Never knowingly undersolved.

Private Eye / Cyclops 485 – Xmas Special

Posted by beermagnet on January 5th, 2013


“So this is Christmas, and what have you done
Another year over, a new one just begun”
Tell you what we’ve done John, another massive Eye Crossword!

As usual there is a giant 27 x 27 grid and references to some feature in the magazine as explained in the preamble:

Answers to asterisked clues are Pseudo Names published in the Eye over the past year or so. The clues are normal cryptic style and/or a rough idea of what the ‘names’ are supposed to sound like. In the case of answers containing one or more invented words, an anagram of the answer appears in square brackets.

Now, I have been known to laugh out loud at the names of some of the contributors to that section of the letters page, but some I say out loud several times and still don’t get it – until I have to ask someone e.g. “What’s so funny about the name Sven Deredredroben” when it immediately bob, bob, bobs into my consciousness.

I was very pleased to finish the grid without recourse to the pile of Eyes stacked in the corner of the office, which is just as well because when consulting said heap I found most had been ‘tidied’ somewhere in the garage sometime during the summer.  I feared they might have gone the same way as the box of Xmas decorations I pulled out last week – turned into confetti by mice.  But I found enough to dig out the original letters from all the Pseuds.  This also meant I lost several hours leafing through old issues.



 Pseudo Name clues and answers rendered in the most pseudy colour I could find – as it happens, the same colour as my Pseuds Club membership card.


