Too Many Seacrest (Solution)

by Rob Speer

The clues give anagrams of Mystery Hunt team names plus a letter. The blanks appear alphabetically by team name; you need to figure out which blanks go with which clues, and the extra letters in clue order spell "CALL IN A SUPERIOR CLUE FOR YOUR TEAM; DON'T ANSWER IT."

Calling in a valid clue for their team name, which we can solve at HQ and consider sufficiently good, earns the team the answer to the puzzle, GERALD J FORD.

  • [C] Montague rival = CAPULET = Up Late + C
  • [A] His superpower is that he can make anything into a terrible arrangement for unaccompanied voices = SHITTY A CAPPELLA MAN = Metaphysical Plant + A
  • [L] As the greatest competitors on Earth run, swim and bike their way around the 100-sided course, a spectator shouts "Hey!" = INTERJECTION AT THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP HECTAGON TRIATHLON = PART I: NON-CONTRADICTION; CHAPTER I: THE THEME 'Who is John Galt?'... + L
  • [L] Where you'll find a nebulous Zero Mostel = VAGUELY IN FIDDLER ON THE ROOF = Grand Unified Theory of Love + L
  • [I] They order a lot of food from Bertucci's and then discard whatever they don't like = PIZZA CULLERS = Cal Puzzlers + I
  • [N] When you fail to stack your dishes in the cupboard in the proper Russian way, this happens = KITCHEN TETRIS TUMBLE = Better Luck This Time + N
  • [A] Proprietary information is oozing from your nipples = LACTATING TRADE SECRETS = Galactic Trendsetters + A
  • [S] Plant lice = APHIDS = ADPhi + S
  • [U] Substantial delay, possibly due to Fezzik attempting a robbery = GIANT HOLDUP = Plaid Thong + U
  • [P] People who fucking love that stuff between floor tiles = PROFANE GROUT FANS = Fangorn Foureast + P
  • [E] At a rival school, everyone can hear you fail = CALTECH AMPLIFIES F = Metaphiscal Cliff + E
  • [R] Parent who doesn't believe in the golden tablets = NON-MORMON MOM = Om Nom Nom Nom + R
  • [I] My brain is full of thunder = STORM IN MY HEAD = Random Thymes + I
  • [O] When Goodyear's agents infiltrate Michelin = TIRE ESPIONAGE = Eigenpirates + O
  • [R] Beware of prejudice and pride = WARNING: REVERSE AUSTEN = Strange New Universe, A + R
  • [C] When that guy tells stories about adventurers over a pulsating electronic beat and a Roland supersaw, a good time is had by all = TRANCE BARD IS SO MUCH FUN = Frumious Bandersnatch + C
  • [L] Picture captioned "I CAN HAZ SPARKLINES?" = LOL-TUFTE = Left Out + L
  • [U] Your getaway boat should be as close as possible when you rob the beachhouse -- check where the shoreline is = BURGLE AT HIGH TIDE = Light Brigade, The + U
  • [E] A sometime Stooge after being knighted = SIR SHEMP = shrimps + E
  • [F] Mushrooms growing in the bottom of a building = BASEMENT FUNGI = Unseen Gambit + F
  • [O] Stay out of the way of a looney devil = AVOID TAZ = DataViz + O
  • [R] Quick summary of what happened to an overbuilt casino = TOO LARGE; TORN DOWN = Too Long; Won't Read + R
  • [Y] He's 70 years old and he's not keeping up with most of the Institute requirements = OLD MAN GENERALLY FAILING AT MIT = Illegal, Immoral, and Fattening + Y
  • [O] Garfield never had to get up and go to work, so this made no sense = HE HATED MONDAY A.M. = Death and Mayhem + O
  • [U] Be like a zombie and re-do Halloween = EMULATE ROB = Meteor Lab + U
  • [R] The Sages won't win this, and neither will the Thymes = ROSEMARY CONTEST = Setec Astronomy + R
  • [T] You can pull them out to determine distances up to this long: —— = TWO-EM TAPE MEASURES = Super Team Awesome + T
  • [E] After that, Mr. Fry realized he was actually in Istanbul = STEPHEN ARRIVED AT CONSTANTINOPLE = Providence Transplantations, The + E
  • [A] Is she a detective or a thief? I'm kind of confused by the name on the door = ROBIN BANK, P.I. = Pink Ribbon + A
  • [M] Indie hipsters already know these won't be as good as Funeral = THE NEXT RELEASES FROM ARCADE FIRE = Left as an Exercise for the Reader + M
  • [D] Sorry, MIT doesn't admit marine mammals = A DOLPHIN APPLIES = Alpha Epsilon Pi + D
  • [O] Doubtful question for American FIFA watchers = IS SOCCER RELEVANT? = Central Services + O
  • [N] Decide there is definitely no God and have a great time = ENJOY FULL ATHEISM = Family Joules, The + N
  • [T] Eh, let's solve puzzles later when round 4 comes out = PROCRASTINATE INTO INDY = Insanity Incorporated + T
  • [A] Hendrix turns his song about LSD into a less colorful song about distributed computing; what it means depends on the circumstances = CONTEXTUAL CLOUD HAZE = Codex Zouche-Nuttall + A
  • [N] One who is inexperienced at carrying things on a stage = PROP NOOB = RoboPop + N
  • [S] Organizational "system" for my desk = RANDOM PILES = Palindrome + S
  • [W] Haven't the Northern Lights looked odd these days? = SUCH CURIOUS AURORAS NOW = Raucous Raucous Rhinos + W
  • [E] "Computer, here is a declarative definition of widgets. How many wigdets are there?" "false" = PROLOG COUNTER = Control Group + E
  • [R] Mathematical assumption that there exists a 10,000 PPI display = VERY SMALL PIXEL AXIOM = Maximally Explosive + R
  • [I] Reporters in Tehran intend to give up = IRAN PRESS WILL RESIGN = Sleipnir's Wranglers + I
  • [T] You could use it to fasten a wheel on a blimp = DIRIGIBLE LUG NUT = Uglier Building + T

