The Celebrity Apprentice recap: The Sweet Smell of Success
Arsenio Hall and Co. are forced to shill for Trump’s new cologne, because who wouldn’t want to smell like Donald Trump?
“I can tell you the rules of chess, but I can’t tell you the rules of Celebrity Apprentice. That’s what’s beautiful about it.” – Penn Jillette
Yes! Yes! Yes! A million times yes! Never have truer words been spoken by any person on any subject in any era. In one quick stroke in his town car after being eliminated, Penn Jillette crystallized and summarized precisely what makes The Celebrity Apprentice the most wonderfully absurd and amazing television experience of our time. Some viewers may find themselves frustrated by the complete lack of consistency in terms of why Donald Trump fires anyone. One week Trump is firing someone because of a poor track record; another week he is firing someone solely because they did not perform in that single task. One week Trump is firing someone because they didn’t do enough; another week he is refusing to fire someone because they can’t be the one to blame since they didn’t do anything. One week Trump is firing someone because they won’t help the team going forward; another week he is saying that should have no bearing on the decision. People who look down on the show say it has no integrity. I say WHY ARE YOU LOOKING FOR INTEGRITY ON THE CELEBRITY FREAKING APPRENTICE?!?
So what if the show makes about as much sense as a Garth Brooks-gone-goth alter ego. That’s what makes it so genius. Half the fun in watching it, of course, is seeing Trump rationalize his reasoning for why he is firing someone due to performance when we all know he simply wants to keep the people that he feels make the best television. For those that don’t believe my point about his real motive for keeping people around, allow me to remind you: six people were fired before Gary Busey! And just look at this year: Lisa and Dayana are still around even though they have now lost 8 out of 11 projects. 8 out of 11!
So why can’t Penn figure out the rules to Celebrity Apprentice? Because. There. Are. No. Rules! And that is precisely the way we want it. The more ridiculous the better. Besides, would you rather play chess or watch Aubrey O’Day press her vagina next to Arsenio Hall’s neck? The answer to that question is revealed simply by the fact that you have already read this far. Now keep reading for my favorite moments from last night’s episode.
1. Hey, Let’s All Talk About Clay Aiken’s Testicles!
Frankly, I am stunned that I made it 400 words into this recap without mentioning Clay Aiken’s testicles. Not that I make it a habit of discussing such things at length, but if someone on this show is going to start comparing the size of his testicles to the size of someone else’s testicles, well, then how can I not discuss it? The “someone else’s” testicles in question were none other than Penn Jillette’s. When Trump announced to the teams that they would be creating a store display and slogan for The Donald’s new fragrance, Success, Penn said he didn’t want to be Project Manager because he knew not of such things (of course, that didn’t stop him from relentlessly suggesting how to do every single element of the task). So Clay took it on instead. Clay wisely brought this up in the Boardroom, telling Trump, “It’s surprising to think that I’m the one that has the bigger balls of the two of us.” Personally, I am a bit surprised they didn’t have a “Boardroom Ball-Off” right then and there to settle the dispute. For what it’s worth, my “biggest balls” money would have been on George Ross.
NEXT: Dayana wants to get naked…FINALLY!
2. How Penn Jillette Spells Success
I’m just going to come right out and say it: Am I the only one that felt super awkward watching Penn forcibly move Dayana’s head around his chest? I get that he was trying to show the team his display concept for a hot woman’s face next to a male torso, but the way he put her head in a vice next to his abdomen was mildly creepy.
But Penn wasn’t the only Forte member getting a bit randy for this project. Dayana wanted to show some skin as well — her own skin. “I just want everybody naked,” said Dayana after pitching her idea of a Trump tie flanked by her own unclothed boobs. “We will find a way to get you naked at some point,” promised Clay, but not for this task. (DAMN YOU, CLAY AIKEN!) Besides, Clay wants nothing to do with Dayana’s boobs. He’s too busy obsessing over the hot male model. “Once the model showed up, we put him in a shirt and tie and tried to do him,” Clay informed us. That’s right: do him. This was after he pawed at the model’s collar, yet before he unnecessarily straightened his tie, admitting that he “just wanted to touch you.” It was clearly only a matter of time before Clay pulled a Penn and grabbed the model’s head and forced it onto his chest, but sadly the show decided to cut to commercial instead.