1 NIETZSCHE Superman champion “loosened” by Heinz beans ultimately, etc. (9)
(HEINZ [bean]S ETC)* AInd: loosened.
6 UPLIFTING Pitiful elastic – no good as a Wonderbra (9)
(Pitiful)* AInd: elastic N[o] G[ood]
11 EJECTED Sad Miliband’s last to go – given the boot (7)
15 DAY BY DAY Gradually, doggedly, producing ex-TV commentator’s autobiography? (3,2,3)
Double-Def. (or triple?)  Ref. Robin Day (I never heard him commentate on the cup final)
16 DUKEDOM Rank date by Brenda’s realm and Dome fiasco (7)
D[ate] UK (Brenda’s realm) DOME* AInd: fiasco
17 TOP THE BILL Headline: “Do away with police force!” (3,3,4)
Double Def. Headline in the theatrical sense rather than the press, second def. ~cryptic
19 CIRCUMVENT Carlton’s chief pisspoor ‘Numeric TV’ dodge (10)
C[arlton] (NUMERIC TV)* AInd: pisspoor
20 ROGER MOORE * Benefit from extra shagging, 007-style? (5,5)
Double/Cryptic Def. for the first of our Pseudo Names.  This was in Issue 1325 (19-Oct-2012) where he opined: ” … I’m hoping that the new Bond film has plenty of love interest.”
23 CHLOE SINGH, SARAH MOANY *[A Royal highness ham con] a 2012 finale (5,5,5,5)
[anagram] plus Single Def. for friends Chloe and Sarah who wrote into Issue 1320 (10-Aug-2012) to declare “… We’re absolutely sick of the Olympics and can’t wait for it to be all over.”
27 REVIEW Eye after, er, overturning Inquiry (6)
ER< VIEW (eye)
28/21 GET A GRIP Sock-hoisting advice ill-advised for a wanker? (3,1,4)
Double Def. {though why ill-advised? Sounds like good advice to me}
30 CHAFE Rocks ache on receiving Fergie’s ‘premier’ rub (5)
(ACHE + F)* AInd: rocks. F from F[ergie] {Ah, that’s the reason}
32 EXTEND Chief characters in expenses disgrace securing next grotesque increase (6)
NEXT* AInd: grotesque, inside E[xpenses] D[isgrace]
33 UNDER-AGE Savile-preferred customised dungaree? (5-3)
DUNGAREE* AInd: customised.
36 ENGINEER Green ballsed up, letting in elected representative at last for Telford? (8)
IN (elected) [representativ]E inside GREEN* AInd: ballsed up.  Ref. Canal engineer Thomas T
37 TRANSLUCENT Nuts central on getting screwed, that’s clear (11)
(NUTS CENTRAL)* AInd: getting screwed
41 SUNLIT Basking in warm glow of books aimed at tabloid readers? (6)
“Sun Lit.” Cryptic def. half of clue
42 YAHOO Balls and Straw back, which is rough (5)
OO (balls) HAY (straw) all rev.
43 COUGAR “Firm” Alan on TV is pointless, catty thing (6)
CO. (firm) [s]UGAR
45 BLOTTO Smear: Blair’s leading pair trashed (6)
BLOT (smear) TO[ny].  Trashed in the New Year’s Eve sense.
47 GREECE A spent nation‘s fat broadcast (6)
Homophone “grease”
48/24 DOWN AT HEEL Shabby ‘bum fluff’ by arse (4,2,4)
DOWN (bum fluff) AT (by) HEEL (arse)
49 STUFF Roger’s tackle? (5)
Double Def.
51 ZODIAC I do fantastically, wearing Goldsmith junior’s heavenly belt (6)
(I DO)* AInd: fantastically, inside ZAC (ref Zac Goldsmith, true blue-green tory, son of Sir Jammy Fishpaste )
53/57 SNOT RAGS Blow job material, put coarsely, these (4,4)
One of the last clues answered purely from the def. I still can’t see the wordplay in: “put coarsely, these”.  Is it yet another homophone going unsaid to my ears
54 NONSENSICAL Canon in less unseemly description of bollocks (11)
(CANON IN LESS)* AInd: unseemly
56 D CAMERON * Toff leader’s name on list, say, for old sexy story collection (1,7)
Issue 1317 (12-Jul-2012) is when the PM apparently wrote in to mention: “… I could tell Lord Leveson a hundred incredible stories.”
Those like me who sneaked in underage in the 70s might well remember Pasolini’s film of Boccaccio’s mediaeval romp
58 YVES EAUX * French weightlifter’s cry? (4,4)
My favourite Pseudo Name from this bunch, like Chloe and Sarah, Olympic-related in Issue 1320 (10-Aug-2012), who proclaimed: “… Let’s hear it for the French shot-putters!”
60 DELPHI Oracle’s place, specialist shop welcoming the boozer (6)
PH (the boozer – Public House PH on Ordnance Survey maps) inside DELI (specialist shop)
62 BSKYB Broadcaster second rate? “Heavens, Brucie’s no. 1!” (5)
B (second rate) SKY (Heavens) B[rucie] British Sky Broadcasting Group plc (commonly known as BSkyB; trading as Sky) Tricky – needed all crossing letters to understand what the answer could be, and given two of those were Pseudo Names, that had to wait till near the end.
63/39 NOAH VALE * In vain, bestowing biblical name on dell (4,4)
NOAH (biblical name) VALE (dell) Poor Noah. From Issue 1305 (13-Jan-2012) though he’d written before it seems: ” … I keep sending you samples of witty names that I keep making up, but you never print them. Am I wasting my time?”
65 ETHNIC Elisabeth: “Nice protecting a racial sort” (6)
Hidden in ElizabETH NICe
67 INCOMPREHENSIBLENESS Recession: PM bins Helen’s interpretation as gobbledegook (20)
(RECESSION PM BINS HELEN)* AInd: interpretation. Nice to see a long one in a big slot that can take it.
70/7 STUD POKER Russell Brand type shagger’s game? (4,5)
STUD (Russell Brand type) POKER (shagger)
71 BILLY O’NARE * [Yon Liberal] who’s loaded (5,5)
Billy, and his sister, Milly O’Nare provided a view from the land of the (ex-)Celtic Tiger in Issue 1311 (06-Apr-2012) “…Don’t write off the Irish economy, there’s still plenty of money to be made here, especially for family firms.”
Very last in – I was looking at Billy Onare wondering how it worked for ages before the Irish O’Nare pronunciation occurred
74 THIRD REICH A particular gear, spicy, wrapped round Eva’s top – a Hitler creation (5,5)
THIRD (A particular gear) RICH (spicy) around E[va]
77 ICING SUGAR Screwed, cruising around the state – topping! (5,5)
