The Apprentice 7 – Week 1

Ed Hunted, more like (and the jokes aren’t getting any better than that, no)

Here they come again. Just after I got the stains out of the carpet from the last bunch, here they come. Stomping around London with their cheap suits and their pencil-skirts and their wheelie-suitcases, which are really the most important element of all. Forget your Blackberry, forget your PA, forget dignity, the only thing you really truly need to practice business in London, is a little wheelie suitcase and maybe a butcher-knife. As Gavin here wins the love of any Londoner who has to use any public transport by doing


this, Helpful Voiceover Man proclaims what’s about to happen “THE BUSINESS DEAL OF THE DECADE!”, which seems mighty presumptive even if it has only just begun. Especially as I hear that, at Stoke Park Primary on Thursday Paul Weisz is planning to swap a Manuel Almunia, a Peter Crouch and a Park Ji-Sung for a Tevez shiny. I hope Helpful Voiceover Man hasn’t become Shiftless Lying Voiceover Bastard. I rely on him for so much.

We get our first piece of High-Heels Fetish Footage for the seriesPfft. Amateur.

which is then immediately one-upped by Melody Hussani here.

One-up, One-up, One-up

I feel this is going to be a theme. She honks to us all joylessly in interview


that last year she set up a building with nothing. That’s right, literally nothing. In fact, less than nothing. Melody Hussani carved her business empire from a black hole. In doing so, she worked in over 500 countries, including Thailand, Paris, Asgard, and The People’s Republic of Hydrogen, with 12 Nobel Peace Prize Winners, including The Dalai Lama, Al Gore, Shirin Ebadi, Colonel Gaddafi, Tyra Banks, Amnesty International, Woodrow Wilson, and the Captain Pugwash Conference On World And Science Affairs. Don’t tell her the sky’s the limit, she’s BEEN TO THE MOON!

I think basically Melody Hossani played a particularly exciting game of Civilisation on her PC last year and got confused.

Jim Eastwood narrowly avoids getting splatted by a bus


and tells us that he’s a doer and a high-achiever and a champion thoroughbred, knowing full-well he could be saying any old rubbish and the combination of his green eyes and soft sexy Irish accent would be rendering his words inaudible over the sound of the nation’s ovaries twanging in unison. Vinnie Disney

Don't be jealous of his boogie.

is already werking it like a supermodel and they’re not even at the Bridge Of Britain’s Next Top Apprentice Model yet. He’s one of a kind, Best of Breed at Crufts 2011 (no tail-docking for this puppy either if you know what he means ladies *wink wink*) and yeah, alright

Meow pussycats

he’s a pretty foxy bitch. Want to go back to chalet and feel up his cuckoo clocks?

Meanwhile we get a chilling vision of a post-apocalyptic future, as Edna stomps around the tragic wasteland that is London after she’s finished with it,


spots a survivor,


and moves in for the kill. Leon,


looking like Orlando Bloom as interpreted by Troma, tells us all that he’s already proved himself. He’s got nothing left to prove. He turned over a million. From, erm, somewhere. He did. And his hair’s so floppy and light. Helen meanwhile

Eep squeak!

is still proving herself every day. She has no life! She is her job! Cut her, and she bleeds Greggs. Goopy dry pastry and pig bollocks spurting from her VEINS *eye twitch*.

Meanwhile Ed Hunter is given some potentially helpful advice by a building


and chooses to ignore it. Ah well, there’s no telling some people is there? Tom, so doomed that he doesn’t have a rolly-suitcase, grabs a Boris-Bike and GOES.


He’s been running a business for the last 5 years – don’t be fooled by his goofy appearance. Underneath these glasses


there lies a CORE OF STEEL! He’s going to do it! Here it comes! Get ready, nation!


ADORABLE! (*ruffles Tom’s hair*).

This one is “cold, hard, and unstoppable”,

Like Angela Rippon

this one is going to have his life changed forever,


this one has nice eyes, I think, but doesn’t really look like a cuddler, which is really want I want from a man,

Definitely not a cuddler

and this one thinks her business with Lordalan would be guaranteed to make millions.


See, they’ve edited out the “point and laugh” from the end of that sentence, which would have made it technically true. Anyway, we all know what this strutting and posturing and transporting is leading up to (no Space Hoppers AGAIN this year. No imagination) right? This :


YOU BETTER WERK, CANDIDATES. Put the bass in your walk.

(Sadly enough, I’m going to declare Zoe the winner of the Catwalk Challenge, when you don’t even know who she is. Don’t claim that you do.)

Oh yeah, Lordalan still exists, and (say it with me)

*tinkle tinkle*

IS STILL NOT GOING BALD. Bet Piers Morgan is. WHO’S WINNING NOW PIERS?! He also built himself up from NOTHING, and is looking for someone to go into business with. Yeah, he’s filled literally every job in Amstrad, or Viglen, or Amscreen, or Charmander, or whatever it’s called these days. What, did the fab glam nature of Yasmina and Stella’s jobs not clue you into that? Well it’s true. Amstrad’s full. So if you win, you’re going to have to set up your own business. With £250,000 in cash (*cough* andvalueallrightsreservedvalueoflordalansinputmaygodownaswellasdown*cough*)

Day One, Boardroom Exterior. Everyone’s lined up raring to go, and I am very glad indeed that most of the cast don’t have blue eyes last series. After last series I had to see an optician because of the permanent lens-flare that Chris Bates alone left me with. Edna has

Poochie poochie

already started, and on the Atrium sofa, the separate life philosophies of Melody, Ed-Hunter and Vinnie Disney are already being displayed.

See no Edna, Hear no Edna, Speak no Edna

Melody : I am an international business woman, who invented cheese and is also the Lindburgh baby. I am married to 5 Presidents and a member of European aristocracy, and you don’t want to mess with me.

Ed-Hunter : I am here on a bet

Vinnie : Welcome to my crotch – won’t you come on in?

Cousin It ushers the candidates in, to a waiting and ready Lordalan. He tells the candidates that one of the most frequently asked questions of him is “Is it possible in this day and age to start a business like you did, back in 1967, with a small amount of money and some humble background?”. That and “Go on, did you ever bang Margaret?”. Well the answer to the first one is yes. YES IT IS BLOODY WELL IS! Lordalan moans that he is sick and tired of this moaning culture where people go on about what they are sick and tired of all the time. You can take any old ramshackle organisation on its last legs and turn it into a success story if you just try hard enough. Tom and Susan nod and grin eagerly, whilst Kaen

Tum ti tum

ponders on West Ham.

Lordlan outlines this year’s prize of £250,000 of “cash and value” and, being an estate agent,

tee hee added value tee hee

Alex knows exactly what that “and value” is going to end up meaning. If Lordalan haggles Nick hard enough, he PROMISES he can get Nick to stand there and pull faces at your business for £500 an hour. PROMISE.  Lordalan tells them all that the winner will be running their business, not him, because he’s not “St Alan, the Patron Saint of Bloody Losers”. Quite right, I think that’s St Vanessa isn’t it? He’s not looking for a sleeping partner, he wants an uncivil partnership. Too many sex jokes, such little time.

Next up, there’s a quite comedy bit where Lordalan outlines that the same task is the same as always – buy a commodity, then sell it on – but pretending this is new and exciting for this new and exciting series. Treat it like you’re running your own business! Look


you can actually SEE the seed money this time!


