8
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Micky Dolenz, drummer and vocalist of 1960s pop band The Monkees, has lost his headwear collection. It has been hidden in a maze whose walls are in unknown places. To find out the location of the walls, solve the cryptic clues and place the solutions in the maze. Can you help the Monkee get to the bandanas?

enter image description here

Rules/clarifications:

  • Word boundaries indicate walls.
  • Every square is reachable from the start. (You'll likely need this information when solving the maze.)
  • Some clues are missing the answer of another clue.

Across

  1. Permission to infuriate, losing nation's {5d} associated with the left (7)
  2. Pilgrim shakes head, joins {3d} to abstain from participating (7)
  3. Orbit around vandalized totem symbol of South {10d} (8)
  4. Important organ to {2a} keynote, leading to a tangle (4)
  5. Spin single going {13d} behind central clubhouse (7)
  6. Losing final argument, chauvinist {4d} numbers (5)
  7. Extremely common containers, primarily metal (4)
  8. Wash and finally brush a mop color, alternately (7)
  9. Spiritual leaders siege America for food items (8)
  10. High time for antivirus to block the middleman (4)
  11. Assessment for former Vietnam right-wingers (4)
  12. Newly have confidence in acquired currency (8)
  13. {7d} degree to cause misery to African city (7)
  14. Fruit wines central in cooked apple pie (9)
  15. In need of carving at {6a} and sevens (7)
  16. {15a} a cleanup, forget pressing start (4)

Down

  1. Oral tradition expressed by people with a strange role (8)
  2. Leading activists {12a} sheltering seabird by turns (11)
  3. High-ranking Mormon abruptly stern to child (9)
  4. Turned to reject without first sign of reason (4)
  5. Leading explosive ignores military conflict (4)
  6. Christmas novel {7a} virgin's introduction (4)
  7. Bones's {9d} function in USS enterprise (8)
  8. Deception extremely hateful, trees said (4)
  9. Authentic {12d} transfer final, not initial (8)
  10. Panthers' home is in a {6d} at the top (8)
  11. Sea cows have tea, eat lost insects (6)
  12. Support softcover lacking material (4)
  13. First biological genus of {14a} fruits (7)
  14. Mother leaves fresh {11d} home (4)
  15. Way to touch honest leader (4)
  16. City with a rag in a {4a} (4)
  17. {8d} writing framework (7)

Central image credit: Steven Depolo, CC BY 2.0

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  • 4
    $\begingroup$ I’m a believer in your puzzle-making skill! $\endgroup$ – El-Guest Mar 21 at 0:50
  • $\begingroup$ 12a I think IN and ACQUIRED are conflicting. $\endgroup$ – Chris Cudmore Mar 21 at 1:01
  • $\begingroup$ FWIW I think 12a is OK. $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Mar 21 at 1:09
  • $\begingroup$ I suppose you could take it as the phrase "Have confidence in" but the word that keys to is often followed by "on" So I'd say IN should go. $\endgroup$ – Chris Cudmore Mar 21 at 1:22
  • $\begingroup$ Would I be right in assuming that in the maze, no words overlap with each other in the same direction, only between across and down words? e.g. ARMORDER has overlapping OR between ARMOR and ORDER. $\endgroup$ – ZanyG Mar 21 at 8:32
5
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Partial answer to some clues.

9d.

Authentic {12d:BACK} transfer final, not initial (8)
ORIGINAL - GIRO< + (f)INAL

7d.

Bones's {9d:ORIGINAL} function in USS enterprise (9)
BUSINESS - B(ones) + SINE in USS

13a.

{7d:BUSINESS} degree to cause misery to African city (7)
MBABANE (capital of Eswanti / Swaziland) - MBA + BANE

16a.

{15a:CRAVING} a cleanup, forget pressing start (4)
URGE - (p)URGE (cleanup - P(ressing))

Final maze.   Gareth and Chris have filled in most of the answers, so credit to them. The final maze looks like this:

Maze

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  • $\begingroup$ Everything's correct except 8d (Chris Cudmore's answer is correct there). Between the three of you you have everything except 7a. $\endgroup$ – jafe Mar 21 at 13:10
  • $\begingroup$ Ah, yes, that makes better sense. (I hadn't looked at Chris's answer.) $\endgroup$ – M Oehm Mar 21 at 13:12
  • $\begingroup$ Alright, I'm peaking. 9D is absolutely impossible for a Non-European to figure out. $\endgroup$ – Chris Cudmore Mar 21 at 13:46
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ We like to have our little niches of secret Old World knowledge ... ;) $\endgroup$ – M Oehm Mar 21 at 13:53
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ The letters along the path anagram to the chorus of "I'm a Believer", obviously. $\endgroup$ – M Oehm Mar 21 at 18:53
3
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Partial If I could do inline spoilers, I'd inline the substitutions.