CRUISING* AInd: screwed, around GA (the state – Georgia)
78 CHEETAH Fast mover, not the faithful type by the sound of it (7)
Homophone “Cheater”
79 EINSTEIN Smart arse scruffy teens, taking Cyclops in (8)
(TEENS I IN)* AInd: scruffy. The I is from Cyclops
80 HEAD OFF No oral sex available – proceed somewhere else (4,3)
Double def. one ~cryptic
81 HYDRATING Andy right pissed – adding water! (9)
(ANDY RIGHT)* AInd: pissed
82 YEA-SAYERS Positive types‘ yen: easy arse movement (3-6)
(Y[en] EASY ARSE)* AInd: movement
2 IRAQI A national air display attended by Queen and Cyclops (5)
AIR* AInd: Display, Q[ueen] I (Cyclops)
3 TOBACCO Snout inside, stuck in pipe? (7)
Seemed obvious when solving, but now I wonder how “stuck in pipe?” works as wordplay – is it just a second def?
4 SADO-MASOCHISTIC Put another way, M&S exhibiting strongly opposing sexual tendencies? (4-11)
aka S&M, so M&S<
5 HAYLEY N LAKELY *[Hey, lay Kelly? Na’], not much chance of that (6,1,6)
Is Hayley a member of the aristocracy or not? Earliest Pseudo Name here, from Issue 1301 (11-Nov-2011) ” … Do you think any toffs would contribute to Pseudo Names if you asked them? Seems pretty improbable to me.”
8 INDIGNANT Hot dating collapsed without nitrogen – pissed off (9)
(H[ot] DATING N[itrogen])* AInd: collapsed.
9 TIMER Watch Merkel’s top during row (5)
M[erkel] inside TIER (row)
10 NOTIONAL Speculative, in no way a lion, ballsed up (8)
NOT (in no way) (A LION)* AInd: ballsed up
13 CAB DRIVER One who’d give way when ‘stupid bird’ squeezes in? Not this road-user! (3,6)
BIRD* AInd: stupid, inside CAVER (One who’d give way).  “Tongue-in-cheek” Def – surely Cyclops defames the noble London cabbie!
14 ECLIPSE Two bodies lined up, energy doubled eating prunes (7)
CLIPS (prunes) inside E[nergy] and E[nergy]
16 DITCH Dump Dave’s principal fancy (5)
D[ave] ITCH (fancy)
18 PERCY CUTED * Turned into a victim, [cry “cut deep!”] (5,5)
Issue 1325 (19-Oct-2012) “…Constantly ignoring my brilliant Pseudo Names and publishing waves of stuff that nobody fucking understands anyway really pisses me off to be honest.”
22 CREDIT Irresponsible direct bank loans? (6)
DIRECT* AInd: irresponsible
25 AGENT NOUN Tug on Anne’s bust as a grammatical activist (5,4)
(TUG ON ANNE) AInd: bust.
26 MINUS A sign of the origins of Murdoch’s insidiously perverted tabloid (5)
M[urdoch’s] I[nsidiously] SUN<
29 ANNULMENT Revocation of cavorting nun in mental anguish (9)
NUN* AInd: cavorting, inside MENTAL* AInd: anguish
31 EARTHMOVER Dirty digger – heart-breaking stirrer (10)
HEART* AInd: breaking, MOVER (stirrer)
34 GALLOWAY Controversial MP “let in homosexual” (8)
ALLOW (let) inside GAY (homosexual)
35 RUB-A-DUB-DUB Stroke one applied to two mates with erection for regular beat (3-1-3-3)
RUB (Stroke) A (one) BUD< twice
38 ASCETIC Eye’s seized by government agency, all over being ‘Spartan’ (7)
TEC’S (Eye’s – as in PI detectives) inside CIA (government agency) all reversed
39 VOTED DOWN Defeated in the House, very old Heath gets depressed? (5,4)
V[ery] O[ld] TED (Heath) DOWN (depressed)
40 TURGENEV Great teller of stories, Putin at heart, getting press onto the state (8)
[pu]T[in] URGE (press) NEV[ada] (the state)
44 UNSELFISH Altruistic‘ Sun is smitten – “Gnome is hot!” (9)
SUN* AInd: smitten, ELF (gnome) IS H[ot]
46 LIZ, TED, BILL DINGS * Woman and two men from same family? They’re of great interest, architecturally (3,3,4,5)
A bit of brown-nosing by this trio in Issue 1318 (13-Jul-2012) “…Our favourite part of your organ is Nooks and Corners. Piloti is our hero…”
50 FRANK LIMIDERE * Butler’s candid preface to his famous classic film quote [irked rifleman] (5,8)
A somewhat pointless admission by Frank in Issue 1309 (09-Mar-2012) “…I’ve often thought it would be nice to see in your pages a feature on classic films of yesteryear. But then again, I’m not particularly bothered.”
52 UNEXCITING Bland peacekeepers withdrawing (China’s first to enter) (10)
UN (peacekeepers) c[hina] inside EXITING (withdrawing)
54 NUANCE Greek character with money matters, less means of keeping on even keel, makes subtle difference (6)
NU (Greek character) [fin]ANCE
55 STEAM Cook Nigella’s butt in stock (5)
[nigell]A inside STEM (stock)
59 SUNBURNED Brown‘s star went up in flames (9)
SUN (star) BURNED (went up in flames)
61 PERMANENT Unremoveable MP” is turned with a tenner (9)
(MP … A TENNER)* AInd: is turned
64 OCULARLY Comically topless in an Eye-related way (8)
66 TESS COE * Hardy sister of Sebastian establishes store? (4,3)
Inappropriate marketing in Issue 1321 (24-Aug-2012) “…I wish my relative, Lord Sebastian, would just run along and everyone get back to the UK’s number one sport – shopping!”
68 NOTCH Evidence of having scored, weight lifted with chain? (5)
TON< CH[ain] Notch brings to mind bedposts which seem somewhat old-fashioned and seedy.  These days there is a different Notch that my youngest kids look up to
69 NO ENTRY New Tory constitution embracing ‘two ways’, hardly a way to get in (2,5)
(N[ew] TORY)* AInd: constitution, around EN (two ways)
72 OSCAR O for a policeman‘s prize figure? (5)
Double Def.
73/12 ELTON JOHN Pop star Jack: “No hotel to be trashed before noon” (5,4)
(J[ack] NO HOTEL N[oon])* AInd: trashed
75 CRIER Gazzer famously one to tell the whole town? (5)
Double Def, (town crier)
76 AS IF * What do you take me for? Answer: female going round overturning lives (2,2)
A[nswer] F[emale] around IS<
Asif was a contributor in Issue 1307 (10-Feb-2012): ” … I really believe bankers deserve every penny of their huge bonuses.”

