I Hear You're Hosting

· By Mikey G · Published 2023-11-11T18:00:41.504Z

Meta Prompt
[Level 3] The answer to the meta is a notable American personality.
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  • Mikey G constructor · 2023-11-11T18:00:41.504Z
    Answer: KEN JENNINGS
    Explanation: A host is commonly called an EMCEE, reinforced by 11-D11DHosts[------], and that sounds a lot like MC (sometimes abbreviated as such). Ten across clues, some more seamlessly constructed than others, have initials MC. In order: BARB1AMean comment[----] EASE8AMinimal complexity[----] BOW13AMovies' Clara[---] ABE16AMary's courter[---] BEE21AMorphological contest[---] SEE32AMake certain[---] GNUS41AManed creatures[----] MANN42A"Manfred" concluder[----] PEAT44AMarshy component[----] HUR46AMajor charioteer[---].
    Per the title, let's see what these sound like (I tried to make this as literal as possible): BARBIE'S BEAU, ABC NEWSMAN PETER. Nice to see one of the biggest movies of 2023 represented - and one of my favorite newsmen of my childhood. These two clues represent KEN and JENNINGS, which together give the answer to the meta, who first earned his claim to fame in 2004 by winning 74 (numeric tie-in!) consecutive games of the show he now hosts: Jeopardy! Note the nod to original host Art Fleming at 5-A5ACarney, Fleming, Garfunkel, or Linkletter[---] also!
    • Hector 🤓7:07 · 2023-11-11T18:34:57.943Z
      Tried every possible way to enter PETER JENNINGS first. Thanks, Mike!
      • Mikey G constructor · 2023-11-11T19:51:21.773Z
        Of course! Your solving skills are unparalleled. And I do remember Peter Jennings well!
      • FrankieHeck 🤓15:53 · 2023-11-11T19:31:54.165Z
        Took a little google detour trying to figure out if Barbie had a thing for Peter Jennings, but then the little lightbulb went off and I kicked myself.
        • Mikey G constructor · 2023-11-11T21:24:15.163Z
          Now there's a movie!
          • whimsy 🤓10:20 · 2023-11-11T21:56:15.855Z
            Did the same! 😄
          • Meg 2s · 2023-11-11T20:07:45.975Z
            I love sounding things out!.
            • boharr 3s · 2023-11-11T20:30:34.463Z
              Unlike Meg, I hate sounding things out. HaHa. Thanks for a fun one!
              • Mikey G constructor · 2023-11-11T23:44:45.217Z
                It's Mad Gab all over again!
              • whimsy 🤓10:20 · 2023-11-11T21:30:43.734Z
                Whoa! Lots of nice bunny holes --- "EASE8AMinimal complexity[----]" OK, just look at the longest entry rows with those double E's! EAR, DRUM14AJust beat it![----]; EAR, MARK (sic.) And A(u)nt Bee kept buzzing at me! And then it took me a moment to realize that Peter Jennings never had a thing with Barbie, but that you were looking for us to make use of two things. Very fun solve! Thanks, Mikey!
                • Darth 11:12 · 2023-11-11T22:32:56.990Z
                  Perfect! I liked the Easter eggs, too! :D Thanks, Mikey!
                  • SamKat9 🤓8:58 · 2023-11-11T23:48:44.151Z
                    This was a lot of fun! I first guessed Peter Jennings thinking "Who's Barbie in this case? Barbara Walters?" Then I got it.
                    • Abide 2s · 2023-11-11T23:49:44.994Z
                      Level 1.5 for me, as I deployed my new MikeyG strategy of reviewing the clues in detail BEFORE starting the grid. I noticed the MC clues and was off to the races! Mighty cool!
                      • Mikey G constructor · 2023-11-12T16:08:48.247Z
                        That'll often help! Not always but enough. 😀
                      • Capn Rick 🤓8:30 · 2023-11-12T02:56:31.937Z
                        Very nicely done, Mikey! I had the same solving experience as PEAT44AMarshy component[----] HUR46AMajor charioteer[---] Abide. 😁
                        • Tyrpmom 1s · 2023-11-12T04:45:41.034Z
                          A multiples clarifier between Bow and Abe would have been very helpful.
