Friday, 15 October 2010

The Apprentice 2010 - Episode 2

So this week they're taken to Heathrow and told they're not going anywhere ha ha ha.  Shugaghmeistah hasn't bothered to turn up, as he has 'pressing business' to attend to (I'm guessing his wife's made him do the ironing again, heh), but he's on a big tv in the departures lounge, and things get going regardless.  We get some big news to kick things off - Raleigh ('It was SHAMEful') has gone home because his brother's been injured in Afghanistan.  Which is not really funny, and he's all right now, so let's move on, with a slight sense of regret, because Raleigh had comedy potential.

Anyway, Stella gets put in charge of the boys, who all start to dribble.  This week is the design one, where they have to think up a new thing that hasn't been thought up yet, and make it and flog it.  It is, in other words, the week which has previously given us the cardboard camping crap thing and the exercise-and-read-and-stretch-and-do-dishes crap thing, and much else.  The reason they're at Heathrow is, rather disappointingly, not because they have to design a new plane ('wings are like, really naff, it should have, like wheels on really long legs so it can just go on the roads but it can go over houses and in the sea and stuff'), but because they have to design a new thing for the beach.  Now, a team of 7 People Who Knew What They Were Talking About would struggle, I imagine, to come up with anything truly innovative for the beach in one afternoon, so we should be in for a treat.

Laura gets put in charge of Apollo (I missed the reason, but I think she remembered one time when her teacher liked her drawing of a sandcastle, or something), and then the girls start screaming at each other.  And I mean SCREAMING.  Laura barely gets a word in edgeways, and they continue this for about a day and a half, managing somehow to design the most crappy piece of crap in the history of the show.  But we'll come back to that in a moment.

The boys, meanwhile, are drooling over Stella, who's reading the riot act.  Then, sensibly, they get down to business.  First up with a Cunning Plan is Chris The Surgeon, who wants to make a big hand thing that you can use to put sunscreen on your back.  You know, that job that those of us with friends and family get them to do.  The next biggest problem you face on the beach is trying to keep your drinks cold, so it is eventually decided that they'll make a thing to keep your drinks cool.  But, obviously, this is The Apprentice, so it can't just be a thing that keeps your drinks cool; it has to be a thing that keeps your drinks cool, and you can lie on, and you can keep the baby in, and makes you look really cool; it does not, of course, need to do any of these things well.  And they call it the Cuuli, with umlauts above the 'u's to look like smiley faces.  They ask a bloke what he thinks of the name, and he thinks it's pants, so that settles it - the Cuuli is 'more, like, for women'.

Still, it's better than what the girls come up with.  Now, in fairness, they only devoted about 3 minutes of actual thinking time to it, when they got bored of shouting at each other, so we shouldn't judge them too harshly.  On the other hand, 3 of them did actual market research, which consisted of playing beach volleyball with 2 random people who laughed at all their ideas, because they were rubbish: for instance, the 'foot glove' to 'protect your feet from the warm sand'.  Yeah, they should have done that.  They could have called it 'The Sock'.  But what they actually come up with is the Book-eazee (no idea how they spell it), a device to make reading on the beach easier.

Now, I am more of a nerd than anyone you know, and I will buy anything at all that I can find pertaining to reading, but the Book-eazee will not be on my Christmas list, because this is how it works:
1. Find beach
2. Open box and remove 8 separate parts of Book-eazee
3. Construct Book-eazee by randomly attaching 8 identical rods in a particular, but unspecified, order
4. You have now formed an arch, which you should stick in the sand
5. Attach plastic sheet thing, and place book in polypocket
6. Get brick or something to prop up the whole device which is now sagging under the weight of the book
7. Read first page
8. Remove book from polypocket, turn page, and put back in polypocket
Repeat step 8 for every other page.

