“PARTY ON TOP” by Brendan Emmett Quigley
It’s the tiiiiime of the seeeea-son for puzz-liiiiin’ <organ jams>
“Party on Top”
Constructor: Brendan Emmett Quigley
Theme: There are four man buns illustrated in the grid, and the corner Across answers start with MAN or BUN.
- 36A/37A: MAN BUN – With 37-Across, trendy and unfortunate bro hairdo that you can see silhouetted four times in this puzzle
- 1A: MANIAC – Wild ones
- 8A: BUNK BED – Place where you can sleep on top of somebody without touching them
- 65A: MANAGES – Runs the team
- 66A: BUNGEES – Jumps off a bridge, maybe
Ben: Am I missing something here? There are four MAN BUNs in the puzzle, and there are MAN BUN words on the top and bottom rows, and… that’s it? I like grid art, but this is thin.
Lena: I solved this week’s BuzzFeeds back to back– kind of like grading essays, I’d imagine– and by the time I got to this one I was looking for something to love, and I love those little MAN BUN silhouettes. Other than that, it was just a plain old pleasant solve
Ben: Grading essays is a lot like that, only instead of clever clues you have comma splices and superficial symbolism. (I hate grading essays a lot.)
Ben: I’m not trying to be difficult here, but this week’s themes have just left me completely cold. I don’t watch South Park, I don’t drink craft beers… it’s just a perfect storm.
Lena: Nobody can win ‘em all, different strokes, etc. I wonder if the BuzzFeed commenters will have noticed the MAN BUNs, or if there will be whining. I think this week’s puzzles are skewed towards solvers who don’t like any funny stuff– that’s fine and all, but some folks might get bored and cranky.
Ben: It’s not immediately obvious, but we have vertical symmetry today, which is cool. I like it when crosswords explore symmetry options beyond the usual. The corners are all pretty nice too — crossing triple-stacks of 7’s (with one cheater square added to each of the top corners). The grid is inevitably segmented, but those corners are pretty sweet. The NE is my favourite with BUNKBED / ORIGAMI / BABBLES crossing BALDWIN / EMERALD / DISUSE.
Lena: I thought the clues were fun-yet-sedate– chilly (chill and silly).
Ben: Favourite clues — 60A: Army shithole for LATRINE and 34D: [We can’t find an opener for this slot, what’s your band doing Monday?] completely saving TBA.
Lena: Is it time for BOBA TEA (8D: Taiwanese drink with tapioca balls that I assume is named after the best “Star Wars” character period) to be included in the Crosswordese Dictionary yet? I’ve never had the stuff, but when I give it a shot I’ll certainly be taking a Croswordese Selfie– unless BEQ beats me to it; his CrossSelfie game is on fleek.
Ben: I may not have liked (detected) the theme, but this was a smooth, breezy solve. Happy Thanksgiving to Americans (I celebrated it back in October… on the first BZF puzzle day, in fact).
Lena: Thanks, Ben! Of more import than Thanksgiving, it’s Michael’s birthday today– I hear he ate cake days in advance so he could also eat pies today. Everyone e-wish him a happy day!