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ACROSS
 1 Back , like a bird (6)
 5 Curtailed talk about Frisbee at the Olympics? (6)
 8 Matt Drudge, finally taken in by president, laid out… (9)
 9 …the letters needed for the last name of a constructor of crosswords about vision (5)
11 More cheerful, and more like a devout Muslim? (7)
12 Horrid girl, ten, with a little curl (7)
13 Jack Fitzgerald Kennedy is whipped (11)
15 See 4
16 and 6 downBatter clipped holiday noise-maker (4,4)
17 Blow up air mattress—that’ll get you some exercise (11)
20 Praise piece of software backed up twofold (7)
23 Military aircraft pushing violently (7)
24 The most undesirable part of departmental leadership: rules (5)
25 Brand-new attitude—what you’d need to serve lamb (4,5)
26 Bury nurse, at first, with doctor (6)
27 Sycophants smuggle sulfur into Middle Eastern country (3-3)
DOWN
 2 Pressure Senator Thurmond about northern tabloid on the rise (6-3)
 3 Marine sex-change inspectors (9)
 4 and 15 acrossStrangely, Saturn contains a tiny plant that’s a source of energy (7,3)
 5 French writer in the grip of sordid erotica (7)
 6 See 16
 7 Before hunt, illuminate innards (5)
 8 Skip ahead and refuse to eat, in solidarity with Cleaver (4-7)
10 Disaster: hipster with a verse (11)
14 San Diego’s shifting assessments (9)
15 Outages he repaired in groundskeeper’s dwelling, possibly (9)
18 A black cat, perhaps, with head stuffed inside belly (7)
19 Nineteenth-century style: checkered green with corduroy fringes (7)
21 Groom ‘em? (5)
22 Trim both sides of pattern for walkway (5)
 
ACROSS 1 & 15D 2 defs. 3 B(RIQUETT)E (quitter anag.) 8 & 19D STARCH + AMBER 9 “pre-Madonna” 11 INTEND + ANT 12 anag. 13 anag. 14 TR(I)AGE (great anag.) 17 RE(FUN)D 18 ARTIS + TIC (sitar anag.) 21 anag. 23 EMIL + E(Z)OLA (rev.) 24 IRON + M(AIDE)N 25 [c]LIMB[s] 26 GIN + [f]OR MOUS[e] 27 hidden
DOWN 1 “pistols” 2 2 defs. 3 BAR(NACL)E 4 IN + MATE 5 UND(E.T.)ERMINED 6 initial letters 7 EXAM + PLE[a] 10 pun 16 AR[e] + BITERS 17 RI(SKI)NG 20 ME(XI)CO (come anag.) 22 ADO + RN