Anyway, the new "Apprentice" has moved to Monday, which is a great place to stick it, since we're all watching "American Idol" on all those other days.
Donald is implying that he knows that the last season was too tame:
"We've got great new characters," he said, touting the addition of some foreign-born "Apprentice" applicants this time, including Lenny from Russia and Sean from Britain.No Carolyn?! Nooooo! Donald's daughter??? Right after we suffered through Martha's catatonic daughter! I am going to be hypercritical of the deserves-no-sympathy Ivanka. Ivanka must deliver or be rudely skewered!
Then there's the inclusion of a couple of other characters, who had a certain in with the star. Ivanka Trump, Donald's daughter, will fill in for Mr. Trump's sometimes acerbic aide-de-camp, Carolyn Kepcher, for five episodes; and his son Don replaces the other assistant, the gently curmudgeonly George Ross, for two episodes.
[Trump] acknowledged, that the third edition of "The Apprentice," which concluded last spring, contained a cast "full of marshmallows," a result, he said, of his not taking a stronger hand in casting. For the fourth go-round, last fall, and the fifth, starting tonight, he said he had been extremely hands-on with casting....Okay, this better be good. Now, go watch it, everyone. I will. Look for a quick update to this pose.
He would not reveal how his consulting efforts turned out, only that "nobody's going to believe it."
UPDATE: The contestants have to walk up the steps into his plane -- the plane that says TRUMP on the outside. They meet Trump, who mainly says I wanted you to meet me here so you can see how expensive my plane is as you begin your journey on this show which is all about how you can become rich and have a plane like this.
Then they get out of the plane and line up next to it, in extreme wind, where they must quickly summarize their bios, while their hair whips them in the face. Trump selects team leaders: the guy who says he's in Mensa (Tarek) and the girl who went to Harvard Business School (Allie). (What's with Mensa? People are proud to be in the top 2% of IQs, but not too proud to join an organization about just that?) The Harvard Business School girl is, in my mind, distinguished by the fact that she's the only person who chose to use her hand to grip her hair and keep it from whipping her in the face. Well, that's management!
The two who suddenly find out they are the leaders now need to pick their teams. Were they listening, in all that wind, to the bios of the other contestants? Neither leader remembers anyone's name, so they're both, I'll take the gentleman in the pink tie.... The fat guy is chosen last, and we see him interviewing about how he was always chosen last in high school. Oh, the team choosing ordeal! It's designed to dredge up all your old high school nightmares.
The fat guy, Brent, destroys our sympathy for him by pushing the team name "Killer Instinct." His team rebuffs him and chooses the dorky all-purpose business word "Synergy." The other team, someone Brentishly, calls itself "Gold Rush."
The task is dripping with product placement: Goodyear (the blimp) and Sam's Club (they have to promote it). We see the Gold Rush contestants laying into typical Sam's Club customers. Lots of high pressure sales talk. In interviews, they rave about what high energy go-getters they are. Lee wore a suit! What a creative idea -- we're told. What a way to command respect. The Synergy folk are pushing manicures and massages -- you know, what women want. Even though the teams aren't all-male and all-female this season, there's a masculine vibe to Gold Rush, and a feminine vibe to Synergy.
We get mercifully quickly to The Boardroom. The teams do almost exactly the same, but Gold Rush loses. We see the team conspiring to oust Summer, who does seem like a bit of an idiot. But Lee doesn't like this ganging up. He wants to blame Tarek, the team leader. And he's right. The team had no idea. All they had was a gift bag, but it was a gift bag with no gifts in it. The gift was the bag.
The firing scene unfolds brilliantly. We start by not wanting Summer to lose, because of the way the team plotted against her. But Carolyn pins her on the question: what did you do for the team? And then, when Trump is focusing on Tarek, getting ready to fire him for having no idea, Summer starts annoyingly butting in. So he fires her for being such an idiot as to keep interrupting when he's getting ready to fire someone else. Lots of big laughs here! She tries to spin her idiocy as truthfulness. And so, truthfulness is the joke of the night.
In the cab confession, Summer says she is happier with herself than she's ever been.