3. An UnSUCCESSful Presentation
Groping of male models aside, Clay Aiken has been a super strong competitor. He was my pick to win it all at the start of the season, and even with this loss I see no reason to change that now. Plus, truth be told, I thought his display for Trump’s Success cologne blew Aubrey’s out of the water. But man, oh man, that was an awful presentation. Clay simply spoke for a few seconds and then asked if the execs had any questions. “No, keep going,” replied the confused Macy’s executive. So Clay stuttered, spoke for about 10 more seconds…and then finished again!
What in the name of Brian Dunkleman was that all about? I don’t care if you have nothing else to say, your whole presentation can’t be roughly the same length as a Kim Kardashian marriage. Just talk! Make something up! Here’s a list of topics that Clay Aiken could have discussed rather than simply stopping: What he loved about the cologne (lie if you have to…and you have to!); his thoughts on “success” in general; the apparently irresistible male model they used; Penn Jillette’s testicles; that unsightly red leather jacket he wore while singing “Grease” on American Idol (Youtube it); anything in the world basically. Talk. man, talk! Lou Ferrigno would be horrified. You are clearly only giving 100% — at best.
Clay is quick on his feet so I was surprised he was so flummoxed in this situation, but since there is nothing funnier than watching people screw up on national television, his pain became our gain. Especially since we knew he would never be fired so was in no real danger.
NEXT: Aubrey goes head and shoulders above the rest
4. Aubrey Presents Arsenio With a Personal Neck Warmer
Aubrey is not shy when it comes to sharing her opinions. Aubrey is not shy when it comes to criticizing others. Aubrey is not shy when it comes to hogging all the credit. And Aubrey is evidently not shy about thrusting her hooha right on the man who called her a “whore” a few days prior. “Aubrey had a great idea,” Arsenio explained. “She said ‘Let me put my vagina on the back of your head.’” I have to concur with Aresnio on this one — it is a great idea! Forget about the photo she was allegedly trying to take by climbing up onto Arensio’s shoulders. I think Celebrity Apprentice should make all the players complete the next project while on the shoulders of other contestants. I realize this would be completely absurd, however I also realize this is Celebrity Apprentice we’re talking about and in a weird way, it also makes complete and total sense. I can already picture the Boardroom debate after:
Donald Trump: “Clay, whose idea was it to put Teresa on top of Lisa’s shoulders?”
Clay Aiken: “Um, I believe that was a group decision, sir. Lisa is bigger than Teresa, so we figured she could hold the weight more effectively.”
Donald Trump: “Yeah, but don’t you think Teresa has been underestimated this entire time? I mean, my wife tells me she’s incredible.”
Teresa Giudice: “OMG! I totally love your wife. Oh, and also…MONSTERS!”
Donald Trump: “See, I think that’s fantastic. Monsters is an amazing adjective. Well said, Teresa.”
Lisa Lampanelli: “To your point, sir, we weren’t sure Teresa could handle the weight, so we put her on top. Also, I realize this is neither here nor there, but Dayana is a f—ing piece of s—!”
Donald Trump: “Interesting point, but Dayana isn’t even on your team anymore since I switched up the squads again this week.”
Lisa Lampanelli: “Wait, she’s not? I can’t keep track of who is on my team anymore, but my point stands. She’s a f—ing piece of s—!”
Clay Aiken: “Oh, can I have the male model on my team?!”
Donald Trump: “ABSOLUTELY NOT! Only female models are allowed on this show! You should know that, Clay. In fact, just for that — Clay, you’re fired. Go on, get out. Great job. Now get the hell out. You’re a fantastic star. Go! Amazing stuff all around, Clay. Now get out of my sight.”