So anyway, after flowers, fruit n veg, coffee, fish, cleaning products, and sausages, the show’s run out of ideas, so they’re doing fruit n veg again. Go and sell fruit n veg but…turn it into a pie, or a smoothie, or a cleansing scrub or something. I dunno. Most money wins (OFF THE WALL!). Somewhere at the back

Tom takes notes, or doodles a naked picture of Vinnie Disney, such are the already powerful effects of his sexual magnetism. Just to mix things up further, it’s girls vs boys and Nick and Kaen will be trailing the teams around as usual. At this point, Nick looks almost like

Existential crisis ahoy

he’s going to say “actually, do you know what, I think I’ll step back and let Alesha Dixon do it this year Lordalan. I’m getting older, I’ve got antique tractors to restore, what with the Curse of Kaen I don’t really DO anything any more, and frankly I don’t know how much joy I can get any more from just stalking around making pissy comments and sneering at people. Is this a life? Is this how I want to spend my Autumn years? I could do something beautiful with what time I have left. Truly beautiful. Run with the bulls, swim with the dolphins, write poetry…” But then

Oh yeah. Sneering.

the impulse passes. Kaen’s face just reads



Teams are dispatched, and told to come back in “a day or so”, preferably with a bit more money. You know. It’d be nice. We’ve got to pay for Don’t Scare The Hare somehow. Except, you know, karmically.

To the Apprenticars! Immediately Boys Apprenticars fill themselves with a morass of

Sweaty sweatySlicky slicky sweat

awkward sweaty handshakes. I wonder how they’d pass muster on the Edna Agbahar Handshake Scale. Not very well I’d warrant. Speaking of which Edna herself


is currently trying to crush Helen’s metacarpals as Natasha and Felicity watch in amused terror.

In girls Apprenticar A, Melody sing-songs through her nose about how nice it is to finally meet the women she’s going to crush. Never was someone so inaptly named. Meanwhile in Boys Apprenticar A, Vinnie Disney asks all the other men what they were thinking whilst they were stood in the waiting room. Leon replies that he was being quietly confident, and Glenn responds that he was thinking “I’ll have you all”. Oddly enough that’s what Vinnie Disney was thinking, but in a slightly different context.

There then follows a brief montage of Melody, Gavin, Ellie and Susan saying that they run their own businesses, in lies, glasses, construction and organic skincare respectively. Susan then interviews that

Short, sweet, smiley, senile

people will under-estimate her at first because she’s “short (go form a support group with Ed-Hunter), sweet and smiley” but when she does business, she MEANS BUSINESS. I’m scared. Vinnie Disney meanwhile, is admitting that he hasn’t got his own business, but he is a “sales manager cum sales director” for a software house. And judging from his business attire, they operate from

All class

above a brothel. In 1940s Ipswich. Tom meanwhile is bragging adorably about having invented the world’s first curved nail-file, which helps you get a REALLY SMOOTH EDGE to your nails. The other Boys Of Apprenticar B

Hmm yes...
Nail file you say...

look about as interested by that as you’d expect. He then interviews adorably and enthusiastically


about his life as an inventor, finding gaps in the market, and creating products to fill people’s needs. When he gets fired, it’s going to be so painful I don’t think I’m going to be able to recap it. Just amuse yourselves for that week, if you can.

Meanwhile, in Girls Apprenticar B, Edna is bragging about how she works in HR, which is people. She loves people. Anything to do with people. They’re just amazing. Roasted, fried, boiled, scrambled. People in a crepe, people with a red wine reduction, people juice. All of it. Edna loves it. She interviews that she also enjoys

Meow pussycats

stretching herself to the ultimate (I hear Vinnie Disney enjoys helping women out with that *wink wink*), wearing lipstick that makes it look like she’s still got toothpaste all round her mouth, and annihilating people with weak handshakes.

Ed-Hunter at this point is introducing himself as a “humble accountant”. Vinnie Disney suggests he might be here to set up his own accountancy firm then mightn’t he? Ed-Hunter says no.


The end.

After these introductions, the Apprenticars find themselves arriving at the Apprentice House for the series, which is this


rather nice little house out in the middle of Richmond. As they pull up, Felicity claps her hands and gasps like an infant Lucinda Ledgerwood, and I feel my


one moment of kinship with Evil Edna for the episode. It’s a bloody house dear, calm down.


Kitchen fresh!


Hello ladies.

I think Vinnie Disney’s already trying to work out some angles involving the sofas, if you know what I mean. Glenn jokes “it’s a bit like my house!” hurr hurr, but we’ve no time for that, because Tom has accidentally found himself in the girls’ bedroom already.



The boys convene in the lounge and the women in the kitchen, to decide on team names. Helen, who has clearly been brainstorming for this moment ALL HER LIFE and is all but bouncing up and down in her chair, suggests “Galvanise, for obvious reasons”. Oh and also Platinum, which is apparently not for obvious reasons. Edna sees this as an obvious opportunity to shun and destroy


and automatically throws her weight behind the next suggestion out of anyone’s mouth, no matter how idiotic. Which turns out to be Melody’s suggestion of “Venture”.

Team Venture

Apprently this is bold, daring, and exciting. OK. Frankly, if you can get away with Team Venture, then why not try for Team Rocket? I would Edna throws her weight behind being part of Team Venture Scouts, everyone else agrees, Helen

Boo hoo, boo hoo

has a bit of a cry. Probably the first of many. Melody bellows “GIRLS, WELCOME TO TEAM VENTURE!” like it’s a strip club, and everyone squeels and claps their hands. Woo.

Meanwhile, over on the boys, Vinnie Disney is suggesting “Team Ability”, possibly as a new abstract noun that candidates might want to use on this show in the future. EG : “I really feel I have a lot to contribute in terms of teamability Lordalan”. Ed-Hunter doesn’t like ability, although he can’t explain why.


I can think of a few reasons. Leon then decides to gallop in with an ice-breaking joke, suggesting they call themselves “Leontrepreneur!”. This is still somehow a more realistic suggestion than “Winning Women” was. Everyone tells him to cut it out, then Glenn hollers “I’VE GOT IT!” then comes up with


Team Logic. You know. Like, a logical approach to things. Why not call yourselves Team Awesome? Because of your awesome approach to things? Jim miseries that he’s not in love with the idea, but he sees the logic behind it. I’ve no idea if he’s being ironic there, or if he’s just that dull. Alex then snots “let’s stop over-complicating things and just get on with it!” and they all take a vote. One vote


for “Team Ability”. A billion votes for everything else. Team Logic it is.

Over on the girls team, it’s now time to elect a leader. Once again, it’s a battle between Melody and Helen. Melody sets out her stall with her 100% cast-iron credentials in a commanding tone of voice, with a high degree of certainty and command. Helen speaks in a mouse voice and says “me too” a lot. Unsurprisingly, the girls elect Melody. Edna does this by doing a little dance. I have no idea why. I think she might have been trying to summon demonic forces. And so early in the game for them too. Melody’s first edict as Project Manager is to turn to the person on your right and give them a handshake. She does not follow this up by asking them to turn to the person on your left and give them a kiss, because she is not (yet) the warm up for the Strictly Come Dancing live tour.

