What the devils?

Welcome back to the forgotten realm of George vs the Listener crossword. Hi – remember me? The last few weeks have been pretty ragged, and I even went about two weeks without solving a daily puzzle.  Yes, check the old pulse.

Not sure why, just a combination of stress, travel, and other things.  Anyhoo – it’s time to do a bit of a catch-up.  These puzzles have been out for a while, so I’ll do a bit of lip-service.

I found Nutmeg’s puzzle very hard to get into. It wasn’t the printer’s Devilry clues, it was the misprint clues that really held me up.  It helped to eventally get SHADE and SYMMETRIC to figure out the last of these. Fortunately RALPH the Printer’s Devil was an obvious choice for the middle of the grid, and SATAN and CLOOTS jumped out to give half of the symmetrical pairs.

As I solved I was keeping check of the PD and misprint clues side by side – that would have been funny to animate.  The PD clues were well in the lead until I figured out what the message in misprints was, and then it was just PD clues left at the end.

PD clues are fun, and although I’ve stopped entering Azed competitions (I might get back to that someday), I used to do pretty well in his PD clue-writing competitions.  I particularly liked 28 across:  Feeling for US lady-killer, we visited he(r on de)athrow, and 37 across:  for presenting out pe tit(ion i c)an send my fleetest runner. That one really uses the PD device nicely.

My working grid for Listener 4493, Devilry by Nutmeg

In the end, a fun puzzle! I used to really dislike PD but I’ve warmed up to them.  This will not happen with Playfair.

Game over:  100% completion

Feel free to tell me that I should be split in two and have something inserted, and now we move on to Chalicea who wants to inform everyone of the homosexuality of a foreigner.


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