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Episode 4: Beauty and The Brand

Stuart Baggs | 21:56 UK time, Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Another week, another life affirming episode of The Apprentice; restoring your faith in humanity like a vet putting down the family pet. In this case of course our helpful vet is Lord Sugar with a fresh candidate each week put out of their misery.

And what a week it was, with skincare expert Susan doing a fantastic job of exfoliating the other candidates. Talking of rubbing others up the wrong way, did anyone else share my shudders when Jim offered his helping "extra pair of hands" on the massage table? No wonder people didn't want to extend their free trials!

Apparently these are tough economic times, so getting paying customers to have stones wedged between their toes was quite an impressive "feet". Expect next week's task to involve selling magic beans and vegetarian peace biscuits to unsuspecting members of the public.

In a shock result, a poor performance by Team Venture was overshadowed by an unforgivable loss for Team Logic. The writing was on the wall for Felicity and she was unceremoniously despatched from the boardroom.

Thanks to those of you who left comments especially Robyn who correctly noticed that I am indeed an utter legend. I also agree with ChrisMorgansForehead, Jim is looking like a pretty strong contender. I'll add just one caveat; Jim's facial expressions during massages are just plain wrong.

Please keep your comments coming, my butler reads them all and makes sure to pass the best ones on.

On that note, I'm off for a spraytan. Paper bra and pants at the ready.

Stuart Baggs

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Good show today, thought Felicity was the right choice to go in the end although yet another show passes when we don't see Edna do anything! If she lands in the final three I think she'll be a goner, not seen her do anything since the first task!

    Jim looked uncomfortable in this task, hope we'll see him back to his old Jedi self next week.

    And Felicity did really well in You're Fired, was strong enough to stand up and admit where she went wrong. Didn't like the fact the other two girls in the final three didn't even say goodbye to her though, it's that kind of thing that keeps propagating the "women are too bitchy for business" image.

  • Comment number 2.

    I very much agree with Chizzle. The image women on the show sometimes portray doesn't work in the favour of the majority. It also got me wondering what Lord Sugar actually thought about women from the bickering during tasks and more bickering in the boardroom.
    I actually thought, for a second, that they assumed this pleased Lord Sugar in some way.
    Oh well, all negativity aside - very good show tonight. I do see Jim and Tom going far.
    As for Vincent, aw shucks. He seems an able guy, just sometimes unlucky.

    I'd like to see him involved in a task that plays to his strengths.

  • Comment number 3.

    Hi,
    Another great episode ov the Apprentice.

    I picked up on a few points re:the 'loozing team' and where I think they went wrong. The point regarding one ov the apprentices being in the treatment room for 3 hours without a client was a good point, on this issue alone, I would have fired her. Did the girl not have one thought in thoze three hours, alarm bells should ov rang after the first half ov an hour. Then once woken up...not just her, though the entire team. Not one ov them, not even the team leader, thought to display any ov the products within the treatment room itself, especially upon the reception desk, This I feel was the fundamental floor during the entire demonstration, most sales ov course would have been made here, especially given the fact, as they all pointed out, that the point ov sale and the treatment room were a good distance away from each other. Any good sales person should ov known that regardless ov the quality ov the product, once they leave the point ov demonstration or sale the lead is lost. Lord Sugars point ov an escort between the sales floor, treatment room and vice versa was indeed the logical approach to that situation.Therein lies the lack ov strategy Lord Sugar referred to. Given those points too, I feel Lord Sugar made the absolute correct choice this evening in his decision. The entire strategic approach and planning was floored from the start on those points alone. Well done Lord Sugar. Oops to the Team and its leader. (as ov course, team leader or not, none came up with any ov those points). Not good not good at all.

  • Comment number 4.

    My Father told me that against advice of his senior managers, he gave Lord Sugar his first loan. He was always very proud of this as it showed he'd got it right when he thought Lord Sugar was "a good chap". I'm sure Lord Sugar will look beyond appearances when he sorts his current intake out and find the "good chap or chapess!!

  • Comment number 5.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 6.

    How on earth did Felicity (25 May) succeed as a contender of 16 on The Apprentice when she said she could not really work with Lord Sugar as a business partner - shown on The Apprentice - You're Fired. How big of her to make that comment.
    What a sore loser and being unprofessional. She deserved NOT to have the other two contenders saying goodbye but rightly walking past her. What a waste of someone else's lost opportunity in what must be hundreds who don't make that final 16. Never mind about not selling products in her own business as it does not involve selling products, with that same attitude she will soon go under and I hope she does not gain financially from this short term fame.
    Surely all contenders on applying should be questioned on how much they know about Lord Sugar and why they think they would make a good business partner with him.

  • Comment number 7.

    From what we've seen so far.

    Edna: "I've done my bit and now I'm keeping my head down for a few weeks"

    Ellie: "I'm a great team player and that's why I'm not putting myself forward until you're all fired"

    Jim: "I could use my Jedi skills to get Lord Sugar to give me the money, but I have to go back to the asylum before the final"

    Helen: "I'm a PA and a PA I am"

    Natasha: "It was everybody else's fault Lord Sugar"

    Vincent: "Where's Dellboy"

    Zoe: "Inside I'm very good at this, but on the outside I'm a little bit too quiet"

    Leon: "How can I get out of this and do what I want to do? The old little finger trick of course!"

