The Apprentice 9 – Week 8 Summary

It’s time for the advertising task. Jason officially made it. Just barely. *mops brow in relief*

The episode opens with Myles aghast at the realisation that his team now consists of himself, Dr Leah and Alex The Vampire. And that’s it. He wonders how this happened, apparently not noticing the trail of bloodied caravanners the team left in its wake last week. Then Jordan leaps up and down waving his hands and squeaking and Myles looks about 5 feet downwards and sees that actually Lordalan has transferred him over to make the numbers up. HUZZAH! Jordan’s first act as an Endeavour is to cock-block Alex from being Project Manager for the umpteenth time in a row, just because. Alex fumes, as well he might.

The task is to create a dating website and an advert to go along with it. Jason is elected as PM for Evolve, on the grounds that he ran a dating website at University. In the guise of Cupid. Oh how I hope the picture of him in a nappy with a nerf gun and a bashful smile, shooting puffballs at PPE undergrads, still exists somewhere. He, much against the advice of Luisa and Francesca (who are randomly aligned for the entire episode for reasons I can’t quite grasp), opts for a target market of the Over 50s. Francesca is sent off to do market research, which she does, and which she listens to, which apparently is the WRONG DECISION. Somewhere Melody Hossaini is sat in her pyjamas, spraying out “SEE, I TOLD YOU!” through a mouthful of BixMix crumbs. Obviously the most ballyhooed event on the team is the “coup”, which consists of Jason and Luisa having a playful tiff over the website design which results in them wandering around the office having such a pathetic slapfight that everyone around them bursts out laughing. The upshot is that Jason resigns as PM in favour of Luisa, rather mournfully trying to make out that it’s for the good of the team. Boo. This all results in a barely started website with a, by consequence, incredibly awkward pitch attached. Both of which Luisa seems really DETERMINED to get associated with her personally, whilst simultaneously distancing herself from them. It’s not an episode of GREAT tactical play by anybody on Evolve, except maybe Neil, who does very little except shake his head at them all. Oh and their advert features a man going out with a woman who’s just been involved in a major car accident and probably needs to go see a doctor for her concussion.

Endeavour? Are really all about Alex dressing up as a greasy emo vampire panda in jorts called “Herbert” and stamping his outsize undead personality all over their advert to the degree that it drags the rest of the project down a black hole after it, making their by comparison (and only by comparison) classy website for young urban professionals seem somewhat redundant. Myles emerges as the star of the task, as he seems to be the one really holding things together whilst Jordan delegates everywhere and gets a little…too into what he imagines to be the female mindset, and Dr Leah cringes internally at the entire task.

Evolve lose, as much as anything because that’s where the drama is. The result is a rather bizarre Push Me Pull You boardroom where both Jason and Luisa serve as the losing Project Manager, like someone got the casting for Zaphod Beeblebrox VERY WRONG. Somehow Jason gets his way for the first time the entire episode, forcing Francesca into the Final Boardroom over Neil. This cements both the Neil & Jason alliance (bizarre) and the Francesca & Luisa alliance (bizarrer), although I can’t imagine either of them have much life in them beyond this episode. Partly because Neil & Luisa appear to form some sort of unholy Axis Of Evil next week, repeatedly murder Francesca, and then drive off into the sunset with all her stripper money like Bonnie & Clyde, and partly because Jason is, sadly, with regret, and a very special closing theme song, fired.

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! HE WAS THE FIRST USELESS POSH CANDIDATE I EVER LOVED! WHYYYYYYYYYYYY?

Next week : hopefully someone blocks Alex from being Project Manager again, just for funsies ; the teams make ready meals ; and we all try to learn how to cope in this post-Jason world.

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41 thoughts on “The Apprentice 9 – Week 8 Summary

    1. monkseal Post author

      I can’t believe the BBC didn’t give us a hotline. I didn’t give a shit about Take That splitting up, but I NEED TO DISCUSS MY FEELINGS WITH A TRAINED STRANGER ABOUT THIS HAPPENING.

      Reply
      1. Socksy

        “If you or someone you know is affected by an issue covered in one of our programmes, please blog your feelings, preferably IN CAPSLOCK, while our producers cackle to themselves over how easily you are manipulated and make another sacrifice at the altar of Moira Ross.”

  1. Jack

    Great recap, I’ll post more later. The only thing is you got Evolve and Endeavour mixed up from where you started talking about Alex.

    Reply
  2. Tim

    Slightly bizarre that Francesca got so uppity about Jason wanting to bring her back in and then basically volunteered to come back in anyway on the basis that she was spoiling for a decent scrap. As if Jason would ever stoop to anything that didn’t adhere to the Queensbury Rules.

    Farewell, Jason. You were never going to win but the programme is a duller place without you.

