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'The Celebrity Apprentice' recap: So Happy Together

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Apprenticepiersstephen_l

Apprenticepiersstephen_lGood news, PopWatchers: Both my cough and 100-degree fever have subsided, so I’ll no longer be stuck in that bitter, flu-induced haze that last week kept me from enjoying what would probably be this season’s best episode of Celebrity Apprentice. The bad news is that this week’s show didn’t quite measure up to the others in the drama department, even though it did boast a fairly notable guest star and the return of George (!). Even the boardroom was tame. I was hopeful that Trump would open a can on Nely when she said she couldn’t understand why the mogul couldn’t get past Gene’s “sacrifice” for her three weeks ago (her words: “Get over it.” Girl has got some cojones!). Instead, The Donald quietly fired the television producer, something he seemed to be itching to do ever since Gene’s ouster. Not that she should have necessarily gone home over Omarosa, who’s raking up quite a tally when it comes to losses. But could Celebrity Apprentice‘s producers really let go of Omarosa, especially after she poured that drink on Piers’ head?

Aside from Omarosa’s smack talk and Piers’ snippy comments, has the cutthroat spirit of The Apprentice lost its way this season? Granted, it’s nice that our celebrities are competing to win money for their charities, but, with the exception of last week, Celebrity Apprentice is beginning to feel like a more like a telethon than a drama-fueled hour of intense competition. Our cast members are dropping in and out from week to week (last week Tito had to attend a fight; this week Stephen Baldwin (right) skipped out to talk at a church), and they hardly even seem up to preserving the air of competitiveness. Not only that, but when Piers (left) called Lennox out on his poor managerial skills, the boxer and his teammates simply laughed in agreement. And we know that Lennox is a nice guy, but since when does an Apprentice project manager make decisions democratically? Come on, you had to think that a few flurries dropped in hell when Omarosa asked Trump if she could opt out of choosing two teammates to be placed on the chopping block. Not that we should be too worried about a snowstorm a-brewin’ in the underworld. Empresario’s project manager did manage to whip out her trademark fangs throughout the episode, even if only for a few minutes during the episode’s first few minutes.

addCredit(“Celebrity Apprentice: Tommy Baynard”)

This week’s challenge: Borrowing a page from Project Runwayseason 2 (only natural, given this week’s special guest), ourcelebrities were instructed to design a creative window displayadvertising Vera Wang’s new mattress line for Serta. Naturally, sincewe know that Lennox “I Like Cats” Lewis likes cuddly things, he waschosen as Hydra’s project manager this week. And if we didn’t know whyLennox chose to be a silent contributor over the past few weeks, boy,did we learn why last night. To say that our champion boxer doesn’tquite have a gift for words would be an understatement, not that thatmakes him any less likable. Could you imagine, though, how Lennox wouldsurvive in the corporate world, let alone the original Apprentice world? He would be eaten alive. But not, you know, in that Mike Tyson way.

With Lennox as the leader — if we can really call the vote-happyboxer a leader — the men pretty much developed their plans the same waythey had in the previous six weeks. Trace created a slogan, Piersthought it was a brilliant idea, and Tito and Lennox stood by anddaydreamed about their girlfriend and kittens, respectively. Thoughtheir brainstorming technique may have grown stagnant over time, atleast Hydra reclaimed their creative mojo. Not only did they not opt touse Lennox for his star power, but they also managed to think outsidethe box when it came to the challenge. Not that good ol’ Piers wasgoing to let his team’s plans to manifest too smoothly. Seems he was alittle starved for drama, and decided to call Lennox a “monster” andpoint out his lack of contribution. The tabloid king claimed thatHydra’s project manager neglected to share any ideas so he could not beblamed in case they lost. Hmm, I don’t know, Piers. Could it be thatLennox simply doesn’t have any ideas? How else do you explain hisagreeing to join the cast of Celebrity Apprentice in the first place?

Of course, Empresario had to tame a monster of their own. Aftera demure few weeks, Omarosa briefly unleashed the beast through a pettyargument with Piers in the show’s first few minutes. As soon as herteam banded together, however, the reality TV bad girl managed to spread thelove, at least for most of her teammates. Omarosa wasn’t shy aboutpointing out Marilu’s inability to hone in her creative enthusiasm(Surprising, considering Marilu seems to be the only celeb with achance of winning this thing). And she certainly was more than willingto rip on new team member Stephen Baldwin — or should I say Stevie B? —who arrived late and tried to alter their entire theme last minute(you’ve got to love that face Nely made when Baldwin unleashed his newnickname). Nonetheless, it was obvious that Stevie B provided too little toolate, as the girls were already stuck with their clichéd wedding plans.

Was it me, PopWatchers, or did the window unveilings seem awkwardand uncomfortable? I was expecting our two teams to exhibit theirwindows for longer than just a few minutes, and both displays were soobviously hidden from view for passers-by. And isn’t the point of awindow display to attract attention? Either way, Hydra’s clever Antonyand Cleopatra display clearly trumped Empresario’s scattered weddingset-up, even though the laptops and cell phones seemed out of place. As Lennox said, in a moment of syntactical genius, “At least we’re better overboard than underboard.”

At any rate, there really wasn’t anything more overbearing than Vera Wanglast night. Girl was a bit too excited about those window dressings,no? I understand it’s charitable to inflate our celebrities’ egos, butWang acted more like a six-year-old at a Wiggles concert than aworld-renowned designer.

Tell me, PopWatchers, do you think that Omarosa or Nely should havegone home this week? Do you think that this was the perfect week forLennox to whip out his democratic leadership style (only two days afterSupa Dupa Tuesday, of course)? Do you think that Stephen should havebeen given a second chance when he asked Trump if he could bow out ofthe competition? And, finally, who would you cast in the tragicallyinevitable Celebrity Apprentice 2?

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