Posts in: the apprentice

The Apprentice Series 10, Episode 1

Good old Auntie is giving us 125% this time around. For you, guv, not 16 shiny, bickering, self-aggrandising candidates, not 18, but 20. God help us. As if 16 were not treat enough. As they fill the boardroom with High Street tailoring, hubris and hair products, the camera and Lord Sugar try desperately to take stock of such bounty.

Keep Reading

Apprentice 2013, The Final: Never mind the botox …

The tension in my living room is electrifying. Well, it’s not every day you find out you have a bumblebee colony in your back-garden, is it? Only an hour to go, and I can go back to watch them woozily float in and out of their nest, paralytic on nectar, and quietly congratulating myself on allowing them to live in harmony with nature. A quick whizz through The Apprentice Final and I can go back to doing something positive about sustainability …

Keep Reading

Apprentice 2013, Episode 11: So, where do you see yourself in five minutes’ time?

Five green candidates, hanging on the phone ... Yes, it’s the favourite televisual moment of every misanthrope from Maidstone to Motherwell: The Apprentice Interviews, where we get to see someone deluded enough to buy their dreams off eBay proposing a business that consists of other people doing the same. Only with some very dodgy maths, some porky-pie revelations and a welcome return to our screens of Margaret Mountford. (Ma’am, you’re too classy for this, but thank you for dropping by.) If the series is a long canter round a rather predictable track, this episode is the unexpectedly massive water-jump 20 furlongs from the finishing line. And it’s surprising how wet some people can be.

Keep Reading

Apprentice 2013, Episode 10: You Can Take The Boy Out Of Monaco …

At 6.30am (ooh, a lie-in; are these people slacking), the candidates are shepherded to the sitting room, where Jordan is ‘rocking’ a sarong. OK, make that rocking slightly in a sarong, and possibly wittering a little. It’s the ‘smell what’s selling’ task, where they start with one load of tat and wind up with another. They’ll start with a stall and £150, and then open a pop-up shop on Day Two. (‘Pop-up’ is the new Brick Lane in Apprenticeworld, pop-pickers. It sounds so much trendier than ‘temporary’ or ‘in an old shipping container’, doesn’t it, even if the main thing that threatens to pop-up is my dinner. But we’ll have more of that story later …) Boys versus girls, to even up the numbers. Edited to stereotype, Luisa is already bitching about how hopeless the boys are.

Keep Reading

Apprentice 2013, Episode 9: Hard to Swallow

As 6am rolls around again, the novelty of the early starts is plainly no longer working. Alex is (thankfully) fully dressed as he answers the phone, and the residue … sorry, remaining candidates are chauffeured off to The Gherkin. En route, Luisa reveals a hitherto suppressed talent for comedy, as she complains about being called aggressive. Alex meanwhile frets about why no-one takes him seriously enough to make him PM. Answers on a postcard everyone … Quite why they have to stand in Searcey’s Restaurant to be told ready-meals are big business is beyond me: nor have the r’n’r shots of the Apprentice house shown a lot of chopping and dicing action going down. But Lord S has laid on three top retailers for them to pitch to, and Voiceover Man gets to spout some stomach-turning puns. Most orders placed wins (so price doesn’t matter, I assume?), but they have some ludicrously short amount of time to create a ready meal and – ooh, let me guess – branding. Never saw that coming.

Keep Reading

Apprentice 2013, Episode 8: Open Heart Sugar-y

And somehow, Luisa survives. Having presented us with an hour of some of the least charming behaviour I’ve seen on television short of serial killer dramas, she lives to torture another day. I shake my head at the screen: anyone who behaved that atrociously to colleagues anywhere I’ve ever worked would have been frogmarched to a door and told to pay for their own blaady cab. But her card is now clearly marked: Karren firmly requests that she be allowed to follow her next week. Is it too much to hope that the budget might stretch to a blowtorch or a crossbow for Ms Brady?

Keep Reading

Apprentice 2013, Episode 7: Hitting the Road

The team were, if anything, lucky that only two of them were fired. The question is who will make the final with Neil, who currently seems unstoppable. But then their next challenge is to promote an online dating site, and Mr Clough may need to show a little more romance under the stubble. The teaser trailer hints that the course of true love - and of flogging some grim approximation of it in a browser - will not run smoothly.

Keep Reading

Apprentice 2013, Episode 6: Shambles Incorporated

The Business Away Day sounds like a discount railway ticket, but rarely delivers anybody to a worthwhile destination. And the journey – to use my nomination for the century’s most over-used word to date – can be pretty lacking too. Yet this is their task. Lord Sugar has lined up two clients, who will provide a budget, and the contest will be judged on profit and customer satisfaction. (Mindful of the importance of establishing clear evaluation criteria at the outset, I wondered how that might be measured, but I’ll avoid a spoiler: the answer is too obvious.)

Keep Reading

Apprentice 2013 Episode 3: A Box Of Frogs

The most startling moment of this episode - officially called, with blinding insight, Flat-Pack - happened a few minutes in, and I’ve been trying to have my retinas repaired ever since. Earlier in the series than usual, The Apprentice played the ‘everyone was relaxing at home on a day off, with a camera crew – as you do’ trope, and the remaining 14 contenders (I use the word loosely) suddenly found themselves with thirty minutes to reapply the bling. Girls scampered along luxury corridors, hectically searching for trowels so they could re-do their eye make-up. Meanwhile, not content with flashing his abs at us in a towel last week, Myles decided that the most appropriate way to behave on camera in a men’s dorm is to wiggle across our eye line in a thong. In a programme with no audience voting, I was left wondering which bottom line he was most eager to demonstrate familiarity with. His own, possibly? Fundamental mistake there, Myles. Oh well, maybe he was just showing us his best side …

Keep Reading

Please upgrade your version of Internet Explorer to view this website, or turn off Compatibility Mode.