5. Speaking of Male Models…
Trump men are fantastic in many ways. But modeling is not one of those ways. That didn’t stop Aubrey — who is determined to worm her way into the Trump family at all costs — from asking hair spray hoarder Eric to model for a silhouette photograph for their display. “You’re not so hard on the eyes, young Eric,” Aubrey cooed while taking the photos. “What if I was just some crazy stalker and I wanted to get a lot of photos of you?” You don’t need to stretch your imagination particularly far to envision that scenario.
Later in the Boardroom, Aubrey informed Donald that, “we used a sexy model ourselves,” which led to this response: “Aubrey, let me ask you a very important question. Maybe the most important question of the night: Do you think that Eric Trump has a better hairline than Donald Trump?” I can answer that. HELL TO THE NO! While Eric’s hair definitely inspires curiosity and confusion, Donald Trump’s hairline qualifies as no less than the eighth wonder of the world.
Instead of enjoying having his son be a representative of his younger self, The Donald eventually tired of the discussion, slamming his fist down on the table twice to interrupt Teresa’s explanation on the matter. (And we all know how much he and his wife love Teresa!)
NEXT: A blast from The Apprentice past
6. The Triumphant (and Curmudgeonly) Return of George Ross!
Holy crap, I love this cranky bastard. George Ross is a remarkable human being. I’m not speaking of his professional accomplishments, of course. Honestly, I have no idea what this guy has done in the business world and don’t really care. But when he comes back to the show that made him a household name (in houses that have nothing better to do than watch The Apprentice) everything seems right in the world. Besides, it also allows me to use excellent words like “grizzled” and “crotchety.”
Bless you, George Ross, for mistakenly calling Unanimous’ buildings out as a Rolls-Royce grill. Bless you for taking one look at the Eric Trump silhouette and dismissing it with “Yeah, that doesn’t look like Donald.” And bless you for inserting your own commentary while delivering the executives’ remarks in the Boardroom with, “They thought the silhouette was unappealing. I thought so too. I didn’t know who it was until you told me it was basically Eric.” But most of all, bless you for attempting to slide the photograph of Unanimous’ display across the table to team Forte…and failing miserably. George Ross! I’d love you even if we didn’t share the last name. This man-on-man love would no doubt cause you to feel very uncomfortable and you would then yell at me for being a whippersnapper or something. But I would love that too.
7. From Celebrities to Super Celebrities
So after Clay’s team lost, Penn was fired for coming up with the “You Earned it” slogan. (It’s kind of crazy that after being dominated by the men for weeks on end, that there are 4 women left and only 2 dudes.) Penn’s real miscalculation, however, was not fanning the flames of his early season feud with Clay. Had Penn yelled, bickered, and made more of a scene of himself, Trump would have kept him around for another week or two. A true rookie mistake by the master magician.
Anyhoo, we were once again treated to a wonderful postscript line from Trump after Penn had flashed his second peace sign and exited the premises courtesy of Adrian the elevator operator. “Well, he’s got a big career going, and it will continue to go, only get bigger.”
This is one of my favorite things about Donald Trump — the way he keeps insisting that everyone will get even more famous after appearing on his show. He said this about Dee Snider a few weeks back, yet I fail to see Twisted Sister charting alongside Adele, Taylor Swift, and Katy Perry. As for Penn, he’s currently the in-house entertainment at the Rio in Las Vegas. Nice hotel. Stayed there once myself. But I wouldn’t exactly say playing at the Rio — which is not even located on the Vegas strip — constitutes a fast pass to superstardom. And contrary to what Donald Trump may have you believe, nor is appearing on The Celebrity Apprentice.
So much tomfoolery, so little time. But now it’s your turn to weigh in on all the shenanigans. Glad or sad that Penn was fired? And what was your favorite madcap moment of the evening? Hit the message boards and let us know. And for more Celebrity Apprentice inanity and insanity, follow me on Twitter @DaltonRoss. Until next week: Cluck, Cluck…Splash!
The Celebrity Apprentice