Never knowingly undersolved.

Cyclops 484: Reading the Riot Act

Posted by jetdoc on December 16th, 2012


Only a week since the last blog, I know — but this one has a submission deadline only three days after the publication date (though of course, many of us buy the Eye a couple of days before that). So I am getting the blog online to let you concentrate your energies on the Christmas puzzle, due later this week.

As so often happens, I sped through this puzzle… only to be completely stumped by just one clue, 19d, on which I needed help.

Here’s wishing you all a very wonderful Christmas and New Year, from me and also from Enigmatist, Elgar (OK, wrong blog, but who cares?), Io and Nimrod. We’re looking forward to lots more cruciverbal malarkey in 2013.

5 RIOT ACT Parliament’s attempt to stop dissenting groups: “Big city diplomacy”
RIO = big city; TACT = diplomacy. This 1714/15 Act of Parliament was described as “An Act for preventing tumults and riotous assemblies, and for the more speedy and effectual punishing the rioters”. No modern resonances then…
7 IDYLLIC Ordered to take time off, Lab, Lib, Independent and Con =leaders — charming!
[t]IDY = ‘ordered’, minus T (time); first letters (leaders) of Lab, Lib, Independent and Con
10 CHELSEA BUN Clinton has arse cheek roll?
CHELSEA Clinton; BUN = buttock (arse cheek)
Chelsea buns
12 UPSTAGED Having an erection, mounted, is put at a disadvantage
UP = having an erection; STAGED = mounted. Definition: put at a disadvantage
14 RIDER Dominant sex partner’s stipulation?
Double definition: whoever gets on top; a clause or corollary added to an already complete contract or other legal document
55 ACT OF PARLIAMENT Bill’s destiny: to be a luvvie and flirt with a MEP on a binge?
ACT = to be a luvvie; *(flirt a MEP on a), with ‘binge’ as the anagram indicator. A parliamentary Bill may become an Act in due course.
18 SEMEN Result of having come from club out of basement
’baSEMENt’ minus bat (club). Definition: result of having come
20 COVER-UPS Concealments of balls snatched by Bristol supporters?
OVER = six deliveries (balls) in cricket; in CUP = part of a bra, the supporter of a breast (a ‘Bristol City’)
22/11 STAR SIGN Cancer celebs accepted pocketing a lot of money?
STARS = celebs; IN = accepted; G = a grand (£1000)
23 CROSS-PARTY “Pissed off with shindig!” sums up Tory-LibDem sort of partnership?
CROSS = Pissed off; PARTY = shindig
26 GRENADE e.g. Brenda, topless, wantonly dangerous when unpinned
*(eg renda), with ‘wantonly’ as the anagram indicator and ‘topless’ to indicate that the B is removed from Her Maj’s Private Eye nickname. Grenades are dangerous when the pin is removed.
1/24 HIGH TIDE Main climax, getting pissed on new diet
HIGH = pissed; *(diet)
2 STILETTO Heel demands time to nuzzle into Lottie’s bust
T = time; in *(Lotties).
Stiletto heels
3 CLOSED Plonker taking up drugs should be locked up?
CLOD = plonker; containing ES = drugs (ecstasy tablets, E being a drug that finds its way into many a crossword clue), reversed (‘up’ in a down clue)
4 GINGERSNAP Quick bite making Chris Evans freak out?
GINGER = Chris Evans, who has ginger-coloured hair; SNAP = freak out
6 CLEGG ’Power-sharer’ of little weight, taking the stage
CG = centigram (little weight); containing LEG = stage (part of a sporting event, etc)
8 DENARII Rained off international makes money for an old Italian
*(rained); I = international.
The denarius was a Roman coin.
9/25 BBC DIRECTOR GENERAL Hall now celebrated with boring Conservative Right routed
*(celebrated boring CR) — impressive anagram!
Tony Hall is the current holder of the poisoned chalice.
13 PACE SETTER Sun, at the end of the day, is after justification for stop and search (temporary front-runner only)
SETTER = Sun, at the end of the day; PACE = the Police and Criminal Evidence Act, providing ‘the core framework of police powers and safeguards around stop and search, arrest, detention, investigation, identification and interviewing detainees’
16 PANACEA Pot and crack (top grade), the universal fix
PAN = pot; ACE = crack (in the sense of ‘excellent, first-rate, expert’); A = top grade
A substance meant to cure all diseases, named after Panacea, a Greek goddess of universal remedy
17 MARIANNE Andrew getting end away with one Princess representative of France
Andrew MAR[r]; I = one; ANNE = Princess.
Marianne is a national emblem of France and an allegory of Liberty and Reason.
19 MARKET Demand from Miliband’s no.1 to head state, other-worldly!
M = Miliband’s no.1; ARK = Arkansas (state); ET = extra-terrestrial. It was the definition that I think deceived me here, but ’demand’ is valid.
21 VISOR Very Boris to go topless and shake knightly equipment?
V= very; *(oris) — ‘to go topless’ indicates that the B is dropped, and ‘shake’ is the anagram indicator. Good surface reading.


A Tweet from Frankie Boyle: “The BBC will miss Sir Patrick Moore — the only guy they had with a telescope who wasn’t pointing it at the local school playground.”

And a Christmas Top Tip: “WORK from home? Enjoy an office Christmas party fling by having a wank in the cupboard under the stairs.”.

5 Responses to “Cyclops 484: Reading the Riot Act”

  1. Thomas99 says:

    Thanks for the blog. I’m comforted you also found 19d hard. It took me ages, although like you I found most of the puzzle went by very quickly. I think it was partly the contrast with the other clues that made it so hard. That definition certainly is imaginative, but it’s a good one.

  2. lemming says:

    19d was my last one too. Didn’t doubt it was market, but took some time to hit on Ark for the reconciliation. I’m now minded to write a wicked clue using “Northern Mariana Islands” for “MP”, as in

    All a bit academic anyway, as having done the thing last Wednesday, left my draft email in the Pending folder as usual, and then noticed the closing date last night. Galling, given that this is the one week when email probably gives a clear advantage.

  3. Winsor says:

    I found this one a bit more troublesome than your good selves….but given my target a year ago was to try and complete anything more than half the clues, this might be expected!! I rarely get the chance to enter the competition since my copy of the Eye usually arrives the same day as the closing date. However, in the unlikely event that I get the chance one day, can someone advise how an email entry should be formatted?

  4. lemming says:

    @Winsor: there is an online version too, at Once there you can also download an Across Lite software version, or you can get it directly from The program itself is light on resources and user-friendly.

    I usually manually transcribe the solutions, as I also copy them to an archival text file, but I don’t believe there would be any problem if you sent an attached file, either a .puz one if using Across Lite, or a standard graphics file such as a JPG, GIF or PNG if you want to scan or photograph your paper copy — that’s what I usually do with the jumbo Christmas one, of which there’s no software version, problem-solving deities permitting.

  5. fearsome says:

    I had left 19d unfilled, with “Market?” written beside the clue
    Was about to fill in and send off when I realised I was too late

    So thanks Jetdoc for the explanation

Leave a Reply

Don't forget to scroll down to the Captcha before you click 'Submit Comment'

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

5 − one =