Melody interviews that as a leader it is VITAL to inspire people. She personally has been inspired by Al Gore, Desmond Tutu and “Dalay Lama”. I think that’s a supermodel isn’t it? By “personally inspired” I’m guessing she means she’s bought their autobiography, or possibly shook their hand at a function once. Or someone who looked like them. She closes by smugging that she works with an understanding that there is a purpose

Like, mothers or elephants or something yah?

greater than herself. Which I guess does put her ahead of most Apprentice candidates.

Boys process now, which is basically Ed-Hunter yelling


“ME! I WANNA!”. Jim asks him what he’s going to bring to the table, and Ed-Hunter replies “some rationale, some common sense, some leadership”. I think he missed off “and a great big bag of weed” there. Just guessing. He seems kind of…unfocused. Always. Glenn asks if anyone else wants a go, and Gavin says that he thinks they should maybe learn a bit more about Ed before putting their lives in his hands. Naturally this immediately prompts a vote to see if anyone wants Gavin to be leader, even though Gavin is clearly less interested in leading this team than Edna ACTUALLY is in people. This in turn is naturally followed by Gavin back-peddaling like a mother away from the support of Gavin and Tom for the job as fast as his legs can carry him, resulting in Ed-Hunter being PM after all. Ah the Circle Of Apprentice. Kaen looks on


like Hitchcock.

Edward’s first act of Managerial handshake is not to share the love around the room in a big circle, but to


advance on his team, flailing wildly like a raved-up Mr Tickle. Some handshakes get down in there, possibly. In interview he proclaims that he’s a


“wheeler-dealer, who somehow became a financial professional” and he wants OUT. After this display Ed-Hunter, I doubt that’s going to be too much of a problem. He wants to show that he’s so much more than just an accountant, and he’s given up a really good position in a great company for this. Oh dear. Cut to Ed-Hunter telling everyone that his heart is racing, and his chest hurts and also his vision’s going a little blurry and his ankles have gone all weak and the voices have started again. Jim laughs nervously.

Back with the girls now, and they’re


passing the money around. Handling it, sniffing it, getting a good feel of it. This is what it’s like to run your own business girls. They’re Actually! Holding! Money! Felicity is so enamoured with the money that she suggests that they spend as little as possible of it on fruit and veg. What if the money never comes back? What then? Helen agrees. You’d never get this amount of money in Greggs, it’s DIZZYING. Meanwhile on the boys team, Tom is suggesting they dip the fruit segments they buy in chocolate and/or toffee to sell on. Mmm. Remove the fruit part, and I’m sold.

For the girls, Susan suggests making one breakfast item and one lunch item, so they can shift both in one go for a full day’s worth of food. Melody agrees, and plumps for a fruit salad for breakfast, and a vegetable pasta-pot for lunch. Job done. Meanwhile Ed-Hunter is saying that his input is soup. You can’t go wrong with soup. At the end of the day, soup is really just any liquid. People may not buy it again, but they won’t be sick. On this slogan he gives his team a

Thumbs up!

cheery thumbs up. Hooray! Glenn breaks in earnestly, sticking his hand in the air for teacher, gasping that he has a point to make. Everyone ignores him and Glenn stares at his hand all

Stoopid hand!

WHY AREN’T YOU WORKING HAND? BE A BETTER HAND! Eventually he just blarts in asking if anyone can make soup. Turns out


no. Oh Glenn, it’s alright. Just get a recipe off that Internet you’re not allowed to use.

3:20am now, and the teams are off to buy their basic produce. In Boys Apprenticar A, Ed-Hunter waffles on about how people were telling him that he has to do margins and numbers and costing and stuff and oh my God how rude, don’t they know that he’s not just an accountant? He doesn’t WANT TO BE AN ACCOUNTANT! He just wants to get some fruit, SMASH SMASH SMASH and sell it, like they do in REAL BUSINESS! Huff. SMASH!

The teams arrive at Covent Garden market and


LOOK AT ALL THE LOVELY PRODUCE! The girls stomp around demanding grapes and pineapples, whilst Ed-Hunter and Vinnie Disney ponder whether


this is an orange? Who can say what’s truly an orange. Oh, you may sit there comfortable on your sofas all “of course it’s an orange”, but in these circumstances, sleep-deprived, disorientated, staring down the next month of spending time in close quarters with Edna Agbarhar, would you be confident in making the judgment call that that’s an orange, and not, say, a tangerine? Really? Then you’re a braver man than I.

Back with the girls, and Melody has decided that in furtherance of Felicity’s amazing plan of spending as little as possible, she’s going to give the Precious Money to the scariest member of the team, and that’s Edna. Edna is now in charge of the money. Melody hands over the Precious Money to Edna, as all the other women stare at it like it’s the Arc of the Covenant and the Holy Grail and…whatever they were looking for in Temple of Doom, the Sacred Curry Stones or something, all rolled into one. PRECIOUS MONEY! Susan points out that their plan of selling a breakfast item involves selling at breakfast time, so they might want to get a jog on.

The boys meanwhile, have settled on selling orange juice and tomato soup and we join Ed-Hunter’s half of the team (Edward, Vinnie, Leon, and Gavin) in the middle of negotiations, and by negotiations, I mean


Ed-Hunter standing there sticking his hand in people’s faces saying numbers at them like it hurts him to say them. He’s being offered oranges at £9.50 a box. Leon pipes in to turn this down, and Ed-Hunter offers a clumsily and hastily added up £150 for 17 boxes. The Orange Man says that they’re £9.50 a box. Vinnie Disney throw a faux huffy snit and begs for £9.25 a box. Orange Man says that they’re £9.50 a box. The boys end up buying 16 boxes of oranges for…£9.50 a box. Well that’s productive. Awesome Orange Man chuckles that they’ve obviously got no clue about the business and congratulates himself on not being negotiated down at all. I’ll say. Karen looks

Doss for dan yeah?


Helpful Voiceover Man, if he can be trusted anymore, says that the boys have just bought 1400 oranges, for £152 of their Precious Money, as Ed-Hunter awkwardly hauls them into the back of the Logic-Van. That’s about 1.09p per orange fact fans. Ed-Hunter interviews that his plan is to buy things cheaply and then SMASH SMASH SMASH, and then maybe sell it at some point, he’s not really thought about that yet. He does know that he is quite interested in setting up “rolling with the punches” as his catchphrase, if that can be arranged.

Rolling with the punches

I’ll see what I can do.

Reconvened with Jim’s half of the team (Jim, Gavin, Tom, Ringo), Ed-Hunter lays out what he’s just done. Jim asks how much money he’s got left to spend on soup, and Ed-Hunter tells him that he’s got £40


for all his soup related needs. Gavin asks if the team’s entire stock of Precious Money is going to end up being spent, and yet they only have £40 for soup and Ed-Hunter confirms that it is so. Gavin then complainterviews (looking foine)


that if he’d been PM he would have had a much better plan, definitely. It would have involved people knowing what the fuck was going on for a start.

Team Jim runs off to this lady, with his £40 soup budget :

Ow do

and he spends a lot of time being very charming and Irish and open and patting her on the arm and being discursive all in the aim of trying to buy something that she doesn’t actually end up having (over-ripe tomatoes for £3 a box). Still, at least she got to feel a bit special and be on the telly.

