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Paper Monitor

12:50 UK time, Thursday, 26 March 2009

A service highlighting the riches of the press.

For a lowly television reviewer, watching episode one of The Apprentice must feel like Christmas.

The Guardian deems it a cultural event worthy of its front page, although Nancy Banks-Smith rather blows her rare stint in the spotlight with an uncharacteristically prosaic summary of round one.

There's more to savour for Apprentice fans from the Daily Mail's Paul Connolly, who finds himself in his usual back row seat, page 25.

He deliciously describes sidekick Nick Hewer as "Sir Alan's representative on Earth" and loudmouth estate agent Philip Taylor as resembling footballer "John Terry with a GCSE".

The Independent devotes the whole of page three to the show, but Tom Sutcliffe is distinctly unimpressed with the heavily scripted "jokes" from the scowling ex-Amstrad boss.

And, in common with today's Magazine feature on bravado, Sutcliffe imagines Sir Alan giving the contestants an off-camera task to "come up with sentence that makes you look like the biggest [twit] in creation".

And it's all for what, asks the Times - last year's winner is working in the "digital signage business".

The Daily Telegraph already deployed its nuclear option on Wednesday, with a column by Suralan's other Earthling, Margaret Mountford, in which she described this intake as "quite an able bunch". Hard to believe, having watched one team wash cars with the windows open... But she does drop an insider's tip - keep watch on the fish in the penthouse aquarium.

Hewer is signed up to commentate for the Daily Mirror (who just isn't the same when you can't watch his eyebrow hoist incredulously upwards), and last year's loser, Michael "I'm a good Jewish boy but what does kosher mean?" Sophocles writes for the Sun.

And the latest pop reunion provides lots of fun for headline-writers:


"SPANDAU BELLY" (Daily Mail)


"IT'S TRUE!" (Mirror)


Come again?

Anyway, if you like these, you may like our midweek quiz on pop reunions. Where else might the Smiths and S Club 7 share page space?

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