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4 puzzles by Deb Amlen
with Jeff Chen comments

TotalDebutLatestCollabs
45/23/20044/2/20192
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
1030000
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.61000
Deb Amlen
Tue 4/2/2019
CASCAAMYBLIP
TREATWEEPRADO
REALMMTAROVES
ALLFLASHNOCASH
MEINIFC
SATEENNOTFORME
ICHDOORELIAS
THATCANTBERIGHT
BONZOURSAIRE
YOGAPOSETRADER
TOORUED
JAZZUPTHEPLACE
IQUITOOHIGAVE
LUCKSMBAEIDER
TIKIBOBFOSSE

The NYT celeb series continues! I watched the first season of OitNB, and Nicky was my favorite character. It's a shame that this crossword didn't relate to her, but considering Nicky's … ahem … colorful personality, it wouldn't have been appropriate for the NYT.

ALL / THAT / JAZZ referring to the movie about BOB / FOSSE, the choreographer. These types of "first words hide a saying" themes live and die on 1.) how snazzy their theme phrases are, and 2.) the impact of the a-ha moment when the solver connects the words together.

ALL FLASH NO CASH is a great way to hide ALL.

THAT CANT BE RIGHT is a solid colloquial phrase, too.

I did hitch at JAZZ UP THE PLACE, as I wanted it so badly to be JAZZ UP THE JOINT. Even more appropriate given the setting for OitNB!

I didn't get a fantastic a-ha upon realizing ALL THAT JAZZ was the theme, mostly because I didn't immediately recall who BOB / FOSSE was. It works fine, but I might have preferred a revealer that meant "and related things," like ODDS AND ENDS or ET CETERA or best yet, YADA YADA YADA.

With such little constraints – ALL / THAT / JAZZ and BOB / FOSSE the only fixed requirements – Deb and Natasha had a lot of flexibility in their grid. I loved what they did with YOGA POSE, TZATZIKI, even BROCCOLI and COP OUTS. That's a lot of bonuses to PROFFER!

I wasn't sure about ZUCK, but perhaps that's what the kids are calling him these days? Generally good gridwork otherwise, just some minor dings in CTR ICH MEIN MTA. And yeah, MAHRE.

With this celeb series, I love when the crossword riffs on something specific to the celeb. But overall, a solid crossword with some great phrases worked in.

Tue 2/12/2008
MEDALEGADASIF
ALEXAMOLEFATE
REMEMBERPROFILE
ANOBORISMOLLS
TACTNILSIR
RECOLLECTDUST
GLAREAKASOU
OATMEALGRAMMAR
EMIBAMLEARN
RECALLWAITING
CUERNASAGO
CLARATACITZEN
RECOUNTCALORIES
AGESBOASMANSE
BODSAPSESWEET
Tue 3/8/2005
MATTSTEALSAIL
ARIATESLAETTU
DEERINTELNEAL
STILLERANDALL
SLONEBLOAMY
MINCESSWANK
ATEUPDEANGAS
SHORTERANDSWEET
HENGILDPATSY
LOOPYPISTON
GIANTEONOPE
HUNTERANDPECK
AIDEIMAGEUNIT
USESPETEYTORO
TEXTSNORESWAP
Sun 5/23/2004GROOMING FOR HOLLYWOOD
DESIIZODFINALAPSOS
ETASRENEALEROSTENT
BATHMANANDROBINPATER
TITANPIARANGESHE
SEATMAMBOSNOORBOA
RAZORSOFTHELOSTARK
IRSDOTFAADEVISE
DANNONSAWRHETTSLED
THEBREAKFASTSCRUB
AREAMYRRHGORILLA
GAZETTEODETSUNPLUGS
HEROINEAHEAPAGEE
PERMSOFENDEARMENT
PASTSAFERMDSROARAT
OBLADIABAAMYSSS
SHAVINGPRIVATERYAN
TOVSTARTSTRAPLIBS
DRECOLASCARAWGEE
ARRAUWISHYOUWEREHAIR
TEENSASTERMALTTUNA
EDDYSYESESAXISSTEW