Tuesday Crossword Themes 2017

December 26, 2017

Here is the list of all the Tuesday crossword themes from 2017:

01. Mastermind (TV quiz) Tyrus
02. Tennis Jambazi
03. Spinal Tap Jambazi
04. “L” (peripheral Nina) Mordred
05. Foul weather Morph
06. Shakespeare Tees
07. Valentine’s Day Eimi
08. Food named after counties (Yorkshire pudding etc) Glow-Worm
09. Artists Mordred
10. Sensational journalism Tyrus
11. Battle of Trafalgar Glow-Worm
12. Piltdown Man hoax Radian
13. Abba Raich
14. Holes on a harmonica (Nina) Monk
15. Rebukes (“slap on the wrist” etc) Tyrus
16. Cats and dogs Radian
17. Henry VIII Mordred
18. “The Hobbit” Crosophile
19. Association football (theme and Nina) Donk
20. Airports Rorschach
21. <no theme> (but plenty of malarkey) Punk
22. Punctuation and proof reading Radian
23. “The Hunting of the Snark” (theme and Nina) Crosophile
24. Millers’ tales (eg. Arthur, Glenn, Henry …) Punk
25. “The Canterbury Tales” Scorpion
26. The horsemeat in food scandal Morph
27. Points Radian
28. Breakfast Crosophile
29. Quentin Tarantino Jambazi
30. Inspector Rebus Phi
31. Test cricket Raich
32. “The Silence of the Lambs” Tees
33. Richard Briers Eimi
34. Sheep Hob
35. Joints Morph
36. Roy Orbison Raich
37. Cluedo Scorpion
38. Tom Stoppard Radian
39. Pink Floyd Alchemi
40. Rocks and stones Radian
41. Countdown (TV game show) Scorpion
42. The Clash Alchemi
43. Phoenix Nights Jambazi
44. High finance Hob
45. Fish Phi
46. The Open (golf) Radian
47. “The Wizard of Oz” Jambazi
48. Boxers Punk
49. Fictional bears Kairos
50. Card suits and golf (double theme) Radian
51. “Great Danes” Hob
52. Winter holidays Hypnos

A few observations:

Firstly, a big “hurrah” for all the setters: they don’t have to devise these elaborations after all, and in general the jigery pokery adds to the gaiety of the solvers’ lot. The overwhelming majority of these puzzles had accessible themes, or else permitted of solving without one having a clue that there was any funny business going on. The Tuesday puzzle is rarely the toughest of the week but often provides a lot of entertainment, so I hope we can be indulgent on the handful of occasions when it does get a bit obscure.

A cursory scan of the list shows that “high brow” is the exception rather than the rule. There is, however, a heavy bias towards the arts – and if there are disgruntled scientists and engineers out there feeling under-represented, they have a point. Despite frequent grumbling (and that definitely includes me), football isn’t omni-present after all … it just seems that way. Popular culture seems to finish some time during the early 1990s in Crosswordland. For all that they would probably baffle me, I’m sure younger solvers would be pleased to see some more up to date references.

And that is about all the wit and wisdom I have to offer on the subject. Comments are encouraged!

3 Responses to “Tuesday Crossword Themes 2017”

  1. jonofwales said

    I’d always suspected we saw few high-brow themes on a Tuesday. They’re more likely to be served up by Phi on a Saturday. 🙂 Ditto football, a game I know little about and care less, and which rarely seems to hinder my solving progress. To my shame I can’t remember a lot of those, so thanks for the reminder. I must admit though that a few went right over my head when solving, despite the suspicion that, being a Tuesday, there must be a theme.

  2. dtw42 said

    The football clues are my main stumbling point in the general knowledge crosswords. Today, for example, 23/7 is a German footballer and I’ve got L???Y ?A?E but am still none the wiser. :-/

  3. Cornick said

    In the early days of the i, and of idothei when JonofWales was doing all the blogging on his own (and usually having to supply half the answers) the Tuesday spot was Virgilius, and his puzzles remain my favourites of all time – although that might well be a perspective taken through the rose-tinted spectacles of an early love. These days I think of the Tuesday spot as sort of honouring the memory of his puzzles with the variety and invention they offer – although it takes several setters to fill his shoes.
    Interesting that we have so few science themes – I hope some new setters fond of themes are taking note(!)
    Phi’s Saturday themes are probably (at a guess) 25% Ninas and anything up to 50% literature. Tbh it’s not all highbrow stuff though – a lot of the authors are detective story writers and the like, which just happen to be on Phi’s bookshelves I suspect, and which probably don’t quite rank alongside Virginia Woolf.

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