The Apprentice : our man watches bad TV so you don’t have to
The Apprentice Week 3
Three weeks into the ”Ëprocess’-we are constantly informed it is not a game-show although it so very obviously is-and this week’s task was to enlist two teams of corporate cannibals, who have very little experience in the field, to first create a condiment and then sell it onto either trade or the public; a bit like an upmarket polyester suited Generation Game. The first task for host and quizmaster Alan Sugar was to even the two teams up as the female team, Sterling aka SAS, are operating with depleted ranks after losing the previous two tasks.
So moving the unpopular Katie over to the male team-thereby allowing the other women to bitch about her to the new arrivals which they promptly did within minutes- Phoenix (Nights?) and two males over to the female teams the gender balance is still heavily unequal. I find it strange that a show which is supposedly of the twenty first century still initially splits its teams according to gender creating an immediate primitive sense of divide and showing a distinct lack of imagination for a programme which seeks to unearth new ideas. Also mixing the teams up a little inevitably lends itself to some seriously cringe-worthy flirting by some delusional Lothario which combined with the egos on display makes for highly unintentional comedy moments.
The programme threw up little in the way of surprise however as the products from both teams were decidedly uninspiring and uninspired as were the constantly lame jokes about relishing the moment and getting into a pickle whilst being saucy. Phoenix came up with Belissimo ”âwhich should have been spelt Bellissimo though no-one amongst this group of supposed highfliers spotted this crucial mistake until labels had been printed- but reaction to it indicated more than the spelling was wrong with the actual sauce within the bottle. Acting as project manager Katie’s right hand man, Stephen, blew his own trumpet heralding himself as an ”Ëideas man’ but somehow revealing himself to be little more than a complete tosser.
Sterling opted for a pineapple, chilli and ginger chutney and even though I am adventurous in my food choices I could tell from the combination it would be vile, Matters were not helped by messing up the ingredients and overdosing on the chilli causing last night’s funniest moment as project manager Duane to cough his insides out onto the factory floor after a taste test. Ah! The sweet taste of success!
Selling the latter product proved more of a problem as this balls-up over the chilli resulted in the selling team trying to sell a product without having any product to sell. Obviously this set the team back a little but not as much as the complete disaster over at the other teams factory space. Here the problem was not so much the product but the fact they were going for volume of sales at a low price but a miscalculation resulted in not enough product therefore resulting in a higher price for a sub-standard product. From this juncture the writing was on the wall and Phoenix were well on their way to their first loss after having been extremely fortuitous over the previous two weeks.
So all Katie had to do now was choose her two fall guys for the board room, eventually plumping for anonymous bore Michael and the ridiculously named, totally up his own arse, Ricky Martin. Adam, who made the fatal mistake of trying to claim all the credit for the teams success before finding out they had lost, slunk unobtrusively into the background after the results were announced and had a lucky escape. I was expecting more from this showdown in the boardroom than it actually delivered.
The previous weeks have seen the female team at full screech with stilettos sharper than daggers and talons poised to take out eyes as well as any opposition. The male team have shown divisions which could rival this bunch of harridans but the seemingly insipid Michael struggled to even raise an eyebrow never mind his voice and more disappointingly made little impression at all. It was evident he was going from pretty early on in the proceedings although Ricky shows great promise of becoming a hate figure for the series-human foghorn Jenna is his closest rival and probably has the edge so far, although Stephen and Adam revealed themselves as contenders- and a more worthy adversary than the insipid Michael will hopefully bring it out in him. I see him as a regular boardroom visitor over the weeks as he has the habit of being able to annoy without having to do anything much to elicit such a negative feeling.
I am hoping next week livens up a little as the last two weeks have been rather subdued. More fireworks are needed and mixing the teams up a little more, as they are already starting to become a little complacent, is definitely in order.