DA Debate on 29/30th November, 2010

There’s a lot to talk about this week. Here are the bones of contention:

  1. Ian reports what might make 11 across more sensible: a spear carrier is a film extra.
  2. Aren’t pagans the opposite of atheists?
  3. Am I right in think CAST SUP is a little tenuous for a wrap party? And isn’t throw forward not quite in the same direction as casts up?
  4. Surely RED HAND = queen of hearts is a bit much Oopsies — that should be RED CARD, which makes more sense.
  5. I’m OK with cosmopolitan = COCKTAIL even though it goes from particular to general, much like I would be OK if it was dog = PET — although something like dog = ANIMAL would be abominable.
  6. Can anyone save promising = PALMIER?

Agree? Disagree? Did I forget something?

DA on the 26/27th of November, 2010

I love elections and I love DA’s cryptics. Tomorrow they combine forces and I’ll be a very happy man.

Is this week’s crossword exceptional even without an election enhacing one’s mood, Sydneysiders?

(No spoilers on this thread until Monday)

Update: The best of times, the worst of times:

Two well-connected themes with some very clever clues, although some very tenuous definitions and frustrating clues (now that I’ve looked at the answers — I didn’t go all that well this week!)

The DA Debate on the 12/13th of November, 2010

Let me start with my bugbear: ellipses.

In DA’s book, Puzzled, he mentioned that comfort with ellipses was a sign of cryptic mastery. I’m more than willing to concede that I am no cryptic master, but I think the inconsistent way ellipses are used is simply unfair.

This week, it was 7 and 8 across that were connected by ellipses, which ordinarily has no effect on how one interprets the clue, but on this occasion 8 across required the last word of 7 across, brothers, to make sense.

If such a reading were standard or if it was marked, I’d have no problem with it, but it’s the inconsistency — mostly you don’t need to worry about ellipses, sometimes you do — that annoys me.

Am I the only one howling at the moon?

Other controversial points:

  1. I wouldn’t like pink = red or orange = yellow, and I reckon brown = maroon is just as weak;
  2. I’m OK with rose referring to the wine — is the general consensus that that was crossing the line, though?
  3. blind as an anagram indicator — can anyone justify that?
  4. service as an anagram indicator: jnrj didn’t like it, but I find it acceptable.

So, your thoughts?

DA on the 12/13th of November, 2010

A weekend of pouring rain is forecast for Melbourne, so I expect a whole lot of you will be poring over this week’s DA (sorry for the pun).

Let us know how well it goes here.

(No spoilers until Monday on this thread)

Update: A lot to love, a lot to not love so much:

Some very, very good clues, a good theme, but the odd questionable clue.