Da Vinci Code priory / FRI 5-15-15 / 2000s James Cameron cyberpunk/sci-fi series / Co-star of Greta Garbo in Ninotchka / Two-time mythological role for Anthony Hopkins / She's too cute to be minute over 17 / Hagar creator Browne / Hall of Famer from 1950s-60s Celtics / Chang Harry Potter's onetime crush / Athena's gift to Athens / Legalese conjunction
Friday, May 15, 2015
Constructor: David Phillips
Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging
Word of the Day: Forever ALONE (5D: Forever ___ (Internet meme)) —
[some crap I tried to look up but it was something something 4chan reddit god-knows-what and I couldn't bother, sorry (it appears to be a big dumb ugly face … you can google it yourself, I assume)]
• • •
ALONE") appears to have originated in 2010, which is like … 1878 in Internet Time. This is all to say I have no idea what "DARK ANGEL" is (looks like something someone who's destined to be forever ALONE would watch…) (1A: 2000s James Cameron cyberpunk/sci-fi series), so I'm old, I guess, but I also don't know what INA CLAIRE is (14A: Co-star of Greta Garbo in "Ninotchka"), so I'm not old enough. THE CARS, I know. Well. I am exactly that old. I am THE CARS years old. The real, real, actual main issue—in the NW, at any rate—is a yucky surfeit of proper nouns. All the long Acrosses, five of the Downs, yuck. I don't like when constructors mistake "names names names" for fresh / youthful / interesting. If you don't vary your fill, and especially if the fill you don't vary is names, you run the risk of having your puzzle become annoying and alienating to a lot of people. I was only alienated by the NW, though. The rest seemed pretty good.
There were some ick-ceptions (™). ATTIRER goes right into the Bad Fill HOF. RERATES = rough. I've heard of TO SCALE, but not IN SCALE. Barfy back-to-back Windows clues at SUITES and NTS :( I still don't believe AD-AWARE's good fill, as it's a specific brand name that I've still never seen in the wild—plus it's crutch fill masquerading as hip fill. AD-AWARE is really just a lot of useful letters and a "W." Puzzle has a good number of Longer Answers That Are Almost All RLSTNEA (see TRESPASSES, STRASSE, RERATES). Other tired stuff = SION (die die die) SES DEI ATOI DIK. But otherwise it's reasonably smooth and interesting. Despite my aversion to excess commercialism in puzzles, I really liked ADD TO CART (19A: Online shopping button), and the DATA PLANS / OLIVE TREE stacking provides a nice modern/ancient contrasting juxtaposition. SYNTHETIC and GIGAHERTZ make attractive grid lynchpins. This is a marginally appealing Friday puzzle, on the whole. Plus, I learned something semi-valuable, i.e. how to spell KIM-JONG UN. I had a "U" where the "O" goes. I know a woman whose last name is JUNG, so I'll blame her. Or else I'll blame Erica JONG, who I assumed couldn't possibly share a name part with the North Korean dictator. Why I assumed that, I have no idea.
PS Brendan Emmett Quigley's latest puzzle ("The Other Way Around") is a good example of what a midweek (i.e. Wed.) themed puzzle should look like. Go do it.
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