Cityish Alt-ish Fortyish (verlaine) wrote in times_xwd_times,
Cityish Alt-ish Fortyish
verlaine
times_xwd_times

Times 26,843: Caged Fury

A very fun and frolicsome puzzle this, bursting with guff, galumph, Lilliputian megaflops and an underwear-based clue that surely narrows down the identity of the setter to an elite group of usual smutspects. My time on the clock of 6m45 does rather suggest though that whoever suggested, earlier in the week, that Tuesday has become the new Friday may have been onto something.

18ac would probably have been more of a poser if we hadn't had THIMBLERIGGER at least a couple of times in recent memory: how do words this odd just keep on turning up? The down clues were notable for brevity (this being the soul of wit, of course), with 8dn surely close to constituting some kind of record, though we'll always have bloody "Gegs?" of course. I always think that 3dns can't fly though of course this is pretty racist of me, just because they look a bit like penguins doesn't mean they can't exceed 50mph in the air "the wings moving so fast as to become a blur". Some good classical education morsels to be found in Gad and dear old Lydia, plus a bit of the right sort of literature, Robert Louis and Dean Swift. I shall studiously avoid putting the rear-viewed underwear anywhere near my COD: honourable mention to 11ac with its lovely surface, but I think 20dn takes it for me with its marvellous marriage of cleverness and concision.

Round of applause to the setter. It's been a pretty good crossword week, hasn't it?

ACROSS
1 Flag lowered finally, miserable in retreat (5)
DROOP - {lowere}D + POOR reversed [miserable "in retreat"]
4 Son of Jacob nursing swelling, he is lumbered (9)
GALUMPHED - GAD [son of Jacob] "nursing" LUMP HE [swelling | he]
9 Was substituted? Strange! (4-5)
LEFT-FIELD - If you were substituted, you might have LEFT FIELD (punctuated differently)
10 Romeo in bunk becoming surly (5)
GRUFF - R [Romeo] in GUFF [bunk]
11 Sweet thing, remarkably genial wife filling in puzzle (7,6)
BELGIAN WAFFLE - (GENIAL*) ["remarkably"] + W [wife] "filling in" BAFFLE [puzzle]
14 Anger, with one enjoying a carefree life cut short (4)
RILE - RILE{y} [one (proverbially) enjoying a carefree life, "cut short"]
15 Stop company cutting funds for home protection (10)
DAMPCOURSE - DAM [stop] + CO [company] "cutting" PURSE [funds]
18 Sneaky blighter, I'm a con (10)
THIMBLERIG - (BLIGHTER I'M*) ["sneaky"]
19 Reportedly cross, whimper (4)
MEWL - homophone of MULE ["reportedly", cross]
21 Unexpected U-turn with date and deal complete (13)
UNADULTERATED - (U-TURN + DATE + DEAL*) ["unexpected"]
24 Fighter starts to box intelligently, presenting defence (5)
ALIBI - ALI [fighter] + B{ox} I{ntelligently}
25 He wrote in earnest, even so, needlessly (9)
STEVENSON - hidden in {earne}ST EVEN SO N{eedlessly}
27 Proscribe different tokens for cash (9)
BANKNOTES - BAN [proscribe] + (TOKENS*) ["different"]
25 Skimpy briefs a possible source of irritation when viewed from behind (5)
TANGA - A GNAT reversed [a possible source of irritation, "when viewed from behind"]

DOWN
1 Planned debate (10)
DELIBERATE - double def
2 Festering cricket side (3)
OFF - double def
3 Excessively complimentary review in flier (6)
PUFFIN - PUFF IN [excessively complimentary review | in]
4 Fruit garden's odd parts fascinate (9)
GREENGAGE - G{a}R{d}E{n} + ENGAGE [fascinate]
5 Ancient region largely evacuated before help turned up (5)
LYDIA - L{argel}Y + AID reversed [help "turned up"]
6 Huge disappointment? That's the measure of computing (8)
MEGAFLOP - more or less another double def
7 One must stay in under this (5,6)
HOUSE ARREST - cryptic def
8 Bad pud (4)
DUFF - double duff, sorry def
12 Very small place, one secured by girl (11)
LILLIPUTIAN - PUT I [place | one] "secured by" LILLIAN [girl]
13 Siren trouble girl raised as blooming deadly thing? (10)
BELLADONNA - BELL ADO [siren | trouble] + ANN reversed [girl "raised"]
16 Futile, to be blunt? (10)
POINTLESS - more or less yet another double def
17 Offering nothing in classical language, alumnus going first (8)
OBLATION - O [nothing] in LATIN [classical language], O.B. [alumnus] going first
20 Pirates at sea without a prayer? (6)
PRIEST - (PIR{a}TES*) ["at sea"] - prayer as in "one who prays" here, of course...
22 Happy band, distressed (5)
UPSET - UP SET [happy | band]
23 Post or stick, did you say? (4)
JAMB - homophone of JAM [stick, "did you say?"]
26 Beginning to seem cool, crime (3)
SIN - S{eem} + IN [cool]
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