The Apprentice 9 – Week 6 Summary

After the madness of Dubai last week, Lordalan decides that he wants to keep the drama rolling, so he meets the teams in needlessly grand surroundings, with rolling orchestral music, super dramatic lighting, and Nick and Kaen looking like they’re about to perform a Black Mass. Then he tells them that this week’s task is to create a naff corporate away day. Part of me can’t quite believe it’s taken them this long. Has there ever been a greater idea on this show than getting Apprentice candidates to teach actual business people how to do their jobs, whilst wearing a variety of outlandish costumes? Apart from going to Marrakesh, obviously.

To further stir the pot, Myles is ripped out of the heart of Evolve and booted back to Endeavour, dissolving the former immediately into pitched warfare along by now entrenched tribal lines (Luisa and Jordan vs Appointed PM Francesca and Rebecca, with Jason capering around manically as court jester). A “Back To School” theme is settled on and…then promptly abandoned five seconds later, in favour of wine tastings, cupcake making and giant pink flamingos. No attempt is really made to tie any of this together, or back to the theme, or to the planet Earth, except via Francesca rather sadly saying that when she was young she dreamed of being a policewoman. And then this happened. We don’t hear what Jason’s schoolyard dream was. I think it may have involved him being allowed to take his head out of the toilet now please, sir.

Dr Leah meanwhile, is left staring down the reformed Endeavour Kool Boys Klub, with only Natalie at her most invisible to back her up. It’s not pretty. An early attempt to exert her authority over the initial theme “Majestic & Magisterial Medieval Majesty” is undermined by the team’s client flat out telling her that she’s wrong, and from there it’s all downhill, until Neil, Alex and Myles are running her theme of “Military Boot Camp” between them mob-handedly, whilst she boop-boops around in the background in fatigues. Alex and Neil in particular form some sort of Homoerotic Cat Army Tag Team (Alex as Grumpy Cat, Neil as Piano Cat) and spend most of the day titting around yelling at people in a way they think is imposing, but which instead just comes across like the rejected concept for a Frankie Goes To Hollywood video. The team’s theme is ultimately subtly adjusted from “Military Boot Camp” to “X Factor Boot Camp” as Neil motivates the attendees by talking about how his dad died of cancer when Neil was 18.

Some Redemption Arcs are subtler than others.

After more cringing than perhaps even an episode of The Apprentice should contain, the Kool Boys Of Endeavour are declared the winners (and Neil Neckbeard the winner of the entire series, in there somewhere, or at least that’s what I think I heard) whilst Dr Leah recovers in a darkened room somewhere. They then all go off to a spa and we get further insight into just how Alex’s Eyebrows got to be how they are. He tweezes them. Fascinating stuff.

The boardroom for Evolve mostly revolves around Luisa, as she proclaims that she hates corporate types and also can’t work with women. Oddly enough this, along with her general all-round opposition to Francesca over everything for the entire task, gets her brought back to the boardroom. Of course she just writes it off as Francesca being jealous of her LUSHUS BEWBS or whatever. Also joining them in the boardroom is…somehow not Jason! Those of us who were convinced that he would be fired the second he was on a losing team mop our brows, thank Jesus (/Francesca) and pray that the advertising task comes SOON SO HE CAN DEFINITELY TAKE PART. No, joining Francesca for the final boardroom is Rebecca, who gets identified as being responsible for the team’s high spending tactics, which are taken by Lordalan to be the reason they lost the task. Rather than, you know, THE WHOLE DAY MAKING NO SENSE. Sadly, instead of really trying to defend herself she…just sits there vibrating, and Lordalan finally comes to the conclusion that she is naught but a saleswoman, and fires her.

She will be missed.

Next week : Caravans. Hmmm…

38 thoughts on “The Apprentice 9 – Week 6 Summary

  1. Ferny

    This was by far my favourite episode of the series by far – and next week is JASON’S TIME TO SHINE so I’m so excited about that….especially considering it’s about caravans and I can’t imagine that whole camping subject has ever been anywhere near Jason’s life.

    I also am dying to see Myles try and sell a caravan hehe it could his downfall even though I like him now.

    Felt a bit sorry for Francesca (is her business idea the English Moulin Rouge…please tell me yes) because she clearly loves and believes all the business speak, and she did try against all odds/Luisa. I just had a glimpse in my mind of Natasha Scribbins being on this task and volunteering to do the speech. That would have been GOLD.

