Issuer of ukases / THU 4-12-18 / King in 1922 headlines / 2003 Afghani film that won Golden Globe / Facetious sign in lab office / Where Flash Gordon played polo / Native American charm made with willow hoop / Popular TV dramedy based on Colombian telenovela

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Constructor: Jules Markey

Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging


THEME: CABLE BOXES (64A: TV adjuncts ... or a hint to four squares in this puzzle) — rebus puzzle with the 3-letter abbr. of four different "cable" channels hidden in boxes throughout the grid:

Theme answers:
  • DREAM CATCHER / TEAM CREST (what the???) (17A: Native American charm made with a willow hoop / 4D: Image on a soccer jersey)
  • "UGLY BETTY" / GLOBE THEATER (21A: Popular TV dramedy based on a Colombian telenovela / 11D: Setting for Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar")
  • WISHBONES / DASHBOARD (39A: Some gridiron formations / 24D: Place for a clock or a radio)
  • "SAUSAGE PARTY" / GENIUS AT WORK (47A: 2016 comedy that takes place mainly in a supermarket / 28D: Facetious sign in a lab or office)
Word of the Day: "SAUSAGE PARTY" (47A: 2016 comedy that takes place mainly in a supermarket) —
Sausage Party is a 2016 American-Canadian adult computer-animated comedy filmdirected by Greg Tiernan and Conrad Vernon and written by Kyle Hunter, Ariel Shaffir, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. It features the voices of Rogen, Kristen WiigJonah HillBill HaderMichael CeraJames FrancoDanny McBrideCraig RobinsonPaul RuddNick KrollDavid KrumholtzEdward Norton, and Salma Hayek. The film, which is a spoof of Disney and Pixar films,[8] follows a sausage named Frank who tries to discover the truth about his existence and goes on a journey with his friends to escape their fate while also facing his own arch-nemesis, a ruthless and murderous douche who intends to kill him and his friends.
It was the first American CGI-animated film to be rated R by the MPAA. The film's rough cut premiered on March 14, 2016, at South by Southwest and the film was theatrically released in the United States and Canada on August 12, 2016, by Columbia Pictures. (wikipedia)
• • •

I liked this one fine. Any time you've got a rebus where the contents of the rebus squares are different, and not symmetrical, the whole grid becomes a kind of minefield, and gets a whole lot tougher even if the clues themselves aren't particularly hard. I was able to track 3 of them down pretty  easily, but the GENIUS AT WORK / "SAUSAGE PARTY" one took a lot of doing. I really had to pin that last rebus square (USA) down before it would reveal itself—it was just about the last square I filled in. Never saw "SAUSAGE PARTY," but I certainly knew it existed, and *might* have had a shot at it if the words "animated" or "Seth Rogen" or "anthropomorphic food" had appeared anywhere in the clue. And GENIUS AT WORK, forget about it. Tough enough as a straight clue/answer, virtually impossible with an invisible rebus square somewhere inside it. I should say that both these answers are original and inventive. The placement of the rebus square just made them tough. I figured the rebus square would be in the symmetrical Across answer (so, in AS WE SAY, to parallel the one in UGLY BETTY), but I guess the idea is that the long Downs (11D, 28D) are the primary theme answers, i.e. parallel to one another the way DREAM CATCHER and CABLE BOXES are. Thus there is symmetry in the involved answers, if not in the actual boxes themselves.


I was totally thrown by there not being a rebus square in IN A PIG'S EYE, but now I see why. The phrase CABLE BOXES fairly screams "make a rebus puzzle based on me," so I'm slightly surprised someone hadn't done it sooner. DREAM CATCHER was mercifully easy, so I knew there was some kind of rebus pretty early on (after stumbling with STAT instead of ODDS at 1D: Sports figures, plural!!!). I hesitated in stunned disbelief that for the second time this month I was going to be asked to write in BIC PEN (???) (6D: Product advertised withthe slogan "Writes first time, every time"). I wrote the goddess of peace as IRENA and then couldn't figure out the D&D characters (ELVES) and even second-guessed IN A PIG'S EYE, thinking maybe it was in his EAR (...something about a sow's ear...) (29A: "Fat chance!"). Not too many tricky things here, besides the rebuses. Oh, there will undoubtedly be some solvers asking this question:


Just pick up your phone and look at the number keypad. Specifically at the number "8"—voilà! Our phones pretty much dial themselves now, so general familiarity with the concept the keypad and its features is diminishing precipitously, I'd imagine.


Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]

117 comments:

Lewis 6:30 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lewis 6:31 AM  

This one gave me a decent fight after I slapped in gimmes (maybe a third of the puzzle). Then, due to vague and tricky cluing, answers leaked grudgingly out of my brain, and it felt like my march to the finish was made with weights tied to my ankles. That is just as I like it!

Thankfully, the rebus boxes aren't symmetrical (as Rex points out), making the puzzle tougher. Very nice (tricky) clues for ODDS and GLOBE THEATER.

A sweet Thursday tussle -- thank you, Jules!

Harryp 6:42 AM  

Happiness is a Thursday rebus! BIBB, SAUSAGE PARTY and UGLY BETTY were complete unknowns, but gotten by the crosses. Fine puzzle by Mr. Markey.

three of clubs 6:50 AM  

Fun!

Loren Muse Smith 6:55 AM  

Wow – toughie today. I agree with Rex - I love it when the rebus squares aren’t symmetrical, love the challenge. Very nice that they’re hidden in the longer answers. And not just in one long answer, but they cross long answers. And as Rex noted, the answers involved in the theme are all symmetrical. Elegant.

I sniffed out the rebus pretty early, but since I didn’t know that movie OSAMA, I had DRE AM CA TCHER first, wondering what the deal could be with AM and CA in little boxes.

Considered FORT for the 36A minuteman shelter. Nope. It’s the 2D stronghold. (FORT was certainly on my brain because my daughter just yesterday committed to Colorado State in FORT Collins for vet school.)

