Welcome back! We are getting down to the wire here. Last week on The New Celebrity Apprentice, sent to the choppa first was rock star Vince Neil because he was tired and gave up after winning a record amount for his charity. On the second task, Chael Sonnen was fired for cutting the cables to the computer in an attempt to win Team Prima more time. Arnold Schwarzenegger fired Chael for cheating. Then Arnold fired Real Housewives star Porsha Williams for not giving an answer on whom to fire even though the girl is quite capable of running her mouth. The Governor decided to even up the teams again. The new teams are:
Team Prima: Carson Kressley, Lisa Leslie and Boy George
Team Arête: Matt Iseman, Ricky Williams, Laila Ali and Brooke Burke-Charvet
The client is the Clippers basketball team. Steve Ballmer is the owner, but ran Microsoft for 14 years prior to this. The teams will be expected to fire up the fans during a 90 second time-out at a game. Ballmer wants high-intensity that represents the Clipper-nation brand. The teams will have access to the Clippers dancers and tee-shirt cannon. They will also be creating a signature Clippers tee-shirt. The teams will be judged on overall creativity of their presentation, tee-shirt design, and ability to get the crowd on their feet. The winning project manager will get $75,000 for their charity; $50K coming from the Clippers.
The Project Manager and Strategy
Team Prima – No surprise Lisa Leslie is the project manager. She was the first woman to ever dunk in the WNBA and she did it in the Clippers’ stadium. Fun fact: Boy George and Carson Kressley have never been to a basketball game – ever. Lisa puts Carson in charge of tee-shirt design and Boy George in charge of writing an original anthem that will move the people. Lisa is excited to rap for the crowd, though she won’t be touching a basketball. Carson’s tee-shirt will say “Rise Clippers Nation.” Boy George thinks it’s boring and he’s right. They “tszuj” it up with their celebrity and Boy George likes it in the end. Ba-dum-tisk! Plus his song is catchy. The teams goes shopping and practice and practice and practice their new song. We shall see if this makes them perfect. Patrick stops by to check in and is surprised to learn Lisa is not going to dribble or dunk the ball.
Team Arête – Ricky Williams has volunteered for project manager because being an athlete he knows what the crowd wants. So he says. Ricky hits the ground running with research on Ballmer, the dancers, and past tee-shirt designs. Matt Iseman shows a video of Steve Ballmer screaming like a girl and hopping around like a maniac at a Microsoft function. Matt plans to be just like Ballmer. They will use his words, “I love this company” but change it to “I love this team” thinking they will score brown-nosing points from Ballmer. Ricky wants a black shirt with the “We love this team” logo on it because he loves wearing black. Brooke doesn’t think the back of the shirt is creative enough, but doesn’t force the issue. Laila Ali is not feeling well, so she’s not doing much. Matt thinks Brooke is the one to watch out for because she’s creative and covers her ass. Steve Ballmer stops by to visit the team. Matt gives him the spiel, and Steve says he loves it, but calls Matt out for his pandering.
Team Arête is up first. It’s go time. Matt is full of energy as he welcomes the crowd and tries to get them on their feet. They get the crowd to chant, We love this team, but only a couple of times. They shoot out the tee-shirts and then their 90 seconds are up.
Team Prima runs out on the court with their new anthem playing. Boy George sings along with gospel singers and Lisa raps. Carson is tossing out foam fingers, doing jumping jacks, running around like a lunatic as he hand delivers Ballmer a tee-shirt. And just like that, they’re time is up, too.
The Boardroom Feedback
The Governor welcomes the teams and announces how happy he is to have his smart and wealthy friend, Steve Ballmer, with him. I think Arnold wants Steve to fund his next movie project. Lisa says she thinks her team did well especially with their anthem. Boy George shares the credit with the team for writing the song. It’s a big deal to the board that Lisa decided not to touch the ball. Steve wants to know why she didn’t throw a three pointer. Arnold asks if it was because she was afraid to fail. Lisa says no, she was too busy because her teammates had never been to a basketball game before. Ricky says he initially was intimidated that Lisa was PM but when he considered her teammates, wasn’t scared at all. And the crowd goes, boo-hiss. Steve tells Matt he didn’t like how he high-jacked his slogan from Microsoft and that Matt had the crowd up, but then lost them.