Meanwhile, Venture Team A (Melody, Susan, Edna, Natasha) are apparently doing most of the buying for their team. Melody haggles over pineapples and grapes, before Susan gives them all a big negotiating pep talk, telling them all to give their best smiles and be super-friendly, because it’ll REALLY help, before they move on to buying vegetables. Edna looks at her


likes she’s seriously considering strangling her with her scarf, and huffs that everyone is to ask her every time they want to touch the Precious Money. IT’S HERSES! IT’S HER PRESHUS!

The girls stomp off, and Melody and Susan negotiate neatly with Incidental Character Boyfriend Carl The Market Worker here :

Hello Carl!

Susan manages to chip £4.20 a box down to £8.00 for two boxes, and wants to shake on this, smiling dementedly the whole time. Edna at this point comes steamrollering in jabbering at Melody and huffing “SHE’S MAKING DECISIONS WITHOUT CHECKING IT OUT WITH ME FIRST!. DON’T LET HER HAVE THE PRESHUS!” Susan whines “but it’s cheeeeeeeeaperrrrrrrrrrrr!” and Melody tells her to get on with it, because she doesn’t need this crap. Carl then gets the unenviable task of trying to claw some of the PRESHUS out of Edna’s claws as she whinterviews to the camera that all the other candidates are spending her PRESHUS. ICB Carl jokes that Edna’s so unearable and overbearing must be the Project Manager. She replies that she isn’t, but she’s been given a very important role.

Yes dear, that of “holding paper”, well done.

As Venture Team A carry the crates back to their van, where the four other women are presumably all swigging Bombay Sapphire and playing strip poker, Edna announces to thin air that they’ve got £84 left, like this is TASK OVER, then gives a death-glare to a


crate of kumquats. DON’T CROSS HER, KUMQUATS.

Meanwhile, Jim’s quest to charm the tomatoes off people has finally borne fruit (SO TO SPEAK A HA HA HA) and he’s bought all the tomatoes he needs, a box of red peppers, and an onion (presumably just to show off) for his £40. Gavin jiggles around feeling over-shadowed, whilst Alex grins in awe. Jim then closes giving his (pointless, only doing this because they’ve been mandated to make two items to sell, backwater) team a rousing sales pitch about MAKING SOUP LIKE THEY’VE NEVER MADE SOUP BEFORE! Gavin guffaws that he has in fact never made soup before whilst Tom

takes notes. Hey, remember the last Inventor on this show? Remember how she was eventually “just a secretary”? DON’T LET HANNAH CHERRY HAPPEN TO YOU, TOM!

Apprenticar A meanwhile are long gone, and Glenn is already setting up an imaginary production line. He chants “cut, squeeze, sieve, and into the bottle” like a mantra, as Vinnie Disney


prays for relief. In some form. Ed-Hunter tells Glenn to cut this planning, because it’s annoying him. Glenn splutters that he’s just trying to work out eventualities, but Ed-Hunter’s having none of it. THE ONLY PLAN IS TO SMASH!

Dawn breaks over London and

Finally, those businesstards are out the way

people who aren’t Apprentice Candidates take to the Underground. Imagine that. Team Venture are busy at work, cutting up pineapples, as Melody waves a knife about and tries to be inspiring. Edna demands to know how many fruit salad pots are going to be made, and Melody replies that they were aiming for 500, but as Edna swallowed £50 worth of the PRESHUS because she thought it would give her magical powers, they don’t have enough produce to do this, so they’re going to have to scrimp a bit. She demands her girls to TAKE PIECES OUT OF THE FRUIT SALAD POTS AND SHUFFLE THEM AROUND LIKE THEY’VE NEVER TAKEN PIECES OUT OF A FRUIT SALAD POT AND SHUFFLED THEM AROUND BEFORE! and they do so, whilst Nick


examines the product and finds it wanting. He thinks they should have spent more of the money on produce, because the end-product is mean and uninspiring as a result. You try getting that money off Edna Nick.

Hmmm...maybe not

Yeah, didn’t think so.

Susan suggests to the girls that they use some of the money that’s currently sat there doing nothing to buy more stock, because at the moment they’re only going to make about 60% of what they set out to. Edna starts flailing around and bugging her eyes out and hugging her PRESHUS and saying they need to focus on how much this stuff COSTS and HANDS OFF MY PRESHUS! Susan turns to Melody for support, but Melody just shrugs and says she values her limbs too much to try to get that stuff off Edna now, let’s just move on. Edna tries her damndest to look both threatening and triumphant whilst


dressed as a Pet Shop Boys Backing Dancer. It’s not entirely effective.

Girls done, the boys are finally arriving in their kitchens, and Ed-Hunter says “roll with the punches” about a billion more times, as Gavin ponders what his catchphrase is going to be.


Maybe, “shut up Ed”. Team Jim is put on soup, and seems to cope reasonably well, directing soup-making traffic like a pro. Alex is cutting up the peppers and onions, Gavin and Tom are on squishing tomatoes, and Jim himself is combining all the elements like a soup-wizard, marshalling disparate elements and ingredients together to create a taste sensation, in the complicated art of soup making. Meanwhile, Team Orange Juice is Leon failing to operate a juicer whilst Ed screams at him that he’s not doing it right, until the juicers are broken. I don’t know why, “SQUEEZE THE BALLS OUT OF THEM” and “BUZZ THEM FOR FIVE SECONDS ONE TWO THREE FOUR FIVE!” are both right there in the manual.

Leon gives a wistful interview


about how this isn’t really a very fun or important task he’s doing, but it’s time to sell soon, and that’s when he’ll shine. Him and his


massive hands. Which will come in useful, as, juicers broken via Ed’s screaming, the team are having to


squeeze all the oranges by hand. Kaen chuckles outside that there are 6 boys in there trying to squeeze 1400 oranges, and she doubts they’ll be done in time for the dinner rush, let alone the breakfast one. Back inside Ed-Hunter squeezes and squeezes and squeezes until his arms are tired and his lungs hurt and his voice is panicky and squeaky and he can see his parents mocking him for thinking he was anything other than an accountant. HE’LL SHOW THEM! HE’LL SHOW THEM ALL! SMASH SMASH SMASH! Sensing vulnerability, Vinnie Disney swoops in with a soothing word and a “big boy” and an invitation back to his hotel room to have a look at his pilot’s licence. Sadly for him, Ed-Hunter has got other things on his mind, like the fact it’s 8:45am and they’re not even out the door yet.

The women on the other hand are selling great guns – flaunting their fruit salads to the denizens of Canary Wharf Shopping Centre. Well, at least, Melody’s team are, as she’s made sure that she’s always at the centre of everything. Edna has been swapped out in favour of Felicity because…well wouldn’t you? Susan in particular seems to be selling well, by being girly and charming and giggly, whilst Natasha…


is not, getting thoroughly blanked. Still, she’s putting an appearance in, which is more than can be said for Zoe. Who exists. She does. Definitely. Somewhere. Melody and Susan seem to be doing a lot of standing around patting themselves on the back in between sales, which I guess is what they’re eating to keep them moving this morning : Self-Congratulation Flakes. Breakfast of Apprentice Champions.