My first thought on the grid-iron formation was a ridiculous “t-bone.” Oops. Then I thought “shotguns” and wondered if Showtime was SHO. Even now, I feel smart to look at the field and notice the shotgun formation. I’ve said before that I like to throw around terms like naked bootleg, play action, and FLEA flicker. A few months ago, my husband taught me pick six during some game, and I practiced that beaut the rest of the day, used it Monday morning while jawing with some of the guy teachers before school. Yeah, after that pick six, I just changed the channel. No one noticed, no one was deeply impressed by my facile use of the term. Sigh.

Jules – excellent work!

kitshef 7:15 AM  

Putting more than one letter in a square? What manner of fiendishness is this?

Thoroughly enjoyed it.

I know Flash Gordon (or Speed Gordon, to any Aussie’s out there) played polo, and I know he went to YALE. But did he actually play polo at YALE? I don’t know, but if he did I can’t remember it.

Anonymous 7:19 AM  

Surely shakespeare would have a theatre, not theater ...

Anonymous 7:27 AM  

Genius at work was the first one I figured out but struggled with the other rebuses. I kept wanting to put in spirit catcher instead of dream catcher so that took a bit of work. This was a fun and challenging puzzle. I've never heard of bibb lettuce. Neither has my spell checker.

Eric 7:29 AM  

Anonymous 7:19. You are absolutely right. Should definitely be theatRE. That’s what happens when Americans speak English as a Second Language. 😄

FLAC 7:31 AM  

A lot of fun, and worth it just to see “Sausage Party” in the grid.

Mark Laser 7:35 AM  

This must have been right in my wheelhouse, but I can’t say why exactly. I finished in about half of my usual Thursday time. Only one or two missteps which I caught quickly from the crosses. Maybe it’s time to enter a competition. Then again, every time I think that, Friday comes along and puts me in my place.

Anonymous 7:38 AM  

@anon 7:19: Nope.

Irene 7:43 AM  

Hard but so interesting. It hit the right spot between difficulty and creativity. I started on the bottom, got cable boxes before I even realized there was a rebus. What a great off-clue for GLOBE THEATER.

Evan Jordan 7:51 AM  

Very fun solve. Felt fresh like the Spring where FINALLY gracing St. Louis.

ArtO 8:16 AM  

Enjoyed this one and pleased to see the rating. Always helps to know you can find a rebus on Thursday. Clever construction. Kudos to Mr. Markey.

Jofried 8:17 AM  

Tough for me! I got stuck on WISHBONES (since I never watch football and know next to nothing about it) and DASHBOARD (since I did the puzzle lying in bed next to my clock and radio so wanted the answer to be bedside table or nightstand or something). I did finally finish but it took a while. Very fun!

John Child 8:22 AM  

Hand up for spiritCATCHER making the NW corner the last to fall. Relatively fast time overall, even with that hang up. I liked this one just fine. Every Thursday doesn’t have to be a rebus, but most should do some tricksy thing, IMO. That’s a Thursday tradition I adore.

David 8:23 AM  

I had difficulty because I was placing the rebus all over. I was thinking maybe two letters worked across and one down and all other types of combinations.

Not have had any cable until after 9/11 (here in NYC only CBS still had left a transmitter on the Empire State Building; all the rest had moved to WTC) and growing bored with it pretty quickly, cutting the cord some 10 years ago, I have no clue about much of anything other than HBO.

But I did finally get it right.

Glimmerglass 8:25 AM  

Really, really hard, and really good fun. Went pretty quickly, except for the Midwest. My problem was that RHETT seemed to fit in both 34A and 27D, and for the longest time, I didn’t think of OHARA (wasn’t there an asHley?). Not knowing what the missing cable channel was or where it would sit gave me fits. I never heard of SAUSAGE PARTY (I was working on StaGE PARTY). I thought of GENIUS. . ., but didn’t see USA as the rebus until the bitter end. Wow! Too many possibilities for my old brain to sort out at once!

Janet 8:26 AM  

Globe Theatre, not Globe Theater! Will S. is rolling in his grave!

QuasiMojo 8:30 AM  

I liked this a SMA bit less than the others here (so far) primarily because I got rid of cable many years ago. I did not know some of these three-letter acronyms (I'm guessing they stand for something.)

The asymmetry felt like an aesthetic mistake rather than an attribute.

It's "The Globe TheatRE" and there's no way aROUND that fact. Especially since the constructor bent over backward to be correct about the spelling of BLEU cheese so close by.

And the lack of continuity of form at "Leaving for" and OFF TO left me a tad miffed. I wanted JILTING or some such. Tricky corner!

I also threw in DESKTOP for the clock and radio home. Dumb. And EMAILS before TWEETS. It's an age thing, I guess.

All in all, a clever and challenging puzzle but not one that made me, as an old YALE soccer player, sporting his TEAM CREST, go BOOLA BOOLA.

Seth 8:31 AM  

...is HBO considered a cable channel? I thought the whole point of HBO was tray it was different from normal cable channels.

Stanley Hudson 8:40 AM  

Finally a rebus and a darn good one. Thanks Jules Markey.

@LMS, congratulations to your daughter.

Two Ponies 8:45 AM  

Tricky Thursday Is back!
I had lots of fun but having a theme based on television added an extra level of difficulty for me. My relationship with TV has gone from love/hate to hate/hate so I just had to work around most of the grid. Still managed to have a good time.
Now for the ? marks in the margins:
Are we talking about Flash Gordon from the comics?
Who keeps their logs in a bin?
Where is/was a gong used beside The Gong Show?
Emma? I only know Sharon.
A movie about talking hot dogs? You must be kidding.
Ukases? Must file that away. Is that money or an edict?
Loved the clue for TUV.

mmorgan 8:50 AM  

Lots of great stuff! Got the rebus theme from UGLY BETTY but it was even more fun when I realized they were all different. The NW corner gave me fits, but this was a great puzzle.

