Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,858 / Orlando

Posted by Andrew on November 16th, 2009


It’s one of the occasional non-Rufus Mondays. This was harder than a typical Rufus, but mostly not too difficult. There’s a theme involving characters from the TV series M*A*S*H, who are collected up in the final clue.

dd = double definition
* = anagram
< = reverse

10. PROFUSION PRO + (nuclear) FUSION
11. DESERT RAT TAR, “on” DESERT (=leave)
12. BURNS dd – “is full of ardour” being one definition
13. REBECCA REBEC + CA. The rebec is a mediaeval instrument similar to a violin.
15. RETREAT RE (religious education) + TREAT (discuss)
17. GLEAN G + LEAN (tip – as in lean over/tip over)
18. HOT H + OT
25. RISINGS I.S. in RINGS (calls). I found it quite hard to work out the wordplay here.
31. PRESS dd
1. ABED A BED (B.Ed = Bachelor of Education)
2. PASSABLE PAS (French for “not”) + SABLE
3. DEAR dd – letters start with “Dear (somebody)”.
4. APPROACH A (sho)PP(ing) ROACH
5. POTTER Three defintions – one who throw pots, Harry Potter and Potters Bar,
13. RIGHT dd
16. TREWS (cen)TRE + W(ait)S. “Bags” and “trews” both mean “trousers”.
23. ARDOUR As a cockney might say “(h)arder”
24. REGAIN I’m not sure about this – it seems to be RE (back Queen) + GAIN (lift ?), but the definition can only be “Take back”, so “back” is doing double duty. Maybe there’s a better explanation. There is (thanks to Maskelyne): it’s REGINA with the A “lifted”
26. ROCK dd
28. LIPS SPIL(l)<
29. MASH The linked names are Col. Sherman POTTER, Hawkeye PIERCE, Col. Henry BLAKE, Frank BURNS, TRAPPER John, RADAR O’Reilly and Margaret HOT LIPS Houlihan. All but Potter also appeared in the original film that the TV series was based on.

18 Responses to “Guardian 24,858 / Orlando”

  1. Maskelyne says:

    Thanks for the blog, Andrew.

    I suspect 24d is ‘REGINA’ with the ‘A’ lifted.

  2. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Andrew, this was very enjoyable and, even though I entered MASH at 29d, I failed to see the theme or the significance of the linked clues.

    I have never watched much TV.

  3. IanN14 says:

    I liked this, but, personally, I’d have preferred a more elusive clue for “mash”.
    I’d got a few of the answers before seeing 29d. and after that it became a lot easier.
    I just wondered how long it would have taken for the penny to drop otherwise…

  4. Andrew says:

    Thanks Maskelyne, that must be it – obvious when you see it!

  5. Ian says:

    A nice way to start the week. I, too, failed to spot the link as, like Bryan, I started at the top and worked down.

    As I was entering the answers, I remained blissfully unaware of the connexion!

    Nonetheless, a good, well clued puzzle, I’d say.

  6. cholecyst says:

    Thanks Andrew. The penultimate one I filled in was LIPS which then gave me the last one – MASH. Grrr. So on this occasion the theme came as a pleasant surprise but was of little help in completing the grid.

  7. liz says:

    Thanks, Andrew. This was a good puzzle, I thought, and a nice change for a Monday. I parsed 24dn in the same way, as re+gain and agree Maskelyne’s interpretation is better.

    Got 29dn quite quickly, but it didn’t help that much, as the only characters I could remember the names of were Hot Lips and Radar. Still, very enjoyable!

  8. rrc says:

    Enjoyed half of this puzzle, got Mash quite quickly,knew the tv series but no idea of characters, but must admit the answers were well clued

  9. walruss says:

    I thought this was great! What a nice change from the usual Monday fare, too.

  10. Martin Searle says:

    Found this one quite easy, as I spotted the M*A*S*H link almst immediately, and was very familiar with the characters. We are of course all different in our set of familiar cultural references.

    Thanks to Maskelyne re 24D, as I too had it as ‘re – gain’.

  11. rob c says:

    thanks for the blog andrew ; i thought you might like to know that i often just look at the solution blog without attempting to solve and obtain lots of fun from this rather lightweight use of this great site.

  12. Dave Ellison says:

    Yes, enjoyed this, and I agree with liz at #7 and walruss at #9 that it was a pleasant change from the usual Rufus – many fewer CDs, which I prefer.

    Got “mash” half way through (having got 5d, 7d, 22a, 26a ), which helped with the other mash clues, though they were doable without 29d.

    Took 6 minutes to get the last one, 2d! I could see the word but not why for ages.

  13. Arfanarf says:

    Could someone please enlighten me about 28d. What’s Spili? I don’t get it.

  14. Andrew says:

    Arfanarf – that’s SPILL: the letter in parentheses is a lower-case L.

  15. Jobs says:

    I had 8d as “payment not being introduced” = free = on us; (b)onus is much more elegant

  16. smutchin says:

    I’m a fan of Orlando – always very fair clueing, and 9a and 3d prove they don’t have to be hard to be good. Took me ages to get the theme but the penny eventually dropped when I got 28d. Very enjoyable, though I do enjoy Rufus on a Monday too.

  17. Paul B says:

    Hear hear. Back to top form today, with a really nice piece.

  18. Uncle Yap says:

    What?!! I completed the whole puzzle easily enough but have to come here to realise that I completely missed the theme and it so happens that *M*A*S*H* is one of my favourite movies … I can never forget the scene in front of the shower tent when Hot Lips got her come-uppance.

    Thank you Andrew and Orlando for the memories

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