Meanwhile on the dark side of Team Venture :


mmm. Just like momma used to make. All over the bathroom floor after she’d been on the gin. Ellie is a braver human than I would be and sticks it in her mouth, before proclaiming that it tastes like uncooked Ragu. She then grumbles about not being from around these parts, so not understanding this flavour combination, or how they can sell it on for £2.50. I’m surprised – isn’t Ragu what they use to make Bloody Marys in the North? Helen meanwhile skitters around squeaking about pasta. I really do think Helen would benefit from a life outside Greggs.

11am now, and the boys are STILL juice-loosening. Well, most of them all, Ed-Hunter is squatting on the floor in a fugue state counting rows of bottles over and over again and possibly crying.


Counting – it’s all he really knows how to do in a crisis. Glenn complains loudly about this state of affairs, and then goes outside to warnterview


to the effect that somebody on this team needs to “man-up” and that someone is going to be him, and he’s going to do it right now, just you watch, it’s going to be AWESOME! Him telling off Useless PM Ed-Hunter is going to be on Apprentice Highlight reels for years, like when Lucinda told Helene to shove her camera up her arse, and this is going to cement him as an Apprentice Legend for ALL TIME. Get your cameras on boys, you are not going to want to MISS THIS CLASH OF THE TITANS!

So he marches back in, banging his hands together and rattling pots and pans and yelling “IS EVERYONE READY GUYS WE NEED TO GET SELLING NOW!? ED I’M DOING YOUR JOB FOR YOU MATE! OI! ED!” and so on and so nonsense, distracting Ed-Hunter momentarily from his corner where he’s currently elbow deep in pots and pans doing pretty much nothing. All the other men roll their eyes all “oh, here we go”, and ignore Glenn utterly, then…


Jim swoops in proclaiming “I’M GOING TO DEFUSE THIS SITUATION NOW!” and drags Glenn off to stop making a tit of himself whilst everyone rolls their eyes at stoopid old Glenn and his bid for attention. You know originally I had blamed Jim for how artificial that was, but in retrospect, Glenn was ten times worse. Finally the boys get done, and Leon

Hello boys

lounges against a fridge like he’s doing a Boyz Unlimited shoot.

Meanwhile, the Venture B-Team has also launched, with Edna snarling down their Apprentiphone

I've got your produce RIGHT HERE, Bat-boy

like Earth Kitt’s Catwoman, that she’s sending on 100 vegetable pasta-pots and 100 fruit pots to Melody and her A-Team soon, whilst Ellie and Zoe both sniff their fingers and ponder how much longer they’re going to stink of courgette.

The boys arrive at their “permanent pitch” in Liverpool Street, and as Tom has not done anything adorkable in about 5 minutes, he decides to


juggle oranges. At least, I think they’re oranges. Oh and speaking of adorable, he pronounces it “ORINGJ JUICE!” Vice-Captain Jim grins


that he’s selling lots of orange juice, and he thinks that they’ll definitely be able to return the £250 to Lordalan, possibly maybe even with a little bit extra. Imagine! On the B-Team Gavin also appears to be doing an impressive job of upselling, getting people to buy two bottles of orange juice when they really only came for one.

The Boys A-Team? Is running around the West End, selling their orange juice directly to office workers. Leon pushes the fact that they did this all this morning with their bare hands, and Ed-Hunter corners bemused young women like this one


and starts talking about how orange juice is made. First you buy the oranges then you SMASH THEM then you sell them on. BUY-SMASH-SELL! THIS IS MY VISION! Neither of these approaches seem to be meeting with any success whatsoever. What is working? Vinnie Disney’s Raw Sex Appeal.

Hello! Ladies!

Literally everything he says in the pursuit of this sale sounds filthy. “Five-a-day”, “all this beautiful juice”, “you could do with an extra one”, “it tastes beautiful”, “happy with it? Goooood.” Sadly enough for feminism, this is going great guns, with women buying orange juice from him by the crate. Outside, Kaen nasueaterviews to this effect, and looks physically sick as a result.


Hey Kaen, why not barge in and tell them all how they’re letting Women In Business down by responding to these tactics eh? For the SISTERHOOD! After this sexual smash and grab, the Logic A-Team retreat to their Apprenticar and check how the other side of the team are doing. They learn that in £20 time, they’ll all have broken even! CELEBRATE!

The dregs of the Girls Team meanwhile are arriving at Euston Station for their permanent pitch. Looks

Sign me up!

appealing. Ellie gets down on her knees and finds herself having to make the right decision at this particular crossroads in her life.


She does not.


She then grumbles in a very Victoria Wood-esque way that she can’t spell anyway, before she stumps up to a man minding his own business and demands that he be her first sale of the day. I love Ellie. I particularly enjoy the way she pronounces “stuggle”. She grouses that nobody is buying their vegetable pasta because it’s past lunch-time. That and it looks like it’s come pre-digested. Helen gamely tries in her mouse-voice to shift the stuff, but she gets cheerily patronised by one old man too many til she just stands there staring into space


wondering if she shouldn’t get a boyfriend. Or any sort of friend. Or at least a hobby. She hears that sometimes people like to go to the cinema. She wonders if there are any films about Greggs. Meanwhile, in the midst of his existential crisis, Nick throws a lemon-face

What happened to me...

at his own reflection in a serving pan.

Back on the glamorous, non-despairing side of Team Venture, Felicity is bounding around in people’s faces like she’s an impromptu devised piece, and Melody’s starting to wonder where all this fresh stock that Edna was promising is, because thanks to Susan’s Smiles, they’re on the verge of running out. She rings Edna to find out. Edna


does not have a clue. And decides to blame this on Helen and Ellie somehow. And then claim she’s discussed this with Melody already. And then bitches that Melody calling is preventing her from selling. And also a wizard did it. And oops phone’s gone dead la la la la. Melody stomps off to tell the Glamorous Venture A Team that Edna is an idiot, so they’re going to have to pack up and join the static team if they want to get any more stock. Felicity wants her face on this matter to be on record.


Duly noted Felicity.

They pack up and hit the road in Apprenticar A, with Melody ringing Edna on the way to let them know they’re ON THEIR WAY. Edna’s response? “Why?”

Final piece of plot now before the task ends – Alex is sat in the van. This piece of plot runs to the fact that Alex is…sat in the van, not really doing anything, other than ladling out other people’s orders and cutting up bread. I’m sure this is supposed to be some sort of major plot point in support of his getting fired tomorrow, but…somebody’s got to do it. And I feel bad cussing out Alex for this when I literally have not even seen Zoe in the last quarter of an hour, let alone seen her do anything as involved as cutting up bread. Alex interviews that

in a previous life he ran an ice-cream van so he’s experienced in food hygiene. How mundane. Ask Melody – in her past lives she was the Dalai Lama, Boudicca, Jennifer Hudson, and Melody Hossani. And none of them ran an ice-cream van. Boudicca did have a hot-dog stand though. Tom interviews that, as he’s one of the few actual salespeople on the team, he thought Alex might be


less rubbish.

Last minute sales montage! Helen tries to upsell, gets ignored, and runs off to self-harm. Edna bitches that Melody has turned up and is trying to run ting, who does she think she is, the Project Manager or something? Tom tries to sell cold soup and gets sent off to reheat it. Felicity continues to get loud and obnoxious and stagey everywhere.Ed-Hunter tells a woman there’s no point in him talking. Vinnie Disney continues to work his mojo. Ed-Hunter says “roll with the punches” 500 more times, Leon and Vinnie Disney take the piss out of Ed-Hunter saying “roll with the punches” 500 more times and resist the urge to


pitch him under a bus.