Anonymous 8:55 AM  

I frequently solve by first using the gridless, list-of-clues mode (iPhone NYT app), then popping out to the full grid to finish. Upon doing so today, it took me a while to see I actually had “RHETT” crossing “rHett”.

Z 8:56 AM  

Cable channels rebus embedded in a TV show and a movie are not great. That’s two of the three factors needed to solve those squares being PPP. And give me an effing break, a Flash Gordon clue for YALE? Please note: I am 57 years old and Mr. Gordon stopped being part of the zeitgeist before I was born. There is PPP and then there’s FGDPPP (Friggin’ Great Depression Pop culture, Product names and other Proper nouns). If you’re going full on PPP for your YALE clue could we at least get a Jodie Foster or David Hyde Pierce clue. Not that they would have been better for me but at least, you know, famous in my lifetime.

For the most part I really liked this. Grokked that we had a rebus earlybut not what it was going to be until I got CABLE BOXES. I’d put this more at challenging. Some odd hold ups at BIN (what kind of logs go in a BIN?) and Open eRa before Open MRI. Also, AS WE SAY seems stilted to me, but is hanging out in the back of my mind as a real phrase.

Hungry Mother 8:58 AM  

Slowed down by looiking for “SHO”, but love a rebus puzzle. Fun solve for my return to SW Florida after two weeks in Vegas.

Z 9:08 AM  

Please make it stop. The Globe was a theater (british theatre). So either GLOBE THEATER or GLOBE THEATre is defensible usage.

Odd Sock 9:14 AM  

Osama and Bin in the same puzzle seems subliminal.
Having rent for let puts you in a British frame of mind only to be blown away when theatre is actually theater.
Are ice bergs particularly dangerous to subs? I would think having sonar would keep that hazard at bay since most of the ice berg is below the surface. I suppose I'm over-thinking.
Still lots of good stuff like the clue for young.
OK, all of the PC crowd out there, isn't having a little dream catcher hanging from your rearview mirror cultural appropriation?

Anonymous 9:15 AM  

@Z perhaps "globular theater" would be more acceptable? And puh-leeze, Flash Gordon has been in the zeitgeist many times since you were born. There was the hilarious 70s sex spoof, Flesh Gordon, and a 1980 film featuring Max von Sydow as Emperor Ming. Ornella Muti was in it too. Google it.

Trudy Morgan-Cole 9:18 AM  

I had the theme figured out but I would have been there forever if I hadn't caved and googled "SAUSAGE PARTY." Neither than nor "GENIUS AT WORK" was ever going to happen for me, from those clues.

Nancy 9:28 AM  

Absolutely loved it!! It does seem to me that if you solve this without knowing any of the pop culture clues in the manner that I was forced to solve, you need to have much greater smarts. So I'm feeling very, very smart right now. What's not to love about a puzzle that makes you feel smart. I never heard of SAUSAGE PARTY (remind me never to see it; sounds dreadful), and I didn't know OSAMA or UGLY BETTY as clued. But while I never know product ads, logos or slogans, I have written for 55 years with a BIC PEN -- including my one published book, which like everything I write, I wrote by hand -- and therefore I definitely knew this slogan.

I got the theme at UGLY BETTY/GLOBE THEATER. GLOBE THEATER (11D) was so well clued: I was looking for a place in the play -- Rome, the Forum, an amphiTHEATER -- and not where the play is performed. But once I had BET, I began looking for a variety of different cable channels appearing God-knows-where. The fact that we had to guess where the rebus went was great: it always makes a puzzle much, much crunchier. A real beauty! Oh happy, happy Thursday!

Anonymous 9:31 AM  

As I frequently reminded my British friends we Americans took their language and improved it. 🤓 Seemed to make them a little testy!

dddaly 9:31 AM  

“Genius at work”= apt title for Jules Markey. A long time since I enjoyed a NYT puzzle this much. Very high on my Mary Poppins list. Thank you.

Anonymous 9:34 AM  

sailed thru. caught the rebus early with Ugly Betty.

asymmetrical rebus placement complaint? rexus carpus

best clue by far? iPhone 8 (TUV), but its crossing with "elves" was hard. i ran the alphabet to get the answer, but had to come here for an explanation to iPhone 8.

zippy

Blue Stater 9:43 AM  

And what, pray, is an "open MRI" )43A)? I hated this puzzle, all too predictably.

puzzlehoarder 9:59 AM  

The rebus is back with a vegeance. It was like culture shock going from a Monday difficulty level yesterday to a Saturday like level today. Lots of easy stuff to get things started but those rebused themers we're everywhere to slow things down. It was good to have a theme actually contribute to the difficulty.

There was tricky fill too. The clues for TUV, MRI and YALE caught me flat footed. ASWESAY doesn't sound like an actual phrase more like a made up debut. Basically I had to work in every section to get it all so a good puzzle.

GILL I. 10:02 AM  

Sorry, @Z. It's GLOBE THEATRE. In London. British spelling. Made me angry. I don't like being angry on Thursday. I'm whining. I'm joining @Two Ponies for the big ???? at wondering why a log keeper keeps his/her things in a BIN....
Whine over.
Boy, did I have trouble wrapping my head around this puzzle. I figured if Will allowed THEATER then he would allow that cheese to be spelled Blue instead of an actual correct BLEU. I left that whole upstairs and went on in to the middle. Got my favorite IN A PIGS EYE...so yay me. Didn't help. Went on downstairs and sussed out the CABLE BOXES answer. Now it began to make sense. It HAD to be UGLY BETTY. Oh...the beautiful DREAM CATCHER! Hah, so now we have BET and AMC. Off to find the others. Boy, I'm loving this rebus.
I'm embarrassed to say I actually watched SAUSAGE PARTY. Well, my husband had it on so I glimpsed at it. It's actually quite fun in a distorted foody butcher sort of way. Speaking of bigger than CABLE...If you have NETFLIX you really should be watching "Better Call Saul." The new season just started and it's terrific. If you haven't watched it from the start, go back to season one. I can't get enough of that stuff.
Anyway...I've been itching for a rebus Thursday and I got a good one. I didn't like like some of the clues and I really disliked WISH BONES thrown in a a gridiron position. That one needed something fancier like "the fercula between the neck and breast that you fight over at Thanksgiving." Now That would make me happy.
Oh...I also thought the clue at 32D needed some oomph as well. YOUNG as the answer for puppies and kittens? Throw in Loretta - you already have LUGOSI RHETT OHARA IAN ELI to name a few. One more wouldn't have hurt.

