We have made it. As much as we confess to enjoying every episode, we always have the semi-final of The Apprentice in mind. It is by far the best episode every season. “Interviews” are guaranteed to provide satisfying reality TV as the sweaty, desperate candidates are called out for their bullshit. Most of us have a CV. I am guessing that 80% of you have exaggerated or sold a lie in at least one of the bullet points. However, when it comes to providing a business case for investment, it is very difficult to hide and to divert the blame elsewhere. You are the case study. You are the blame.
So what happened in The Apprentice? As “Interviews” is a different format to all the other episodes. I have decided to break down how each candidate performed. Before I start the breakdown I would like to say that despite this episode being the standout of the series, it confirmed to me that this year’s The Apprentice is a bloody disgrace. I’ll explain why soon. Let’s have some fun….
The fact that we have had to suffer with this woman for 11 weeks makes us all heroes. I congratulate you all. I found it enjoyable to watch the one person who would not shut her mouth every week get shut down so easily, and so calmly by the interviewers. Who knew that after all this time of Elizabeth guaranteeing millions to Lord Sugar that all she was planning to do was run an online florist? Lord Sugar likes to make big numbers, obviously. It was obvious this is what the interviewers were going to point out.
Elizabeth’s business plan was not the worst ever for The Apprentice but I have to highlight that I expected more after the pain she has put me through. I think what was more frustrating is that even with her shoddy interviewing techniques, Lord Sugar still had an eye for her. I immediately fist pumped when she got fired. It is finally over people. We do not have to endure her for any longer.
Smooth operator…smoother operator! Not so much this week. The greatest part of week 11 is that candidates cannot hide behind their shiny faces. James clearly struggled with the pressure of the interviews to the point that he did shed a tear. His entire persona was broken. James has been a favourite of mine for a while mostly because he keeps it cool and shows common sense, however, his business case was not the best. As Karen Brady stated, Lord Sugar will be investing in him if he wins, not his business. The problem with that is we are going backwards. That is what The Apprentice used to be about: hiring an apprentice. This is about hiring a business partner.James deserves to be in the final but I am not so sure on him being a business partner. What might win it for him is the fact he is up against Sarah.
Joanna really impressed me last week with her fashion task. She really grabbed it by two hands and I think I may be correct in saying she drove the team to the most convincing win of this season. You could not help but feel sorry for her in the interviews. Unlike Sarah, James and Michaela, she buckled under pressure when the interviewer threw a spanner in the works. The fact of the matter is, her business plan for fashion did not hold up because she had not thought of every element needed to run an online fashion business.
I have to give her props however for her social responsibility idea; when the successful buy her clothes, those less fortunate get some clothes. What a thoughtful idea for any fasion company. I think Joanna would have made a good finalist but she was pretty argumentative and lacking ideas throughout the entire process. I was not surprised to not see her in the final.
Quite possibly the weakest finalist I have seen since… oh last season. I feel with Lord Sugar’s decision he is reverting back to the apprentice outlook rather than the business partner. First of all, Sarah’s business is nothing new, with various competitors who are probably better than what she does in most aspects. There was an air of embarassment when one of the interviewers brought out three similar brands of sweets. When she blurted out that the bow makes the difference I bowed my head in disbelief.
The nail in the coffin is when we found out that she has had this business for seven years and still does not have a workable website. Nor has the business really moved forward. I have nothing personal against Sarah but I cannot believe she has made it to The Apprentice final. On top of this, she has barely made an impact week by week. I found her to be quiet.
And here we go. The reason why I think Lord Sugar and his show has completely lost touch with reality. Not only did Michaela handle the interviews immensely well, she also had potentially the best business case. The way she fired shots back to the interviewers was not only impressive but they were not embarassed either. Despite her claim to lack confidence, she did not hold back and she really went for it. When she firmly told the interviewer that she will return to her business over other competitors in two years my jaw dropped. The interviewer had no response. Well played.
The fact that she did not make the final does not make sense at all. Let me explain.
You sound disgusted. What happened?
I am. I really am. Let’s breakdown the facts:
- Sarah has had a business for seven years. Barely grown. Website does not work. Quiet for most of the series.
- James has a flimsy business case and whilst I agree he is a good candidate and deserves to be in the final, he has never been in business.
- Michaela has a firm business plan with potential to make big money, which is what Lord Sugar wants, but because she has many other businesses and entrepenurial flair he decides to not put her in the final.
What is the point then? When they cast for the show why don’t they just pick people who are not good at what they do? I’ve completely lost all respect for the concept. The Interviews were good but Lord Sugar and his aides lacked common sense and they have seemed to forgotten the point. To find a good business partner.
Deserved finalists for this year’s The Apprentice?
James, yes. Sarah, no.
The Final prediction…
It has to be James doesn’t it? Knowing my luck Sarah will pull the rabbit out of the hat with a grand business idea to present that will completely embarass my entire recap here.
Yes, obviously watch the final but next year The Apprentice may have lost me as a viewer.
I will be live tweeting the final on twitter handle @ReadySteadyCut so make sure you give us a follow!