After rolling into Boys Apprenticar A, and strapping himself awkwardly into his seat, Ed-Hunter grins that they all sold really well, and he thinks that, that what they just did there, with the SMASH is a viable business. If you say so. Meanwhile in Girls Apprenticar A, Melody slaps on her best face of smug


and says she heard somebody, not naming any names (let’s face it, it was Ellie), who didn’t believe they could sell shitty fruit salad for £2.50 a pot. Well, Miss Doubting Thomas, Melody Hossani CAN sell shitty fruit salad for £2.50 a pot, and Melody Hossani DID sell shitty fruit salad for £2.50 a pot. So THERE. Truly, as an achievement up there with whatever she did for Barack Obama. Looked after his plants whilst he was on holiday probably. Felicity sees an opportunity to hitch herself to the Queen Bee and runs with it, nodding and grinning and acting like Melody is her own Personal Jesus.


All the candidates line up ready for the Boardroom, as Tom

pores over his notes again. As per usual, he looks like the entirety of his face wants him to have no chin, apart from his actual chin. Keep on fighting chin! Don’t ever give up! After a while , Cousin It ushers the candidates in to the boardroom.

Everyone enters and sits down. Meanwhile, Lordalan finishes up his pasta-pot and juice and Flintstones vitamins, and

So bloaty...


He starts off by reminding them all that he gave them £250 each, like Edna needs reminding, she’s probably still got most it stuffed down her bra. Oh, and the aim was to come back with more than you started with. Fingers crossed eh?

Ed-Hunter is identified as the Logic PM, and he’s already being kind of sarcastic and awkward in tone in response to the question “were you Team Leader?” so… this should be good. Lordalan asks if anyone else considered putting themselves forwards, and Gavin decided to make out like he did, but Ed-Hunter was just SO passionate that he couldn’t be stopped. What I wouldn’t give for a Margaret Mountford “GAVIN! I WAS THERE!” at this point. There then follows a round of “good team leader?”


So that’s Leon desperately looking at someone else to answer, Vinnie Disney fiddling with his cuff-links, Jim trying to levitate himself right off into space a la “light as a feather, stiff as a board”, Edward doing the physical equivalent of an eye-roll, Glenn staring at his feet, Gavin looking confused that Lordalan would even have to ask, ABC trying to look like he’s deep in thought, and Tom sticking his hand up like a 9 year old. Bless. Glenn is the first to speak, saying Ed was alright, except for how he’d make random decisions based on nothing except SMASH, and Tom follows up by saying that he personally likes to know what he’s doing before he does it, which…Ed-Hunter isn’t so much a fan of.


The boys products are then identified as “soups and juices”, with Ed-Hunter saying that he chose them because they were so simple. You could just buy the products, SMASH THEM DOWN, then sell them on. Products so identified, Vinnie Disney already realises which way this is going on puffs his chest out seductively as Alex

Pick pick pick

picks his nose, absently.

Lordalan gets Ed-Hunter to aver that he spent all his seed money, then Ed-Hunter breaks this down further. He knew he wanted between 1000 and 1500 oranges (precise), and the rest he’d spend on tomatoes. Kaen tells Ed-Hunter to thank Jim profusely for somehow being able to find all the ingredients needs for soup for only £40, and Ed-Hunter does so, although not without patting himself on the back for identifying Jim as Chief Soup Maker-Upper. He’s then asked when he started to try to work out what he was going to sell the soups and juices for. His response?


“Lordalan, my plan, my strategy different. Very different. Bottom up, not top down. Because I didn’t know how many I was going to sell, I didn’t wanna to speculate. Didn’t know what I was going to sell it for, didn’t wanna speculate.”

Oh Ed-Hunter, just because talking like a caveman worked for Lee McQueen, it doesn’t mean it’s going to work for you. Lordalan asks him to clarify if this means that he had no clue what he was doing. Ed-Hunter replies that no, of course he didn’t, things just got SMASHED in the moment that they happened and that was it. Vinnie Disney decides to break in at this point and try to pretend that the team actually had a plan. This doesn’t really work either. At this point Lordalan loses his rag and starts rambling about how Ed-Hunter was trained at one of the leading accountancy firms in the country…


DON’T FIT THE MOULD! That’s what he says. It’s like he’s channelling messages from another dimension for Dr Who or something. Lordalan gets him to try to pull his brain back to the matter at hand – his training, as Ellie

Burr hurr hurr

tries not to burst out laughing. She doesn’t have people like this round where she comes from, I’m guessing. Ed-Hunter snits that YES HE WENT THERE AND IT’S ALL THERE. Lordalan asks him what’s all where, and he replies that ALL HIS EXPERIENCE IS THERE WHICH IS HERE WHICH IS NOW WHICH IS ED-HUNTER. Lordalan asks him to stop talking like a malfunctioning Cylon so he can talk to the (comparative) normals on Venture. Vinnie Disney deploys Plan B :

Hey Kaen...

Seduce Kaen. I’m surprised it’s taken this long.

Melody is then identified as PM of Team Venture, and the originator of the Team Venture name, and printer of the Team Venture t-shirts, and most popular girl on the team, and the originator of all womankind along with her good friend Benazir Bhutto. She proclaims herself to be a bold risk taker who takes bold risks and who took this risk which was bold, in become team leader. “Good Team Leader?” in this instance naturally gets Felicity terribly animated and Deputy House Captain and enthusiastic about just how inspiring Melody is.


Melody agrees that she is indeed inspirational, because she really listens to people.

Ellie identifies the team’s product line as being “fruit pots and healthy pasta” and then Lordalan asks if the team had a game-plan in terms of costs and pricing and quantities, unlike Psycho Ed over there. Melody says they did, thanks to the financial ministrations of Edna. Edna is asked if she’s in finance – she says no.


Melody flaps slightly, saying that Edna volunteered to do finance, and Edna denies this also, but says that she certainly didn’t shirk from this role that was thrust upon her so awfully. She certainly struggled mightily and internally with having to manage all this money, and didn’t all seize on it as an opportunity to act like a grasping psycho or anything.

Finally we close on the issue of the girls only spending £170 of their £250 seed money, mostly because if they pulled on it any harder trying to get it off Edna they would have torn most of it in half. Lordalan then goes on a lengthy rant about how if he’d WANTED THEM TO SPEND £170 HE WOULD HAVE GIVEN THEM £170. This…wasn’t what he said after the Series 5 Cleaning Task, but ok. Melody hand-waves some rubbish about wanting to keep costs down, before pulling an almighty poo-face at being criticised at all.

Ungrateful little shits...

She never got this shit when she worked with Benjamin Disrael, she’ll tell you that for free.


Logic spent £250, and took £339 on orange juice and £93 on soup, for a total of £182
Venture spent £170, and took £37 on pasta and £555 on fruit salad, for a total of £422



Tom gives Venture a small round of applause. Again, bless. The girls are applauded for their margin of victory, although Lordalan apparently wishes they’d made the same margin on £250 as opposed to £170, because he hates Ed-Hunter that much as this point and wants to see him smooshed. They are despatched to their lame prize, which is a champagne reception. They all run outside, and squeal, and


Felicity jumps right on her new BFF Melody. Try to look surprised/not depressed. EVIL POWER DUO in the making right there. Boys meanwhile are told to go away and come back tomorrow, when he’s going to expect simple straightforward facts from them, not, say, nuggets transmitted across the ether from Emperor Tharg.