Sir Hillary 10:05 AM  

Excellent Thursday rebus. Fun theme answers, clever rebus crosses and a minimum of crappy fill.

Does any team run the WIS[HBO]ONE these days? I have such great memories of watching it in the 70s, when Oklahoma, Texas, Texas A&M, Nebraska, Arkansas and other schools (seemingly mostly in the old Big 8 and Southwest conferences) ran it to perfection. It always looked like football ballet to me, starting with the three-quarter pirouette the quarterback would do coming out of center.

Anonymous 10:09 AM  

@Seth, way back when before cable tv, we had an antenna hooked to the tv that brought much hilarity to ABC, NBC, CBS and PBS. We bought the antenna but we didn't have to pay for the service. We also had telephones hooked to the wall that the phone company gave us for free, but that's a different story.

And then came cable tv. We now distinguish between network and cable, but it's all cable.

Carola 10:10 AM  

Fun! I had a hazy notion of the rebus at 17A, which then came into focus at UGLY[BET]TY. We don't have a TV at home, much less a CABLE BOX, but vacation stints provided the channel knowledge I needed. Last in for me was the USA link in SAUSAGE PARTY (were there GUESTS there?). Thought DREAM CATCHER over STAR MAP was quite beautiful.

michiganman 10:14 AM  

Theater/Theatre, Blue/Bleu. It's all good. HBO is a premium (more $) cable channel. The solve that allowed me to finish was GENIUSATWORK, which clearly I am not. Great new word, NENE. It turns out this bird is endeemic to the Hawaiian Islands and is in fact the state bird. It won't be easy to use this word in casual conversation.

Kathyce 10:17 AM  

An MRI for claustrophobic persons such as I!

Andrew Heinegg 10:18 AM  

An 'open MRI' is a machine designed to be more patient-friendly to the claustrophobic. I have had a bunch of these tests done and always took the advice of the referring doctor to avoid the open machines as they don't provide as good a resonance image as the 'closed' ones.

JuanB 10:21 AM  

Globe Theater (er, not re) was used before, also with a rebus in it.
http://rexwordpuzzle.blogspot.com/2014/06/brightest-star-in-aquila-thu-6-5-14.html

wgh 10:23 AM  

Very challenging. Liked it! Didn’t understand the iPhone 8 clue until Rex explained it, and now I am in awe at the clever diversion. Well done.

jberg 10:24 AM  

There was a tough little knot of ambiguity up there near the badlands of North Dakota. coBB or BIBB? BLue or BLEU ISLa or ISLE. But then it all led to my name, so no complaints here.

@Z was saying a week or so ago that having the rebus puzzles all be on Thursday makes them too easy, and that was certainly the case here -- but then there was that nice little twist of having them be almost, but not really symmetrical. Nice puzzle, overall (though I too wonder what an open MRI is!)

Yesterday's news that John Boehner had signed on with a marijuana company reminded me of when the guy in @Loren's avatar started flacking for Viagra. I wonder what Paul Ryan will do next?

Hartley70 10:24 AM  

Finally, a rebus Thursday. Sigh. It's been so long that I almost didn't recognize what was staring me in the face. Of course that is the fun of a rebus in the first place. UGLYBETTY gave the game away. It was perhaps too easy a clue for rebus lovers, but I'm not complaining because I didn't hit that entry for quite a while. I was jumping around looking for easy fill. This was good fun made all the better by anticipation.

Ellen S 10:36 AM  

Hey, @LMS — congratulations to your daughter on starting vet school. Getting in to one is quite an accomplishment!

Anonymous 11:07 AM  

yep sussed it out never heard of sausage party kept looking for SHO. had aces instead of aced. Oh Lab the dog not the genius office.

Nancy 11:09 AM  

The most interesting things on the blog today so far? Learning that @Quasi was a YALE soccer player (that means great jock, right?) and learning that @Carola doesn't own a television set (that means a true intellectual, right?)

Since I'd much rather think about tennis than think about MRIs, my initial answer to "Open ___" at 43A was eRa. (This kept me from seeing GENI[USA]T WORK for a very long time.) Doctors don't like OPEN MRIS because the resolution isn't as good, just as @Andrew Heinegg says. "I don't do open MRIs," one irritatingly paternalistic neurologist sniffed at me. "Well, doc, then we have a problem because I don't do closed MRIs," was my reply. I've never had one and I'm going to strive with every fiber of my being to keep it that way. I've heard that not only do you feel you're in a coffin, but that the noise is absolutely unspeakable.

Laurence Katz 11:20 AM  

Bad clue for "Osama." It is an Afghan movie. The people of Afghanistan are Afghans, NOT Afghani, which is properly used to refer to Afghanistan's currency.

old timer 11:33 AM  

I was gonna Google for "storePARTY" but didn't. So S USA GE PARTY was the last to fall. Never heard of it. Result was a perfect finish with no outside help. And as rebuses go, I rate this a solid Medium, not "challenging". The reason is, one or the other of the rebuses will become obvious during the solve. And if you find AMC and HBO you know what to look for.

My only writeover was "isla" before ISLE. Since I grew up in Southern California I know that Santa Catalina is 26 miles across the sea. And while it is not called "isla" but "island" it was of course "isla" in Spanish times.