    For once I’m with Luisa in that I could never work in a corporate environment, it’s my idea of hell (however I wouldn’t WHINE on about it all task :-))

    1. monkseal Post author

      There were a couple behind me on a train at the weekend talking about going camping, and it turned out what they meant was hiring a really expensive log cabin. I think that’s probably about where Jason is.

  2. Shrinking Man

    It’s been coming for a few weeks now, and this episode cemented it for me – Luisa is the best candidate this series, and one of the best candidates of all time. Erm, in entertainment terms, that is, not competence. If she doesn’t make it through to at least the semi-final, it’ll be criminal.

    And I have to say that I was surprised at Neil right near the start saying “we need a queer theme throughout the day”. Shame they didn’t run with that, really. It would have been different, at least.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I dunno, that bit where Alex bossed them around in his aviators and artfully applied camouflage make-up was more than a little fruity.

  3. David

    I still (perhaps naively) have hope that Neil isn’t the winner. I distinctly remember last series the editors were seated firmly within Tom’s rectum and his “doubt” episode didn’t come until week 8 or something. Although I think EVERYONE’S edit is very…odd this year. Still prayin’ for Dr Leah.

    (did you notice that her twitter name is “Official Dr Leah”? Bet she reads this blog)

    1. monkseal Post author

      I held off on Neil at first because obviously he has personality issues but…then it turned out so does everyone else this year so…

    1. monkseal Post author

      The little quote she gave at the start of the episode about how she really needed to be PM but maybe not right now, tum-ti-tum is what got me wondering.

  4. Tim

    Despite her ridiculous anti-corporate rhetoric, I still thought it was wrong for Fran to bring Luisa back. Much though it pains me to say it, as far as the task was concerned she actually did quite well this week. I’m not entirely sure how Fran survived, but I’m finding it hard to lose any sleep over Rebecca going.

    I really liked this task, although I wish they’d done more than pay lip service to the unique “customer satisfaction is important, guys” bit. Did they really have to make both refunds for the same amount? How was Endeavour’s day (which missed the mark in a few places) equally bad as Evolve’s (which missed the mark pretty much everywhere)?

    Pah. In keeping with the school theme I’ve done a little half-term report in my weekly recap thisly:

    1. monkseal Post author

      Ah but, you see, it RAINED on Endeavour’s day so really you have to take that into account.

  5. David

    Dr Leah’s team won by £500. Rebecca’s motivational speaker cost £600. Therefore, the speaker lost Francesca’s team the task. With logic like that, who needs enemies? As the delegates thought the speaker was easily the highlight of the day, it’s reasonable to assume that without him an even larger refund would have been required. What I don’t understand is why Rebecca didn’t advance that argument in the boardroom, and for that she deserved to go.

      1. min

        I know the winning team is often decided … arbitrarily … but the ‘you both lost but you spent less of your budget doing it – so yay, win for you’ method seems the laziest.

      2. Tim

        So often, though, it’s the least bad team that wins, often by some arbitrary factor, and this week was no exception.

        Honestly, so much of the entire day (except for the bit that got Rebecca fired) was a shambles, that I really don’t see how anyone other than Francesca could have been fired. Sugar, however, thought otherwise. This has to go down as one of the most random firings he’s ever made, surely? Except for the one in season four where he fired himself. Whadaya mean, that was just in my dream?!?

    1. durnovarian

      Tim – I suspect the reason Francesca wasn’t fired is either because LS didn’t want to be accused of prejudice against anyone looking like Stella English, or will become clear once the business plans are revealed. Cynical? Moi?? 🙂

      1. Tim

        Cynical’s a good place to be when it comes to The Apprentice! And, of course, so much does depend on the credibility of the business plans, which Sugar has already seen and we haven’t. But on the face of it, last night’s decision still baffles me.

    2. monkseal Post author

      The maths of the task is so odd. Really I think they should have given the teams a fixed budget and just had whichever team put on the best day win. I know with Lordalan is ALWAYS has to come down to the bottom line and cash amounts where possible, but it would have made the task more transparent if anything. Not that they want that on this show obv.

  6. Jen

    As long as my boys Alex and Jason are still in it, I don’t care. I hate Neckbeard and Dr. Leah. And lol at the quote marks on Francesca’s name!

  7. constantmotion

    They are hammering the “Neil done lurnd a lesson” button so hard that it’s not even funny. I think it must be a red herring, though. They wouldn’t be this blatant, surely? It’s like Liz Locke, and he gets fired week ten, and the edit is emphasising his positives just so everyone will fume at the blowhard comedy character who beats him, right?


    1. monkseal Post author

      Neil’s edit most reminds me of Ricky Martin’s, except defter with the negative stuff and more heavy-handed on the positive. The major thing that gives me pause about his win is basically the fact that it’d be the same type of winner back to back.