                          • merlinnimue 6:16 · 2023-11-12T05:05:05.830Z
                            mighty cool meta contest... many congrats
                            (i believe my answer is in fact incorrect because i did not phrase it in the form of a question... mea culpa)
                            • Pair O Ducks 🤓11:11 · 2023-11-12T15:16:30.660Z
                              I saw almost all the pieces before I picked up on the "MC"s, but couldn't make sense of them. (What do barbies, the alphabet, and some newsman named Pete have to do with each other?) I don't know any news anchors' names, so it didn't come together until after I figured out how to connect ABC and use a little Google (the other Mr. G!)
                              • Berto 🤓2:13 · 2023-11-12T19:01:45.011Z
                                Took me longer than I care to admit, mainly because I got lost down a rabbit warren full of dead ends: “I hear you ARE hosting” > abundance of “AR”s in the grid, “EASE8AMinimal complexity[----]” > all the “EE”s in the grid, hosting “us” > all the “US”s in the grid (why else have TZUS47AShih ___ (silky-haired toy dogs)[----] and USD40A$, briefly[---]?!) - before finally focusing on 11 down11DHosts[------] and seeing the M- C- clues. Fun one with a satisfying aha!
                                • Carolyn 2s · 2023-11-14T01:43:32.419Z
                                  Fun, once I saw it!
                                  • DrTom 3s · 2023-11-14T19:36:17.977Z
                                    I'm so embarrassed that it took me so long to put two and two together. First I saw the MCs, great. Letters spelled nothing. "MC, well maybe they are introducing the correct letters..." Nope that didn't help. Gee, "heard" -Arb ase rum (mis-circled one darn it)be, ee ee nus ann eat ur...what?? Ok, add back the first letter, BARB1AMean comment[----] BASE DRUM14AJust beat it![----] ABE16AMary's courter[---] BEE21AMorphological contest[---] SEE32AMake certain[---] GNUS41AManed creatures[----] MANN42A"Manfred" concluder[----] PEAT44AMarshy component[----] HUR46AMajor charioteer[---]. AHA! Barbies Dream ABC Newsman Peter, well that makes sense but it makes no sense, why would she be humng up on a deceased news anchor??? DOH, not DRUM14AJust beat it![----], BOW13AMovies' Clara[---], so Barbie's beau ABC Newsman Peter...but her beau is not Peter Jennings it is Ken...AARRRGGH KEN JENNINGS MC, well just brilliant! Now if the prompt had been "questionable" American personality or "Perilous" American personality or "The answer to the meta is someone who is a questionable American personality" I might have gotten it earlier😁 Thanks for the challenge Mikey, fun one.
                                    • Steve M 32:07 · 2023-11-15T00:09:21.528Z
                                      Found the MCs quickly. Took me a little longer to “hear” the words they pointed to. Fun meta!
                                      • MatthewL 🤓6:21 · 2023-11-16T15:04:54.049Z
                                        Totally not in my wheelhouse -- not good with the "sounding it out" metas. Needed all the nudges and still struggled with it. Finally got Barbie's Beau and since Ken Jennings is the only Ken I know that hosts a show, that was my guess. That having been said -- great puzzle Mikey!
                                        • Joe 🤓7:07 · 2023-11-16T16:02:32.329Z
                                          Wowww. That was fun. Took me a few nudges, but I got there!
                                          • Qmark 7s · 2023-11-17T19:54:36.913Z
                                            Filled in the grid last weekend and left it to simmer...finally remembered to check today for nudges...just needed the first 2 to lead me to the finish line. Thanks Mikey!
                                            • hoover 9s · 2023-11-18T08:48:28.857Z
                                              Oops, I meant to click the "enter me" check box. Fun one!
                                              • HeadinHome 🤓4:06 · 2023-11-18T13:10:11.363Z
                                                Late to this party so I brought an extra host gift… you wanted an aging fruitcake, right?