BTW, Catalina was long owned by the Wrigley family, of chewing gum fame. They also owned the Chicago Cubs, and their PCL farm team was the Los Angeles Angels. Who played at -- guess where? -- Wrigley Field in LA. Where the Dodgers played before building their stadium in Chavez Ravine. I saw a few Dodger games there, but never an Angels game, for I was a fervent fan of their crosstown rival, the Hollywood Stars. They played at Gilmore Field, across from the Farmers Market. Easy for my mother to drive to, compared to Wrigley, and easy for her to afford, too. Box seats near first or third base were a cheap luxury for her.

Suzie Q 11:37 AM  

Okay, after solving this delightful puzzle I'm left with Suzie's Dumb Question of the Day: Are there bergs that are made of something else besides ice?

JC66 11:40 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
JC66 11:41 AM  

@Suzie Q

GoldBERG, GreenBERG, etc.😂

jb129 11:48 AM  

Ugly Betty gave it away but I was stuck on Puppies & Kittens (young). Thank you Jules - great puzzle.

Masked and Anonymous 11:50 AM  

Cute rebus puz. Feisty and fun. Liked that the rebus answers were all weejects. W-E-E-S-P-E-C-T.

Surely there is a cable tv channel in INAPIGSEYE, somewheres. There are about as many cable channels as weeject-letter combos, right? Is there a NAP channel? Sounds like it would have some potential. Not gettin enough sleep? … Tune to NAP-TV and lean back in yer bark-o-lounger. Watch an overly long montage of close-ups on the eyes of pigs. Hypnotic. [zzzonk]

Greatly esteemed the RHETT/OHARA crossin. Also great to see schlock flick star LUGOSI lufkin around in there.
staff weeject picks: UNH, TVU, TUT. [Meta puz: spot the common element in that threesome.]

Thanx, Mr. Markey. Enjoyed binge-solvin yer Longball Rebus Channel.

Masked & Anonymo5Us


**gruntz**

Cali Marie 11:52 AM  

Isn’t the expression “As they say...”?

Tim Aurthur 11:58 AM  

I like the way people still say to "dial" a phone. Has anyone under 40 ever "dialed" a phone?

It's one of my favorite verbal vestiges, along with the names of the last four months of the year.

mathgent 11:59 AM  

I've never met a rebus I didn't like including this one.

The cluing was on the dull side except for the excellent one for TUV. At first I thought that it was an iPhone acronym for something like Telephonic Ultra Virtuality. But Google didn't give me anything. Then I noticed that they were alphabetically consecutive and it came to me. There have been telephone clues in previous crosswords.

JC66 12:00 PM  

@M&A

Your AcossLite link don't work today.

Mohair Sam 12:04 PM  

This played Easy/Challenging for us. Challenging for me because I pored over the grid and came up with five gimmes: TUT, ELIE, IRENa, BLue, and romanforum at 11D (what else could it be?). Yikes! Lady Mohair looked up from her coffee and breezed through the puzz after correcting my errors - she's a freak for BLEU cheese dressing so she had an edge.

Thursdays are fun again, thanks Jules Markey. I'm going to Google the source of INAPIGSEYE, great saying, and nifty in the puzzle. TUV too good. I'll make a point to avoid SAUSAGEPARTY (Hi @Nancy). Finally, it's THEATre for sure - but that a minor nit in a really fun puzzle.

Aketi 12:09 PM  

CAught the first rebus it at DREAMCATCHER. I thought it was a movie theater theme since we have an AMC five blocks away with fully reclining seats. Airlines could learn a few things from that movie theater. I’ll go to watch almost anything in that theater just for the seats. About all they show there is Marvel movies. We turned offf the cable this year after I pointed out to my husband that we hadn’t watched cable TV in about five years. Now our 19 inch TV is sitting on a table unplugged waiting for the day when I plug it into an X box one.

@Nancy, the MRI of my knee was fine because my head wasn’t inside and the technician gave me earphones with my choice of music. Sounds like your neurologist is not user friendly.

@LMS, another congrats on your daughter getting into vet school. Two of my college roomies were prevets when I was an undergrad. It was far more competitive than being premed.

Joseph Michael 12:12 PM  

"IPhone 8" gets my vote for the Crossword Clue Hall of Fame.

First rate puzzle by Jules Markey. If only every Thursday could be this good...

Charles Flaster 12:16 PM  

Easy-medium but would have been easy as I quickly got UGLY BETTY crossing GLOBE THEATER. With ODDS already filled in I was looking for a rebus of BET(gambling).
This led to a time consuming writeover of
DASHBOARD for Desk top.
After that USA and AMC were cinchy.
Liked cluing for BLATANT and DENT.
Thanks JM

Anonymous 12:30 PM  

I. Hate. Rebuses. ("Rebii?") Having said that, I did finish today. Thanks for explaining the "TUV" answer, I had not thought of that. A decent Thursday, but to my (old-fashioned) mind, a crossword puzzle square represents ONE letter, not two or three. Just my two cents.

QuasiMojo 12:33 PM  

@Nancy, 11:09AM, a "great jock"? Not really. It was just intramural soccer. Not varsity! lol. Back then soccer was not as big as it is nowadays. I'm glad to see it has caught on as it is a wonderful sport on many levels.

TJS 12:33 PM  

Absolutely loved this one. Generally, I solve puzzles without paying any attention to the theme, but I was at minute forty when I got cableboxes, and suddenly figured out why I couldnt fit "dreamcatcher" into 17 across. Knocked off the rest of the puzzle in abount 10 more minutes. Just a great challenge.
As a Wisconsin resort owner, we refer to logs destined for campfire burning as stored "in the stack" or "pile", but smaller logs used for indoor fireplace use are stored "in the bin", a small metal box next to the fireplace.

Melrose 12:34 PM  

Tough but appropriate for a Thursday and fun once i got going. I got Globe Theater first so I knew there was a rebus, but I'd never heard of BET cable station, so I didn't really get the theme until later on. IPhone clue was devilish.

