The Apprentice blog: Episode 3 Series 7

Posted on by Nell Frizzell

“Do you have the balls to actually smell what’s going on in business”, asks Lord Sugar as a parade of polyester, spray tans and cufflinks flap across the opening credits. I have no idea what this phrase actually means, but it has given me a rather unsavoury image involving mozzarella, jock straps, wheelie chairs and a nailbrush.

As we enter episode three of The Apprentice there are fourteen candidates left. For one job. Hold on. Fourteen people for one job? Six hundred people applied to work in the Helston branch of Tescos last November. Are we sure this show is as competitive as they make out?

As usual, Lord Sugar Ray Slobinson has woken up in the night for a pee and decided to ring the housemates. Poor thing; he must be getting lonely. Having made sure that no-one will have their judgement impaired by a decent night’s sleep, Lord Alan orders them all to the Savoy. Glenn is putting on deodorant and Natasha can’t find her knickers. I can’t help but think there’s more going on here than the cameras are allowed to show.

Anyway, the taxis are here and it’s time to, in the words of Roxy Music, do the Strand and, in the words of Louis Armstrong, stomp down to the Savoy. “There is no option but to win” says Vincent, who has woefully misunderstood the rules of this competition. Unless that is the Belgian pronunciation of ‘whine’.

The Savoy Hotel looks like a Dubai public toilet, as designed by Michael Jackson and decorated by Jackie Collins. However, according to the manager, there are still things left to buy. If it’s yet more marble tiling and gold-effect souvenirs then there’s a wholesale furniture outlet in Walthamstow that I think would be right up their alley. It’s called Elegant Interiors and has a bronze tiger coffee table in the window.

Like teenagers at a school disco, the teams are then shuffled in to a mix of boys and girls.

Susan, Dildo Baggins, Gollum Glenn and Felicity are in Team Venture. As is an extremely thin woman, dressed as Pavaroti (white cravat and all) who I swear to god, I’ve never seen before in my life. Susan is elected team leader, which may seem a good idea until you realise that, as a dealer in organic skin care, this is a woman who will pay £120 to rub tree sap in to her face.

Over in team Logic, a.k.a Team Spectacles, scouser Gavin is chosen to lead Commando Zoe, the Emerald arse Jim Eastwood, Vincent “Gaston” Dinosaur and Tom Pellerau, who appears to be wearing his dad’s glasses.

As this is a shopping list episode, the teams will have to spend other people’s money on an eclectic range of goods, including 52,000 pieces of cutlery, a top hat and 2,000 uniforms. Good training if any of them ever fancy becoming MPs then.

Sadly, Logic’s Gavin Winstanley is having trouble recognising a couple of things on the list. “There are a few items I have no clue what they are like… ice.” Well, you know what they say; the sun always shines in Liverpool.

Luckily, Natasha has had the blinding idea of phoning up another hotel and asking for all the answers. This is like when the school bully told me to give her my homework or she’d phlegm in my bag; I can’t decide whether to be disappointed that she’s cheating, or impressed by her sheer tenacity.

Over on Team Venture – which is very nearly an anagram of Ever Mutant, by the way – Orlando Bloom/ Dildo Baggins is trying to buy a top hat for a fiver. Sadly, he has gone to one of the most expensive milliners in London. This, as Nick is so keen to point out, is the place where the King of Tonga comes to buy his headwear. Whatever the hell that means.

As we all know, if you need a top hat quickly and cheaply, you just mug a goth. Or Jethro Tull.

In an equally expensive, but slightly more cleaver-heavy shop, the ironically-named Team Logic – which is an anagram of Atomic Leg, by the way –  Jim Eastwood is haggling over meat. Now, The Apprentice goes to Smithfield every other ruddy episode. So why, the one time they actually have to buy meat, they go to Mayfair instead is beyond me.

But back to those mystery items. Because The Apprentice is basically the Virgin Trains of business-orientated telly, absolutely nobody seems able to access the internet. That’s right. Not a single person manages to jab the word cloche in to Google. So, instead we are regaled with questions like, “Where might we find a 10-inch bell in London?” Go to Soho and ask for Jumbo Jim? Just a thought.

Of course, the absolute hero of the episode is the ball-breaking fabric salesperson who treats the request for cheap organza silk with all the enthusiasm of someone offered an orgasm with Robert Kilroy-Silk.

Like any sane-minded shopper, by 4.30pm Team Logic are looking for a cup of tea. Camomile tea, specifically. Sadly, the box they’ve found is £990 and being sold to them by Mrs Smugpants – a representative from the Planet Retro. I know how they feel – I once paid £3.25 for a cup of tea and a Bounty in a Little Chef off the A30. Sigh.

So, as the shopping frenzy comes to a close, the teams return with their wares. A top hat, 500 loo rolls, half a cow and some camomile tea? Either the Savoy is preparing for some sort of aristocratic apocalypse or they’ve signed up to the most extreme series of Come Dine With Me to date.

Back in the boardroom the results are closer than Sir Alanstrad’s eyebrows, but Logic take it by just £8. To celebrate, the winners are taken to a ‘burlesque cocktail bar’. A post-work trip to watch semi-naked women swing their nadgers around as you get drunk on overly sticky drinks? Wow, The Apprentice contestants are finally acting like high-ranking business men. I just hope they don’t get a pube in their daiquiris.

Back in the boardroom, the losers are accused of “three hours of pontificating.” I mean really – in that time S’r’Alan could have fired up the AmstradB00B and applied a tanning wipe. These chumps really are wasting his time.

Gavin takes Vincent and Zoe back in with him for the final three. “If I see things going wrong, if the ship’s sinking, I bloody jump in there myself,” divulges Lord Sugarlumps. Oh how, I’d love to put them all in a leaky boat and see who jumps first.

“I know you’re Belgian. That’s where the waffles come from.” Lord Sugar hits Vincent with one of his trademark zingers. Or, should that be zingeurs. So, are we about to lose the axe-nosed, mock-Madeley, Disney man himself?

Thankfully, no. Gavin is given the boot instead. And rightly so. The man doesn’t know what ice is, for chrissakes.


This entry was posted in Misc and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.