It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker. Please consider supporting our site by purchasing an account.
This web browser is not supported. Use Chrome, Edge, Safari, or Firefox for best results.

New York Times, Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Author:
Paula Gamache
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
1085/21/20021/14/20184
SunMonTueWedThuFriSatVariety
81318151217619
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.58431
Paula Gamache

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 76, Blocks: 36 Missing: {FJKQZ} This is puzzle # 104 for Ms. Gamache. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Jeff Chen notes:
Every time I think Will has finally exhausted his stash of 'both words can precede ___' puzzles, another one trickles through. Paula ... read more

Every time I think Will has finally exhausted his stash of "both words can precede ___" puzzles, another one trickles through. Paula uses GO ON AHEAD to describe "both words can precede HEAD," i.e. RED LETTER = RED(head), LETTER(head), etc. It's a very nice revealer, aptly describing what's going on.

Prince IGOR of opera

"Both words can precede HEAD" feels pretty familar to me, though. Perhaps it's because Paula recently had a similar puzzle which used LETTERHEAD as one of the theme answers? This theme genre is tough these days — so many have been done that it's hard to elevate one now, even with strong themers and/or a perfect revealer.

With six themers, Paula goes a smart route in stacking pairs at the top and bottom. RED LETTER and HOT SHOWER only overlap by three letters, and those letter combinations are very friendly — TH, EO, RT. Still, it's no surprise that those regions are the parts I had the most trouble with. I hitched on PATHE, unfamiliar to me as I don't watch many foreign films, and ETRES, which was tough for me to piece together even after four years of high school French. (Needless to say, I did poorly on my AP French test.)

Similar result in the south. BONE WHITE over GO ON AHEAD gives easy IG, TO, EO letter combinations. Yet ORNE sure was tough for me. It's fair since IGOR looked much more reasonable than IGER or IGUR, but I could see solvers guessing IGER as the [Prince of opera].

DEL WEBB was also mysterious. Might just be out of my wheelhouse since that company focuses on retirement homes. Although, the retirement home right around the corner from me looks awfully enticing, with its fancy meals, private movie theater, game room ...

Overall, a really nice revealer with some strong theme entries, but a tried and true theme type like this needs to be absolutely perfect in order to stand out.

Jim Horne notes:
Fans of French film are familiar with Pathé. The great Children of Paradise, for example, is a Pathé production. ETRES ... read more

Fans of French film are familiar with Pathé. The great Children of Paradise, for example, is a Pathé production. ETRES looks odd but it's legit, and no odder, if you think about it, than the English word beings. "Les êtres humains" translates to "human beings."

1
B
2
E
3
A
4
D
5
I
6
P
7
O
8
D
9
D
10
O
11
G
12
G
13
Y
14
A
X
L
E
15
S
A
R
A
16
A
T
L
A
S
17
R
E
D
L
18
E
T
T
E
R
19
S
T
O
V
E
20
S
C
O
W
S
21
H
O
T
22
S
H
O
W
E
R
23
E
T
24
R
E
S
25
H
E
M
26
H
27
A
28
S
B
R
O
29
S
O
D
A
30
P
31
O
32
P
33
A
I
R
B
U
B
34
B
35
L
E
36
N
A
P
A
37
U
L
T
38
S
E
A
B
E
39
E
40
S
41
G
R
R
42
L
E
A
43
S
44
H
O
R
S
E
45
M
E
A
T
46
S
Y
S
T
47
E
48
M
S
49
T
R
A
S
H
Y
50
P
D
A
51
S
52
P
E
E
D
53
B
54
O
55
N
E
W
H
56
I
T
E
57
N
E
58
R
59
V
60
E
61
E
V
I
T
A
62
G
O
O
63
N
A
H
E
A
D
64
D
E
T
E
R
65
O
R
N
E
66
A
N
N
A
67
S
N
E
R
D
68
R
E
S
T
69
Y
E
S
M
© 2016, The New York TimesNo. 0517 ( 24,297 )
Across
1
Thing on a string : BEAD
5
Listening device? : IPOD
9
___ bag : DOGGY
14
One of several on a big rig : AXLE
15
Poet Teasdale : SARA
16
Brother of Prometheus : ATLAS
17
*Especially memorable, as a day : REDLETTER
19
Burner holder : STOVE
20
Garbage transporters : SCOWS
21
*Campground amenity : HOTSHOWER
23
Beings, in Bretagne : ETRES
25
A dress line : HEM
26
Pictionary company : HASBRO
29
It's carbonated : SODAPOP
33
*Feature of a carpenter's level : AIRBUBBLE
36
Valley with many cabs? : NAPA
37
Last: Abbr. : ULT
38
Naval base builders : SEABEES
41
[Damn, this is annoying!] : GRR
42
Gamboling spots : LEAS
44
*Beef alternative in many countries : HORSEMEAT
46
Gamblers use them : SYSTEMS
49
Low-end : TRASHY
50
Obsolescent mobile device, briefly : PDA
51
186,000 miles/second, for light : SPEED
53
*Basic china color : BONEWHITE
57
Courage : NERVE
61
Hit musical set in Buenos Aires : EVITA
62
"Don't wait for me to proceed" ... or what either part of the answer to each starred clue can do? : GOONAHEAD
64
Arrest : DETER
65
Writer Sarah ___ Jewett : ORNE
66
Eugene O'Neill's "___ Christie" : ANNA
67
Dummy Mortimer : SNERD
68
Breather : REST
69
Quaint affirmative : YESM
Down
1
Criminals may be behind them : BARS
2
Corner office type : EXEC
3
Designer Gucci : ALDO
4
Big name in retirement community development : DELWEBB
5
Suffix with human : IST
6
Company that invented newsreels : PATHE
7
They can be crushed for a pie crust : OREOS
8
It may be thrown at a corkboard : DART
9
Ruined, as dreams : DASHED
10
___ Empire (land of Suleiman the Magnificent) : OTTOMAN
11
What fireflies do : GLOW
12
Handed over : GAVE
13
River to the North Sea : YSER
18
Stage when an animal is in heat : ESTRUS
22
HBO rival : SHO
24
Spa amenity : ROBE
26
Fisherman's takes : HAULS
27
Alvin of American dance : AILEY
28
Mex. misses : SRTAS
29
Oracle : SEER
30
Website parts : PAGES
31
O of the magazine world : OPRAH
32
Part of G.O.P. : PARTY
34
Dismissive cries : BAHS
35
Wall St. debt deal : LBO
39
Villa d'___ : ESTE
40
A Williams sister : SERENA
43
Heavenly gatekeeper : STPETER
45
Seized the opportunity : MADEHAY
47
One of eight English kings : EDWARD
48
___-jongg : MAH
51
Mall tenant : STORE
52
Drudges : PEONS
53
Hospital capacity : BEDS
54
Kiln : OVEN
55
Dark time, in ads : NITE
56
Prince of opera : IGOR
58
Actor Auberjonois : RENE
59
Some shuttles : VANS
60
Dutch export : EDAM
63
Part of a soccer goal : NET

Answer summary: 2 unique to this puzzle.

Found bugs or have suggestions?