Masked and Anonymous 12:40 PM  

@JC66 at 12:00 - yep. Don't work for m&e, either. Well that sorta sucks lite. Always kinda cool to hear that someone tries to work these little varmints, tho. The "litter selection" at the bottom here seems to work ok. No refunds, btw.

While I am here: SAUSAGE PARTY was a complete mystery, to m&e. Looks like (from the blog pic of it) that it may be one of them animated flicks? We don't do many of those, unless it has some Minions in it. Then there is always the primo chance for a Fart Gun demo. har

M&A Tech Support & Fart Gun Desk


**gruntz**

Anonymous 12:46 PM  

Ukas is an edict in Russian.

Roo Monster 12:47 PM  

Hey All !
SAUSAGE PARTY movie is funny in your inner 12 year old self. Innuendo movie. Male Hot-dogs, female Buns.

Can never understand the claustrophobic feeling some get in a regular MRI. They are open on both ends, so you can look forward or backward and see that you're not wrapped up like a burrito. And the clicking isn't that bad/loud. I almost fell asleep once in that MRI!

For some reason, this puz held me up in spots. Got the revealer first, so knew it was a rebus. But didn't think TV stations at first, was thinking CABLEs, as in hold down things. Har. BLEU wouldn't enter the ole brain, not sure why, but crossed with BIBB lettuce (what in tarnation is that?) made me alphabet run plausible-before-L-letters.

SMA is an Ugh. AStoSAY-ASWESAY, Ing-ILE, IRiNa-IRENE. Took me a second or two for TUV also. Ha, no one has letters on their phones now, do they? Maybe old flip phones? Remember texting with those? HELLO was 44-33-555-555-666. Good stuff.

So a nice Rebus return. OFF TO laundry! :-)

EDGY ELVES
RooMonster
DarrinV




Carola 12:52 PM  

@Nancy - As if! :) The real story is one of slow weaning, with an abrupt conclusion. In the late 1960s my husband and I were given a hand-me-down b&w TV, which after a few years was down to one channel, as the UHF tuner had broken. In the mid-1970s, disgusted at having wasted a Saturday evening by staying at home to watch a truly worthless Shirley MacLaine "special," we ceremoniously carried the TV to the Dumpster outside our student housing apartment and with a grand flourish tossed it in.

Anonymous 1:05 PM  

Some are made out of lettuce... Just kidding...

JC66 1:07 PM  

@M&A

The new link works fine. Thanks.

BTW, I can't decide which I enjoy more; your posts or your runts.

Trombone Tom 1:11 PM  

We kept asking for a Thursday rebus and Jules Markey has delivered it in spades. Once I tumbled to the theme this was not too challenging. Like some others I kept looking for SHO.

SAUSAGEPARTY was unknown to me and I'm not surprised. When I see Seth Rogen's name I run in the opposite direction.

I must have considered that "iPhone 8?" clue a dozen times before I got it.

Suzie Q 1:21 PM  

@ JC66, As my Gleason-loving father used to say "Hardy-Har-Har."

Teedmn 1:22 PM  

I had to start in the North Central today. By the time I had the CHER in 17A and the UG in 21A, I knew we were in rebus country. The BET was easy to find but I wasn't seeing anything in DREAMCATCHER to tell me what the rebus would be. When I got DASHBOARD, the HBO gave the AMC TV channel away.

Black ink IN A PIG'S EnE. I missed the "or" in the Puppies or kittens clue and had nOUNs at 32D. But isn't it "In a pig's ear?", I thought. Or what if there's a rebus in 29A and 33D should be a rebussed dwarVES? Well, dwarVES wouldn't give me IN A PIG'S Ear either and I don't think D&D had dwarVES so...reread the 32D clue and get the YOUNG. Ah.

And thinking Mr. McShane's first name was Tim meant there was no GENIUS AT WORK for a while, but all was sorted out in the end. Thanks, JM, nice tricky Thursday.

Masked and Anonymous 1:35 PM  

@muse: Best of luck to yer darlin daughter, on her vetquest. Sounds like a rewardin and interestin career, that will no doubt produce no end of on-the-job anecdotes. Plus, she can now de-tox yer TuckerDoggy, whenever he helps himself to the rat poison. Does she get to read all the "All Creatures …" books in her studies? Recommended.

@JC66 - U sure are nice. Evidently the AcrossLite app don't like clues that look like this Fart Gun sound effect:
[blarg]

I assume it's some problem with the openin "[" dealy? Anyhoo …
Below is a suitably adjusted version of the runtpuz I was tryin to put out here in the first place. Sooo … today is an ultra-rare [thank goodness] two-fer. May I suggest a vodka collins and an extra cinnamon roll, to cope with this here two-fer situation.

M&Also


**gruntz**

pabloinnh 1:39 PM  

If it's Thursday, it must be rebus day, we're overdue. There it is! UglyBETty! What a great rebus theme--Place your BETS. Believe it or not, there are no other BET rebuses anywhere in this puzzle. I know. I looked.

And I actually did play varsity soccer, although it was D3 and the program has now upgraded to national prominence and has an artificial field with lights and heated dugouts and so on. I bet they even have sausage parties.

Z 1:42 PM  

@anon9:15 - Hmm, maybe I forgot I saw that movie when it first came out? Or maybe I know what zeitgeist means and don’t think a movie so widely panned and selling tickets so far below expectations that they didn’t even bother with the sequel they set up wasn’t really part of it. On the list of sci fi movies that were part of the zeitgeist in 1980: Star Wars - yes, Flash Gordon - no. I’m pretty sure the studio was trying to ride the Star Wars zeitgeist and managed to fail somewhat flashily.