Here are the clues sorted by team name, which is how the blanks appear in the puzzle:

  • ADPhi + S: APHIDS
  • Alpha Epsilon Pi + D: A DOLPHIN APPLIES
  • Better Luck This Time + N: KITCHEN TETRIS TUMBLE
  • Cal Puzzlers + I: PIZZA CULLERS
  • Central Services + O: IS SOCCER RELEVANT?
  • Codex Zouche-Nuttall + A: CONTEXTUAL CLOUD HAZE
  • Control Group + E: PROLOG COUNTER
  • DataViz + O: AVOID TAZ
  • Death and Mayhem + O: HE HATED MONDAY A.M.
  • Eigenpirates + O: TIRE ESPIONAGE
  • Family Joules, The + N: ENJOY FULL ATHEISM
  • Fangorn Foureast + P: PROFANE GROUT FANS
  • Frumious Bandersnatch + C: TRANCE BARD IS SO MUCH FUN
  • Galactic Trendsetters + A: LACTATING TRADE SECRETS
  • Grand Unified Theory of Love + L: VAGUELY IN FIDDLER ON THE ROOF
  • Illegal, Immoral, and Fattening + Y: OLD MAN GENERALLY FAILING AT MIT
  • Insanity Incorporated + T: PROCRASTINATE INTO INDY
  • Left as an Exercise for the Reader + M: THE NEXT RELEASES FROM ARCADE FIRE
  • Left Out + L: LOL-TUFTE
  • Light Brigade, The + U: BURGLE AT HIGH TIDE
  • Maximally Explosive + R: VERY SMALL PIXEL AXIOM
  • Metaphiscal Cliff + E: CALTECH AMPLIFIES F
  • Metaphysical Plant + A: SHITTY A CAPPELLA MAN
  • Meteor Lab + U: EMULATE ROB
  • Om Nom Nom Nom + R: NON-MORMON MOM
  • Palindrome + S: RANDOM PILES
  • PART I: NON-CONTRADICTION; CHAPTER I: THE THEME 'Who is John Galt?'... + L: INTERJECTION AT THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP HECTAGON TRIATHLON
  • Pink Ribbon + A: ROBIN BANK, P.I.
  • Plaid Thong + U: GIANT HOLDUP
  • Providence Transplantations, The + E: STEPHEN ARRIVED AT CONSTANTINOPLE
  • Random Thymes + I: STORM IN MY HEAD
  • Raucous Raucous Rhinos + W: SUCH CURIOUS AURORAS NOW
  • RoboPop + N: PROP NOOB
  • Setec Astronomy + R: ROSEMARY CONTEST
  • shrimps + E: SIR SHEMP
  • Sleipnir's Wranglers + I: IRAN PRESS WILL RESIGN
  • Strange New Universe, A + R: WARNING: REVERSE AUSTEN
  • Super Team Awesome + T: TWO-EM TAPE MEASURES
  • Too Long; Won't Read + R: TOO LARGE; TORN DOWN
  • Uglier Building + T: DIRIGIBLE LUG NUT
  • Unseen Gambit + F: BASEMENT FUNGI
  • Up Late + C: CAPULET