Thursday, 30 April 2009

Value Added Twats

As you may have heard, there’s this job going at NotAmstrad. The pay will be bang on £100,000 which is much less than the runners-up will make from media appearances, and in order to succeed at it, you’ll need to lose all sense of personality or ambition and develop a strong appreciation for sitting in a storecupboard with no windows. Still, that’s months away and for now you’ve got a telly show to make… welcome to The Apprentice.

I’ve realised that every time I get to do a recap it’s a really dull week so I apologise in advance for this one and the rather dull task, it’s clearly my fault for being on the rota. So, onwards.

Last week Kate stormed to victory with an advert that had a jingle I’ve still got in my head a week later, whilst on the losing team, Philip bulldozed everyone into thinking selling breakfast cereals to children using a character called Pantsman, who is allowed to wear his pants outside his clothes, but you’re not because eating the cereal means you don’t put your pants on over your clothes. Everyone was confused, Kimberly proved to be a cream puff, but not in the least bit ruff or tuff and was FIRED and Steve recapped it all for you a little further down the page.

Crackden Apartments. Philip finally answers the phone in his pants, but it’s too late to try and get us interested in you now, cuntwipe.

This week we’re off to an auction house in Chiswick and in this place people come to have their products VALUED and sold. Get the emphasis there? Good, because the next think Sralan says is that this task is about selling. He’s then all cryptic and like ‘sell them but don’t take everything at face value’.

More team swapping, which makes Ignite and Empire meaningless as team names. Anyway, Kate and Noorul swap, presumably on the grounds that swapping possibly the best candidate with possibly the worst one will make the teams more even. Ben and Philip are the team leaders which automatically means there’s no-one to root for this week.

Sralan asks if everything’s clear – it truly isn’t.

Sralan PTCs that they have ten items but don’t have to sell them all, they do have to sell them at the right price and the right value. This wasn’t particularly clear from his instructions earlier, although it was revealed on You’re Fired that the written brief was a little clearer. The items they have to sell include a rug, some shoes and a box of books. Ben tells Imnite they need to value their items.

Ben VTs that he is a natural born leader and that’s what Sandhurst saw in him, and situations when he’s under pressure, under gun fire, is when he can lead. Interestingly, his voice wobbles a bit as he’s saying this.

Over at Egpire, Philip says he and Lorraine fight but he doesn’t want that any more. He then tells Lorraine off for looking at a rug which isn’t important. He VTs that she’s erratic, for example, she’s looking at a rug made ‘about five years ago’ and that she’s volatile.

Ben decides to ‘lead from the front’ and takes seven items to sell, whilst Philip divides his team’s articles in half.

Philip is convinced the skeleton has the highest value and goes to see a dealer in old curiosities. They tell him it’s amazing and ask if he’s sold that kind of thing. The dealer says no, it’s too new, and suggests they try the universities.

Ben ‘leads an assault’ on book dealers. Interestingly their pile includes some sort of Take That annual circa 1992. The VO tells us the booksellers know their stuff but can’t be rushed. After a few seconds, Ben starts to ask for a decision on a costume book, which the dealer says is worth £10 at the most. After a couple of valuations, Ben leads and says he can’t take any shit ‘I’m fed up of these book people talking shit to me for too long’. Debrabarr says they just want to talk at you. Ben then snarks that this is a horrible task for him to be PM of so will no doubt blame the task if it all goes wrong.

Philip still has his skeleton bone-on whilst Lorraine is keen on the rug. Philip says ‘it’s a nylon rug, made in the last year, try and heed some of my advice’. Lorraine tries to persuade him to get a valuation and he dismisses her.

Ben’s team go to another book dealer with their first edition Octopussy – it’s a James Bond specialist store, so they’ve struck gold. Debrabarr negotiates well and gets £100 from him. Ben shakes his hand, just in case you were worrying he didn’t totally nail that negotiation with his ace skillz.

