DA DA (from the 6/7th of October)

Is this week’s DA any good?

Comment away, but no spoilers until Monday in consideration of the plight of the Melbournites.

Update: One of the greatest:


Wow.  What a puzzle…..what a theme!  AS and I (RC) met up in Windsor, already anticipating a cracker from the earlier comments.  Once AS had cracked 4 down we steadily got through a truly fantastic crossword.  So good we’ve decided to make a new category – DA Classics.  Crosswords to tell your grandkids about.  The last one I thought worthy of this imortalisation was the widely acclaimed “McCrossword” from 20th February this year.

My nominations for gold – 13 across, 17 down, 23 down, 9 down 9 across, 6 down

AS also liked 8 down, 29 across.

We agreed that 31 across was the first time in a while that a Spoonerism hasn’t made it into gold.  I thought 1 down bordered on nasty, while AS claims anyone who doesn’t get the direct clue for 1 down is a “cultural philistine”.  Harsh words from a passionate man…passionate about the 30-acrosses.  Token hangups that hardly detract from one of the greats.

11 thoughts on “DA DA (from the 6/7th of October)

  1. Wow! Just survived (barely) DA’s latest offering. I think some time ago on this blog there was a quote by Geoffrey Rush that doing a DA crossword was a “total mindf–ck”. Certainly one of his nastier ones….all over the place and very tricky and……BRILLIANT!

  2. Lots of candidates for gold this week, I think. My picks:3D, 24D, 15A, 25A, 28A…..and on and on.Terrific stuff DA.

  3. I haven’t seen the crossword as yet, but your comments AL have both frightened and delighted me.

    The perfect word might be frisson.

  4. Double wow. Took me ages to get the theme. All done now, no bullshit that I can see (many clues that initially seemed dodgy make sense once the whole thing’s in place). One of his best.

  5. Not wanting to boast, but I found it a tad too easy to be included in the pantheon (apart from my still lacking a satisfying explanation for the last part of the clue for 25A).

  6. 15A … 19A … proper use of the ellipses!

    An artfully clever crossword.

  7. Re 25a: (Spoiler alert) The the last part of the clue tells you to remove the second letter of a word and insert a reversal of another.

    I’m going to go out on a limb and declare this week’s crossword bullshit-free, and I care anyone to prove me wrong.

  8. I agree this was a real cracker! Lots of really good tough clues. And this “cultural philistine” doesn’t mind admitting that Google was necessary to understand 1D’s direct clue. (Since when has intimate knowledge of an American TV sitcom been a hallmark of culture?)

    It looks like there’ll be disagreement on the nominations for Gold this week. (The two lists above do not overlap at all). BTW, the list at the top (RC?) mentions 9D – which one did you really mean?

    I don’t know why you dismissed 31A from Gold consideration – it was one of my favourites. As were 7D and 23D. On the other hand, I didn’t particularly like 8D – nothing wrong with the clue, I just didn’t like the answer – it sounded like a made-up word. But it’s in the Shorter Oxford so I can’t really object.

    I have a couple of queries, which I’ll post under “confusions”.

  9. It’s uncanny! As soon as I started to write down my “confusions” (21A and 24D), the explanations just popped into my head.

  10. Ah yes, enlightenment via confession. Many times I’ve also been about to write out my confusions only to see the light too.

    I noticed too that there wasn’t much overlap, which is a rare thing usually.

    31 across RC and I just thought was an ordinary Spoonerism.

    Oh, and that should have been 9 across, not 9 down (now emended in the post).

    And I have perhaps an overdeveloped love of The Simpsons and consider it one of the great cultural artifacts of the last century. The Simpsons often don’t get respect because it is an American TV sitcom, but in my opinion it’s the better of all other comedy productions that have made their names (while I concede that the movie and many individual episodes are poor).

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