                                                • HeadinHome 🤓4:06 · 2023-11-18T13:11:56.779Z
                                                  (Ps .. no nudges needed. This was fun to figure out, after all the MC clue entries didn’t spell anything.)
                                                  Mean comment
                                                  1. 1A
                                                    Mean comment
                                                  2. 5A
                                                    Carney, Fleming, Garfunkel, or Linkletter
                                                  3. 8A
                                                    Minimal complexity
                                                  4. 12A
                                                    Bring up
                                                  5. 13A
                                                    Movies' Clara
                                                  6. 14A
                                                    Just beat it!
                                                  7. 15A
                                                    Italian flower
                                                  8. 16A
                                                    Mary's courter
                                                  9. 17A
                                                    Summers, for one
                                                  10. 18A
                                                    What many do at my lectures
                                                  11. 21A
                                                    Morphological contest
                                                  12. 22A
                                                    Middle word in the name of a South American archipelago
                                                  13. 23A
                                                    Get off the fence
                                                  14. 25A
                                                    One-___ (Wilder's "The Long Christmas Dinner," for one)
                                                  15. 28A
                                                  16. 29A
                                                    "You ___!" ("Right on!")
                                                  17. 31A
                                                    ___ punk (Mighty Mighty Bosstones genre)
                                                  18. 32A
                                                    Make certain
                                                  19. 33A
                                                    Like the last dance a couple often performs on "Dancing with the Stars" (Mark Ballas created some of my all-time favorites)
                                                  20. 38A
                                                    Former US govt. agency whose acronym is one letter away from a continent
                                                  21. 40A
                                                    $, briefly
                                                  22. 41A
                                                    Maned creatures
                                                  23. 42A
                                                    "Manfred" concluder
                                                  24. 43A
                                                    Inventive initials
                                                  25. 44A
                                                    Marshy component
                                                  26. 45A
                                                    Once, once
                                                  27. 46A
                                                    Major charioteer
                                                  28. 47A
                                                    Shih ___ (silky-haired toy dogs)
                                                  1. 1D
                                                    "You always boast about disagreeing with me!" "I ___ to differ!"
                                                  2. 2D
                                                    Dynamic introduction?
                                                  3. 3D
                                                    Harangue (if I complain about tart fruits, it's a lemon harangue)
                                                  4. 4D
                                                    When my chickens didn't lay any eggs, I ___ about it
                                                  5. 5D
                                                    Have ___ (live it up, ideally solving metas!)
                                                  6. 6D
                                                    Cover-up in the courtroom?
                                                  7. 7D
                                                    Boss of years gone by
                                                  8. 8D
                                                    Genre my mom derisively calls "beeps and boops," for short
                                                  9. 9D
                                                    Last word in the title of 1962's Best Picture
                                                  10. 10D
                                                    "You betcha!"
                                                  11. 11D
                                                  12. 19D
                                                    Times feature (this clue is just my type)
                                                  13. 20D
                                                    Bushel's four
                                                  14. 24D
                                                    November 2022 invention that, when I just asked it for a pun about puzzles, gave me "The puzzle broke up with the dictionary because they had too many cross words!"
                                                  15. 25D
                                                    Suppose (you know the saying...)
                                                  16. 26D
                                                    This guy had some Gaul LOL
                                                  17. 27D
                                                    Some promotional gimmicks
                                                  18. 30D
                                                    Prevaricators suffer from ___ decay
                                                  19. 31D
                                                    Event that commonly begins with Kadeish (a blessing of the first cup of wine)
                                                  20. 34D
                                                    He forgives Jacob in Genesis 33
                                                  21. 35D
                                                    California's Santa ___ Valley
                                                  22. 36D
                                                    Its name comes from the leaves of a stew often served at one
                                                  23. 37D
                                                    Ballpark figs. (I prefer Ball Park franks but okay)
                                                  24. 39D
                                                    "Did your uncle approve of your becoming an entomologist?" "No, but my ___ did!"