    Random scribblings in between all the sobbing:
    http://slouchingtowardstv.com/2013/06/20/the-apprentice-flirting-with-disaster/

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      She seemed to be arguing with him that he should be bringing Jason in instead of her. Which given that he is Jason, probably wasn’t going to work. Although, after this episode…

      Reply
  3. KoalaSees

    NO WHAT IS THIS STRANGE NEW WORLD GO BACK AND RIG IT PLEASE!!!11!!!!
    Luisa’s pitch was terrible don’t know how she didnt get any blowback for it.
    Fran didnt deserve to be in that boardroom more than Neil.
    Never had I swore more than Jordan winning tonight ITS SO UNFAIR

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I can’t believe that she WANTED to do it. I’ve seen candidates over-estimate their ability to sell a shitty product, but that was quite something.

      Reply
  4. Alex B

    Oh, Jason. How will we cope without you? I actually thought he was surprisingly effective in the boardroom, but it was clear he was toast as soon as he abdicated – there’s no way Sugar would let that go.

    I didn’t think anything could be funnier than Alex’s hilariously terrifying advert, but Evolve trying to pitch their spectacularly shitty website design came pretty close. I just couldn’t stop laughing every time I saw it.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      To be fair, it probably should have been clear he was toast when he spent 45 minutes choosing between taup and turquoise. I don’t think Lordalan can really relate.

      Reply
      1. Alex B

        You’re right, Monkseal. I knew the other team had Alex dressed like Eddie Munster so I tried to kid myself that they’d fail even harder, but *sigh* you’re right.

  5. FuTeffla

    WHYYYYYYYYYY

    Even Jordan’s amazing bit about how he’s a strong independent woman and if you liked it Alex, you should have put a ring on it because he doesn’t need you to be empowered can’t make up for the loss of Jason. (Actually, between that and Jordan’s ‘I want to be an international spy’ I have never liked him more).

    Even Myles basically telling Alex he’s hideous while Jordan cackles in the background can’t make up for the loss of Jason.

    Even Alex dressing up as Edward Cullen in denim hotpants and sliding towards a horrified lady on a bench while Leah drones over the top can’t make up for the loss of Jason.

    Even the gnomic wisdom of the expert at the pitch who explained that if you go with what your market research gives you, you end up with what your market research has given you can’t make up for the loss of Jason.

    Why.

    Reply
  6. min

    I feel adrift.
    Not only is Jason out – but 2 of the founding principals of apprenticeship have been blown out of the water. You shouldn’t listen to your PM and should disobey if ‘your gut’ is telling you to and you shouldn’t take a blind bit of notice of the focus groups if ‘you gut’ is pulling Nick-style faces.
    The world’s gone mad!

    Also had a picture of Myles – when Jordan wanted to be an international sppppyyyyyy ‘cos it’s exciiitttinnnggg – thinking, ‘nah, it’s not all that, really’ πŸ™‚

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      Lordalan actually gurning “WHAT? YOU LISTENED TO MARKET RESEARCH?!” was ridiculous and amazing. I mean…there’s a way of selling that, and he chose to just brazen it out and not bother all “what? I’ve never said anything different!”

      Reply
  7. Neio

    This show really needs to be consistent about market research – should you listen to it, or ignore it? It seems like a no-win situation. Maybe they should admit that it’s just a way to keep one of the sub-teams busy for a couple of hours?

    I’m sorry to see Jason go, but I suppose it was inevitable after the abdication crisis. He was very entertaining on You’re Fired, so I think a TV career could be in the offing whatever happens (and would be far preferable to the glorified estate agency that his business idea seemed to be).

    And has there ever been a candidate who avoided being PM for this amount of episodes who actually wanted to do it, like poor Alex? I remember a few who dodged it as long as they could (ahem, Tom Pellerau), but no one who was actually chomping at the bit to do it.

    Reply
    1. Vika

      The key is that you should listen to the market research when it’s been founded on a good premise – for an internet site, they probably should have first talked to the focus group about their internet usage, then tested site ideas etc – but of course there’s no time to set it up properly on this show, so really it’s a pointless exercise.

      Reply
    2. Sashi G (@infinitestrikes)

      Well according to this site – http://kcl.academia.edu/JasonLeech – it says he is considering a TV Career. “Currently, I am focusing on something more contemporary: an entertainment programme with an intellectual backbone which developed while filming BBC1’s The Apprentice. Social, cultural, political and all sorts of other commentary delivered in a very ‘Jason’ way, in text and visual formats, coming soon on http://www.jason-meets-world.com

      Reply
    3. monkseal Post author

      I am very excited for Jason Meets World, and want to know who will be playing the Mr Feeney.

      Reply
  8. MissE

    I spent the whole night episode praying with my boyfriend that Evolve (I think, the one without Jason) would somehow lose and save him. I think we all know who ‘him’ is.