    Tom: "Tom bone connected to your foot bone, Foot bone connected to your ankle bone, Ankle connected to your leg bone... what day is it? Dunno, does it matter? What is matter?"

    Melody: "Thanks for the offer Lord Sugar, but I don't need it as my business on the moon has already taken off"

    Susan: "I'm so cute (flutters eyelids), so just give me the money so I can buy loads of stock that I can't sell"

    Glen: "Time is money, so Just give me the job now and stop wasting it Lord Sugar"

  • Comment number 8.

    Would it be possible for someone to inform the very ignorant Susan Ma that not everyone in Dudley (the location of the 'out of town shopping centre') is poor. It is probably more likely that they don't want to buy over-priced rubbish. I was surprised the BBC screened this comment as it is extremley offensive to viewers watching from the town.
    While we are on the subject, why didn't the BBC explain that the Westfield (Merry Hill) shopping centre is not in Birmingham, but in Dudley? Is it because it is full of poor people and you are worried middle-class viewers would turn off?

  • Comment number 9.

    Must say I found Natasha to be an unpleasant individual in last night's episode and thought Karren Brady summed her up very well; the unpleasantness did provoke a response from me that Natasha probably would have wanted, i.e. I visited this website to view her audition, however within 10 seconds of playing it I thought "Good Lord.....it's an aggressive David Brent!".

    I sadly know that from now on in each time I see her on screen the only vision I will have in my head is her 'dancing' to a fusion of Flashdance and MC Hammer....


  • Comment number 10.

    @8
    It's going to be included because it shows the sort of person Susan is.
    I don't understand why you'd argue that middle class people would turn off because it wasn't in Birmingham, I'm fairly certain the show is watched for the business and the, for want of a better word, contestants, not the location.

    I really don't like a lot of them this year, they're nearly all playing a game, and many of the women continue to perpetuate the idea that you have to be bitchy to succeed in business. Ellie especially repeated at least 3 times that you can't have friends in business etc.
    Jim, Tom or Leon to win, they're good honest guys who can hold their hands up and admit when they're in the wrong.

  • Comment number 11.

    Year after year, the 'committee-thinkers' in the running appear to be pathologically predisposed to tell anyone with a vaguely "geeky" individualistic demeanour, to stop reading / speaking / thinking, regardless of what they say, how they say it, or where or not the point is valid. This year it's Tom being patronised / mocked / dismissed even when he's right, the other year it was Lorraine Tighe.

  • Comment number 12.

    I was being sarcastic about middle class people turning off - clearly that didn't across in my comment.

  • Comment number 13.

    This week kicked off with a strangely unprepared Inspector Gadget (aka Tom), the courier arrived and he wasn’t wearing his suit. Was this an omen? I took it to be a bad sign. (He did, however, have on bright blue pants. Not sure whether that was significant, but you can never tell with this show….) Anyway for some bizarre reason, the team were chauffeured to the British Museum (which might have ‘dinosaurs and stuff’ according to Violet/Susan) to be told by LudAllen that they task was beauty “A massive business” said LudAllen and their “next task is to get a piece of that action.” LudAllen added that there was money to be made "if you know what you’re doing." Unfortunately for LudAllen's bank balance, it transpired that none of the candidates (not even Violet/Susan who works in the skincare industry) knew what they were doing... My take on tonght's episode http://realitytvarmchair.blogspot.com/2011/05/apprentice-did-you-know-that-susan.html

  • Comment number 14.

    To contributor of comment no. 8:
    I agree with you that I was initially very shock with Susan's comment about people being poor when they didn't want to buy her product, but having worked in media, I feel that it's important to note that when the statement was made, Susan was not facing the camera so we couldn't really tell just by her tone of voice if she was sneering or complaining or just plain frustrated. Moreover, having read her profile, it is clear that she's no stranger to selling to a range of people from different background - "Her first ever job was working on a market stall selling skin care products". I don't always like Susan, but for some reason, in the last episode, I felt that she deserved some support especially when it seemed like she had become a target for women like Edna, Zoe and the other woman whom I still couldn't remember what she's called). In the business world, I believe women are so much more supportive than that. Women I have worked with would have pulled up their sleeves and helped to sell the products instead of ganging up on their team members. We didn't see the men on the camera, but I wouldn't be surprised if they found the whole thing distasteful and therefore, preferred to stay out of it. I don't suppose Susan would win, but I do want the most decent candidate to win.

  • Comment number 15.

    Great to hear from you again Stuart, everyone's favourite motormouth of the last series! The Brand returns, auditioning for an alternative career as a television critic ;)

    One thing that does continue to surprise me in this show is the lack of common sense on display, and that was shown by the loosing team - they were told in the task intro that there is a huge profit margin...in TREATMENT. So why did they sell products all day, like any Johnny could've done in any sector? No disrespect of course, but my point is, they didn't take advantage of the lucrative element of the sector they were operating in when it was staring them in the face. Despite the spectacular downfall of Susan on Venture, the consistant stream of treatments all day saw them over the line, plus what I thought was a brilliant performance from Leon in selling. That may well have earned him a little favour with Big S - selling and operating well even when out of his comfort zone a little and in an area he has little experiance in. Him, Jim and Vincent are looking pretty strong - Vincent is reminding me a bit of Chris and yourself from the last series, Chris in the way that he keeps landing in the loosing team and in the boardroom despite doing not badly, and yourself for his slightly outspoken nature - ain't got a patch on yourself, of course.

    All fascinating stuff so far.

 

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