Across

1 Permission to infuriate, losing nation's {5d} associated with the left (7)
2 Pilgrim shakes head, joins {3d} to abstain from participating (7)

BOY + sCOTT pilgrim (comic book character)

3 Orbit around vandalized totem symbol of South {10d} (8)

! PALMETTO not entirely parsed, but LAP + TOTEM all anagrammed up.

4 Important organ to {2a} keynote, leading to a tangle (4)

KeyNOTe (EYE boycotts KEYNOTE)

5 Spin single going {13d} behind central clubhouse (7)

ENGLISH anagram of single + h

6 Losing final argument, chauvinist {4d} numbers (5)

SIXES SEXIST - T (Final argument) So 4D must mean back or reverse

7 Extremely common containers, primarily metal (4)
8 Wash and finally brush a mop color, alternately (7)

bruSH A M ** o **P c O l O r

9 Spiritual leaders siege America for food items (8)
10 High time for antivirus to block the middleman (4)

NO rt ON (not fully parsed but a good guess)

11 Assessment for former Vietnam right-wingers (4)
12 Newly have confidence in acquired currency (8)

RE(CENT)LY

13 {7d} degree to cause misery to African city (7)
14 Fruit wines central in cooked apple pie (9)

PINEAPPLE Wines central is N

15 In need of carving at {6a} and sevens (7)

CRAVING (anagram of carving - "At Sixes and Sevens" means confused)

16 {15a} a cleanup, forget pressing start (4)

Down

1 Oral tradition expressed by people with a strange role (8)

FOLK+LORE

2 Leading activists {12a} sheltering seabird by turns (11)

A+L(TERN)ATELY

3 High-ranking Mormon abruptly stern to child (9)

brigham YOUNG + STERn

4 Turned to reject without first sign of reason (4)
5 Leading explosive ignores military conflict (4)
6 Christmas novel {7a} virgin's introduction (4)
7 Bones's {9d} function in USS enterprise (9)
8 Deception extremely hateful, trees said (4)

H + OAX ... extremely Hateful + Homophone of OAKS

9 Authentic {12d} transfer final, not initial (8)
10 Panthers' home is in a {6d} at the top (8)

CAROL + IN A not fully parsed still need 6d but this goes wihh 3a

11 Sea cows have tea, eat lost insects (6)

MANTES (MANATEES - "EAT" insert a T (for TEA) Plural of MANTIS

12 Support softcover lacking material (4)

paperBACK

13 First biological genus of {14a} fruits (7)

B+ANANAS

14 Mother leaves fresh {11d} home (4)

NEST MANTES - MA, fresh (anagram)

15 Way to touch honest leader (4)

PAT + Honest

16 City with a rag in a {4a} (4)

AGRA (A RAG in a knot)

17 {8d} writing framework (7)

CON + TEXT

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ All correct so far! $\endgroup$ – jafe Mar 21 at 13:03
3
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Partial answer

OK, so I've abandoned my pride and filled my gaps with others' answers; we now have everything except for 7a. The across answers are:

LICENSE BOYCOTT PALMETTO KNOT ENGLISH SIXES [7a goes here] SHAMPOO SAUSAGES NOON EXAM RECENTLY MBABANE PINEAPPLE CRAVING URGE

and the down answers are:

FOLKLORE ALTERNATELY YOUNGSTER SPUN HEAD NOEL BUSINESS HOAX ORIGINAL CAROLINA MANTES BACK BANANAS NEST PATH AGRA CONTEXT

(I still don't quite understand 5d, but no one else has anything different and I think jafe has said that we have everything except 7a, so it must be right...)

Now, an observation that may (but probably doesn't) help us figure out something about the mysterious 7a.