Philip and co wheel their skeleton into a pub and accost some customers asking if they are doctors or nurses. Philip then shouts out ‘anyone interested in buying a skeleton?’ Someone asks how much and says he’ll give them two quid. Another man asks what it retails at. Philip says £250-300 and the man offers £150. They agree on £160 cash. Margaret says they were very lucky ‘they found someone in a bar who’d wanted one all his life’ but that they learned it was worth trying. I think she might be vaguely impressed at their gall.

Kate tries to flog another book to a market trader and they debate over whether or not she has hungry eyes, and I think he's trying to come onto her a bit which makes me feel rather queasy.

Yasmina and Ben sell some jellied eels in melting ice for £30 to a fishmonger who doesn’t seem keen but thinks getting on the telly might boost his business.

The voiceover tells us that the Indian rug is worth over £200. At this point, everyone I was watching with exploded with glee.

Philip tries to sell it at a flea market and the sellers all think it’s too expensive for them to afford. Margaret says this must be one of the most stupid activities they have ever engaged in. Lorraine VTs that she keeps bringing up the need for the rug to be valued and keeps being told it’s a piece of shite, so she;s quite confused as to whether it’s a gem or a piece of shite. Heh, love Lorraine a little bit today.

Noorul’s found a taker for the skeleton, and both the voiceover and Yasmina sound amazed he’s managed to sell. It’s apparently worth over £150 (not £250-300). They meet a man who says he’s a student and therefore needs a discount. He offers them £50 and Noorul flounders for an eternity before Ben steps in and says he appreciates the man’s a student, ‘but it’s springloaded on the jaw!’ They agree on £60.

Yasmina and Deke go to some rug shops in North London but are told it’s too expensive for that area by several shop owners, who clearly wouldn’t know a piece of one year old nylon shite if it walked into their shop rolled up. Oh, wait…

Philip and co try selling door to door, but people don’t seem to need rugs. Margaret is speechless and apart from Lorraine, they’ve ignored its true value all day and they’ll be lucky to get £10 for it the way they’re going on.

Two hours left and Ben can’t get a buyer for the commode. He suggests selling it as ‘an accessory, rather than what it actually is’. A dealer says it’s not interested as he doesn’t have clients for those types of chairs. They ask if he’ll buy it for a fiver. He says he’ll give them a fiver to go away. Ben wonders if they should offer people money to take it. He calls Debrabarr’s half of the team and tells them to get rid of the rug and come back to him. She says they don’t have time. Yasmina bitches that Debrabarr’s tone of voice is horrible, and she clearly hasn’t forgiven her for futureblackbabygate.

In Greenwich market, Ben’s trying to offload his remaining five items, including vintage shoes worth over £100. He suggests selling them as a load of crap for £1. Nick VTs that they’re treating the whole thing as a ‘flog-off’ and Ben needs to get a grip.

Thirty-five minutes to go, and Philip still has the rug and he ‘cannae believe they cannae sell it’. A market trader tells him she doesn’t have the clientele for it. Philip has not heard a single word a trader has said to him all episode. I imagine Philip’s head is like Homer Simpson’s when he has that little cartoon jingle going on in it all the time, only in Philip’s head is a loop of him singing the ‘pants on your head’ song and guffawing at himself. They call out at a passer by and ask if he wants to buy a rug. The man asks if it’s blue. Philip says he needs to sell it and will offer £50. The man says he wants blue. Mona says ‘there’s blue in it’. The man is all ‘are you avin’ a larf?’ He says he’ll give them £50 because it’s brand new (and he’s on telly). He goes off and Lorraine says ‘that was the gem’ and she feels the rug and the shoes were the valuable items. Philip says ‘you never fail to disappoint, you didn’t say anything about the rug all day and now you’re changing your tune’. A whole nation throws darts at their tellies.


Sralan says some of those products were worth more than you thought, bit like him, not much to look at but worth lots. He asks if Ben was a good team leader. A couple of the team go ‘alright’ in the most damning-with-faint-praise way ever. Sralan asks if he’s tired. Ben says ‘exhausted’. Sralan says ‘never mind’. He asks Ben if it was too tough for him. Ben says yeah but no but yeah but no.

