Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 8,058 by Tyrus (Saturday Prize Puzzle, 11/08/12)

Posted by Simon Harris on August 18th, 2012

Simon Harris.

Having agreed to swap blogging slots, one often wonders what one has let oneself in for, and I must admit there was an “oh crikey” moment when I discovered I’d drawn Tyrus again. The memory of our last meeting remains vivid.

Thankfully, this week’s prize puzzle seemed a little more tractable, at least at first. I expect that the venerable TV quiz show Mastermind will be familiar to most solvers, though how well it travelled to other corners of the globe I can’t be certain.

My task was greatly aided by spotting the theme fairly swiftly, thanks to 1ac and 8ac. Having owned a cassette copy of Telly Hits 2 as a youngster, I had a distinct advantage in being familiar with the name of APPROACHING MENACE, the Mastermind theme music.

The iconic BLACK CHAIR, and Magnus Magnusson’s signature phrase I’VE STARTED SO I’LL FINISH, along with perhaps ANSWERS complete the thematic material, unless I’ve missed something. I’m sure readers will fill me in if so, just as I am sure that they will be happy to clarify one or two answers where the wordplay is lost on me.

*=anag, []=dropped, <=reversed, hom=homophone, cd=cryptic definition, dd=double definition.

Across
1 APPROACHING – absolutely no idea about the wordplay: Tom desperate (with relief reportedly not far off).
8 MENACE – MEN + ACE.
9 ASPIRATE – ‘AS + (I in PRATE).
10 CAME TO PASS – CAME TOP ASS. Clever one.
12 CHIDCH + [m]I[n]D.
13 DOWNHILL – DOWN + [c]HILL.
15 BLACKB + LACK.
16 CHAIRC + HAIR, a musical which I’ve never seen, but which apparently contains some nudity – hence “revealing musical”.
18 TWEETING – TIN in (WE GET)*.
20 AMOS – I’m sort of guessing here, it’s a book, at least. Need a diet book.
21/25 I’VE STARTED SO I’LL FINISH – (SHALL DESIST IF OVER TI[me] IN)*.
23 ANTECEDE – ANT + (DEC in [w]EE[k]).
24 TRIPOD – TRIP + DO<.
Down
1 ARENA – (AN ERA)<.
2 PHASE IN – hom. of “fazin’”.
3 ONE – [ro]ONE[y].
4 CHAGALL – CHA + GALL. Marc Chagall.
5 IMPIS – [w]IMPIS[h].
6 GERTCHACH in GREAT*.
7 STRICKEN – (IT’S + R)* + KEN. I assume this is a reference to Ken Barlow, the character from Coronation Street, which I do not watch, and so whether he is considered a lothario or not, I couldn’t possibly tell you.
11 OSIER – [r]OSIER.
14 ONCOMING – (C + MOONING)*.
15 BLEAT – TABLE*.
17 ANSWERSW in REAS[o]NS.
18 THE BELLT + H[ack] E[very] + BELL. Iris Murdoch, rather than Rupert of that ilk, as Tyrus would have us believe.
19 TERMINI – (RE + [sea]T)< + MINI.
21 ICENI – [tw]ICE NI[ghtly].
22 ENOCH – CONE< + H.
24 TWI – TWI[g].

10 Responses to “Independent 8,058 by Tyrus (Saturday Prize Puzzle, 11/08/12)”

  1. Al Dente says:

    Hi Simon. May be able to help with 1a. Tom is an old criminal and police slang word for a prostitute. So shorten that to pro aching (desperate) with relief reportedly, so sounds like a pee = ap, giving the definition “not far off” = approaching. Hope this helps.

  2. Dormouse says:

    Didn’t have time to do this last week as I was away (and had time to get all of four answers during the week) but I think I can help with 20ac. It’s “am OS” – outsize as a clothing size.

  3. Al Dente says:

    Hi again Simon. Just noticed 20a so could have killed two birds with one stone so to speak. Split Amos up so you Am os the os representing an abbreviation for outsize; giving Am outsize = need a diet, Amos= book (of the Bible. Hope this helps too.

  4. Al Dente says:

    Sorry Dormouse we must have been typing at the same time.

  5. Dormouse says:

    Second day in a row that’s happened to me. :-)

  6. yvains says:

    @Al Dente & @Dormouse – Thank you, those were the two parsings I couldn’t manage! Thank you, Simon, for the blog, and Tyrus for a tough one!

  7. MikeC says:

    Thanks Simon and Tyrus. A good puzzle. I couldn’t fathom the AP part of 1a, so thanks for straightening that out. Also got 18d wrong, convincing myself (somehow) that time could be TELL, including H, E, C. I also figured that it was Iris, rather than Roop, but neglected to check her biblio. Shame on me! But the idea of THE CELL being connected with the News Int Murdoch did rather appeal ;-)

    In 10a, it’s CAME + TOP + AS S(pecial),isn’t it?

  8. allan_c says:

    Nice one, Tyrus; and thanks, Simon and others, for the blog and comments. A satisfying puzzle in which the theme gradually became obvious, enabling me to finish. Only one bit of electronic help required – a word finder for ANTECEDE. I too guessed that the ‘street lothario’ was Mr Barlow. Even if one doesn’t watch soaps (I don’t) one can hardly miss the main themes when logging on to one’s ISP or whatever.

  9. flashling says:

    Ta Simon and Jim. Once again the theme passed me by, hard but fair.

  10. Tyrus says:

    Thanks to Simon for the blog and to others for their comments.

    MikeC’s parsing of 10A is correct.

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