Author: Alan Arbesfeld
Theme: Types of fish are embedding inside two-word phrases, as follows:
- 20a: The Senate, e.g. (UPPER CHAMBER)
- 28a: Scoop shop option (SWISS ALMOND)
- 35a: Panzer battler (SHERMAN TANK)
- 42a: One doing the hustle (DISCO DANCER)
- 53a: Xenon, for example, in the atmosphere (TRACE ELEMENT)
- 46a: Bread box? (ATM). The people who still refer to money as "bread" are probably the same ones who say I DIG (5a: "The meaning of your statement is clear", more hiply). Still, it's a nice clue.
- 21d: Sheepish reply? (BAA). I knew where this one going right away, but I still like it.
- 29d: Word with cry or baby (WAR). I love the way the answer here seems so far removed from the clue words in question. You're thinking "what goes with babies and crying?"... somehow war is not what pops to mind.
- 36d: Letters before "-1701" on the Enterprise (NCC) . Gotta love "Star Trek" clues.
- 48d: Dash hundredths (METER). Referring to the 100-meter dash. Great clue!
- 56d: Kent colleague (LANE). My first thought was of Kent State and the 1970 protest where four students were gunned down by our own National Guard. This would have fit well with 57a: Capital of Vietnam (HANOI) and 64a: "You won't have ___ to kick around anymore, because gentlemen, this is my last press conference" (1962 quote) (NIXON). But it was quickly obvious that we were dealing with Superman here.
- 39a: Morlocks' prey in "The Time Machine" (ELOI). Three vowels in a four-letter word means it shows up in a ton of puzzles.
- 63a: Attendee (GOER). I'm not usually crazy about -ER fill, but this one reminds me too much of this Monty Python sketch not to give it a shout out.
- 22a: Forest's "Street Kings" costar (KEANU). This film came out this year, but I haven't seen it playing in any theaters in my area. IMDB gives it 7.3 stars, which is pretty solid. Anyone out there seen this and care to give a brief review?
- 65a: Painter Magritte (RENE). If you haven't seen the 1999 remake of "The Thomas Crowne Affair"with Pierce Brosnan, Rene Russo, and Denis Leary, I would highly recommend it anyone looking for some light, fun entertainment.
- 8d: Thingamajigs (GISMOS). I initially spelled this with a Z. Somehow, the 'S' just doesn't look right.
- 9d: Jewish village of Eastern Europe, formerly (SHTETL). That's just a cool word all the way around.
- 31d: "Mancha", translated from Spanish (STAIN). I did not know that.
- 5d: Computer that comes with a Mighty Mouse (IMAC).
- 35d: He's hit home runs in more major league ballparks than anyone (SOSA).
- 43d: "Late Night" host (Conan O' BRIEN).
- 44d: Crackhouse raiders (DEA).
- 53d: Oz visitor (TOTO). This is a pretty pedestrian clue, except I literally had just gotten back from a high school performance of "The Wizard of Oz" when I did this puzzle. It's funny how things show up like that.
Suns of Bitches:
Nothing really tough here, but a few answers I only got through the crossings:
- 50a: "Bringing Down the House" author Mezrich (BEN). There a lot of Ben's out there that I've heard of. This isn't one of them.
- 32d: "Death in Venice" author (Thomas MANN).
- 46d: Photographer Richard (AVEDON). I didn't recognize the name, but I've definitely seen some of his photos, including this one of Natassja Kinski, which appeared in Vogue Magazine in 1981.
- 57d: Party animal? (HEN). Ok, maybe I'm a total dumbass, but I can't for the life of me figure this one out. Chicken parties? Hen parties? I could see DONKEY or ELEPHANT, for political parties, but I just don't understand this one. Bonus points for the first comment to satisfactorily explain this one to me.
That about sums it up for me.
Thanks for listening.
- Pete M.