADLE
25
2018 Oscar-nominated picture whose soundtrack sold over one million copies : ASTARISBORN
28
Subway fare? : HERO
29
Oliver Twist, for example : WAIF
30
Part of a Latin trio : AMAS
31
[I'm still here, you know] : AHEM
32
Band with the 1980 hit album "Freedom of Choice" : DEVO
33
Minute amount : DRIB
35
Sushi bar topping : ROE
36
Opposite of excitement : ENNUI
38
No-frills : AUSTERE
41
Requirements for voting : QUORUMS
42
Nosedives : PLUNGES
45
Result of a meltdown? : GOO
47
Jermaine who was a six-time N.B.A. All-Star : ONEAL
48
Driver's assignment : ROUTE
49
Totaled : RANTO
50
Georges of the Romantic era : BIZET
51
Luster : GLOSS
52
Film site : IMDB
53
Film site : REEL
54
Long green : KALE
58
Household name? : SIS
59
Auto inspection no. : PSI

Answer summary: 2 unique to this puzzle, 3 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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