@Gill I - I always pause before entering ER or -re because it feels right to use the British spelling, I’d even accept that -re is preferred. But, since it was not “The Globe Theatre” in Elizabethan England, going with American rather British spelling is probably righter in an American crossword. Mostly, though, I’m hoping not to see 10 to 50 more accusations sans support.

@Laurence Katz - While the monetary unit seems to be the consensus definition, I did find several dictionaries offering “Afghani” as a variant of “Afghan” the noun as well as an adjective, e.g. “Afghani film.” Given that for most of the “-stan” countries we use the “i” suffix for the people of the country I personally find “Afghani” preferable. I mean, how often do we find English becoming more consistent?

@Roo Monster - Phobias don’t easily succumb to logic. When I had the (pointlessly ordered by the insurance company - seriously, one more test is not going to show the tendon re-attached itself to the bone) MRI on my ankle I wasn’t even all the way in and was getting claustrophobic feelings. The constant “DON’T MOVE” when I wasn’t moving certainly did not help.

MetroGnome 1:45 PM  

How the hell is a "BIN" a "log keeper"?

Z 1:50 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Z 1:51 PM  

BTW - apropos of a question from a few days ago, Today’s Style Section devotes most of its front page to a beautiful drawing of Ms. Wintour with the article about the rumors of her leaving Vogue taking many column inches on D1 and all of page D6. I guess this kind of coverage makes her and her first name crosswort

JC66 1:52 PM  

@M&A

2 for the price of 1...Love it!

Larry Gilstrap 1:53 PM  

Thursday enough for this crowd. I did mangle the DREAM CATCHER corner for a bit, stubbornly wanting a CABLE channel called EAM surrounded by nonsense. To err is human.

Speaking of errors, I hate to correct anyone on this panel, but The LA Dodgers played in the Memorial Coliseum from '58 until Dodger Stadium opened in '62. The MLB Los Angeles Angels played their first season in Wrigley Field in '61, then shared Dodger Stadium (Chavez Ravine) until Anaheim Stadium opened in '66. If @old timer has a ticket from that Dodger game in Wrigley Field LA, he has quite the collector's item.

The Scottish poet Robert Burns used SMA in his well known poem "To a Mouse..." As a student I dismissed his work, but later in my teaching career I found his poems to be delightfully full of colorful language, imagery, and deep wisdom.

If you walk into a place and the crowd is predominately male, we'd call it a SAUSAGE Fest. Now, there's some figurative language for you.

cwf 1:54 PM  

@ Suzie Q
There are fatbergs.

"A fatberg is a congealed lump in a sewer system formed by the combination of non-biodegradable solid matter such as wet wipes with grease or cooking fat." -wikipedia

sanfranman59 1:54 PM  

This week's relative difficulty ratings. See my 1/2/2018 post for an explanation of my method. In a nutshell, the higher the ratio & percentage, the higher my solve time was relative to my norm for that day of the week. Your results may vary.

(Day, Solve time, 26-wk Median, Ratio, %, Rating)

Mon 4:52 4:18 1.13 80.8% Challenging
Tue 4:25 5:37 0.79 7.3% Easy
Wed 4:46 6:00 0.79 14.6% Easy
Thur 18:02 10:09 1.78 96.7% Very Challenging

I usually do pretty well with JPM Thursdays, but I was not on his wavelength at all on this one. The list of 3-letter cable networks seems endless. Starting a puzzle with OFF TO didn't sit well. I was fine and even impressed with all but one of the rebuses. I have no memory of SAUSAGE PARTY and it was only two years ago. While I've been relatively out of the loop cinema-wise for the last few years, I'm surprised I don't recall a movie with so many familiar names associated with it. And GENIUS AT WORK did nothing for me. That little mid-Pacific Coast section aggravated me greatly. O'HARA is not a role. There are 5 O'HARAs in GWIW. Open MRI just wouldn't come.

This kind of reminded me of my early solving days when rebuses bedeviled me. I've gotten much better at recognizing them over the years, but I still struggle with them sometimes. This was one of those times.

cwf 1:56 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
John Hoffman 2:02 PM  

Good puzzle! I failed to finish due to “open MRI.”

semioticus (shelbyl) 3:03 PM  

Great themes all around this week! This one isn't an outstanding idea necessarily, but the theme entries and the execution are very, very good. And some of them are entertainment-related, which gets some extra credit in my book.

The fill is virtually trash-free, which is an impressive feat given that 55.2% of this puzzle is short answers. Just a SMA here and a TUV there, and the latter is saved by a smart clue.

Speaking of clues, I would have liked more clarity for some of them (especially in the NE and E), but nothing unconquerable. (Grim Grimm beast for OGRE, for example. I don't think of ogres when I think of Grimm Brothers.) However, since it took me a slightly longer time to solve this one, the novelty wore off gradually. I wasn't able to finish it on a high note, but I still appreciate it.

GRADE: B+, 3.8 stars.

Whatsername 3:06 PM  

I LOVED THIS!! A classic rebus Thursday with a fun theme. Simply superb! Thank you Jules Markey. More, more, more please.

phil phil 3:27 PM  

The USA cross was my headscratcher too. But after 3 themes I was looking for SHO to show up.

phil phil 3:39 PM  

Yeah, ditto @Ellen congrats to @LMS,s daughter being accepter at veterinary school. Heard long time ago, guess still stands, the vet students are smarter than the med students going in because of the high application number the schools can pick the cream of the crop.

Anonymous 3:55 PM  

Can someone explain the iPhone 8? Clue to me. TUV?

JC66 3:58 PM  

The last paragraph in @Rex's writeup:

"Just pick up your phone and look at the number keypad. Specifically at the number "8"—voilà! Our phones pretty much dial themselves now, so general familiarity with the concept the keypad and its features is diminishing precipitously, I'd imagine."

GILL I. 4:39 PM  

@Z...Sure...It's The Globe and it's in Great Britain and it's spelled theatRE. Only American's spell it Theater. It's understood.
I'm hoping to see Goodyear Tyre - then I'll be satisfied.
And a happy ano to you too!

