Is it me or was this week's Apprentice
rather dull? I knew how Maria felt when she dozed off.
After the credits and recaps, Ricky Martin answers the phone and then He Bangs! He Bangs! the receiver down again, and they're off to Kensington. You know, for such a supposedly palatial ApprentCave, the bedrooms look pretty poky. Half the boys seem to be in one box room, with Toothlicker on a camp bed in the middle. Tom is the first to appear in his pants; not great, but not bad. They're going to the V&A because it's the design task. LdAlan tells them to design a gadget for "the kitchen, the bathroom, the garden, I don't particularly care." Well you're 8 series in, LdAlan, I can see how you might have lost interest. He tells them the whole thing will be a waste of time if the product sucks - maybe this is why I didn't care for the episode, since it's a foregone conclusion that the products will suck so LdAlan's basically told us everything coming up will be a waste of time.
It's Jane vs Blonde Assassin for PM of Team Girl. Blonde Assassin says this task is "right up my alley." It's a particularly dark, cold alley where she's murdered hundreds. Despite not having killed as many people, Jane wins the vote, she says she's a team player but you know, only so long as she's leading the team and not actually on
it, god forbid. Over on team Boy, Azhar is the only volunteer for PM. He's "a killer whale of the sea world," as opposed to one of those killer whales of the land or sky. Those sky killer whales are such a pest this time of year when they're migrating. Duane suggests a counter-top food composting recycling... thing. They go off to do market research but halfway there the sub-team in the other car phone up to suggest The Blond One's idea of washing up gloves with scourers on the fingers. During the phone call, Duane leans over, muttering into Killer Whale's ear to pick his idea instead, like the world's worst Jedi. "This isn't the kitchen product you're looking for." Both halves of Team Boy do their own market research, both basically come out in favour of the bin thing, but obviously The Blond One lies and says their focus group preferred his idea. Compactor bin thing wins.
Meanwhile the women's idea is to not have any ideas. They're thinking about baths because they're wimminz and like long relaxing baths and aloe vera or something. Shame the other team didn't go for bathtime really, with an aquatic mammal as team leader there'd surely have been some good ideas coming. A Scottish woman suggests some kind of screen for when you're bathing your splishy splashy child (note I don't
have a child, and yet I immediately thought, as one of the buyers did later, that surely this would get in the way of the parent actually trying to bathe the child?) The kid could draw on it in crayons And That. Meanwhile Blonde Assassin suggests a pillow to put over your taps, so you can rest your feet in the bath after a long day's butchering innocents. The girls then spend the next several years going back and forth between the two ideas, and at some point this involves Maria nodding off in the car because she's as bored with Jenna yabbering about it as I am. Eventually they end up with the splash screen thing. Do they? Yes. Sure? Eh.
So they get them designed, the prototypes arrive, and the boys' seems to be called an Ecó Press. It's basically a cafetiere, but instead of delicious coffee you put old banana skins in it. The girls' is called Splish Splash, they don't know why anyone hasn't invented it before (they don't see the fact that the floor actually gets wetter when they install it as a clue) and say they're definitely
going to win, at which point if it wasn't clear already you know they definitely won't.
First the teams must pitch to either a big nameless online department store, or Amazon, depending on whether the person talking at the time cares about product placement on the BBC. If you've ever been on Amazon you'll have seen stuff that says "only 2 in stock, more coming soon," and realised that they only buy small amounts of things up front unless it's a guaranteed big seller. So Team Girl tries to sell them a million units. At this, Karren munches on a lemon in the corner. Then the buyers point out that the girls' figures are gibberish, because last week didn't teach them that doing the maths can be useful on this show. What? No, it's all totally accurate, they can get a gross net percentile of profit pounds! Um... ££££££££££££££££££££££££££££££££££! No, go away now. Then there's the boys' pitch, with some stuff about Rubbish Jedi being verboten from pitching his own product, but he does anyway, but it's clear the girls are going to lose so the boys' stuff is just filler now.
Before the second pitch Team Girl fight about the maths they didn't do, which mainly involves Maria braying into the phone. When they do get to the second pitch, the buyers point out that the Splish Splash would actually make
more mess than it prevented. They've come to this startling realisation by looking at it. I mean the girls didn't realise this even when they actually saw it happen. Basically so far this year isn't the best advertisement for women in business.
Boardroom! The boys openly despised Killer Whale as PM, but they win anyway and go to The Ivy for their dins. Where they still openly despise Killer Whale. And Ricky Martin continues to speak in rhyme. Back at Loser Café, Maria puts 48 sugars in her tea then they're back to the boardroom, more general bickering and then it's time to pick two people for the firing line. LdAlan tells Jane to make "a rational decision, not an emotional one." In other words, "I know you're a bladdy woman, but try to think with your head, not your vagina." Jane picks Maria and Jenna because they have the two most irritating voices. Or something. There's some stuff about whether Maria dozed off, she claims she didn't, she was just thinking with her eyes closed. She also likes to think while drooling and snoring slightly. I kind of think this nodding off thing, which seems to HORRIFY LdAlan, is the real reason she gets fired. Which I'm against in theory because this whole "Be superhuman! Don't eat or sleep! Work until you drop dead!" attitude seeps into real life and not just silly reality shows. But she's got an annoying voice and I'm bored now, so 'bye Maria. In the cab she almost in so many words says never mind, she'll go on Dragon's Den
for the investment instead. But she doesn't have time because she's frothing at the mouth, her eyes are rolling back... Damn! That wasn't sugar at Loser Café! The Blonde Assassin strikes again!