The Tee-shirts are brought out to view. Carson says the other team’s is nice, but not special like theirs. Brooke thinks their tee-shirt is better, but admitted the other tee-shirt had creative components.
The results for best tee-shirt: Team Prima wins.
The results for best audience participation: Team Arête wins.
The results for general creativity: Team Prima wins – because of their song – which the Clippers will use again.
The Winners and the Losers
Team Prima is the winner! Lisa Leslie wins $75K for her charity Semper Fi Fund who is all about giving financial support to all branches of our armed forces. Lisa, Boy George, and Carson leave the boardroom to go celebrate their win.
Team Arête will fight to see who goes home. Arnold asks Ricky what went wrong and he says they missed the mark. Duh! Ricky says the weak link was Laila because she’s sick. Arnold agrees that he never really even saw Laila. Laila says Arnold didn’t see her because she was on the other side of the court, and by the way, she can’t do backflips. Arnold asks Matt who should be fired and Matt says everyone did great, but Laila was sick. Ricky agrees that at this point in the process, if you don’t give all you’ve got, even when sick, you’ve got to go. Arnold brings out their tee-shirt and shows how hard it was to open it up with all the tape. The board tells Ricky that Carson was smarter because he hand-delivered the tee-shirt to Steve. Arnold asks Brooke why he shouldn’t fire her because of the tee-shirt design and she says Ricky was mostly in charge of the design. Ricky says he will bring back Laila and Brooke to the boardroom. Matt is off the hook.
Before he brings the trio back in, Arnold and Steve both agree that Laila was very lackluster and might be the one to go. Patrick disagrees and says the buck stops with the project manager, Ricky. The trio comes back in and Arnold tells Ricky this is his second loss as project manager. Ricky stumbles over his words and says even though he lost, he delivered a quality project. WTF does that even mean? They lost. Laila says that Ricky should be fired because he’s the PM. Arnold interrupts and says he doesn’t see any joy in Laila right now. Laila is like a sleeping bear who just woke up. She says, “Hey, the only task ever won by the women was won by me, damnit!” Brooke thinks Ricky should be fired because they didn’t have enough of a creative vision. Ricky wants to know where this passion was during the task. He accuses the women of being more interested in covering their asses. Arnold says he was about to fire Laila but her fighting spirit has saved her. Instead, Arnold says Ricky, you are terminated. Now get to the choppa!
Episode 9 – The teams are now three on three
The teams meet at Gold’s Gym. The task is to sell modern new gym equipment on QVC. Leeza Gibbons is the special boardroom advisor and last season’s Celebrity Apprentice winner. She explains the teams will negotiate for one of the four pieces available that they would like to sell. They will price their item, create their pitch and have eight minutes to sell their exercise equipment live from Muscle Beach. The winning project manager will receive $50K for their charity.
The Project Manager
Team Prima – Carson will be project manager only because has sold a lot on QVC, though none of it was exercise equipment. This is Carson’s third time as project manager.
Team Arête – Brooke volunteers for the project manager job even though Laila wanted it. It comes down to who has sold on QVC. Brooke has and Laila has not.
The four items are: Double Flex Total Body Gym; Obsidian Slide Board; The Oval Jumper; and the Flex Core 8. Carson asks a very important question – which items are available now. Only two are. Brooke likes the Slide Board and Laila likes it too, but it isn’t available for a month. Carson picks the Double Flex Total Body Gym, it is available for immediate delivery and simple to use. No one gets into a fight over wanting the same equipment.