Newsflash: A truck crashed into Domino’s Pizza today, demolishing it. Unfortunately the rest of the High Street then fell down.

As I can’t really leave you with such a crap joke at this special time, here is the funniest sketch I’ve seen recently:
Extreme amazing super chess


7 Responses to “Private Eye / Cyclops 485 – Xmas Special”

  1. sidey says:

    Thanks for that beerm. I haven’t read the mag for ages so had missed the silly name thing. Never mind, the rest was still worth doing.

  2. Cyclops says:

    Just like to say what a fantastic job you’ve done, beermagnet, in dredging up all the quotes that went with the pseudo names. Bravo!

    In case there’s anyone who’s not picked up on the ‘Butler’ ref. in the FRANK LIMIDERE clue, this refers to Clark Gable’s character, Rhett Butler (in Gone With The Wind, of course)

  3. beermagnet says:

    INCOMPREHENSIBLENESS (throughout history)

    I was sad to see the lack of appearance of incomprehensibleness in the 16 words of length 20 mentioned at least 100,000 times each in the Google books data [link] (97,565 distinct words, from 743,842,922,321 words).

    This despite the fact that incomprehensibleness is far more common than comprehensibleness throughout history, though this is hardly a modern phenomenon as shown here [link]

    Why I am mentioning this? Because I was led to Google’s addictive Ngram viewer after reading this interesting article: [link – English Letter Frequencies] and I am trying to salve my conscience for the time lost by spreading the disease

  4. sidey says:

    The Ngram viewer is a wonder. And a great way to settle silly arguments. I won’t mention that changing the search to comprehensibility,incomprehensibility is interesting as that would be way off topic.

  5. Pajodr says:

    53/57 Snot rags – I took the wordplay to mean ‘snot rags’ is slang (a coarse name) for handkerchief, material you blow your nose on.

    I too spent a pleasant morning leafing through the back issues.

  6. Mitz says:

    Thanks Cyclops and Bermagnet.

    Thoroughly enjoyed the Christmas offering this year – more indeed than Rev’s in the Grauniad, if that isn’t completely heretical. ‘Yves’ and ‘Hayley’ were shiny lights amongst the tinsel. Could really do with the £250 as well, but sadly no email as yet…

  7. littlerog says:

    In 2011 bought a copy of private eye and thoroughly enjoyed doing the puzzle, so much so that I have bought a copy each time it comes out. Had I been confronted with this puzzle I am not sure that would have been the consequence – Im afraid I didnt have any idea about the pseudo names

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