- 19A: Restaurant special (SOUP OF THE DAY).
- 27A: '60s ABC boxing show (FIGHT OF THE WEEK).
- 41A: Featured mail-order club offering (BOOK OF THE MONTH).
- 47A: Motor Trend magazine award (CAR OF THE YEAR).
There's quite a bit of crosswordese in the fill, but it is Monday after all. And there are a couple of interesting and/or Scrabbly words in the grid like OPAQUE, KELP and REHASH. I had some trouble in the Oklahoma/Texas area where my frequent inability to parse long down answers showed itself. It's just something about reading on the vertical that gives me trouble. Sometimes I end up writing the word out horizontally just so I can see it properly and get my head-slap moment. Reading PUT*TO*ED from top to bottom was just not going anywhere and the crosses of PAT and BARA were not helping. I mean, come on, BARA?! The only "silents" actresses I've ever needed to know are Zasu Pitts and Nita Naldi. Expanding that particular list to three seems a little excessive, doesn't it??
- 1A: __ Squad: Best Buy service team (GEEK). Actually had to think about this one. My brain didn't want to move away from the Buy More "Nerd Herd" on the TV show "Chuck."
- 32A: Fillies, as adults (MARES). Look like we've got a little female animal subtheme going here. See also 8D: Doe, for one (FEMALE).
- 33A: Singer Chris or actor Stephen (REA). Do I know who Chris REA is? ... Nope, I sure don't. But wow. He's got a great voice.
- 38A: Minute stake? (ANTE). Well sometimes it's not very minute, but we get the point.
- 58A: French parting (ADIEU). I'm all "The French had something to do with parting the Red Sea?!" So weird the associations we make.
- 61A: Roger who played Bond (MOORE). Like this one. Roger? I went right to Daltrey. (Okay, first I went to my uncle Roger, but that probably doesn't mean anything to you.) I don't think either one of those Rogers would have made a credible James Bond.
- 21D: Qatar's capital (DOHA). Is this the capital city or the country's currency? … It's the city. Qatar's currency is the riyal.
- 48D: Top choice, for short (FAVE). With F*VE in place I thought, well sure "five" is the top choice on a scale of one to five but … what the heck is "five" short for? Ohhhh, I get it now.
- 16A: Inland Asian sea (ARAL).
- 24A: Rap's Dr. __ (DRE).
- 33A: Singer Chris or actor Stephen (REA).
- 34A: Tennis star/anti-apartheid activist Arthur (ASHE).
- 44A: B'way "no seats" sign (SRO).
- 63A: Cathedral recess (APSE).
- 3D: Biblical twin (ESAU).
- 12D: __ Khan (AGA).
Everything Else — 5A: Paving surface (TAR); 8A: Classic orange soda (FANTA); 13A: Bit of subterfuge (RUSE); 14A: Naked (BARE); 15A: Ruthless J.R. on "Dallas" (EWING); 17A: Write on, as sheet metal (ETCH); 18A: Mediterranean island country (MALTA); 22A: Barrio uncle (TIO); 23A: MSN rival (AOL); 35A: Microwave gadget (TIMER); 36A: Sci-fi escape craft (POD); 37A: Geometry calculations (AREAS); 39A: Vienna's land: Abbr. (AUS.); 40A: Nasal detections (ODORS); 45A: Contrived (PAT); 46A: Run in (NAB); 53A: Ribs sauce style, briefly (BAR-B-Q); 56A: Silents actress Theda (BARA); 57A: Niger neighbor (MALI); 59A: What avengers get (EVEN); 60A: Study a lot in a short time (CRAM); 62A: Low grade (DEE); 1D: Mardi __ (GRAS); 2D: Continental cash (EURO); 4D: Brown seaweed (KELP); 5D: Bit of body art (TATTOO); 6D: Semicircular entrance (ARCH); 7D: Prepared, as leftovers (REHEATED); 9D: On holiday, say (AWAY); 10D: Zero, in soccer (NIL); 11D: Explosive abbr. (TNT); 14D: Suits (BEFITS); 20D: Catchall category (OTHER); 24D: The Kalahari, for one (DESERT); 25D: Uninspired new version (REHASH); 26D: Barely gets by, with "out" (EKES); 27D: Key of Beethoven's "Appassionata" Sonata (F MINOR); 28D: "You are not!" rejoinder ("I AM TOO!"); 29D: Plato's language (GREEK); 30D: First-year student, briefly (FROSH); 31D: __ Terror: Bush campaign (WAR ON); 35D: Bills at bars (TABS); 36D: Finished dealing with (PUT TO BED); 37D: Hacienda brick (ADOBE); 39D: "We Three Kings" adverb (AFAR); 40D: Certain Nebraskan (OMAHAN); 42D: Opposite of transparent (OPAQUE); 43D: Main dish (ENTREE); 47D: Trucker with a handle (CB'ER); 49D: Song sung with arm motions (YMCA); 50D: O.K. Corral name (EARP); 51D: Word of sorrow (ALAS); 52D: "The __ of the Ancient Mariner" (RIME); 53D: "Pow!" cousin ("BAM!"); 54D: Hoo-ha (ADO); 55D: __ Grande (RIO).