A hundred years ago when I worked in marketing I had a dream of competing on The Apprentice, but before I had the chance to apply for a spot the show was converted to The Celebrity Apprentice, making it just a tad bit more difficult to get on. No matter, I trudged on. My dream took another hit when the host and creator of the show, Donald Trump, decided to run for president AND THEN FUCKING WON. I’d lost all hope, but just as I was about to light the match and watch my dream go up in flames NBC interrupted me with a commercial promoting The New Celebrity Apprentice. Assuming I manage to reach some sort of celebrity status (which I won’t) before the show is completely cancelled (which I’m sure it will be) I still may have a shot (which I don’t).
So what’s so different about The New Celebrity Apprentice? Well let’s see. For starters there’s a new host: Arnold Schwarzenegger, er, Governor Schwarzenegger – the contestants are expected to call him this which is pretty demanding considering his approval rating was a record low of 23%. But that’s not the point. The point is he’s the new host/boss, and whereas Trump recruited his children and celebrity guests to serve as his advisors, Schwarzenegger recruited his nephew and celebrity guests to serve as his advisors. You see? Different.
With The New Celebrity Apprentice comes a new cast complete with athletes, musicians, reality TV stars and a YouTube Celebrity. The men’s team (Team Arete) includes 80’s pop star Boy George; comedian Jon Lovitz and his dog, Jerry Bruckheimer; former UFC fighter Chael Sonnen; Mötley Crüe front-man Vince Neil; former football star Ricky Williams; American Ninja Warrior host Matt Iseman; Carson Kressley from Queer Eye for the Straight Guy; and former football star Eric Dickerson. The women’s team (Team Prima) consists of Kyle Richards from the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills; Carnie Wilson of Wilson Phillips; former model and host of some sort, Brooke Burke; Snooki, who is best known for appearing on the Jersey Shore; 4-time undefeated boxing world champion Laila Ali; Porsha Williams from Real Housewives of Atlanta; Olympian and former basketball star Lisa Leslie; and one of the first YouTube celebrities ever created, Carrie Keagan.
Now that we’ve met the new cast let’s talk about what else is new: The Boardroom. I mean look, they still go into the boardroom and face the boss and his advisors, and then they get asked how they think they did and then smacked back down to reality by being told how they actually did. And sure, when one team wins they go back and drink champagne and watch the losing team get questioned on what went wrong, and then the losers all blame each other, and then the project manager brings back two people, and then they fight about who did the least, and then someone gets fired. But THIS boardroom is located at Schwarzenegger, LLC headquarters in Los Angeles as opposed to Trump Tower in New York.
Currently the women are off to a bad start. The first assigned task is to host a 10-minute presentation promoting Tyra Banks’ new make-up line. Simple enough yet they manage to botch the presentation by not utilizing their own celebrity as well as beginning it with all of the women confused about what their jobs are and ending it with everyone else confused as to why Carnie Wilson is screaming into a microphone. Porsha, who served as the project manager for the losing team, brings back Carrie from YouTube and Snooki from Jersey Shore, then manages to talk her way out of being fired, thus resulting in the first YouTube celebrity to be the first fired. The next task is to create a commercial for Trident that features a variety of smiles. Not too complicated yet Team Prima goes on to blow it by creating an ad that featured none of what the executives wanted, a fact Lisa Leslie points out during the planning phase and again in the boardroom, which leads to her becoming enemy #1. Fortunately for Lisa the suits hated the concept which happened to be Kyle’s idea. Unfortunately for Carnie, who happened to be the project manager, she failed to bring back Kyle, a decision Arnold, I mean Governor, did not agree with, resulting in Carnie’s departure. And not a moment too soon, her over-animated expressions were very nails-on-a-chalkboard. I had to stop myself grinding my teeth during her scenes; had she not have been fired I would’ve needed dentures halfway through episode 2.
Now for the grand finale, the BIG new aspect of The New Celebrity Apprentice: The Catchphrase. Along with Donald Trump went his catchphrase “You’re Fired”, leaving many of us (or probably no one) to wonder what the new catchphrase would be. Well wait no more because it’s exactly what you thought it would be (or maybe you didn’t, who cares): “You’re Terminated”. I bet you thought he was going to say “Asta la vista, baby”, hahahahaha. Well he said that, too. He also said “Get to the choppuh”, which the loser does, and then they’re pretend flown away along with the last of the new.
Unlike the women’s team who spent the entire first episode losing, the men’s team seem a bit more together. They also appear to get along quite well, with their only major tiff so far being Boy George getting upset with Vince Neil for drinking while working. It’s only been one episode but I think I’ve seen enough to make my pick to win, or at the very least make it to the finals: American Ninja Warrior host Matt Iseman. He may arguably be the lesser known of the male celebrities but if past seasons are anything to go by (which they’re not because they’re the old Celebrity Apprentice) then a win could possibly land him his own talk show (which it won’t because this is the New Celebrity Apprentice, light-years different from the old one).
On the next New Celebrity Apprentice there will be more tasks, teammates will argue, they’ll all go back to the boardroom, one team will lose and then someone will get fired. Not like the old Celebrity Apprentice. It’s not.
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