Posted by beermagnet on April 16th, 2011
I’m not sure but I think this is his first grid in the Saturday Prize slot. I certainly found it tougher than usual for a Morph, (only 4 answers entered on first pass and only 9 after the first pint) and had to rely on slogging out the long anagrams to make progress, and that’s only right for a Prize Crossword.
Morph appears about once a month and usually (always?) has some kind of theme, often political. In this puzzle he is bang up-to-date and celebrates the “Arab Spring” with material alluding to recent uprisings against various totalitarian regimes (plus a few other political references). While I saw the scattering of references in the clues, the true beauty of the whole was not apparent till I finally got 1 Across, as an appropriate last answer. Great stuff.
|1||LIBERTY|| Right integral to turmoil affecting leadership of six countries here? (7)
Last answer entered and even then it took a while to fathom the wordplay. This 1 Across, both clue and in particular answer, is central to the theme. Anagram (turmoil) of R[ight] and L I B E T Y from the “leadership” of the six arab countries mentioned throughout the clues: Libya Iran Bahrain Egypt Tunisia Yemen
|5||COUGARS|| US cargo transported in Pumas (7)
(US CARGO)* AInd: transported. First answer I entered
|9||MARXIST-LENINIST|| Revolutionary form of existentialism, rejecting originator and embracing our own ends (7-8)
(EXISTENTIALISM – E + [ou]R + [ow]N)* AInd: form of. Def: Revolutionary. A long-slog-anag with the twist of having to deduce where the other odd letters come from.
|10||SHABBY||Dirty books discovered in carriage (6) BB (books) inside SHAY (carriage) One-horse_shay|
|11||PARANOIA|| Fear a Hebridean hip-hop comeback? (8)
Reverse of A IONA (Hebridean) RAP (hip-hop) Def: Fear. Remember, just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you. I expect some people might point out that rap is not really the same as hip-hop – anyway it gives me a chance to stick in a link to MC NxtGen’s excellent Rap on the subject of the NHS reforms
|12||SANDWICHES|| Puts the squeeze on smooth West Indies before game is cut short (10)
SAND (smooth) W[est] I[ndies] CHES[s] Def: Puts the squeeze on
|14||KEPI|| Stupid Boy’s cycling cap (4)
PIKE “cycled” around (e.g. via IKEP) to make KEPI (cap). Pike is the youngster in Dad’s Army known to Captain Mainwaring as That Stupid Boy.
|16||ARCH|| A wealthy investor’s principally going to be shrewd (4)
A R[i]CH Def: Shrewd. RICH=Wealthy I=investor’s principally
|18||STONEMASON|| Same, not different progeny for one producing a chip off the old block? (10)
(SAME NOT)* AInd: different. SON (progeny)
|21||INEDIBLE|| Lie in bed, tossing and turning after such food? (8)
(LIE IN BED)* AInd: tossing and turning. Rather nice &Lit though simple enough to be one of the few I got early
|22||ATHENE|| Goddess explaining how to begin aerobics? (6)
The word AEROBICS begins with AE, that’s A then E. I have this kind of device before, but this one took me ages to see and resulted in the biggest PDM groan.
|25||INVITED AUDIENCE|| A divine duet – nice arrangement, select crowd (7,8)
(A DIVINE DUET NICE)* AInd: arrangement. One of the long-slog-anags
|26||YARDMAN|| Farm employee reversing cart succeeds, not taking ages (7)
(DRAY)< MAN[ages] (succeeds – ages) Def: Farm employee. I had this ready to put in from the Def and DRAY< but couldn’t see how MAN was formed. Put it in when crossing letters confirmed it, but only really understood when doing this blog
|27||TIGHTLY|| Idiot twisting with passion has nothing to lose in “Strictly” (7)
(GIT)< (idiot twisting) H[o]TLY (passion nothing to lose) Def: “Strictly”
|1||LUMPS|| Puts up with recession being dealt with in a top-down way (5)
SLUMP (recession) the S moving to the bottom. Def: Puts up with, as in “Like it or lump it”.
|2/24||BARGAIN HUNT|| Bahrain government in trouble, world body taking interest finally in what goes on in souk? (7,4)
(BAHRAIN G[overnment])* AInd: in trouble. UN (world body) [interes]T. For a long time I had PERSIAN GULF on my mind simply from the letter count and ref. to Bahrain. Then I got the checking U, and then the R, and then the N, and then spent ages trying to justify it… Shabby finally got me out of that dead end
|3||RAINBOWS|| Movement in Iran gives way under pressure – but there are signs of a brighter future (8)
(IRAN)* AInd: Movement in, BOWS (gives way under pressure) Def: Signs of a brighter future
|4||YETI|| Until now, one’s not proven to exist (4)
YET (until now) I (one) Another nice little &Lit. This one took me much longer
|5||CAESAREAN|| Originally Roman section of southern district in French city (9)
S[outhern] AREA (district) inside CAEN (French city) Another where I went down a dead end. With C—A—N in place I fixated on Carcasson thinking it might be an acceptable spelling of this French city which undoubtedly dates back to Roman times
|6||URINAL|| Women can’t stand going there (6)
Does this CD work these days? See Go-Girl.com
|7||ADIPOSE|| Perhaps a bowl of hummus with poultry’s no-go, containing fat (7)
A DIP (a bowl of hummus) [go]OSE (poultry no go) Def: containing fat. One for the Dr Who fans: Tardis Wiki – Adipose
|8||SITUATION|| Change to Tunisia’s state (9)
(TO TUNISIA)* AInd: Change. Another early answer. A nod to the SI Situationist International?
|12||STABILITY|| It’s time Libya shifted balance (9)
(ITS T[ime] LIBYA)* AInd: shifted. I spent too long failing to get an anagram of (TIME LIBYA) before realising.
|13||COTYLEDON|| Putting bed on north side of yard encouraged embryonic leaf (9)
COT (bed) Y[ard] LED ON (encouraged) Very clear def: embryonic leaf. A word that you come across if you listen to Gardeners’ Question Time.
|15||EMPTYING|| Egypt minister thrown out in vacation (8)
(EGYPT MIN[ister])* AInd: thrown out
|17||CLEAVER|| Conservative splitter – and another (7)
C[onservative] LEAVER (splitter) Does he mean conservative or the PFJ? Excuse to link to well known Monty Python Life of Brian clip
|19||SHEA NUT|| Fish – what’s turned up as raw material for soap (4,3)
(TUNA EHS)< TUNA (fish) EHS (Eh? as in What? so Ehs = Whats)
|20||VICTIM|| Foil for Reeves and Minchin (6)
Def: Foil. Charade from VIC Reeves and TIM Minchin. Most of you have heard of Vic Reeves, but if you haven’t seen much of Tim Minchin there’s plenty worth having a look at here Tim Minchin videos Late news: The schedule has just been published and I find he is headlining the first ever Comedy Prom.
|23||ENEMY|| Opponent of reform in Yemen (5)
(YEMEN)* AInd: reform