To improve things further, they then get a big box of sand and haul it around to the 'hawking to retailers' bit, because the main thing that will confuse people about this is how you put it in the sand.  You wonder what positive things any of the retailers will find to say about it, but then a very nice lady says she likes the name, so that's good.  On the other hand, one of them says that 'the main difficulty' she see's with this is that it would blow over really easily in the wind, which is like looking at a plane that's crashed in your garden and wondering how you'll ever fix the topiary.

Meanwhile, the boys spend some time taking photos of Stella in a bikini; they use the excuse that she's lying on the Cuuli, which they need to take photos of.  She's wearing the bikini because they made her, by the way.  Onto their presentation, and we have Chris (the surgeon one) demonstrating and Chris (the 'really funny, anything but mediocre' one) reading from a Ladybird book in monotone. 'This is Chris.  Chris is at the beach.  Chris looks cool.  Chris wants to phone his wife.  His phone is in his Cuuli.'  Stella had earlier tried to stop him doing the pitch, because of how crap he was at it, but he threw a very quiet, mediocre strop and called her management style 'piss-poor'.

Alex Epstein (for some reason, we seem to have surnames for everyone apart from the 2 Chrises and the other bloke whose first name hasn't even been mentioned yet) also chips in, with something about the Cuuli allowing parents to keep their baby's food at an optimum temperature, or their baby at optimum temperature, or something; he's so earnest that I just can't listen.  Incidentally, I forgot to say last week that Alex Epstein is an 'Unemployed Head of Communications'.  Really?  Is that a thing?  Is it like being a 'very athletic corpse' or something?

On to the boardroom, where the girls scream at each other some more.  Eventually someone gets them to shut up, and Nick and Karren read out the figures: the boys sold 100 Cuulis, and the girls sold nothing at all, so they all start screaming again.  The boys go to play golf, where Alex Epstein is very awkward, and the rest of them high-five and jump about and generally lower the tone.  The girls have a change of screaming venue, where they yap and yap and yap and yap and yap at each other and blame each other for everything.

Then they go back to the boardroom and scream some more, and get told off by Karren for being a disgrace to women, and business, and book reading devices.  Laura has to decide who she'll bring back into the boardroom; evenutally she decides she'll bring Joanna (who has managed the impressive feat of being the loudest and screamiest of all) and Shandeesh (who doesn't seem to have spoken yet), and then swaps Shandeesh for Joy, without any real reason.  They sit outside and sulk in blessed silence and then come in, and, to cut a lot of screaming short, Joy gets fired for not doing anything, proving once again that being an average, not obnoxious person gets you nowhere on this show.  They skip the customary insincere hug-and-mutter-'allthebestkeepintouch', and Laura and Joanna skip back to the house, hand in hand, where they are greeted by everyone but Chris, who seems to be sulking that they came back, or something.

A loud episode, and frankly I think Joy got off lightly, and am starting to doubt whether my eardrums will survive.

Still, next week is making buns.  Please, please tell me they split the girls into individual teams or something.


Anonymous said...

i was a bit freaked out. as soon as the task for announced, my mrs asked me what i would invent. i said.... ummmmm maybe something make it easier to read a book on the beach.

great review again

whynotsmile said...

Yes. As opposed to a thing to manage the previously-thought-to-be-impossible feat of actually making it harder to read a book on the beach.

bresker said...

"On the other hand, one of them says that 'the main difficulty' she see's with this is that it would blow over really easily in the wind, which is like looking at a plane that's crashed in your garden and wondering how you'll ever fix the topiary."


Another top review

fragmentz said...

i came by your blog to post a comment on the lines of 'why not smile - because i dont feel like it' ... however, after reading your apprentice posts, i did end up smiling ;)

i'll pop back to await the next installement :)

whynotsmile said...

fragmentz, I am pleased that you ended up smiling. The trick is to assume that there is comedy everywhere, and then dig it out and display it to all who will listen.

I am also awaiting the next installment; I've watched it, like, but it was such a car-crash that I have no idea what to say about it.

I'll think of something though.