The girls arrive back to find the house festooned with tacky balloons and full of waiters, who are to cater their champagne reception. Which looks a bit like this :


Helen’s having so much fun! She’s never drunk champagne before. All they have in Greggs is Coke and Oasis and occasionally an Orangina. She’s learning so much. She’s even enjoying the programme of events which seems to be :

8:00pm – Melody gives a speech about what a great Project Manager she was
8:15pm – Felicity gives a speech about what a great Project Manager Melody was
8:30pm – Melody gives a speech thanking Felicity for support, and also stating what a great Project Manager she’ll make in the future
8:45pm – Q & A session with Melody Hossani, hosted by Felicity, about her adventures kayaking down the Zambezi with Edward Heath
9:00pm – Vinnie Disney gives Melody Hossani her victory lap-dance

One person not enjoying this love-in is Susan, who retreats to the bedroom to whine about how everyone loves Melody, but she’s not all that.

kvetch kvetch kvetch

Maybe she should go chat with Edna. She doesn’t seem

*roll eyes*

that enamoured either.

You know where they don’t serve champagne?

LOSER CAFE! Non-Prison iteration as well. You actually probably could get champagne there, if you brought enough cigarettes and heroin in exchange. Gavin plonks himself down, and announces that the other team blew them out the water, would everyone else agree? Vinnie Disney, looking morose


says that he’s decided that the reason they lost is because they didn’t produce enough orange juice, before Tom huffles and wafts and pre-varicates and doesn’t want to put any blame on anybody guys, but it might have been because the juicers got borked. Not that that’s anyone’s fault at all. *guardian guardian guardian*

Why can't we all just get along?

Outside, Glenn interviews that he thinks that the task was all a bit of a punt, without anyone really taking care of attention to detail. Anyway, he knows he did great in his role of stomping around for 5 seconds playing Prtend Project Manager until Jim had to tell him to stop it, so everyone else is on their tod. Ed-Hunter then interviews basically to the effect that


“I’m one of those people who think being PM in Week One is a Get Out Of Jail Free card, so I’m not going to bother formulating any other defence.” That always ends well.


The candidates are ushered in almost immediately, with no time for any extra-curricular face-pulling. Lordalan joins them, and then immediately opens by pointing out to Ed-Hunter that on his application form that he said if his team lost, he was always going to blame the Project Manager. And now he IS the Project Manager. And he just lost. Squirm your way out of that one squirmy! Ed-Hunter replies that he did say that, but then he ALSO said that if he was Project Manager, then the gloves were going to come off. To better punch(/SMASH) himself in the face?

Lordalan then outlines what he believes to have been Ed-Hunter’s plan –


let’s buy as much shit as possible, and sort out the actual details later. I think that’s being generous. Ed-Hunter replies that basically he didn’t need a proper plan, because that would interfere with the ability to lead the team.


So his plan was the most simple plan possible so it would avoid distracting from his key duties of leading (like counting bottles and crying in the corner) – BUY STUFF, SMASH STUFF, SELL STUFF. Also…erm…10p per orange, 500 bottles, stuff that doesn’t even add up using Martian Maths. Lordalan asks if anybody else knew about this amazing plan, and Glenn responds that…


well, we kind of knew about the SMASH SMASH SMASH part, because he wouldn’t stop screaming it, but that was more or less it. Kaen breaks in to say that she certainly never saw any plan, and then Lordalan runs down the line, getting everyone to say they had no clue what the eff Ed-Hunter was going on about at any given time other than SMASH SMASH SMASH roll with the punches SMASH. They all agree, with Jim saying that Ed was very good at telling other people to get on with things like making 5 gallons of soup out of 50p, but not so good at doing anything himself.

Tom breaks in to say that he thinks that Ed-Hunter was so desperate to prove that he was more than an accountant, that he didn’t bother to prove that he was even an accountant at base, by neglecting key things like numbers, and adding, and knowing stuff. Lordalan smiles at this like someone just offered him a bag of Werther’s Originals,


and Tom


beams back like he’s just been told he’s someone very special too.

Ed-Hunter tries to wrest back control back from this very touching moment by saying that his only flaw was being over-ambitious. He would have brought Lordalan £1000 back if he’d made enough orange juice in the time allowed. He just underestimated the man-power it’d take to SMASH. Everyone else agrees that they could have sold much more orange juice if they’d had it, damn those juicers. DAMN THEM ALL TO HELL. Lordalan at this point decides to break down some basic maths for Ed-Hunter, given that Ed-Hunter now thinks he’s TOO GOOD FOR IT, or something. They only made 33% of the bottles of orange juice they could have made with the amount of oranges they bought, so something clearly went hideously wrong with the manufacturing process. What was that?

Ed-Hunter replies that it was that all three of their electric juicers broke, and Kaen is very quick indeed to pin this on Leon, and how he was handling the juicers, certainly nothing to do with the show providing shoddy Amstrad juicers or anything, definitely not. Unfortunately Leon does not bat back that he only broke the juicers because Ed-Hunter was screaming at him to squeeze their balls, and instead says something about burnt-out motors, which burnt-out completely coincidentally all at the same time.

Lordalan then points out that Leon works in the food-distribution business, so why didn’t he bring his expertise to the task? What did he do? Leon replies that he brought his expertise to the plan, as best he could, which lest we forget was SMASH SMASH SMASH. So he smashed things. *shrug*


We then move on to the saga of Alex, and his unit. He assures Lordalan that he was kept very busy all day, keeping the unit clean and making sure everything was well stocked and nice looking for the customers. He tries to head off the criticism that is charging towards him rapidly at the pass, by saying that he knows he didn’t sell as much as anybody else. Lordalan says this is true – he sold 9 things. 9 things all day. Alex then gets very huffy and OCD about how important it is to keep things CLEAN and that doesn’t


JUST HAPPEN BY MAGIC YOU KNOW? THERE’S NO KITCHEN FAIRY, JUST ME! Kaen then silkily snides that she can confirm that she saw him


“cleaning and cutting bread”, and that he can blather all he wants about how he was keeping things clean, but he could have at least tried to sell more than 9 things. Lordalan says that it seems like Alex was “back office”, Alex gets again mighty huffy and defensive about how without him there with his brillo pads and Glade plug-ins, nobody would have come near the unit to buy anything, before Nick decides to contribute by sighing “good place to hide”. Thanks Nick.

Ed-Hunter is asked who he’s going to bring back, and he replies Leon (ok, I guess, although he has the easiest defence in the world if he can be bothered to find it), and Gavin (?!).

Candidates go out, Tom says sorry to Lordalan in a nauseatingly ingratiating way (you can go off a person), Kaen calls them all stupid flirty bread-cutting sons of bitches, candidates come back in again.

