Monday, March 2, 2009

Celebrity Apprentice Recap

Somehow yesterday, Cline and I decided to do a Celebrity Apprentice fantasy draft, if for no other reason to create some artificial interest for the show. Standard snake draft, Cline got the first pick (based on his wining our football challenge) and then we alternated making two picks each until our rosters filled out.

The scoring (which still needs to be ironed out), will kinda go like this:

1 point for each person "fired"
-2 points for person to make "semis" or whatever you want to call it
-5 winner

Person with the least amount of points wins.
Here's how the draft went:

1. Cline - Gulbis
2. Goose - Duke
3. Goose - Hamilton
4. Cline - Walker
5. Cline - McKnight
6. Goose - James
7. Goose - Black
8. Cline - M. Rivers
9. Cline - Roderick
10. Goose - T-Boz
11. Goose - Jordan
12. Cline - J. Rivers
13. Cline - TOM GREEN (not a typo)
14. Goose - Kardashian/(Chyna)
15. Goose - Dice
16. Cline - Rodman

Please feel free to handicap our teams in the comments by the way. Or simply call us idiots for even having this idea in the first place.

Anyway, after the draft we still had the problem that neither Cline nor myself had ever seen a minute, let alone an episode of this show. Both of us had a rough idea of how it worked (this wasn't Lost) but didn't know the inner workings. So we decided to at least give the first episode of this season a go.

Big mistake.

First of all, neither of us realized the first episode was 2 hours long. So now we were about to double our waste of time quotient for the evening. Second of all, these "celebrities" competing, left a little to be desired. Let's put it this way - when Tom Green is the voice of reason in any way, you know your show is going to have problems.

Second of all - Trump could be the worst actor/television presence I've ever seen. His delivery of lines is a bizarre mix of screaming and reading that I've never really seen before - as though each is overcompensating for the other. I'm not sure why either, since there's no acting involved. This is real life. Or as real as can be on television.

Of course he's Lawrence Olivier compared to his son. I don't remember his name and I refuse to take the 4 extra seconds to look him up. I've invested more than enough time on this show. The son not only brings nothing to the table, he actually takes stuff away from the table simply because his presence in the room means the camera has to inexplicably cut to him occasionally.

Enough about Trump though. This is a vanity project pure and simple, and no amount of perfectly windswept hair is going to keep him out of the picture.

Let's talk about the contestants.

First, the teams were broken up according to gender. In a minor upset, we get confirmation that Khloe "Don't call me Chyna" Kardashian is in fact a woman. I lost $10.

First challenge - bake cupcakes and then head out to the streets of New York and sell them for charity. Sounds simple enough, until you realize 90% of these people haven't stepped foot in a kitchen in 10 years. Diceman made that abundantly clear in his case.

Joan Rivers, looking as though she were on loan from the wax museum, took charge of the women; Herschel Walker and his 40 personalities took charge of the men.

Once in the kitchen it became clear that this was more than just selling cupcakes on the street, as these celebrities started calling in favors with friends to line up bigger sales. Which, ok, but really? Doesn't it kind of defeat the purpose of the challenge? I mean Tom Green got Tony Hawk (and I find it deliciously awesome that the "celebrities" on Celebrity Apprentice got actual celebrities to come on and buy cupcakes) to buy a cupcake for $1000. I understand it's all for charity and the more money means more good for people, but it also cheapens the spirit of the challenge. Wouldn't a straight up sale of cupcakes on the street show the ingenuity of both teams?

(And yes, I realize the above paragraph is a very deep look into a shallow reality television show).

Back to the show...

It's evident Annie Duke has a game plan to win - and that's to take charge. Good strategy on paper, lousy strategy with a roomful of women. Annie does seem to micromanage a bit, but at least she seems to be doing something. I seriously am unsure where T-Boz was the entire show.

The men don't fare much better with Herschel at the helm. With cooking cupcakes being the task at hand, Diceman and Rodman immediately excuse themselves to go, I don't know bang chicks? I have no idea what E-List celebrities do in their free time.

While I wouldn't necessarily label their low enthusiasm the reason the men lost, it didn't help. And the men lost - badly. Their cupcakes stunk and they didn't make the cash the ladies did.

I will mention at this point that Tom Green to this point in the show actually looks like he is taking this whole thing seriously! Who would have thought the same guy who painted lesbians going at it on his mother's car hood would work hard to sell cupcakes for reality on a reality show? Color me shocked.

The men losing means one of them have to be "fired." I relish in the relish Trump takes in saying his "You're fired" catch phrase. It comes out so stilted and fake. But I'm getting ahead of myself. The men take turns throwing each other under the bus (I loved when Diceman said he would eliminate Scott Hamilton, who up to this point in the show had pretty much done nothing other than help out where he could), with most of the blame landing on three people's shoulders - Dice, Rodman and Herschel Walker. Dice does go into a bizarre tirade against Trump, the other contestants and even himself at one point. I also loved the fact when he continually said he was the only one that sold out arenas (15 years ago maybe) with Clint Black sitting there. I'm no country star expert, but I have to imagine Clint Black has sold out some places.

After a lot of forced suspense (and I'll admit I didn't know if Rodman or Dice was going - both could have gone and I would have been fine with it) Trump throws out his signature line at Dice, and in what seems like the show's millionth awkward moment, goes on to say how much he likes and respects Dice. Really? He'd be the first if it were true.

And so ends the first episode of Celebrity Apprentice. Will I watch again? Not if it's on for two hours. But I will say I have grown at least somewhat intrigued about a few of the participants, namely Tom Green and when he will flip out, if he flips out at all.


gdr said...

I really don't appreciate that 'wax museum' comment.

Anonymous said...

To learn more about Annie Duke and her charity of choice, read her latest blog post at:

Andrew said...

Nice re-cap, you are a noobie Apprentice viewer, but obviously some of the people on the show have watched before as they've used some of the same tricks as past casts. If you like this cast whatsoever, I think the prior celebrity one was leagues better. It was actually pretty good (and certainly the reason why they did it again). I'm not so certain about this one, you nailed it that not too many of them seem into it. Last time they had some legitimately saavy folks (Stephen Baldwin anybody?)

Don Trump (son), is really not the chip off the ole block when it comes to TV...Ivanka truly got that DNA.

One thought about your scoring system. Perhaps you should give points for the round they get to, starting with Dice at 0. next week will be 1, etc. Then give bonus for semis and then win. They all get fired in the end but 1, so that'll only differentiate you 1 point in that category in the current structure. Its basically who wins it. Just a thought.
By the way, Duke has no shot with her current style based on past shows. Way too aggressive, condescending, etc. Unless she really brings in big bucks everytime, she'll alienate everybody.