      This post did give me happy memories of Liz’s negative edit moments. That time she spent too long tarting herself up and the shop opened late. That time she pretended she’d volunteered to be PM when in fact Lordalan delegated it to her personally. That time she yelled “OOOOH TONY, YOU’RE MAKING ME WEAK AT THE KNEEEEEEEES!” to a 70 year old.

  8. Alex B

    In a mere 2 weeks Dr Leah has gone from serious contender to seriously incapable. However, I did like that she called out Alex for being a whining Dracula-looking mofo (those might not have been her exact words). His constant cab rage was funny at first but is really starting to grate on me now.

    Kaen said “arse” in the boardroom. This made me happy.

    1. monkseal Post author

      Kaen was basically nice about all the boys and mean about all the girls and I cannot WAIT for Natalie to call her a misogynist pig in the boardroom next week!

  9. Neio

    I feel a little sad to see Rebecca go, I think she had a lot of entertainment potential that we didn’t really get to see. It kind of felt like she never recovered from the other women hating her in the beginning, and was strangely cowed afterwards.

    Francesca should have gone – their day was completely random, didn’t stick to its theme (what the hell did all the flamingoes and feathery shit have to do with school?), and Rebecca’s speaker was one of the only popular aspects of the day. This was supposed to be Francesca’s area of expertise too, which is usually enough to get the losing PM fired.

    My favourite moment of the episode? That ‘Are you f***ing kidding me?’ look the chocolatier lady gave Luisa after she said they weren’t going to use her services just to get them stuff before asking if they could buy some icing bags off her.

    I would so have loved to see Tim on this task. Aww, I miss Tim.

    1. monkseal Post author

      “You’re basically me, but in a different universe. Now gimme your piping bags bitch”

  10. Ross Nolan

    I can only assume “Francesca” has a great plan up her sleeve; she was hopeless this week and clearly deserved to be fired. Luisa might have had a tin ear for the way her anti-corporate streak was coming across (even I personally sympathise with her setiments) but she seemed on the ball in the task itself.

    Rebecca had become so invisible by this point I won’t miss her particularly, though as I said “Francesca” should have gone instead.

    An awful week for Dr. Leah, following on from a poor week in Dubai. She’s no longer a serious candidate. Neil on the other hand impressed me, though I admit I’ve never disliked him as much as some.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I’m sad that Rebecca was so ground down by the process (/Luisa). If only Francesca had spilled her drink on her last week, it might have unleashed her inner HULK RAGE.

  11. FuTeffla

    It’s a terrible shame that they had to pick from a list of themes, rather than having the option of creating a Jason-themed event. Just a whole day of following Jason in his natural habitat (Lord knows what that might be) with tea and coffee as required. That’s worth £5000 of anyone’s money.

  12. Jack

    Aww, It’s a real shame that Francesca bombed as PM. 😦 She totally should have been fired for this task as she was pretty awful and tried to dress up the event by using loads of flowery language. In fact all of Sterling, bar Jason (And Rebecca) went from adorable to hateful in the space of one week. Particularly as Jordan and Luisa stood in the back plotting Fran’s downfall. I still think Jordan is one of the most articulate and intelligent ones there, but he needs to disassociate himself from Luisa to be a contender.

    Disappointed for Rebecca as I felt she was scapegoated and had done enough on previous tasks to justify a crack at the PM role. She was lovely on You’re Fired and I hope she does well as she really is a super saleswoman.

    Oh Dr. Leah, she faces a real uphill struggle now. Why on earth she didn’t listen to Neil is beyond me as if it went well, they win the task and if it went poorly, she’d have someone to scapegoat. She wasn’t nearly as decisive as I thought she’d be and she was very lucky to have Alex and Neil on her team. Although he won’t be winning any prizes for humility, Neil finally started to justify the huge amount of self-praise he’s heaped on himself. He was very good this week.

    Think Jordan, Myles, Neil, Alex are contenders, but not sure about the women. I hope Francesca will bounce back and Leah will return to competency.

    Kurt and Natalie are, of course, fodder at this stage.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I guess if she’d listened to Neil and won, it would have been 100% attributed to him, instead of the 99% it already was.

  13. farfetchd

    Bloody hell, nobody came out of that well except Neil did they? Have they ever been this blatant before? His edit was messianic in comparison to the rest.

    1. monkseal Post author

      I think Kaen was quite nice about Myles, a bit, once, although I was looking away at that point, so may well be misremembering.


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