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New York Times, Monday, June 24, 2019

Author:
Ross Trudeau
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
222/9/201711/19/20192
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
5383300
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.61031
Ross Trudeau

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 72, Blocks: 34 Missing: {Q} This is puzzle # 17 for Mr. Trudeau. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Ross Trudeau notes:
Today I launched an indie puzzle website, rosswordpuzzles.com. Come by for fresh #rosswords every other week! The original version ... read more

Today I launched an indie puzzle website, rosswordpuzzles.com. Come by for fresh #rosswords every other week!

The original version of this puzzle included the revealer INSANITY DEFENSE, so BEATLEMANIA, e.g., was clued "35-Across for someone who stole an "Abbey Road" album?" In fact, I generated all the themers first, and the revealer came to me afterward on my way home from work, whereupon I reflexively yelled "Insanity defense!" in the middle of a packed subway car. And mom wonders why I'm still single.

Also, if you're looking to get into crossword constructing, and especially if you identify as non-male and/or LGBT and/or POC, I'd be thrilled to offer whatever assistance I can to help you get your puzzles published. Contact me via Instagram (@rosstrudeau) or Twitter (@trudeauross).

Jeff Chen notes:
FASHION CRAZE is such an evocative phrase. It triggered a wisp of a recollection … turns out it's been used before, in a ... read more

FASHION CRAZE is such an evocative phrase. It triggered a wisp of a recollection … turns out it's been used before, in a similarly-themed puzzle. Thankfully, my cursed long memory didn't affect my enjoyment of today's puzzle, especially given the extended time separating the two.

Even though the previous puzzle used more themers, I liked today's set better. I didn't miss much from ___ FEVER's absence, and it allowed Ross to do so much more with his gridwork.

When you only have four themers to incorporate, you owe it to solvers to give them all sorts of bonuses. I often dissuade constructors from using a "parallel down" structure (see: WHAT NERVE / IMPASSION), but Ross is a pro. Fantastic long bonuses worked in, along with little crossword glue needed to hold everything together.

Check out the impressive array of long down bonuses: ISLAMABAD / NOISE LAWS / POTTY MOUTH / EDIT WAR / SANTA LETTERS / WHAT NERVE / IMPASSION. That's nearly enough to fill a themeless.

If anything, Ross pushed the envelope a little too far. I don't mind a bit of ONEA, RIA minor offenders, but I'd have preferred two or three fewer bonuses along with a squeaky-clean product that didn't risk tripping up newbs, asking themselves what the hell ONE A means.

Upon third glance, I could have done with less of AS DO I / IT IS SO / ARE SO. A sweet spot might have been four long bonuses and no gluey bits that took away from the elegance index.

Overall, a step up from the previous puzzle. And it's perfectly fine to have near theme duplication if there's enough time between puzzles – constructors come up with the same basic concept all the time.

1
R
2
A
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S
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P
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C
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E
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W
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W
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I
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E
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T
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15
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H
M
O
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B
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A
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M
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A
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A
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U
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M
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L
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D
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W
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M
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C
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H
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M
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31
S
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M
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N
O
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L
A
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A
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F
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J
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I
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F
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H
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I
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A
Z
E
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M
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G
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B
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M
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F
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J
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S
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D
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64
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© 2019, The New York TimesNo. 0624 ( 25,430 )
Across
1
Talks with a gravelly voice : RASPS
6
Fastener with a twist : SCREW
11
Brevity is said to be the soul of it : WIT
14
Sir John of London : ELTON
15
Not get caught by, as a pursuer : ELUDE
16
Patient's insurance option, for short : HMO
17
"Affliction" suffered by Fab Four devotees : BEATLEMANIA
19
"The Simpsons" storekeeper : APU
20
___ stage left : EXIT
21
Prefix with air or afternoon : MID
22
Big person on the small screen : TVSTAR
24
Prince Charles's onetime partner, affectionately : LADYDI
26
Removes from nursing, as a foal : WEANS
27
"Affliction" suffered by bracketologists : MARCHMADNESS
32
Child, legally speaking : MINOR
35
Villain's retreat : LAIR
36
Quartet minus one : TRIO
37
Has left the office : ISOUT
38
Triage locales, for short : ERS
39
Enjoy the taste of : SAVOR
40
Move like a butterfly : FLIT
41
Green stone popular in Chinese craftwork : JADE
42
Woods who voiced Cinderella : ILENE
43
"Affliction" suffered by clothes lovers : FASHIONCRAZE
46
Track-and-field competitions : MEETS
47
Insinuates : GETSAT
51
Person with a chrome dome : BALDIE
52
Cow's sound : MOO
54
"Gone With the Wind" plantation : TARA
55
Atty.'s org. : ABA
56
"Affliction" suffered by the winter-weary : SPRINGFEVER
59
Big part of a T. rex : JAW
60
What diamonds and straight-A students do : SHINE
61
Gown : DRESS
62
Commercials : ADS
63
Japanese port of 2+ million : OSAKA
64
"Same here" : ASDOI
Down
1
One in revolt : REBEL
2
Amazon Echo persona : ALEXA
3
Reserved in manner : STAID
4
Spewing naughty language, as a child : POTTYMOUTHED
5
Weekly show with a cold open, for short : SNL
6
Vehicle that can jackknife : SEMI
7
Attired : CLAD
8
Go for elected office : RUN
9
Tussle between wiki page modifiers : EDITWAR
10
Bobbed and ___ : WEAVED
11
"Well, I never!" : WHATNERVE
12
Fill with zeal : IMPASSION
13
P.G.A. ___ : TOUR
18
Kuwaiti leader : EMIR
23
Mail addressed to the North Pole : SANTALETTERS
25
Missile aimed at a bull's-eye : DART
28
Off drugs : CLEAN
29
The fourth letter of "circle," but not the first : HARDC
30
Scrooge : MISER
31
Achy : SORE
32
Make peeved : MIFF
33
Capital of Pakistan : ISLAMABAD
34
Peace-and-quiet ordinances : NOISELAWS
39
Small, medium or large : SIZE
41
Brooklyn's St. ___ College : JOSEPHS
44
"Quite correct" : ITISSO
45
Wide-eyed : AGOG
48
Placed money in the bank : SAVED
49
"Am not!" comeback : ARESO
50
Ankle bones : TARSI
51
___ California : BAJA
52
Stole fur : MINK
53
Prime draft status : ONEA
57
Narrow waterway : RIA
58
Agcy. overseeing Rx's : FDA

Answer summary: 6 unique to this puzzle, 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

Found bugs or have suggestions?