Thursday, 2 June 2011

The Apprentice: you're allllllllll fired!

So, are we all watching this series of The Apprentice then? Apart from Glee there aren't many TV shows on at the moment that have inspired me to watch them. I gave The Hotel a try when everyone was raving about it but it just depressed me. The two minutes I caught of Made In Chelsea left me genuinely confused as to why this would ever be considered entertaining. As for Britain's Got Talent - I disagree. Britain clearly has many oddballs, but talent is most definitely in question. And so, the Apprentice remains pretty much the highlight of my televisual week these days. Well, and The Apprentice: You're Fired, of course.

Last night's episode was very entertaining altogether. The apprentice wannabes had to create and market pet food. As a non-pet owner my interest in the subject at hand was fairly minimal but the task itself is never the important part - it's about the crazy ideas the contestants come up with, how well they manage to pull it off and of course how they all get on with each other. The best episodes are the ones where you think the Project Manager is a complete and utter moron, the rest of the team are bitchy and subordinate, the idea itself is complete rubbish, they embarrass themselves in front of the industry experts and then there's practically a punch-up in the boardroom. The ones where they call each other names are particularly awesome, only surpassed whenever Lord Sugar calls them names instead.

Yesterday's show was particularly good because there was… *drum roll please* …a double firing! Oh yes, Lord Suralan firstly pointed at docile Yorkshirewoman Ellie and showed her the boardroom door but, not yet satisfied, the powerful finger then moved on to sleezy Vincent, who was booted out as an example to anyone back at the house who may be scheming and plotting. Apparently that's discouraged which, given how most powerful business leaders are portrayed in the media these days, seems fairly ironic. A double firing is always a wonderful surprise, like getting two soft toys in one go from one of those arcade crane machines, or two chocolate bars for the price of one from a vending machine, so it made for great viewing. We fancied that Lord Suralan might just get carried away with the power of it all and start trying to fire Nick and Karren too.

It also made for a good You're Fired show afterwards. I love Dara Ó Briain anyway and I think the show's editors have a delightfully wicked sense of humour but last night we had two firees and also one of my favourite comedians du jour, Sarah Millican, on the panel. Great fun! They didn't make fun of Vincent nearly enough for my liking but then perhaps they figured that he was embarrassing himself with his crazy clashing clown outfit anyway.

As for the remaining contestants, my fellow Apprentice fan colleague and I were discussing this morning who we liked and who might win. Neither of us particularly like anyone except for nervous-looking inventor guy (Tom) but we're not sure he's quite dynamic enough to win. I'd like to see him be the PM for a week - I think it would make or break him as a contestant. We're also a little bit wary of crazy Jedi Jim. As a fellow Northern Irish I was rooting for him a little bit from the start, and I was very impressed with his crazy mind-control tricks in the first few weeks, but he's started showing his true colours a bit more now and he's coming across as a bit sly to be honest. He's happy to take all the credit where it's only partially due but the second things go wrong he's the first to point the finger. Unfortunately for him the only pointing finger that matters is Lord Suralan's and he was looking increasingly annoyed at Jimmy boy in last night's boardroom, so he'll need to rein it in a bit if he's going to last much longer methinks.

As for who I think might actually win… I just don't know yet. There are still a few too many of them to have actually seen them all work in much detail yet. I think they've all been the right firing decisions so far, maybe with the exception of Ellie last night, so I guess I'll just wait and see what unfolds in the coming weeks. How exciting!

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