Team Arête – Brooke says she and Laila will be the ones to host the event because they are relatable to the viewers at home who will buy this slide thingy. Matt will be the producer. They discuss price and decide $109.99. Laila is concerned with the shipping delay, but it’s too late now. Matt is mesmerized by Brooke as she works out. Leeza stops by and tells the team they screwed up with pricing it over $100 and for selecting a product that has a one-month delay. But good luck anyway. Brooke says the product spoke to her.
Team Prima – Carson explains to his team that mostly moms who are 30 – 50 year-olds are their target audience. So why not have the two men pitch the product and stick the relatable female in the producer’s booth. Sheesh. Boy George will offer relatable testimonial if losing lots of weight and Carson will be the host. The models arrive to demonstrate how easy the item is to use. Lisa is ready to produce the crap out of this show and begins her bossy ways. Carson recommends staying under $100 for the product so they all agree to $99. Leeza stops by and feels that leaving the real athlete in the producer’s booth is a huge mistake. Carson explains that Lisa is too buff and that Boy George is more relatable because he used to be fat. A picture of Boy George at his heaviest is shown, and Leeza is like, “Woah! Use George.”
Team Prima goes first with their live presentation on Venice Beach. Carson has high energy and wastes no time jumping right into the product information. Lisa does the best she can assisting from the booth, but so far there aren’t very many callers buying the product. Bring on Boy George and his fat picture who says he will use the product to maintain his svelte look. And it’s over.
Team Arête goes next but before they go live, Brooke is already pushing Matt aside to work with the real QVC host. Brooke’s plan is to make this product so special, people won’t mind the high price or one-month delay. She is doing a great job giving a demonstration and explaining what areas will see an improvement. Heck, I want one of these slide thingies. But they are having the same problem the other team had of not a lot of calls, but when Laila finally comes on-air to say how much she loves this product, calls spike.
The Boardroom Feedback
The Governor begins with talking about his days working out at Muscle Beach. Yawn. Carson says he thought they did well because they had a great product and their team functioned well together. Carson explains they chose the exercise piece because they all gravitated toward it and it was available immediately. They discuss Lisa not being part of the on-air team, and what a mistake it was to not use her, but Carson felt Boy George had a real story real people would relate to. Next, Arnold tells Lisa Leslie she looks fantastic for her age. For her age! Leeza Gibbons drops her head on the table, probably wishing Trump was back, but he would have said something like that, too. Again the board tells Carson he should have had Lisa out front, not Boy George. Next up is Brooke who explains that she has sold on QVC so was very comfortable. Matt new the women were the target audience and no one wanted to look at him anyway, so didn’t mind being the producer. Brooke says they went for a higher priced item because this task is a numbers game. Patrick says there’s a huge psychological difference between $109 and $99.
Here are results:
Team Priva: Sold 88 units of the Double Flex for a total of $8,798
Team Arête: Sold 156 units of the Obsidian Slide for a total of $17,148
The Winners and Losers
Team Arête is the winner! Brooke wins $50K again for Operation Smile. Congrats! That’s a lot of smiles.
Team Arête sold almost double Team Prima. Leeza explains that the consumer wasn’t taken on a visual journey of what they could look like by Team Prima. And Lisa didn’t change things up as the producer when she saw sales were flat. Arnold says Lisa should have made the decision to change places with Carson while on-air and leave the booth. Lisa says she told Carson that she could relate better to their audience but Carson wanted George. Arnold says George was on air for too short of time to have any real affect. Boy George is just sitting there while this is going on. Leeza explains to Boy George all of his missed opportunities. Then Arnold tells Carson all of his missed opportunities. But surprise, surprise. Arnold is firing not one person, but two. Carson and Lisa, you are terminated. Get to the choppa!
How about that for a shocker. Many of us thought Carson would make it to the finals. Next week is the semi-finals as the final four go head to head. Who do you think will be in the finals? Your choices are: Goy George, Brooke Burke-Charvet, Laila Ali, and Matt Iseman.
I am so lucky to combine blogging with my guilty pleasure of watching reality TV. I read all the comments and respond to most. Feel free to reach out to me. If you like fiction, I have two published novels: Three Days in Purgatory and A Reason to Run.