    He went out in a style though and made for a great episode of ‘You’re Fired’ which I suppose is the best I could have really hoped for.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      The “let’s summarise the other candidates” bit was so half-arsed it was amazing. Clearly they wanted to be just hugging Jason rather than discussing the putative merits of a Myles vs Dr Leah Final 2. THE MEDICO VS THE MANWHORE!

      Reply
  9. Shrinking Man

    So they showed up 2 hours late at their web design meeting. They had 1 1/2 hours left. And, in that time, they put up the logo, a picture of an old man, and 3 very short lines of text (looking like they were his a/s/l). If that took them 1 1/2 hours, then a) how bloody slow was their web designer? and b) how could they have hoped to make 3 pages in the 2 extra hours they had?

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      There was another page that we were shown the next day at some point. I think the situation maybe wasn’t QUITE as parlous as presented, but still pretty unfinished. Obviously we just got the most awkward bits on air – I’m sure the pitches went on much longer. I doubt they rehearsed for half a day to just go “HI I’M LUISA OUR WEBSITE’S SHIT HERE’S OUR VIDEO K THX BI!”. Or you’d hope not.

      Reply
  10. Rachel Miller

    NOOOOOOO!!!! WHY????????????????

    A Wednesday without Jason is going to be so dull. Maybe Monkseal could bring him in as a guest opinion blogger occasionally so we all get our fix?

    I’m very worried that Alex was so convincing as Herbert though. Maybe this is his business plan? The Dr. Leah notlove is also increasing each episode, you’ve got to hope she’s better as a medic!

    Reply
    1. Missfrankiecat

      Am I the only one watching the Evolve ad who would rather go on a date with Alex Herbert than listen to another syllable of Leah droning on?

      Reply
  11. Jo (@azure_karura)

    I don’t know what to believe any more. All this time teams have been lambasted for not listening to the market research, and now they listen to it and that’s wrong too.

    Farewell, Jason, you will be sorely missed.

    Reply
  12. Ferny

    Well I knew it was coming but it was quite painful, and if it’s Alex going next week I don’t know how I’ll cope. However for Jason, this is just another in a long line of coups.
    I am genuinely so happy that he is now following you on Twitter, especially as it means he’s most likely read this. (Hi Jason!)

    I feel like Leah and Myles have just been cringing internally for the entire series.

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      They do seem the most…collected. Amongst everyone. Such poise. Such extensions. Such thongs.

      Reply
  13. durnovarian

    Alex B is right, LS was never going to let the abdication pass. (Although I think Jason might have made more headway with an argument along the lines of only jumping before he was pushed.) After that, Jordan’s team would have had to be irredeemably awful to not win, and it’s been clear from the beginning that once Jason was in the boardroom he was always going to be fired. Just a shame it happened so soon. πŸ˜₯

    I also think Loo (Jason called her that, so I’m sticking with it, OK?!) was very lucky there’d been a double-firing last week. If there hadn’t, I reckon LS would have fired both of them.

    So, farewell Jason. You were never going to win, but you gave me the other reason for tuning in each week. (Normally, I only bother so I can enjoy this blog fully!)

    Reply
    1. monkseal Post author

      I don’t think Luisa was going anywhere. Debrabarr did “worse” and skated through far more boardrooms – at least Luisa didn’t tell Nick to go fuck himself or whatever Debrabarr did when he told her off (DebraBarr <3).

      Reply
      1. tabithakitten

        Somehow I can forgive Debrabarr so much more though. A – because telling Nick he’s a twat who’s lying through his teeth just to make her look bad is kind of cool and B because Debrabarr didn’t sound like someone from a Catherine Tate sketch whenever she opened her gob.
        I do realise that loathing Luisa principally because she has a voice like a disaffected, idiot teenage girl is remarkably shallow but I make no apologies for this.

      2. durnovarian

        But didn’t DebraBarr have half-decent business sense to back her up? As far as I can recall (which isn’t far, I admit) Luisa hasn’t done anything particularly right yet, has she?

        And tabithakitten, I agree with you about both women and I don’t apologise either! πŸ™‚

      3. monkseal Post author

        I think they’re both fundamentally good saleswomen/negotiators who can hold their own on the more “businessy” bits but don’t particularly excel at them. Lest we forget the car-crash that was MarGay which had a leaflet just as half-finished as the website as this week (although DebraBarr did come up with a more creative excuse for it, so kudos points to her there).

  14. Definitely Not John

    I think they are not letting Alex be PM for tactical reasons. If he doesn’t be PM and they lose then he will definitely be fired

    Reply
    1. Min

      Normally, by this time if someone has sidestepped the PM-ish LidSirAl forces them at finger point in the opening team shuffle. Wonder why he hasn’t this time – rubs chin πŸ™‚

      Reply

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