He asks if Philip was a good team leader and if they've gotten over last week. Lorraine says yes, they were professional. Philip talks about the books and Sralan makes a racialist slur by saying he can’t understand Philip’s accent. He asks if anyone else made valuations. Lorraine says she wanted to value the rug but no-one else did and she didn’t want to cause trouble like on the previous task. Sralan says ‘but you were right last time’. Yes, and you told her off for it. Margaret calls her the ‘Cassandra’ of the team, which no-one else in the room gets, but Margaret is clearly on a BBC-sponsored mission to educate and inform us about classical mythology, so now we all know that Cassandra was a 'prophetess' who was always right but nobody listened to. Sralan says Lorraine needs to speak up, which is exactly the opposite of what he told her last week, so I think the poor bladdy woman's on a hiding to nothing, and tells Philip off for not taking any notice of his team.

Sralan will be calculating profit/loss on what they sold against what the items were worth. Impire make a loss of £96 and Egnite make a THUMPING net loss of £269. Sralan says as far as Philip’s team are concerned they won, but not for him as they made a bladdy loss. He says Philip’s mind is like concrete, fully mixed but set in its ways. Heh. He says their prize is truffle tasting, but not the chocolate kind. Kate cheers and everyone else looks nonplussed, presumably as they’d prefer chocolate.

The other team need to prepare themselves and they’re gonna need that bladdy commode as one of them’s gonna get fired.

At the meal, Philip says he’s always wanted this to happen to him, although we’re not clear what the ‘this’ is and he says there must be a real difference between cheap wine and other stuff because what they’re drinking is really smooth. No shit, Sherlock. He toasts ‘Cassandra’ for putting up with him and she looks displeased because she knows he's learned fuck-all this past couple of tasks.

Loser café is looking even more crumbly than ever. Yasmina says ‘it’ll be interesting to see where Sralan points us to apportion the blame’, clearly proving she will know how to read a boardroom should she end up leading a team in there. Interesting. Debrabarr VTs that she doesn’t know who’ll get fired but it won’t be her.

Sralan says anyone with half a brain cell would sit down and work out where the gems are in the pile of stuff and work out what to sell. Why didn’t that happen? It didn’t happen in the other team either, which might suggest that your instructions were a crock of shit. I’m just saying. Sralan says they failed in identifying prices and seemed to think it was important to sell at any price because for the first time ever they were clearly thinking of previous tasks. Nick says Ben closed the deal with the skeleton. Noorul says ‘no he didn’t, I did’. Nick says erm no you dickweed, you floundered about and Ben had to step in.

Sralan asks Debrabarr what the problem was and she says the division of items didn’t work, they should have divided them equally. Yasmina jumps in on her very quickly and says she’s making the same point over and over again and Debrabarr is just a vortex of negativity. Debrabarr says she sold the most and didn’t cause any rift in her group (Ben: ‘that’s cos I didn’t let you’). Nick says Ben was instrumental in the books. Debrabarr says ‘Nick, how can you say that? I sold it and Ben was just there’ and although SHE DID NOT just shout at Nick, she is actually completely in the right here. Ben flounders, because he knows he did fuck all, and ends up saying ‘are you disagreeing with Nick?’

Sralan tells her off for talking to Nick like he’s a second-class citizen, and really, she should totally know better than to react like that in the boardroom, but I can understand her frustration. However, making an enemy of Nick is never a good move, and this could come back to bite her in future weeks.

Sralan asks Ben who he’ll bring back. Ben says when you decide you look at how people have done over the whole competition. Sralan says ‘no you won’t, that’s my job, you pick on this task, you asswipe’. Ben says he’ll bring back Noorul and… Deke. Deke and Sralan are all ‘Deke? Read the room’ so Ben says ‘oh no no I was deliberating between Deke and Debra’. Debra says BRING IT LOSERBOY and Ben flimflams that he’ll bring Debra, he doesn’t know what James contributed. Sralan asks if he was bringing back Deke because a village was missing its idiot. In the end it’s Debra and Noorul. Noorul says ‘you’d better have good reasons for bringing me back’. Oh, Noorul.

