After Chris denies Stella victory in Phone Answering Wars, the candidates are called to a hotel to be told the final task (do last year’s final task, but with booze instead of chocolates), and, more importantly, pick teams. It’s unfortunately a bit of an uneventful team-pick this year. The cream (as designated by finishing position) are skimmed off first : Jamie, Joanna, Liz, Christopher. When scrabbling over scrapes, Chris plumps for bros over hos, taking Alex as his first pick, and Shibby as his second, leaving Stella to pick Melissa first (!), making Paloma officially the metaphorical fat kid with glasses. It’s a mercy anybody came out alive after that quite frankly.
Stella as always focuses on swift, efficient, merciless decision making. Her aim? To come up with a spirit based drink that appeals to both men AND women. Or at least…most men. She settles on bourbon (blokey), but with honey and herbs (girly). A slender bottle, with sexy curves (girly!) with the name Urbon, which references contemporary rap-culture (MALE), but also involves clever wordplay and cunning use of language (JUST LIKE A WOMAN!) but DEFINITELY NO BLUE (TOO GAY!). Other than a few sticky moments involving Paloma, Melissa and Joanna all having pointless Paloma, Melissa and Joanna-y arguments, which Stella resolves by just staring disbelievingly at them until they blow themselves out, and an advert that involves the cast repeatedly rolling their eyes and looking disbelievingly at the product, the management of the task goes smoothly.
Chris meanwhile, having settled on pomegranate and rum (rum-based cocktails being the wave of the future where Chris is from – 2003) has insubordination problems from a rather unexpected source…Liz. Completely ignoring Chris’ instructions with regards to flavour creation, she decides she’s going pink, with the approval of Shibby, who confirms that it doesn’t look gay, by standing on front of a mirror with the drink and doing “lip wrist”. Still convinced of his own obvious hetro status, he’s on board. Creative juices left to run riot, Chris goes for a pyramid shaped bottle, the brand name of Prism, three different ingredients, a poster campaign straight out of Blade Runner and an advert where three very different (white, young, urban, professional) people trip up stairs and disappear out of shot into the top left hand corner. This creative explosion isn’t tempered any by most of Chris’ time being taken up with the Standards in Advertising Board who tell him in no uncertain terms that he needs to be less sex…that his advert needs to be less sexy.
In the end, both pitches go well, with both contestants getting in a nice round of Bloke Jokes to shed their respective crap pitcher/too corporate reputations. Final Team Reports back feature an impassioned speech for Chris from Shibby, Joanna trying to butt in and then winding up saying more or less “Stella is, like, really nice and good and you should hire her *giggle*” and Alex performing the ultimate backstab on Chris by saying that he’d hire both candidates. Well at least it was more high-drama than the team pick anyway. The final discussion goes about as badly as it could possibly go for Stella. She doesn’t mention learning or growth. Chris does. Chris plays the “I’m just like you Lordalan” card. She doesn’t. What she does do is come off as an unhinged loon, yelling that whether Lordalan hires her or not she’s got the job, because SHE NEVER LOSES. She even gets pulled into the Paloma Trap of criticising her opponent, albeit in the mildest and most meaningless terms possible. And so in the end the job goes to
Stella. Still. Cause she’s just that awesome.