August 23rd, 2019

Quick Cryptic 1424 by Joker

Nothing too scary today, though 21dn might be a trap for the unwary. I was held up for ages by my inability to spell 14dn, which doubled my time, and I kept getting the "UNLUCKY!" alert which of course gives you no idea where the error is.

Unlucky? As Geoffrey Boycott famously said, it's not luck.

1 Dense nature of formal agreement leads to new extremely simple style (11)
COMPACTNESS - COMPACT + first letters of New Extremely Simple Style
8 Pungent gas shells etc in back area (7)
AMMONIA - Shells etc is AMMO, add NI (in backwards) + A
9 Turn with part of the foot (5)
10 Food colouring company feature retails regularly (9)
COCHINEAL - CO + CHIN + alternate letters of rEtAiL
12 Draw connection (3)
TIE - double definition
13 More than one stole from playwright — like Shakespeare at first (6)
SHAWLS - (George Bernard) SHAW is the playwright, add L and S
15 Artist painting restorer reveals (6)
INGRES - hidden word: paintING REStorer
17 Perhaps hail one Conservative European (3)
ICE - I + C + E
18 Cooked patties to eat good, hot pasta (9)
SPAGHETTI - anagram ('cooked') of PATTIES with G and H inside
20 Venerated symbol to note, followed by millions (5)
TOTEM - TO + TE (note - DO RE ME etc) + M
22 Cast, we hear, is finished (7)
THROUGH - Sounds like THREW
23 People like Disney sort actions that must move (11)
CARTOONISTS - anagram ('that must move') of SORT ACTIONS
1 Pear with no end is highly amusing (5)
COMIC - Short for COMICE, a kind of pear
2 Chap makes holes in soil, we hear, finding jawbones (9)
MANDIBLES - MAN + DIBLES which sounds like DIBBLES. A dibble is a gardening tool for making seed holes.
3 Rouse a weak, disturbed Pole (6)
AWAKEN - anagram ('disturbed') of A WEAK plus N for North (pole)
4 Pull of urban area that’s never ending (3)
TOW - short for TOWN
5 German prince is English reader (7)
ELECTOR - E + LECTOR. So called because they were entitled to take part in the election of the Holy Roman Emperor
6 Craftsmen making runners-up medals? (12)
SILVERSMITHS - don't know how to describe this but it's pretty self explanatory
7 Crisis antics are anyhow in vain (12)
NARCISSISTIC - anagram ('are anyhow') of CRISIS ANTICS
11 Yearn to get unusual shorn cattle (9)
LONGHORNS - LONG (yearn) + anagram ('unusual') of SHORN
14 One helping criminal sounding like a chancer (7)
ABETTOR - sounds like A BETTER
16 Bird to spoil metal container (6)
MARTIN - MAR (spoil) + TIN
19 Has confidence in removing last ton for supporting framework (5)
TRUSS - TRUSTS removing the last T for Ton
21 Low satellite terminated prematurely (3)
MOO - Short for MOON. Low is a classic crossword staple  - a common word with an obscure alternative meaning. It means moo, as in 'The cattle are lowing..' You either know it or you don't. See also LAST (metal stand used by cobblers) NEAT (type of cattle)