Nick, Margaret and Sralan conflab and Nick says Ben’s lost his fighting spirit, and this from a man who got an offer from Sandhurst. Margaret: ‘he didn’t actually GO there, though, did he?’

Sralan says Ben looks like a defeated man. Ben says 'I CAN WIN', which is apparently this year’s MAKE ME PM and 'the man to my left doesn’t have any qualities'. Noorul tries to defend himself and the two of them shout over each other. Noorul says he was brought in because he had the balls to say the strategy was flawed because the others were shitting it in case speaking up puts them in the bottom three, which is the only insightful thing he’s said all series. Ben shouts that his strategy was fine. Debrabarr tries to argue and he shouts at her to shut up and LET ME FINISH. Debrabarr says ‘when you’re finished, will you let me know?’. Heh.

He moans at Debrabarr about being ‘corrosive’ and she says they should have divided the items up. He says ‘that’s got nothing to do with it’ (even though he had five items to flog at the last minute). They all bicker and Ben shouts and whinges that the other two shout too much. He says he brought Debrabarr back because she was rude about booksellers. Pot. Kettle. Debrabarr helpfully reminds him of this and he sniffles about how he didn’t and his MUM IS DEAD. Oh, wrong show.

Sralan asks Noorul why he shouldn’t be fired. Noorul says he sold three items (also: is it just me, or does Noorul look like a Halloween mask with those big dark circled hollow eyes of his?), and names the skeleton as one of these and the bike as another. Sralan says he sold the bike at a lower price than anything else. He says Ben is volatile and didn’t do anything, he’s rude, arrogant and doesn’t let anyone speak. This is usually the cure for Sralan to make some comment about how someone reminds him of his youth, so I’m not excited it’s going anywhere. Sralan says Ben talks down to so many people, he’s getting a rick in his neck looking up. Noorul thinks Ben should be fired.

Debrabarr thinks Ben should go for being an asswipe and Ben thinks Noorul should go because Sralan hates him and has had it in for him for weeks he’s sat on the fence throughout the competition. Noorul tries to defend himself and Ben goes ‘just let me finish (big huffy sigh), just let me finish’. Noorul tells him to speak properly and justify his reasons. Ben fails to do so.

Sralan asks why Ben shouldn’t be fired. He says I’m a good leader and I’m really really good at it and I CAN DO THIS. Noorul says Ben’s always on about his magazine deals. Ben says ‘that’s unfair, I say that erm, as a joke’. Sralan’s bladdy eyes go through his bladdy eyebrows.

Sralan is worried Ben is a broken man because of his age, which is not 24. Ben shakes his head. Sralan says Noorul is a bit lucky and other people have been outraged he hasn’t been brought into the boardroom when they were. Debrabarr, I can’t put up with someone with a mouth like yours, trust me love, you’re nothing special (but you could easily come in second). However, Noorul, to no-one’s surprise whatsoever, you’re fired. He tells Debrabarr never to shoot her mouth off like that again but fails to warn Ben for being a total cunt. He says whoever employs Noorul better get a receipt. That’s us isn’t it, from our taxes? Money back, NOW.

Coatwatch, boring and grey. How appropriate. (Although I’m secretly excited that it’s grey and not black). Noorul gives the usual ‘Sralan made the wrong choice’ spiel, but I don’t think he believes it.

Crackden apts. They are split over who should return, but ‘Cassandra’ thinks it’ll be Debrabarr in a shock firing. Ben and Debrabarr return. Deke tells Ben he gives it all mouth and then he crapped his pants. Beginning to love Deke, despite him clearly being a bit crap.

Next week: trade sales, which is always cause for much epic failery, although two sales tasks in two weeks is a little badly planned.

1 comment:

Kerouac said...

Highly entertaining summary!