Tag Archives: Alan Sugar

The Apprentice – Series 7, Episode 5

2 Jun

Image courtesy of Jasminejennyjen via Flickr

Oooh look at that light there. Up there. The light. Ahhhhhh. See the light? They’re light? THERE LIGHT?Yup, it made no sense: CatSIZE: See Their Light. Right you are then.

I knew I was in for a cracking episode when I accidentally stumbled across a headline mentioning the SURPRISE DOUBLE FIRING this morning (I missed the episode last night as I was busy indulging in my newest crush Bradley Cooper at the cinema. And if you don’t see the attraction, watch this. Seriously. Gird your loins and watch it). But I wasn’t to know quite how entertaining it would be. From the trained actor imitating a cat with a Margot complex to top totty Tom baring his chest in the name of advertising, it was full of classic moments.

Even if I hadn’t spoiled things for myself, it was pretty clear that Vincent was on the way out when he flagrantly ignored the vet’s advice and stormed though with the Everydog idea. There was a *bit* of  competition though. The flimsy teamwork on Glenn’s team seemed destined for a boardroom showdown – there but for the grace of ad execs, I say.

Both Ellie and Vincent deserved the chop: she, for the lack of chutzpah and, well, anything; he, for being a lily-livered PM. It seems Jim’s card is marked – too much of a smartarse for Lord Sugar. Tom and Melody are still two of my tips for the top at this point. Everyone else is showing their weaknesses – or nothing much at all.

Who do you reckon has made an impression? And who should get the finger next?

UPDATE: I just remembered the genius of the Boleg Bros, who upload Lego-type animations of The Apprentice. Check them out here.

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The Apprentice – Series 7, Episode Two

12 May

Image courtesy of domanske (click for Flickr link)

Who knew elephants sounded like dogs barking, eh?

The Beeb has well and truly treated us this week, with not one but TWO episodes of The Apprentice, ensuring that we all get nicely suckered in. It’ll make the wait until next week excruciating, but what a way to grab our attention.

In the second of this week’s episodes, teams Logic and Venture (names as reminiscent of Lynx as ever) had to create, develop and market an app that would set the world’s smartphones on fire. Or, you know, be incredibly offensive or mind-numbingly boring. I was just as surprised as you at which turned out to be more popular.

Of course, it was the global appeal of a distressed baby that swung it for the girls, although app-solutely everybody thought the girls were headed for a showdown with the Lord. Yet despite their lack of marketing (unless you count those exquisite gloves Edna sported) and passion for the idea, The Apprentice delivered one of those 180s that we still seemingly haven’t got used to.

I must admit – I’m having trouble with the ladies. There’s Melody, Edna, Susan and….erm… the blonde northern one? The young blonde? Someone called Helen…and er….some others…. Perhaps it’s just because the focus has been on the losing team thus far, but the men in the competition have left a greater impression on me so far. I’m sure this will swap around by next week – from the preview it looked like the teams were mixed up a bit next week. I’m looking forward to getting to know all the candidates better and having a favourite.

Was Alex the right man for the chop? I think so – with this series’ prize of investment from Alan, the qualities he’s looking for have shifted slightly. Whereas before it was often the quietest voices who went on to win, this year’s winner needs to show gumption and chutzpah. Alex didn’t. He also seemed devoid of a sense of humour on You’re Fired, unlike gracious – if misguided – Edward.

Oh – I’ve spotted another lookalike. Loving your suggestions – keep them coming!

Jim Eastwood

Doug

The Apprentice – Week Five

4 Nov

This week was all about the boardroom.

Don’t get me wrong, the task was still entertaining and gave us plenty of opportunities to laugh at the hapless muppets, but it was pretty predictable stuff. Paloma’s epic self-immolation was the only surprise in the heavy-handedly edited episode.

The focus on Apollo over Synergy signalled they were headed for a date with disaster. Either nothing genuinely went wrong for Liz and her team or it was edited out to focus our attention on Apollo. The same can be said for Alex. As soon as Paloma told him he would be responsible for the promotional pitch, we knew he was headed for the boardroom.

I completely agreed with Lord Sugar – Paloma was clearly covering her back and looking who to pass the buck to. Of course, Alex was an absolute fool and has no business calling himself a “retail guru”, but ultimately, Paloma was the project manager and had to take responsibility for losing out on the sparkly dresses that made so much moolah.

Just like last week, the losers lost the task because they lost out on the best product. Apollo’s flat response to Liquorice meant they were stuck with the environmentally-friendly range, which unfortunately, was not wallet-friendly (or nice in any way what so ever).

Still, boring Chris (as opposed to Scouse Christopher) tried his best to sell the godawful dress made of ties. Perhaps he tried a little too hard, as he came across as leery and insincere rather than complimentary. Still, he obviously knows best as he managed to palm it off to a willing customer.

