Puzzle at a Glance
Daily Telegraph Puzzle NumberDT 26832
Publication Date in The Daily TelegraphThursday, April 5, 2012
Link to Full ReviewBig Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 26832]
Big Dave's Review Written ByBig Dave
Big Dave's Rating
|Difficulty - ★★||Enjoyment - ★★★★|
█ - solved without assistance
█ - incorrect prior to use of puzzle solving tools
█ - solved with assistance from puzzle solving tools
█ - solved with aid of checking letters provided by puzzle solving tools
█ - unsolved or incorrect prior to visiting Big Dave's blog
█ - reviewed by Falcon for Big Dave's blog
Ray T is fairly gentle with us today. The puzzle does have the trademark reference to Queen and a bit of rather subdued innuendo.
Notes on Today's Puzzle
This commentary is intended to serve as a supplement to the review of this puzzle found at Big Dave's Crossword Blog, to which a link is provided in the table above.
1a Lady Muck initially rich as one’s poor (11)
Lady Muck is a British epithet for a haughty or socially pretentious woman : it’s that woman, Lady Muck herself—who does she think she is?
14a Stagger one regularly getting into scrap? (6)
In Britain, a totter is a person who makes a living by salvaging saleable items from dustbins [garbage cans] or rubbish heaps [trash piles] • Coney Street in York was a totter’s paradise on Tuesday morning. It would seem that rubbish is a chiefly British expression (although not uncommon in Canada) and trash is a distinctly North American term.
Steptoe and Son (mentioned by Big Dave) is a British sitcom about two rag and bone men (persons who collect unwanted household items and sell them to merchants) living in Oil Drum Lane, a fictional street in Shepherd's Bush, London. Four series were broadcast by the BBC from 1962 to 1965, followed by a second run from 1970 to 1974. It was remade in the US as Sanford and Son, which ran on the NBC television network from 1972 to 1977.
23a Cove encircles the Italian city (5)
Cove is dated British slang for a man • he is a perfectly amiable cove.
27a Touch of wind over relish (5)
On cricket scorecards, O appears as an abbreviation for over, a sequence of six balls bowled by a bowler from one end of the pitch, after which another bowler takes over from the other end. As for Big Dave's comment "not the relish produced by last night’s Apprentices", the "plot" summary for the April 4, 2012 episode of the British television series The Apprentice is "The Apprentice contestants attempt to impress Lord Sugar with creative condiments."
28a Red setter returned, secured around rear (11)
As a cryptic crossword convention, the creator of the puzzle will often use terms such as setter, compiler, author, or writer to refer to himself or herself. To solve the clue, one must substitute a first person pronoun (I or me) for whichever of these terms is found in the clue. Ass[3,4] is apparently a North American term – the usual British expression being arse[3,4]. However, ass seems to be well enough known to the Brits that the term elicited no comment on Big Dave's site. Obviously, one would have to conclude that these terms are considered to be less vulgar in Britain than they are in North American – perhaps due to the seeming lack of a sexual connotation to the words in Britain.
4d De Niro nicely demonstrates sneering (6)
Robert De Niro is an American actor, director and producer.
5d Lord Muck initially in list supporting aristocrat (8)
Lord Muck is British slang for a haughty or socially pretentious man.
15d ’Time’, track’s gripping Queen previews (8)
It wouldn't be a Ray T puzzle without a mention of his favourite band, Queen. By tradition, British monarchs use initials formed from the Latin version of their first name followed by either Rex or Regina (Latin for king or queen, respectively). Thus Queen Elizabeth's initials (or, in Big Dave's terminology, cypher) are ER - from the Latin Elizabetha Regina.
19d Ray, a French bachelor in bed (7)
Un is the masculine singular form of the French indefinite article.
Key to Reference Sources:Signing off for today – Falcon
 - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
 - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
 - TheFreeDictionary.com (American Heritage Dictionary)
 - TheFreeDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
 - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford Dictionary of English)
 - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford American Dictionary)
 - Wikipedia
 - Reverso Online Dictionary (Collins French-English Dictionary)
 - Infoplease (Random House Unabridged Dictionary)
 - CollinsDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)