Anonymous 4:53 PM  

@Z apparently your zeitgeist is composed only of squares.

Mohair Sam 5:34 PM  

@Loren - Heartiest congrats to your daughter. I specialized in lending to vets as an SBA lender and am well aware of how tough it is to get accepted at vet school these days (and yes, @phil phil it is now statistically more difficult to get into vet school than medical). The field is 55% female now, and the nation's vet school students are approximately 80% women - 88% at Cornell, one of the top schools.

Any of you who know a veterinarian should ask them for their best story. I met hundreds of vets in the SBA job and asked that question hundreds of times. Great stories - my favorite is still the tough looking lady vet who told the story of the Priest, the pig, and the goat. Too long to relate here, suffice to say the story ends with the vet in the hospital and the pig on a spit.

JC66 5:37 PM  

@LMS

Mazel Tov!

jae 5:49 PM  

On the tough side of medium for me too, mostly because it took a while to suss which squares were rebus squares. I’m with the “this was a fine Thurs.” contingent, liked it a bunch!

Anonymous 6:30 PM  

Will Shortz? :)

GHarris 8:54 PM  

I was so sure that the answer for open was era that I just entered it and forgot about it, even after I had sussed genius at work and finished solving the rest of the puzzle. Felt real good about it until I came here. Sheez, that’s the difference between solving on paper rather than on the computer.. Never got an alert that something was wrong.

Aketi 9:09 PM  

@Mohair Sam, my first college roomie at UC Davis got into vet school there. We ended up indepently being accepted to Cornell for our doctorate studies. Hers of course was in veterinary medicine. She studied mastitis in cows. Lots of stories. Prior to that she studied ghiardia in beavers. Also lots of stories.

Harryp 7:43 PM  

Easy peasy, not UNeasy, on to Saturday

TedInSaltLakeCity 11:44 AM  

RHETT crossed with OHARA independent of rebus is worth a mention.

jesi k 12:51 PM  

Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to express that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. In whatever way I will be subscribing to your feed and I am hoping you post again soon.luxury vacation rentals

thefogman 9:01 AM  

I knew something was up when DREAMCATCHER didn't quite fit - in the usual way - then I got the gimmick. It was smooth sailing after that. TUV was a head scratcher until I realized it was the number displayed on old tymey telephone keypads - not just Iphones. Nice misdirect there. Open MRI was a new one for me which I only solved via the crosses. I like it when you learn something new in a crossword. This was more fun than the usual Wednesday fare. Well done Jules Markey.

Burma Shave 9:42 AM  

EDGY TART

ASWESAY to a YOUNG GENIUSATWORK,
“EMMA, you’re such a BLATANT smarty,
but YULE be AXED if YULE WISHBONES aren't a perk
for GUESTS at the SAUSAGEPARTY.”

--- “UGLY”BETTY LUGOSI

rondo 10:46 AM  

Rebus-iness, harrumph. Got the UGLY(BET)TY one first, but that BET coulda been a lot of things besides a cable station, like a wager, etc. So when DAS(HBO)ARD showed up, smooth sailing. EAVED grinds a bit.

Only one other person mentioned OSAMA and BIN are both here? And this puz is “laden” with cable stuff.

Ms. Stone is one of a number of EMMAs deserving a yeah baby, ASWESAY.

OK for a rebus puz, not very EDGY.

spacecraft 11:39 AM  

I'm with those who regard HBO as an outlier. This is a PAY channel, NOT a "CABLE" one. But, that aside, I did enjoy this. NW was once again inscrutable; I finished there. Again. Started in the SW with ELKS (lifetime member). So the office thing probably ended in -WORK, which was at least enough to get ASWESAY and lead the way across the south. Yes, I had the reveal before any of the rebi. First one spotted was UGLYBETTY.

I have absolutely no idea that SAUSAGEPARTY existed; that one was all crosses. The rest of it was pretty cool. Agree on EMMA Stone for DOD--but if we're double dating Stones, I'll take Sharon! Birdie.

Diana,LIW 1:16 PM  

Basically, what @Rondo and @Spacey said, except I ended up with a DNF - TV illiteracy does me in again. UGLYBETTY was my only really "known" quantity there, along with DREAMCATCHERS for the charm.

Wanted my clock/radio to be nest to my bed - tho it certainly is on my DASH as well.

At least I got 2 rebi.

Diana, Lady-in-Waiting for Crosswords

leftcoastTAM 2:20 PM  

Slow start, then the "aha!" at SAUSAGEPARTY" exposing the first of the "TV adjuncts".(Adjuncts? channels are "adjuncts"? Maybe aduncts to the theme words? Okay, whatever.)

Not easy, especially the treasure hunt for the other three channels. They showed up by plodding on, filling in squares and finding what had to be the missing rebuses.

It all looked good to me, including the long down crosses, and it was fun to do.

leftcoastTAM 5:37 PM  

I was blind, but now I see--maybe. The TV "adjuncts" are CABLE BOXES (or is it the other way around?), and the boxes relay the cable channels to the TV.

Glad to get that off my chest.

rainforest 9:08 PM  

Ridiculously late, but excusable because I spent 9 hours with my grandson, and chasing a 2 1/2 year old takes it out of a geezer. But I have to say, the little guy somehow saw a relationship between all the water at the water park, and the fact the tide was out in the inlet. GENIUS AT WORK, which, by the way was the last of the rebi I was able to get.

So, though rebuseses aren't my favourite, especially when you are constantly thinking that one lurks just about anywhere, even within "gimmes", I rather liked this one. I've never heard of an open MRI, though I guess I can figure out what it is, nor do I know BET as a cable channel. But the puzzle was friendly enough that I could solve it/them.

Except for EAVED, this was a joyful romp all over. I even could get past THEATER where theatre belongs. For awhile I was courting 'Glochester' there, sorry to say, before I had figured out a rebus resided there.

Lotsa fun.

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