Look at that Y near the top right. It has to be part of an across answer. The existing ones with Y in are BOYCOTT and RECENTLY. It can't be part of BOYCOTT because there isn't enough space to its right. If it's part of RECENTLY then the R is (at present) at the end of a down space, but there are no down answers ending in R. So either (1) that Y is the end of RECENTLY and there's a wall above the R at the start of that word, or (2) the Y is part of the answer to 7a. (Is there some way to make 7a be VERY? That does mean "extremely", and ends in Y, but nothing else about it seems to work.) I think option 1 is more likely.

Explanations for the answers I got:

1a. Permission to infuriate, losing nation's {5d:HEAD?} associated with the left (7)

LICENSE: INCENSE-N after L

2a. Pilgrim shakes head, joins {3d:YOUNGSTER} to abstain from participating (7)

BOYCOTT: BOY + (s)COTT

3a. Orbit around vandalized totem symbol of South {10d:CAROLINA} (8)

PALMETTO: LAP< + TOTEM*

4a. Important organ to {2a:BOYCOTT} keynote, leading to a tangle (4)

KNOT: K(ey)NOT(e)

5a. Spin single going {13d:BANANAS} behind central clubhouse (7)

ENGLISH: SINGLE* after (club)H(ouse)

6a. Losing final argument, chauvinist {4d:SPUN} numbers (5)

SIXES: SEXIS(t)<

7a. Extremely common containers, primarily metal (4)
8a. Wash and finally brush a mop color, alternately (7)

SHAMPOO: (bru)SH + A + M(o)P(c)O(l)O(r)

9a. Spiritual leaders siege America for food items (8)

SAUSAGES: SAGES around USA

10a. High time for antivirus to block the middleman (4)

NOON: NO(rt)ON ???

11a. Assessment for former Vietnam right-wingers (4)

EXAM: EX+(vietn)AM

12a. Newly have confidence in acquired currency (8)

RECENTLY: RELY contains ("acquired") CENT

13a. {7d} degree to cause misery to African city (7)
14a. Fruit wines central in cooked apple pie (9)

PINEAPPLE: anag of (wi)N(es)+APPLEPIE

15a. In need of carving at {6a:SIXES} and sevens (7)

CRAVING: CARVING*

16a. {15a:CRAVING} a cleanup, forget pressing start (4)
1d. Oral tradition expressed by people with a strange role (8)

FOLKLORE: FOLK+ROLE*

2d. Leading activists {12a:RECENTLY} sheltering seabird by turns (11)

ALTERNATELY: A+LATELY shelters TERN

3d. High-ranking Mormon abruptly stern to child (9)

YOUNGSTER: (Brigham) YOUNG + STER(n)

4d. Turned to reject without first sign of reason (4)

SPUN: SPURN-R(eason)

5d. Leading explosive ignores military conflict (4)

HEAD? (HE=explosive, but what then?)

6d. Christmas novel {7a:ZINC?} virgin's introduction (4)

NOEL: NOVEL-V(irgin); 7a might mean "before" or "without"

7d. Bones's {9d} function in USS enterprise (9)
8d. Deception extremely hateful, trees said (4)
9d. Authentic {12d:BACK} transfer final, not initial (8)
10d. Panthers' home is in a {6d:NOEL} at the top (8)

CAROLINA: IN A preceded by CAROL

11d. Sea cows have tea, eat lost insects (6)
12d. Support softcover lacking material (4)

BACK: PAPERBACK-PAPER

13d. First biological genus of {14a} fruits (7)

BANANAS: B+ANANAS

14d. Mother leaves fresh {11d} home (4)
15d. Way to touch honest leader (4)

PATH: PAT+H(onest)

16d. City with a rag in a {4a:KNOT} (4)

AGRA: ARAG*

17d. {8d} writing framework (7)

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  • $\begingroup$ @jafe Would you care to comment on whether my 7a is right? I strongly suspect it isn't. $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Mar 21 at 1:05
  • $\begingroup$ 7a is not correct. $\endgroup$ – jafe Mar 21 at 4:06
  • $\begingroup$ Btw, everything's been found except 7a. Just noting in case you want to peek at other answers :) $\endgroup$ – jafe Mar 21 at 13:25
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Could Chris's 7a rot13(pnaf) be read as an &lit: Ca(lcium) <primarily metal - meaning put first> +ns <Extremely common containers>? $\endgroup$ – Tom Mar 21 at 16:07
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ 5d has already been confirmed, but I think the wordplay is based on "warhead". $\endgroup$ – M Oehm Mar 21 at 19:31

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