I may well be going mad (induced by the realisation getting a Masters degree is actually hard work), but Stuart Baggs – The Brand – was actually pretty funny this week. I’m amazed he’s lasted this long considering his hideous first impression, but he’s actually done the smart thing and skulked in the background. Hopefully he will fail in spectacular fashion soon though.

I have also deduced that it is perfectly acceptable to have a mini-crush on Jamie. Posh, good looking and not that horrible (these words will surely come back to haunt me) – he’s the best we’ve got really. Although he displayed a worrying level of snobbery and ignorance of ‘the North’ this week. I spent three of the best years of my life in Manchester and anyone who disses it gets minus points straightaway.

Next week’s episode looks far better than this week’s for two reasons.

1) It is the standard advertising task, which is inevitably hilarious and cringeable in equal measures.

2) My friend is in it! We caught a glimpse of her in the preview, as part of the judging audience for the team’s adverts (she used to work in the industry before giving all the glamour up for life as a magazine journo). She promises gossip galore once it’s aired, but she won’t spoil it for us. And I’m glad. There’s nothing so horrid as knowing the outcome before the event.

 

The Apprentice – Week Two

16 Oct

In news that is, in fact, not news to anyone but me, I finally discovered where the theme tune comes from this week when I saw Romeo and Juliet at Sadler’s Wells.

So now you know (you probably did already to be fair).

This week’s task for the hopeless hopefuls was to design and produce an original beach accessory and pitch it succesfully to retailers.

Not too difficult, you would think. Everyone knows the main problems that come with beach holidays (sandy pants, exploding sun cream, kids and/or pets running off) so it should be a pretty simple task.

You would think.

Laura (she of the heinous polo fame) led Apollo, while Stella took over at Synergy. Both had my sympathy as team leaders; Stella had to put up with outrageous sexism from the boys as they cajoled her into posing for the promo (she should have put up a better fight though) while Laura tried to get her team to behave as rational humans for more than a minute.

Brava to Karren Brady for her feminist speech in the boardroom. The girls’ behaviour was despicable and an awful representation of women – in business or not-, depicting them as shrewish bickering bullies.

Rather unsurprisingly, the girls lost. The product was awful and the pitching was lacklustre, but Laura really blew it with Boots. The Cuuli suffered from its poor concept but its marketing was actually quite good – I can just picture it on the shelves at Lakeland.

Neither team fully deserved to win just as none of the three in the boardroom deserved to stay. Joy was fired, for her apathetic inaction, but Laura was probably the one to blame for bringing in 0 sales. Lord Sugar will definitely have to keep a careful watch on Joanna though – I started the show feeling sorry for the way she was sidelined by her team mates but soon decided they had the right idea as she became boorish and, frankly, a pain in the arse.

Next week looks promising – will the candidates rise to the challenge? Will they manage to make enough dough? Will I be able to think up enough baking puns for a whole post?

If you’ve not seen their work before, please check out the Boleg Bros Apprentice vlog. I recommend watching older ones too, last series’ Pantsman episode is particularly brilliant.

Lord Sugar will see you now

7 Oct

Praise be to the gods of televisual gold: The Apprentice is BACK, and with rather a bang.

Last night’s opening episode introduced us to the latest intake of dimwits, tryhards and wankers this side of Big Brother (RIP).

Stuart Baggs is set to fill this year’s outrageously-awful-but-great-entertainment quota (see Ben Clarke, Lee McQueen and Katie Hopkins) and even comes complete with his own “money back guarantee”. I wouldn’t bother if I were SirAlan…oops, I mean Lord Sugar.

It was an inevitable exit for losing leader Dan Harris. Dan, did your mother never tell you that shouting, swearing and crossing your arms butters no parsnips? The girls’ leader Joanna was lucky though – they survived by just £15, when it should have been a lot more. Watch out for Melissa (Gok Wan gone wrong) – she’s sure to kick up many a fuss.

Speaking of the ladies, I think they made a distinctly underwhelming impression this week, but I won’t hold it against them. They simply couldn’t compete with the ridiculously testosterone-fuelled boys and their limp and pallid sausages.

There’s not much more I can say about the candidates (apart from the awful polo neck sported by Laura – is she not aware they haven’t been ‘in’ since the nineties?) so I’ll move on to the revamped boardroom trio.

Yes, Karren Brady was on the Junior Apprentice – and what a fine bit of telly that was too – but last night marked her debut on the grown up version. Didn’t she do well? Not as arch as Saint Margaret (who can forget this?) but she has promise. Nick ‘Silver Fox’ Hewer was on fine form, as always, while the big bad teddy bear was pun-forgettable (see what I did there?).

I’ll leave you with a clip of my favourite Apprentice moment ever. Will it be bettered this year? We’ll have to wait and see. Meanwhile, Lord Sugar’s search continues…..

Wednesday Nights are the new black

6 Oct

8pm – ITV2 – Gossip Girl

9pm – BBC1 – The Apprentice

10pm – BBC4 – Mad Men

Happy Hump Day! Check back later in the week for my assessment of Lord Sugar’s candidates….