We open with Ed-Hunter being asked why Gavin has been brought back and held responsible for the failure of this task. His response is basically “people said Gavin stepped up to be Project Manager, but he never did”. That is, I think the worst reason ever for bringing someone back to the Boardroom. It’s entirely irrelevant to the task, it’s about 10% provable, there were ample opportunities to discuss it at the time, it’s not even a big deal anyway. Never mind Alex, if Ed had brought Tom back he’d possibly have been fired for having a job that sounds a bit gay. Gavin and Ed-Hunter have out, at length, as to whether Gavin actually volunteered to be PM, or only volunteered a little bit, or volunteered just enough to say he had but not enough to actually get it, until Leon is dragged in and asked to vouch for Gavin, which he does, albeit half-heartedly. Meanwhile the one impartial witness to this kerfuffle?



Once we’ve ascertained that Gavin did put himself forward to be PM, Ed-Hunter decides to take the tack that Gavin isn’t a Doer. Kaen breaks in to say that Gavin in fact sold second-most units out of everyone, so it seems he is, in fact a doer. Ed-Hunter says that he didn’t get this information back from Jim, and Kaen says that he should have. Seriously? You just lost, and you don’t know who sold and did not sell? What sort of Boardroom strategy is it? Other than SMASH SMASH SMASH obviously. Gavin, taking umbrage at this slight on his ability to “do” from Ed-Hunter, says that he was an awful PM, and the only feedback anybody ever got out of him was “go away”. This then devolves into a debate as to whether Ed-Hunter is


this big. Gavin says that he is. Ed-Hunter insists to Lordalan that he is not. How much of this is metaphor, I’ll leave up to the imagination.

We carry on with the whole size thing next, as we get an assertion from Ed-Hunter that he deserves not to be fired just for standing up to be PM, whilst being both the youngest AND the shortest on the team.


I don’t think there’s any answer to that really. “I shouldn’t be fired because I’m short”. It was at this point I started wondering if Ed-Hunter wasn’t in fact playing an elaborate prank on the world, and just wanted to get in, say as much dumb stuff and potential catchphrases as possible, and then get out again. That or he’s high. Or both. Anyway, in the midst of laughter, Gavin says that Ed-Hunter was desperate to wear the PM hat, but didn’t want to take on the actual role. How I wish there was an actual PM hat. With horns.

Ed-Hunter is then asked why he’s brought Leon back and Ed-Hunter cites that, along with breaking the juicers he gets the impression, not really based on any numbers, because he hates numbers and has evolved beyond them and is so much more than them, but he just thinks that Leon didn’t sell a lot. Leon squirms to an extent that makes it obvious this is true, and says that it didn’t matter about individual sales, because he has a business where he sells things, and that should totally count towards winning The Apprentice. Lordalan then kicks into “make people beg mode” as he asks Leon to “inspire”/”beg to” him, to show why he should still be in the competition. Leon begins his plea with “LORD SUGAR, LET’S GO! HERE WE GO!” like he’s going to do a dance-remix for his begging, and frankly that’s enough to convince me that he should stay. Because whilst the actual begging is your standard “I’m passionate, I love money” nonsense, and I still wish they were marking these people on


posture, like with Dan and Jamie last year, any dance-remix is a good dance-remix. He’s asked who should get fired – he says Ed-Hunter. Duh. He also calls him “just an accountant” to try to poke him into a rage-fit, but it doesn’t work, and Ed-Hunter remains eerily calm. Lordalan for his part says he loves accountants, and is a bit sad that Ed-Hunter has decided to renounce his accountant roots to try and be some sort of wheeler-dealer.

Firing Time now, and Leon is kind of fire-teased, but not really a lot, and only really then because Lordalan’s forced into it because Gavin’s so transparently here by mistake that he can’t even touch on his failing for more than a millisecond. Getting fired then, is


obviously. Squeaking about how he’s NOT ASHAMED TO BE AN ACCOUNTANT BUT IT MAKES HIM FEEL SO DIRTY INSIDE. He doesn’t say “thank you for the opportunity”. He does give Lordalan evils.


I’ve got a feeling, unless Edna proper cracks, we’re not going to get any weirder than that all series.

The other two are dispatched back to the house without insult, to tell everyone they can sleep without putting the lock on their doors tonight now. Ed-Hunter’s last words in the Cab of Shame?


“Roll with the punches”. Quite.

Back in the Apprentice Farmhouse, everyone is, as usual, debating as to who’s coming back. Vinnie Disney wonders if Leon’s inability to operate a juicer might count against him in the end. I’ve got a feeling that Ed-Hunter’s inability to operate his human body was always going to weight slightly heavier in that equation. Evil Edna get him to commit to an opinion that Leon isn’t coming back, and Vinnie does so cautiously, but obviously he loves Leon like a son (not a biological son obviously, have to leave ones options open if one wants to win) so hopes not. Naturally it is at this point that Gavin


bursts through the door like Captain Melodrama, trailing Leon after him like a tug-boat. He then tells everyone, in the most euphemistic terms, that Ed-Hunter turned out to be a weed-eating psycho with…problems and he won’t be coming back. Felicity looks


sad and sympathetic. Count yourself lucky Fliss – by Week 4 he would have been running around naked smashing abacuses yelling “SMASH SMASH SMASH!” We close on a toast to Ed-Hunter’s memory, launched by Vinnie Disney. What a gent. (*snort*)

Next time :


This apparently is Zoe Beresford. Maybe we’ll be meeting her.

1 down, 14 to go


15 thoughts on “The Apprentice 7 – Week 1

  1. joistmonkey

    I think there is something rather funny going on with my head. I’m convinced that all the girls are either really attractive or dead fab people.. and I’m thinking Karen is both.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I have to admit I can at least see having that opinion for most of them (even if I might disagree in a few cases), although I’m intrigued as to which side of the divide Edna falls.

  2. melisande

    You know, when the girls picked their team name my first thought was that what the Apprentice *really* needs is some Brock Samson.

    Anyway. Monkseal apprentice blogs, yay!

  3. Robbie

    Edna should go straight into playing the villain in a Doctor Who episode after she’s fired in, oh, about week 5.

    Hilarious as ever, Monkseal

  4. consmot

    Right now…

    Love Jim, Tom, Susan, Felicity.

    Think the rest are all good value, except Edna who is definitely in league with the devil. Melody’s voice gives me earache.

    Good batch this year.

  5. gav

    I feel thoroughly let down no-one suggested naming their team “Shazam” this episode. Oh Kimberlypuff, how I miss you.

    Edna looks like she’s going to be quite the character this time round.

    1. monkseal Post author

      Every year needs a little bit of KimberlyPuff as far as I’m concerned. I really want to know her exciting ideas for apps…Well what NAMES the apps could have anyway.

  6. David

    I trained as an accountant and then decided to do something different … didn’t fit the mould you see … so I do have just a little empathy for Ed-Hunter. It was all those Monty Python sketches about accountants being so boring … but then I think half the Monty Python team trained as accountants, so maybe they were just taking the piss out of themselves?

    But I have been using my half-remembered skills to count the days until the next Monkseal Apprentice blog! Very funny as always.

    1. monkseal Post author

      My dad trained as an accountant and always wanted to do something different. I am familiar with the pull… Ish.

  7. Sam C

    HI CHRIS!! Why is Lordalan touching himself in that first picture? Is it just the London skyline that does it for him?

    1. monkseal Post author

      HI SAM!!

      I thought it looked like he was taking a wee off the side of the building myself.


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